Tired of getting stuck in traffic during your daily commute? We’ve got you covered! Here’s a list of the 11 best commuter motorcycles that will make your ride to work faster and more enjoyable. These bikes, available on Amazon US, offer a variety of styles and features to suit your needs. From sport bikes to touring bikes and dual sports, we’ve got something for everyone. Say goodbye to traffic jams and hello to the open road!
Commuter Motorcycle Buying Guide: Choose the Perfect Ride for Your Daily Commute
Finding the perfect commuter motorcycle can be a daunting task, especially with so many options available. This buying guide will help you make an informed decision by considering the most important factors when choosing a commuter bike.
1. Riding Style
First, determine your preferred riding style. Commuter motorcycles come in various styles, including sport bikes, cruisers, dual sports, and touring bikes. Each type has its unique characteristics and benefits, so consider which style suits your daily commute and personal preferences.
2. Engine Size
Consider the engine size that best suits your needs. Smaller engines (125cc-400cc) are great for city riding, offering excellent fuel efficiency and maneuverability. Mid-range engines (500cc-750cc) provide a balance between power and fuel economy, making them suitable for a mix of city and highway riding. Larger engines (750cc and above) are perfect for highway commutes and long-distance rides, providing more power and comfort at higher speeds.
3. Fuel Efficiency
Fuel efficiency is a crucial factor for a commuter bike, as it directly impacts your running costs. Generally, smaller engines offer better fuel efficiency, but some larger bikes can be surprisingly economical as well. Be sure to check the manufacturer’s claimed fuel consumption figures when comparing different models.
Comfort is essential for a daily commuter, as you’ll be spending a significant amount of time on your motorcycle. Look for bikes with an upright riding position, a comfortable seat, and adjustable suspension. Also, consider the seat height and ensure it’s appropriate for your inseam, as this can greatly impact your comfort and control.
5. Price and Maintenance Costs
Set a budget for your motorcycle purchase and stick to it. Don’t forget to factor in maintenance costs, insurance, and gear when setting your budget. Keep in mind that more expensive bikes may have higher maintenance costs, and some brands may have more affordable parts and service options.
Modern motorcycles come with various features, such as ABS (Anti-lock Braking System), traction control, and riding modes. While these features can enhance your riding experience and safety, they may also add to the cost of the bike. Decide which features are essential for you and look for bikes that offer them within your budget.
7. Storage and Accessories
For a commuter bike, storage options and accessories can make your daily rides more convenient. Look for bikes with built-in storage compartments or consider adding aftermarket luggage options such as saddlebags, top cases, or tank bags. Additional accessories like windshields, heated grips, and smartphone mounts can also improve your daily commute.
8. Test Ride
Before finalizing your decision, take a test ride on the motorcycle you’re considering. This will help you determine if the bike is comfortable, easy to maneuver, and suits your riding style. It’s also an excellent opportunity to assess the bike’s performance, handling, and ergonomics.
By considering these factors, you’ll be well-equipped to choose the perfect commuter motorcycle that meets your needs, preferences, and budget. Remember, the best commuter bike is the one that makes your daily ride enjoyable, comfortable, and stress-free.
What to Know Before Buying a Commuter Motorcycle
Purchasing a commuter motorcycle is a significant investment that can greatly impact your daily life. To ensure you make the right decision, consider the following factors before buying a bike for your daily commute:
1. Your Experience Level
Your riding experience should play a significant role in your motorcycle choice. If you’re a beginner, look for bikes with a manageable power output, lighter weight, and a lower seat height. More experienced riders can opt for motorcycles with larger engines and more advanced features.
2. Your Commute Distance and Route
Consider the distance and type of roads you’ll be riding on during your daily commute. For short city rides, a lightweight and fuel-efficient bike is ideal. However, if your commute includes highway stretches or longer distances, you may want to choose a bike with more power, better wind protection, and a larger fuel tank.
3. Weather and Climate
The weather and climate in your region should also influence your motorcycle choice. If you live in an area with frequent rain, opt for a bike with good wet weather performance, such as ABS and traction control. For colder climates, heated grips and wind protection can make your daily commute more comfortable.
4. Insurance and Registration Costs
Insurance and registration costs can vary significantly between different motorcycle models. Research these costs for the bikes you’re considering and factor them into your budget. Some insurance companies offer discounts for bikes with safety features, such as ABS, so keep that in mind when choosing your motorcycle.
5. Reliability and Brand Reputation
Research the reliability and reputation of the motorcycle brands and models you’re considering. Look for online reviews, join forums, or talk to other riders to gather information about the bikes on your shortlist. Choosing a reliable and well-regarded motorcycle can save you time and money in the long run.
6. Availability of Parts and Service
Ensure that there are dealerships or service centers in your area that can provide maintenance and repair services for the motorcycle you’re considering. Additionally, check the availability and cost of replacement parts, as this can significantly impact your ownership experience.
7. Resale Value
While you may not plan on selling your commuter bike anytime soon, it’s still essential to consider its resale value. Some motorcycle brands and models hold their value better than others, which can be beneficial if you decide to upgrade or change your bike in the future.
8. Personal Preferences
Lastly, your personal preferences will play a crucial role in your motorcycle choice. Consider factors such as the bike’s aesthetics, your preferred riding position, and any specific features that are important to you. Ultimately, the best commuter motorcycle is the one that you’ll enjoy riding every day.
By taking these factors into account, you’ll be better equipped to make an informed decision when purchasing a commuter motorcycle. Remember that the right bike should not only meet your practical needs but also provide a fun and enjoyable riding experience.
Our Top Picks for the Best Commuter Motorcycle
1. Kawasaki Z400
The Kawasaki Z400 is an excellent choice for city riding. Its parallel twin engine delivers a respectable amount of power, while its upright riding position ensures rider comfort.
- Pros: Great option for beginners, fuel efficiency, and slipper clutch.
- Cons: Limited top speed compared to larger sport bikes.
- Why we recommend it: Perfect for the average commuter who wants a stylish and reliable ride.
- Fun fact: The Z400 is the younger sibling of the popular Kawasaki Z650.
2. Triumph Street Twin
The Triumph Street Twin is a modern classic with an upright ride and plenty of torque for city riding. Its parallel twin engine is both powerful and fuel efficient.
- Pros: Vintage-inspired design, comfortable seat height, and traction control.
- Cons: More expensive than some other commuter bikes.
- Why we recommend it: A great option for those who want a stylish, comfortable, and reliable commuter bike.
- Fun fact: The Street Twin is one of Triumph’s best-selling models.
3. Suzuki SV650
The SV650 is a versatile and affordable option that suits both city riding and weekend trips. Its V-twin engine delivers a punchy performance, while its upright riding position ensures comfort.
- Pros: Excellent fuel efficiency, manageable seat height, and budget-friendly price.
- Cons: Lacks some advanced features found on more expensive bikes.
- Why we recommend it: The best commuter motorcycle for those who want a bike that can do it all.
- Fun fact: The SV650 has been a fan favorite since its debut in 1999.
4. Honda CB500X
A dual sport motorcycle with a comfortable, upright riding position, the CB500X is a fantastic option for both city riding and off-road adventures.
- Pros: Fuel-efficient engine, long-travel suspension, and approachable seat height.
- Cons: Limited top speed due to its modest engine size.
- Why we recommend it: Perfect for the commuter who likes to explore the great outdoors on weekends.
- Fun fact: The CB500X is part of Honda’s popular 500cc lineup.
5. Yamaha MT-07
The Yamaha MT-07 is a lightweight, nimble sport bike that’s perfect for city riding. Its parallel twin engine offers a great balance of power and fuel efficiency.
- Pros: Attractive design, manageable seat height, and ample lb-ft of torque.
- Cons: Limited wind protection for long highway rides.
- Why we recommend it: A great option for those who want a sporty yet practical commuter bike.
- Fun fact: The MT-07 was formerly known as the FZ-07 in the US market.
6. Kawasaki Versys 650
A versatile touring bike, the Versys 650 offers an upright riding position, a large fuel tank, and a comfortable seat height, making it perfect for long commutes.
- Pros: Excellent fuel efficiency, adjustable windscreen, and reliable performance.
- Cons: Heavier than some other options on this list.
- Why we recommend it: Ideal for those who have a longer commute and want a comfortable, fuel-efficient ride.
- Fun fact: The Versys 650 has been a popular choice among adventure riders since its introduction in 2007.
7. BMW G310R
The BMW G310R is a lightweight, stylish bike with a single-cylinder engine that’s perfect for city riding and short commutes.
- Pros: Premium build quality, agile handling, and attractive design.
- Cons: Limited power for high-speed highway riding.
- Why we recommend it: This commuter bike is an excellent option for those who want a premium motorcycle experience on a smaller scale.
- Fun fact: The G310R is BMW’s first sub-500cc motorcycle in recent history.
8. Honda Rebel 500
The Honda Rebel 500 is a cruiser-style commuter bike that offers a comfortable, low seat height and a fuel-efficient parallel twin engine.
- Pros: Easy-to-ride design, approachable for new riders, and excellent fuel economy.
- Cons: Limited wind protection and top speed compared to some other options.
- Why we recommend it: A great option for those who prefer a cruiser-style bike for their daily commute.
- Fun fact: The Honda Rebel series has been a favorite among beginner riders since the 1980s.
9. KTM 390 Duke
The KTM 390 Duke is a lightweight, agile commuter bike with a single-cylinder engine that offers plenty of power for city riding.
- Pros: Excellent handling, fuel efficiency, and modern styling.
- Cons: Limited wind protection and less comfortable for longer rides.
- Why we recommend it: Perfect for those who want a fun, sporty bike for their daily commute.
- Fun fact: The 390 Duke shares many design elements with its larger siblings in the KTM Duke lineup.
10. Suzuki DR-Z400SM
A supermoto-style dual sport, the Suzuki DR-Z400SM is a fantastic option for those who want a versatile, fun bike that can handle both city riding and off-road adventures.
- Pros: Lightweight, nimble handling, and excellent suspension.
- Cons: Less comfortable for long highway rides and limited top speed.
- Why we recommend it: Ideal for the adventurous commuter who wants a bike that can handle a variety of terrains.
- Fun fact: The DR-Z400SM is one of the few factory-produced supermoto bikes available in the US market.
11. Royal Enfield Himalayan
The Royal Enfield Himalayan is an adventure-style touring bike with a comfortable upright riding position and a reliable single-cylinder engine.
- Pros: Long-travel suspension, large fuel tank, and approachable seat height.
- Cons: Modest power and top speed compared to other adventure bikes.
- Why we recommend it: A great option for those who want a comfortable, adventure-ready commuter bike that can handle rough roads and long distances.
- Fun fact: The Himalayan was designed and tested in the Himalayas, one of the most challenging environments on Earth.
These 11 best commuter motorcycles offer a range of options for riders with different preferences and needs. Whether you’re looking for a sporty ride, a comfortable cruiser, or a versatile dual sport, you’ll find the perfect bike on this list.
Purchasing a commuter motorcycle is an exciting and important decision that can significantly impact your daily life. By considering factors such as your experience level, commute distance, budget, and personal preferences, you’ll be well-equipped to find the perfect bike that meets your needs and brings joy to your everyday ride. Remember that the ultimate goal is to enjoy the journey, so take your time, do your research, and choose the motorcycle that makes you feel excited every time you hit the road.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can I use a sportbike for commuting?
How important is fuel efficiency for a commuter motorcycle?
Is it necessary to have ABS on a commuter bike?
Can I use a dual sport for daily commuting?
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