Rev Your Engines: A Beginners Guide to Buying a Motorcycle

  1. Think about the purpose

  2. Decide on the type of motorcycle

  3. Decide on the engine size and power

  4. Decide on the condition of the motorcycle - new or used

  5. Decide on your budget/year

  6. Do the research

  7. Buy the motorcycle

If you've always dreamt of feeling the wind against your body and the rumble of an engine beneath you, it's time to take the plunge and buy your first motorcycle. As they say, there is never a good reason not to buy a motorcycle. You will be rewarded greatly with a new passion and hobby, new community, loads of adrenalin and many riders would even swear that there is nothing as therapeutic as riding, while the only thing you focus on is the road.

But, it can be overwhelming for beginners to know where to start. With so many different types of motorbikes, brands, and models available, it's easy to feel lost in the sea of options. That's why we've created this guide to help you navigate the world of motorcycle buying and make an informed decision. Let's rev our engines and get started!

Think about the purpose

Before you start browsing through motorcycle catalogs or hopping on the internet to search for the perfect motorbike, it's important to decide on the purpose of the motorcycle and the kind of riding you want to do. Do you want to use it for daily commuting, weekend adventures, or long-distance touring? Is it for leisurely Sunday rides or adrenaline-fueled track days? The type of riding you plan to do will play a big role in determining the type of motorcycle you should buy. Consider your lifestyle, riding preferences, and skill level and even what your buddies ride if you want to join an existing or prospective group when deciding on the purpose of the motorbike.

Decide on the type of motorcycle

If you're planning to ride on the road, a naked motorbike is the most versatile and all-around best first motorcycle. These motorbikes have a standard riding position, which is comfortable for long rides and provides excellent control and visibility. They're also lightweight, making them easy to maneuver in traffic and great for beginners who are still getting used to the motorbike's handling. Additionally, naked motorbikes are generally less expensive than other types of motorcycles, making them an affordable option for first-time buyers. Whether you're riding to work, cruising on the highway, or exploring new roads, a naked motorbike is a great choice for beginners looking for a versatile and reliable motorcycle.

Decide on the engine size and power

When deciding on the engine size and power of your first motorcycle, it's important to consider your level of experience and the requirements of your driver's license. In some countries, such as in Europe, new licensed riders are limited to a certain horsepower or engine size until they gain more experience and upgrade their license. For example, A2 license holders in Europe are limited to 35 kW of power. Even if you're not subject to any legal restrictions, it's still a good idea to choose a motorbike with an engine size that matches your skill level. A motorcycle that is too powerful can be dangerous and difficult to handle for beginners, while a smaller engine can be more manageable and easier to learn on. Ultimately, it's important to choose a motorbike that you feel comfortable and confident riding.

For a typical adult rider I would recommend looking in the range of 400 to 600 cc. For a woman 500 cc should be a great starter motorcycle, they usually have max power at 35 to 40 kW and come with low weight. A man should be able to handle a 600 cc with around 70 kW. A bigger motorbike would be too much to handle and it would be counterproductive as far as learning proper technique. A smaller motorcycle like a 250 cc is great for first steps, but it becomes too little of a motorbike pretty soon.

Do not worry too much about the number of cylinders. As a newbie rider you won’t know much of a difference. Anywhere between 2 and 4 is good. 500 cc motorbikes come usually as two cylinders, which is great, because the lack of power is compensated by its delivery from low revs. 600 cc are often 4 cylinders, which makes for a more cultivated ride with less vibrations.

Decide on the condition of the motorbike - new or used

When it comes to deciding between a new or used motorcycle, your budget will likely be the deciding factor. While a brand new motorbike might be tempting, it's important to consider the higher cost and potential depreciation. On the other hand, a used motorcycle can be significantly cheaper and may hold its value better. As a beginner rider, your primary goal should be to learn and gain experience, so a used motorbike can be a great way to achieve that without breaking the bank.

It is a matter of preference. Many people only buy new vehicles, if that is your case head to the nearest dealership for a test drive and financing options. I personally recommend buying a used motorcycle as your first ride. The purpose of this motorcycle is for you to learn how to ride, and that involves pushing the limits on a training lot and you do not need any extra pressure from the fear of a few scratches or cracks. Of course, you'll want to inspect any used motorbike carefully and have it checked by a mechanic before making a purchase. But as long as you take your time and do your research, a used motorcycle can be a fantastic option for your first ride.

Decide on your budget/year

Setting a budget is crucial when it comes to buying a motorcycle. Your budget will determine whether you can afford a brand new motorbike or how old you will need to consider a used one. It's important to be realistic about what you can afford, taking into account not just the purchase price, but also ongoing costs like insurance, maintenance, and fuel. Your budget will also determine the year of the motorcycle you can afford. If you have a smaller budget, you may need to consider older models, while a larger budget will allow you to consider newer models with more advanced features.

When buying a used motorcycle, going with one of the big four Japanese brands (Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki or Yamaha) is a safe bet. These motorbikes have been known decades for their reliability and you do not need to worry buying even a motorcycle 20 years old. It will still serve you plenty, with just basic service like oil, brakes, spark plugs, chain and tires.

From the features try to look for ABS, although not having ABS on your first motorbike is a good learning experience. Since around 2007 all motorbikes have fuel injection, which is better than carburetors. Traction control, anti-hopping clutch or riding modes are something you won’t take advantage of on a low power motorcycle.

Remember, the most important thing is to choose a motorcycle that you can comfortably afford and that meets your needs as a beginner rider. Don't stretch yourself too thin financially, as this can lead to stress and make the learning process more difficult. You need to be left with a budget for a good name brand quality helmet, pants, jacket, boots and gloves as well as some money for basic maintenance and repairs. A used motorcycle often needs new tires, chain and oil change.

Do the research before buying a motorcycle

Once you have determined your budget and whether you want a new or used motorcycle, it's time to do some research. Look up different makes and models of motorcycles and compare their specs and features. You can also read reviews from other riders to get an idea of their experiences with specific motorbikes. As a beginner, you'll want to focus on motorbikes that are easy to handle and maneuver, with a comfortable riding position. Based on your research, make a list of two to three contenders that fit your budget and needs. Don’t forget you need to like the motorcycle too. If you don’t like the way it looks, you’re not gonna ride it as much.

Buy the motorcycle

Okay, so now it’s time to browse the classifieds on websites like or cycletrader. You can buy your dream motorbike from a dealer or a private person. Finding a dealer with a good reputation, which you can check from the customer reviews, is usually a better experience. In many countries it involves a certain level of guarantee, that all the information disclosed is true.

Look for motorbikes with as few as possible previous owners and clear history. Motorcycles with fewer miles or kilometers are always preferred. It is not uncommon to find motorbikes with very low miles or kilometers, as many people like the idea of owning a motorbike more than riding it. Try to find a motorcycle in original condition, with original handlebars, exhausts, mirrors and lights. Any tuning is often a consequence of an accident rather than style. Do not mind minor scratches if they are reflected in the price. You will probably put more, since the exhaust, handlebars, levers and even engine if it’s not protected get scratched each time the motorcycle falls. You need to worry about constructional problems, where the frame of the motorbike has been moved. Take the motorcycle for a test drive, everything should run smooth and without any vibrations. Do not forget to test at highway speeds. Take a mechanic with you or an experienced rider.


In conclusion, buying your first motorcycle can be an exciting and rewarding experience, but it's important to take your time and do your research. Start by determining your budget and whether you want a new or used motorbike. Then, research different makes and models to find a motorcycle that fits your needs and is easy to handle. When it comes time to buy, look for a reputable dealer or private seller and take the motorcycle for a test drive. With these tips in mind, you'll be well on your way to finding the perfect motorcycle for your needs as a beginner rider. Now all you need to do is ride, ride and ride and practice, practice and practice if you want to become any good and safe. Happy riding!

What safety equipment do I need to buy for my motorcycle?

As a beginner motorcyclist, safety should be your top priority. Riding a motorcycle can be an exhilarating experience, but it can also be dangerous if you don't take the necessary precautions. That's why investing in the right safety equipment is essential.

Here are some of the must-have safety equipment for your motorcycle:

1. Helmet: A good quality helmet is the most essential piece of safety equipment for any motorcyclist. Always opt for a full-face helmet that meets the minimum safety standards set by your country's regulatory body.

2. Riding jacket: A riding jacket is another crucial piece of equipment that can protect you from serious injuries in the event of a crash. Look for a jacket made of durable materials that offer protection from abrasion.

3. Gloves: You need to protect your hands while riding. Gloves made of leather or other durable materials can help you grip the handlebars and protect your hands from road rash.

4. Boots: A sturdy pair of boots can keep your feet and ankles safe in the event of an accident. Look for boots that offer good ankle support and are made of durable materials.

5. Riding pants: Riding pants are another essential piece of safety equipment that can protect your legs in the event of a crash. Look for pants made of abrasion-resistant materials that offer knee and hip protection.

When shopping for safety equipment, make sure you invest in high-quality gear that meets the necessary safety standards. Don't skimp on safety equipment

What type of motorcycle should I buy?

As a beginner motorcyclist, choosing the right motorcycle can be a daunting task. With so many different types and models available, it's important to take the time to consider what type of riding you plan to do and what features are important to you. Generally naked motorbikes are considered perfect starting motorcycles for their versatility and maneuverability. Here are some tips to help guide you in your decision: 1. Determine your riding needs: Think about what type of riding you will be doing the most. Will you be commuting to work, going on long road trips, or hitting the trails for some off-road adventures? The type of riding you plan to do will dictate the style of motorcycle that is best suited for you. 2. Consider your experience level: If you're new to riding, it's best to start with a smaller, less powerful motorcycle. This will allow you to build your confidence and skills before moving on to a larger motorbike. On the other hand, you do not wanna go too low, as your skills will quickly surpass a small cc motorcycle. 3. Think about your budget: Motorcycles can range in price from a few thousand dollars to tens of thousands of dollars. Determine how much you're willing to spend and stick to your budget. 4. Research different models: Look at reviews, talk to other riders, and visit dealerships to get a better idea of what type of motorcycle is best for you. 5. Take a test ride: Once you've narrowed down your options, take a test ride. This will help you get a feel for the motorbike and determine if it's the right fit for you.