The motorcycle has come a long way in its short history and in that time we have seen a growing number of different styles and types of bike design. The designs can vary due to what the bike is going to be ridden for. For instance, if it is being used for racing on tarmac, then you would have a bike designed with aerodynamics in mind, along with a high revving engine able to produce blistering speeds, with the ability to corner well & using slick tyres. Whereas if the bike is being used off road then the design is quite different, with a taller suspension, nobly tires for better grip and a lower revving engine able to produce a decent torque at lower speeds.
Below is a list of some of the most well-known motorcycle types. Often the type of bike a rider goes for does in some way reflect on his or her personality. What does your bike say about you I wonder?
ADVENTURE TOURING BIKES / DUAL SPORTS
The Touring bike has been increasing in popularity over the years. With its rider sat in an upright position, it can be ridden for many hours without the rider feeling overly tired. It is versatile as it can be ridden hard and is designed to withstand tough terrain, yet it is ideal for commuting with too. There has been a development of this style of bikes over the last decade, with the engine size becoming bigger and the power to weight ratio also getting a lot better. However, with this comes heavier bikes, and in some cases, it does make it a good idea to take them off road. This particular type of motorcycle has been popularised by shows like ‘The Long way round’ & ‘The long way down’ that highlighted the ups and downs of traveling both on road and off road through different countries across the globe.
If you didn’t know, the word chopper comes from the fact that these bikes were ‘Chopped’ up motorcycles. In other words, these bikes have been built out of parts from different bikes, often built by custom motorbike builders in ‘chop shops’ or garages. Out of all of the bike types, the chopper offers a look that can be radically different to another chopper. In recent years these bikes have very often become more like works of art than bikes, yet they still offer a ride that is like no other. The chopper motorcycle emerged in the mid-sixties and ever since their arrival have been loved by riders. With a similar seating position to the cruiser, it offers a lower ride to other motorbikes and in many cases with the handlebars in a higher position, plus longer front forks this bike is designed for cruising and not racing or taking corners hard.
CRUISERS / POWER CRUISERS
The cruiser motorcycle also began life in the late sixties, though in reality it had been gradually getting developed since the end of the world war. Manufacturers such as Harley Davidson, Triumph, BMW, Honda, Yamaha, and others started to develop this style of bike. The cruiser is designed to be an easy ride. They usually have a large engine with good low-end torque & an easy gear shift which makes riding at low speeds easy, no need for the constant change of gears as with other bikes. The power cruisers differ in that they have more horsepower, better suspension & upgraded breaks.
OFF ROAD – DIRT BIKES, ENDURO BIKES, MOTOCROSS BIKES & TRIAL BIKES
These are a true off-road bike, designed specifically for off road conditions (although most are street legal and can be ridden on the road) with the trials bike designed specifically for competition and definitely not to be used on the street. These styles of bike can be great deal of fun and have their own following of fans and admirers. The bikes are often used in competition or as stunt bikes but are also loved for being lightweight and generally less expensive than other styles of motorcycle.
NAKED BIKES / ROADSTERS also known as STANDARD BIKES
Naked bikes also go by the name of standard bikes or roadsters. The style is that of a general-purpose motorcycle design for the road rather than off road or dual purpose. The term naked comes from the fact that the bikes are without fairings, a wind visor in most cases, leaving the bike exposed showing its basic elements. The riding position is set between the extremes of a cruiser, which is a more reclined position, and that of a race bike which is aggressively leaning forwards. With the costs being fairly reasonable and the power being manageable, these bikes make a good all-rounder and are a good beginners bike, though not in a disparaging way, as they are well liked for their versatility, simplicity, and quality.
SCOOTERS & POWER SCOOTERS
The Scooter has a distinctive design and shape that hasn’t changed much in appearance over the years, though much more recently with the introduction of the power scooter some are starting to lean a little more towards the look of a motorcycle. The scooter still maintains its unique look with its step through frame, and a foot plate for the rider’s feet, these bikes are ridden in a sat-up position. Ideal for urban commuting or traversing the city. The scooter was made popular after the second world war with the likes of the Italian Lambretta’s & Vespa’s which are still today a sought after brand.
SPORTS BIKE / SUPER SPORTS
This is a type of bike that is designed specifically for speed, they are optimised for acceleration, cornering and breaking on tarmacked roads. This kind of bike is made popular as the superbike which is a race specific bike used in commercial racing around the world made famous by racers such as Carl Fogarty, Noriyuki Haga, & Troy Bayliss to name a few. The rider is positioned leaning forward on these bikes enabling them to almost hug the fuel tank whilst hitting high speeds, hugely reducing the overall aerodynamic drag in comparison to other bikes. As well as being able to ride these bikes on the road they can also be used for track days since they will corner and accelerate at a level similar but not the same as super bikes. This kind of bike is definitely for the more experienced rider.
So, what is the café racer and why is it called this? The café racer was originally a standard bike that was customised for racing and they got their name from groups or gangs of bikers in the 50’s and 60’s for racing from a certain café around a route and back again before the record on the duke box had finished playing. The Ace Café in London was made famous for this, as the riders would need to reach 100mph or more to be successful. Nowadays riding this type of bike is more about the style and look of the bike rather than for racing. Quite often enthusiasts of these bikes will restore classic bikes to show off at shows and events. But, whatever you use these bikes for, whether it’s for riding or displaying, you can’t get away from the fact that they are a very stylish motorcycle.
Whatever type of motorbike you prefer , whether you go for speed or you find the idea of touring more attractive, there is one thing that every biker has in common and that is the importance of being safe on the roads.
With the best will in the world, accidents do happen, and if in the last 3 years you have been involved in a road traffic accident that wasn’t your fault it is possible that you are entitled to compensation. But, first, you’ll need advice from experienced motorbike accident solicitors such as Smith Jones Solicitors. The consultation is free and in many motorcycle accident claims, they are handled as a no win no fee claim.