Motorcycles: A substitute for cars or luxury vehicle?


Man with motorcycle helmet

Motorcycles can be less expensive, more convenient, and way more fun than a car. But is it possible for a motorcycle to replace your current mode of transportation? Be careful before switching your car for a motorcycle because there are definitely some things that you’ll feel like you’re missing.

Your motorcycle will never be able to replace your car. Whilst motorcycles are cheaper, funner & quicker than cars; you’ll wish you had the car for those rainy/cold days when you need extra boot room when it’s more than just you and those extra-long commutes.

Some people believe motorcycles are the perfect alternative to owning an automobile especially with skyrocketing gas prices & the increase in parking costs. Motorcycle owners don’t have to worry about finding parking spots, they get better gas mileage than their four-wheeled counterparts, and most of the time there is only one person in the car anyway. All of this means motorcyclists spend less money on fuel per mile traveled, and they also get more exercise while riding! But don’t get too trigger-happy just yet. There are a few things to consider before trading in your car for a motorcycle.

Why you might want to consider replacing your car with a motorcycle

Motorcycles Cost of Ownership are Less than Cars

The cost of owning a car is expensive. Owning your own vehicle means extensive insurance costs, changing the oil, replacing the battery, getting new wiper blades, buying gas & filling up the tank & doing all this under budget isn’t just difficult it’s nearly impossible.

Motorcycles are cheaper to maintain than cars. You don’t have to worry about paying for parking or car repairs as much as you would with a car because motorcycles are small enough that they can fit in even small spaces and finding free parking is easier too.

The Upfront Cost of Motorcycle is Cheaper than Car

Let’s face it, compared to other modes of transportation cars are expensive. The cost of buying a car can be daunting but because motorcycle ownership is cheaper than car ownership the initial cost for owning one is less too.

Most people spend around $20,000 to buy a good car, whilst a great brand-new motorcycle costs around $5000.

The benefit of Motorcycles in Traffic Compared to Cars

Motorcycles take up much less space on the road than cars which means that they spend less time sitting in traffic jams and get places faster than their four-wheeled counterparts plus you get to enjoy your ride so much more when there isn’t all the added stress of having to fight with other commuters for road space.

A Motorcycle Cost of Less Gas per Mile

My 2015 CBR 300R motorcycle will give me 85 mpg; whilst our 2020 Mazda CX-5 will only give me 28 mpg. Enough said motorcycles are just THAT MUCH CHEAPER.

Now it should be noted here, that a car (such as the CX-5) can carry 5 people, whilst the motorcycle cannot carry more than 2. But when you consider all the commutes you do, how many really involve more than 1 or 2 people?

Why you might want to reconsider trading in your car for a motorcycle

The convenience of a Car over a Motorcycle

When you own a car you have the convenience of being able to carry everyone & everything, because there is enough room for friends, groceries, luggage, and fun!

Motorcycles are not as convenient as cars because they do not have the same amount of storage space or seating capacity. It’s not just about the storage and ability to carry luggage, but also ease of getting around.

Imagine this, a day out at the beach, you’re still in your swimmers, you wrap the towel around you and jump in the car to drive home. You can’t do that on a bike.

You’re driving to work and you want to listen to a podcast whilst drinking your morning smoothy. You can’t do that on a bike.

The Ability to Carry Luggage and

Cargo is Better with Cars

If you’re thinking of using a motorcycles as a primary form of transportation you need to be made aware that you can only really fit so much on your bike and all your luggage and cargo needs to go somewhere.

Car drivers have the luxury of people carriers & hatchbacks which makes it easy to store items during transport because they’re easy to put in, take out and see what’s going on inside.

Exposure to the Elements

When it comes to getting places dry, warm & not drenched in sweat, having the option to take the car is a necessity. Unless you have the absolute most expensive riding gear, if it’s raining outside and you have no choice but to take the bike, you are going to get wet. Likewise, if it’s boiling 🥵 you will arrive covered in sweat. This is really unavoidable on a motorcycle.

And whilst 70% of the time it won’t be an issue, when it is pouring outside and you don’t have any other mode of transport, you’re kinda stuck.

Extra Cost of Owning a Motorcycle

There are some hidden costs associated with owning a motorcycle, namely your riding gear. Owning a car doesn’t require any additional spending. Sure you need to insure your vehicle but there are no extra costs associated with owning one.

It’s not just the obvious stuff like gloves, boots, helmets etc., but also things like riding gear cleaners and lubes which all add up over time.

Safety Concerns

Statistically the more you ride your motorcycle the higher chance there is that you’re going to come off it, and in a lot of cases when that happens, things don’t end well.

This is going to sound dramatic but insurance companies know this and take it into account which means if you ride frequently your insurance premiums will reflect that fact and you’ll pay more for your cover than someone who does not ride as often.

Concluding thoughts

Whilst motorcycles are the cheaper, funner, and clearly a more environmentally friendly alternative to cars for so many commutes, I would not trade in my car for a motorcycle. I would only have a car or have both. In my eyes, motorcycles are luxury items that, if you can afford to own, give you so much joy in riding, can significantly save you money on gas, and look cool as hell!

Cars provide a certain level of safety, storage, and simplicity which I personally could not live without.

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