Now that the case for your first motorcycle to be a used bike has been made, it's time to talk about exact bikes. Sure you have a lot to think about, such as style, size, price and condition, and you can read about that in other articles in the Advice section on Wind Burned Eyes, but that's not what this article is about. Here you'll find three specific models that are good for beginning motorcyclists. Take a look below.
Honda's venerable 250cc Rebel (or CMX250) has been around since the 1980s, and while buying a motorcycle that's old can be a fun experience you really need to know what you're doing and have the time to learn the necessary skills to fix up and keep your bike on the road. Instead of going for an old Honda Rebel, look for one that is as new as possible but still fits your price range. Some Rebels can be had for a little over a $1000 in good condition. Keep an eye out on Craigslist or wherever it is you look for bikes and you're likely to find one within your budget.
Honda Rebels make great first motorcycles for a few reasons: 1) they're small and easy to maneuver, 2) they're reasonably powered and can handle short jaunts on the highway, 3) there are Honda dealers everywhere and it should be easy to find someone to service the bike if you don't want to or come up against a job that's beyond your skills.
Find a Honda Rebel for sale near you
Another bike that's been around since the 1980s, the Kawasaki Ninja has stood the test of time and only gotten better (and more powerful) as time has gone on. The Ninja comes in a few different displacements but get the 250 (unless you have the funds for a newer 300) for many of the same reasons the Rebel is also a good bike. The Ninja 250 is lightweight, reasonably powerful and there are Kawasaki dealers all over the place that can help you keep your bike in tip-top condition.
Once again, you should buy the newest best Ninja you can find that fits within your budget. While these bikes might be just a little more expensive than the Rebel, they also ride differently and are generally a little more high-tech. So, if you're leaning towards a sportbike, this is the motorcycle you want to get first.
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While some people will say that a better first dual sport motorcycle is the Honda CRF250L (and could probably make a pretty good case for it), the Suzuki DR-Z400 is listed instead for one reason: more power. The Suzuki DR-Z400 has a 398cc engine, whereas the CRF250L has a, you guessed it, 250cc engine. Like the Rebel and the Ninja, the Suzuki DR-Series has been around a while, albeit not quite as long as the other two bikes on this list. Also, Suzuki dealerships and service centers are easily found, making it easy to get your a tuneup when necessary. If you're looking for a great dual sport machine, this is a good choice.
Find a Suzuki DR-Z400 for sale near you