General Question

squirbel's avatar

Are motorcycles more fuel-efficient than automobiles?

Asked by squirbel (4277points) March 27th, 2008 from iPhone

I’ve always wanted a Katana – and even the Hayabusa looks tasty. I’ve considered getting a bike for basic to/from work travel, and using the car for carting loads (ie groceries) around.

Am I far off base?

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11 Answers

Riser's avatar

Motorcycles are infinitely more fuel-efficient than 90% of cars found on our American streets. I have owned two bikes. Even my pocket rocket Ducati got 50 mph! They don’t hold as much fuel, obviously but they are one of the most fuel efficient alternatives, if you get a Ducati though I highly recommend you disregard its economical practices.

I miss my baby… oh so much.

Hope this helps my sweet Squirbel.

P.S. Do not let friends ride with you, it could cost you your life.

squirbel's avatar

Thanks, I don’t feel comfy with the idea of having another person on a sportbike with me, and you sealed my prejudice! Hehe…

Can I buy before getting the license, or do I need the license first? Does the license evaluator ride with me or watch me? Where can I learn proper riding?

Riser's avatar

Depending on your area your highway patrol will have to give you a class through your DMV. I am not sure about new bikes as I purchased my second bike new after I already had my “M” class. My first bike I bought used and didn’t have any problems.

Randy's avatar

I had a GSX-R 600 and it was the greatest thing ever! It got, if I remember correctly, about 45–50 mpg. It was the most awesome thing EVER, untill I totaled it… :( if your gonna get one please, PLEASE, be careful. My wreck happened so fast, there was nothing I could do besides panic and hope I didn’t die. Basically, I got scared goin around a curve and ended up endoing at 50 mph. Needless to say I was catapulted and it sucked. Oh, and you can get your license after you by the bike, you just won’t be able to ride it home or anything.

@ Riser- I really want a Ducati 749 or 999! Ducati makes some sweet bikes. Just a little outta my price range though. :(

Rememberme's avatar

Motor cycles have a low People to tire ratio.

judochop's avatar

Motorbikes and scooters are an awesome means of travel and by all means more better on gas and oil then say, even some hybrids. I have a custom bobber and I get around 45 miles to a gallon and it only takes a quart.5 of oil. I also have a Prius which gets around 40 miles to the gallon. Although you can not take passengers with you on the bike and the weather can play a huge part in your trip it is still a great way to see the things around you and a cost effective way to commute to and fro. Just don’t ride the fast lane on the freeway and always make sure you have plenty of passing room.

Poser's avatar

My GSX-R 750 gets around 35 mpg.

But that’s no reason to get one. Get it because its the most fun you can have with all your clothes on.

gooch's avatar

Dont forget its hard to carry passengers or groceries. Its also easier to die and you get cold in the winter and wet when it rains. But it does get better gas milage.

kevbo's avatar

With the money you spend on a bike, you could buy a lot of gas. Also, motorcycle emissions are not regulated like car emissions. It sounds like you’re headed in that direction regardless, but I think it’s sort of a false rationalization to use fuel efficiency as a reason. Also, your bike may require more shop-based maintenance depending on it’s condition.

Depending on your route, a bike does make for a fun commute. I used to love singing in my helmet and the sweet smell of grasses at certain spots along my route.

computertron's avatar

Yes and no. For the transport of one person a motorcycle is as efficient as a prius. In the days of the civic being the standard econocar, the average motorcycle owner could rest assured that they were getting considerably better mileage. Now that cars are getting 50 mpg they can be carrying four passengers using as much gas as it takes a motorcycle to carry one. A katana will get high 40’s to mid 50’s depending on how it is ridden. Slow acceleration and premeditated stops will help alot. But in short motorcycle design was never meant to be efficient, it was meant to be fast and was efficient as a bonus. Mpg aside you must take into consideration tire changes every 8k and frequent maintenance. So bikes are relatively inefficient if you consider weight moved for your gallon, but if you are always driving alone and can’t afford a hybrid you will probably end up saving money. Hopefully this will change in the near future as we see electric and hybrid motorcycles. The narrow two wheel design really does have the potential to be much more efficient than a car.

person12346's avatar

i have a dyna wide glide HD its a big bike and i get 56 miles to the gallon its alot cheaper so ride the bike when u can and when u cant drive a car or truck its cheaper

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