I’ve got a friend starting out and he’s got a budget of $4,000, not mechanically inclined. He’s asking what are the best used adventure motorcycles for a beginner.
So I pulled this list together to search wanted ads, but I’m curious if anyone has better advice for low-cost motorcycles that make good adventure bikes for beginners?
BMW Motorrad GS Family - The Touring King
Smaller BMW models like the G650GS, F750GS, F850GS can be found second-hand for around $4,000 and are the smaller sibling to 1250GS that have proven themselves on adventure rides around the globe. These bikes are great to load up with gear, handle the road and gravel well, and is easy to find parts. I would consider it an “adventure touring” bike, great for long trips, mostly on road or packed gravel with loads of camping gear to carry.
Kawasaki KLR650 - Price Champion
A classic choice and easy to find cheap models in good condition. KLRs are more dirt oriented machines that happen to be street legal. These bikes are great for folks who want to spend most of their time off-road, or the time spent off-road doing more extreme rock climbs, river crossings, etc. You can get a late model KLR for $3-$4,000.
Suzuki VStrom - Economic Touring
Like the BMW, this is more of an Adventure Touring bike, spending most of your time on pavement but having the confidence to dip onto some logging roads or trailheads you come across. These tend to be well loved and therefore a bit pricey as Suzukis go with a late model pushing $4,500.
Of course Honda’s Africa Twin and KTM’s Adventure R are great bikes, but hard pressed to get a decent one anywhere near $4K, and also I think for more advanced off-road riders.
Well, what did I leave off, what’s the best second-hand adventure bike for new motorcycle riders?