Scooters vs. Motorcycles

This is a discussion on Scooters vs. Motorcycles within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; I am thinking about getting one of these to save on gas money. I work 5.5 miles from my house (all city streets, no highways) ...

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Thread: Scooters vs. Motorcycles

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array McPatrickClan's Avatar
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    Scooters vs. Motorcycles

    I am thinking about getting one of these to save on gas money. I work 5.5 miles from my house (all city streets, no highways) so it would add up pretty quickly.

    I am looking for something safe, economical & enjoyable to drive/ride. I will be using it almost 100% on city streets, no need to take it to the highway.

    Thoughts? Scooter or motorcycle? Which brand/models to look at?

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    Member Array dang.45's Avatar
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    My personal preference has been for any Honda two-wheeled vehicle - I've owned 6 motorcycles & 1 scooter. I can say with confidence that you should definitely go for a motorcycle. If you are confident that you will never / rarely go onto the highway, you can get something with a 250cc engine that will be very good on gas, but will still have the ability to accelerate quickly to get out of traffic trouble at city street speeds. Scooters just don't have enough power to be safe in my opinion. Besides, it is much easier to put some kind of bag(s) on a motorcycle so that you can carry things back & forth from work, or even make relatively small trips to the grocery store.

    If all my logic fails to persuade ... motorcycles are just damn fun! I don't think you'll be unhappy if you get one.
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    Member Array Sonic Misfit's Avatar
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    I agree with dang.45, go with the motorcycle. I currently have three motorcycles, one of which is a Honda Rebel 250cc. My wife also has one. We use them for rides around the neighborhood, trips to the store, etc. They get around 70mpg and can hold their own in most traffic.

    I tried some scooters just for fun and didn't like them at all. They don't seem to have the balance of a motorcycle, plus the one I tried had an automatic transmission that limited a lot of the slow maneuvers that you can do on a motorcycle by using the clutch and back brake.

    Whatever you decide, please sign up for the Motorcycle Safety Course offered by the American Motorcycle Association. I am sure that wherever you live they have a course. It may even help you get a discount on the insurance. I know from experience that some of the things you learn in it will save your life.

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    VIP Member Array Cupcake's Avatar
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    Motorcycles are more fun, but depending on your needs an electric scooter might do the trick and cost you even less to operate (no oil changes, tuneups, pennies to charge). A 250 or so cc motorcycle is probably much more useful overall.
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    Senior Member Array Juggernaut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dang.45 View Post
    My personal preference has been for any Honda two-wheeled vehicle - I've owned 6 motorcycles & 1 scooter. I can say with confidence that you should definitely go for a motorcycle. If you are confident that you will never / rarely go onto the highway, you can get something with a 250cc engine that will be very good on gas, but will still have the ability to accelerate quickly to get out of traffic trouble at city street speeds. Scooters just don't have enough power to be safe in my opinion. Besides, it is much easier to put some kind of bag(s) on a motorcycle so that you can carry things back & forth from work, or even make relatively small trips to the grocery store.

    If all my logic fails to persuade ... motorcycles are just damn fun! I don't think you'll be unhappy if you get one.
    x3 on the 250 cc bike (like a Rebel 250- par for most MSF schools' training bikes) and x2 on the Honda (see avitar), x2 on the MSF no matter what. I've gotten a bunch of guys at work onto the two-wheeled bandwagon since I've been here, one guy got a Shadow 750 and is getting 65 mpg on it. The difference in displacement between the 750 and 250 won't net much more gas mileage, but the forgiveness of the powerband is much higher in the 250. Not to say it can't get you into trouble, because it can. A scooter with reasonable power to get you around is going to be of sufficient displacement to require a Class M or Motorcycle Operator's license anyway, might as well get something with a little more utility.
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    Member Array Aaron4_6's Avatar
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    I'd personally get a small cc motorcycle. If you are wanting a scooter though, I know someone who has one of these and is quite happy with it. I think it gets 60-70mpg and tops out at 120mph.

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    Distinguished Member Array randytulsa2's Avatar
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    My wife has a gasoline-powered scooter that gets like 95 mpg. She drives it to work, weather permitting.

    I can't stand the thing (I don't like motorcycles, either- I've never heard of a motorcyclist walking away from a collision with an automobile), but I must admit that the numbers (aside from the safety factor) make a certain amount of sense.

    Some of the higher-end scooters are pretty nice, too, and from what I understand fast enough to get the job done on the highway. But they start to approach motorcycle prices at that point.

    I guess some people just don't like the idea of using a clutch....
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    If I was only 5.5 miles away from work I would get a scooter. You are doing this to save money anyway , scooter 100 miles a gallon , no license and registration fees , and no insurance required in my state. That's a big savings over a year. I have a 1584 cc bike insurance and personal property taxes cost more than the gas , I am thinking hard about getting a scooter also. I do agree with the others about having the power to get out of someones way , I had a 4 cylinder car that I sold because I couldn't get on the interstate in traffic and you could not pass on a 2 lane road because it didn't have enough power.
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    Member Array What the?'s Avatar
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    Gas cost for a 25 mpg car (in your scenario) is about $450/year. Gas cost for a 95 MPG scooter is $120/year. Not counting the days you don't 'scoot' due to rain, etc.

    A max savings of $330 a year. It will take a while for the scooter to pay for itself, assuming you already have a car.

    Buy a motorcycle to have more fun, and stop kidding yourself that it is for the mileage.

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    You didn't add the cost of insurance , personal property taxes , license , state inspection , and maintenance. I have to pay all of that in my state.

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    VIP Member Array tns0038's Avatar
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    As others have stated a 250cc or bigger is a must. Some of the manufactures even make scooters with 250 cc.

    What you’re going to find is you’ll love it, and within a year or two you’ll want something larger. For me it was a Harley.

    Love mine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by What the? View Post
    Gas cost for a 25 mpg car (in your scenario) is about $450/year. Gas cost for a 95 MPG scooter is $120/year. Not counting the days you don't 'scoot' due to rain, etc.

    A max savings of $330 a year. It will take a while for the scooter to pay for itself, assuming you already have a car.

    Buy a motorcycle to have more fun, and stop kidding yourself that it is for the mileage.

    This is the exact point I was going to make... and I love bikes and I really like seeing them become a more popular mode of transport. But, if its purely to save money, you're kidding yourself. Maybe if you planned on trading in your existing car, it would make more sense by keeping the trade in, picking up a used bike with the money you would have spent on the new car, and only use your existing car when you really need a car. Did that make sense?

    I do commute more on my bike because of gas prices, but I would have at least one bike in the garage if gas was .99 still. I also enjoy thumbing my nose at OPEC as much as I can. Scooters are fun, but none of your motorcycling friends will ride with you.

    For your question... I'd buy a small cc in line 4 or maybe a twin... they will give you the best MPG. The Japanese brands all build a good bike for the money, Harley does as well, but you are paying top dollar for the name, and sorry Harley guys, the performance vs. dollar just isn't there.

    BMW also builds a really nice 650 for a reasonable amount too, but if a inexpensive economical ride was my goal, I'd pick up a used Honda Shadow 650. Maybe a sportster if the right bike presented itself. The bike can be had for cheap, parts and service are easy and cheap, its easy to ride and maintain.
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    VIP Member Array goldshellback's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by redrick View Post
    You didn't add the cost of insurance , personal property taxes , license , state inspection , and maintenance. I have to pay all of that in my state.
    +1

    After adding up the insurance and safty gear(that may or may not be required by law) the cost will probley avrage out to the same as operating you car. Be careful and research it before jumping in thinking it'll (buying a bike) save you money. It might not be worth it.

    Now, if for fun and enjoyment......go get it. $$$$$
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    Senior Member Array DrLewall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrLewall View Post
    Whatsa matta Doc?
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