High-powered superbikes fell out of favor when the Great Recession hit, but the unexpected upside of those lean times has been a newfound focus on designing smaller, more affordable motorcycles — exactly the sort of bike that’s ideal for new riders.
These beginner-friendly rides feature less powerful engines to keep acceleration and top speed in check as you build hours in the saddle. Plus, they’re constructed with lighter, easier-to-wrestle frames that are low to the ground, delivering smooth handling and confidence for novice riders. And should you drop one on its side, the budget nature of such bikes means repairs generally cost less, too. These starter bikes combine striking looks with surprising performance, making it all but irresistible for the curious to join the two-wheeled world.