It’s part of human nature to stick with what we know and that is certainly the case for a lot of motorcycle enthusiasts. That being said, it isn’t uncommon for riders to jump from one brand to another, always in search of that new great “new bike” feeling. What about you? Would you consider yourself to be brand loyal,  or more of a whatever best meets your needs at the time is what you ride sort of person?

 

  • V8-Snail

    Motorcycle I have owned and currently rides:
    79 Suzuki 125
    83 Suzuki GS750E
    94 Honda VFR750
    00 Yamaha YZF-R1
    11 Suzuki GSX-R1000 (rides)
    11 Harley Davidson FHLTK Electra Glide Ultra
    02 Honda CBR954RR
    03 Kawasaki Voyager XII (rides)

    Future Bike BMW if I could afford it.

  • Gruf Rude

    I started on a Honda 52 years ago and have a strong attachment to them (made my living at a Honda shop for ten years), but that said, I currently own bikes from four different manufacturers.

  • Ahmed Barnawi

    I started with Honda 70 when I was Yong then Suzuki 1800 M109for 5 years. then Gold wing GL1800 2005 then Goldwing 2012 that i have up to date. I rode BMW GTL1600 2015 for long journey trip in KSA about 7 days, then I rode Harley street glide for a long journey trip in KUL about 10 days. so far my number one bike is the Gold wing GL1800. I would love to test ride the new Yamaha.

  • Matt F

    I have a lot of fun on my 690 Duke, but if there were ever a Japanese 701 Supermoto competitor or modern DRZ400SM, I’d find myself making my first new bike purchase.

  • kawatwo

    My first love was the 86-87 Ninja 250 so I am a Kawasaki fan. If two bikes are very similar I will lean that direction as I usually love Kawasaki styling. That being said if another brand has something Kawasaki doesn’t offer or is just way better for the category I will go with another brand. Just curious, what do Harley riders do when they want a dirt bike these days 🙂

    • Sayyed Bashir

      KTM.

  • Jon Jones

    Kawasaki seems to attract me the most these days. I’m also a big Suzuki fan and can’t help but love Hondas. I also have to own a KTM (625 SXC) as they are definitely enthusiast’s bikes. I’ll score a nice Harley at some point as the used prices are dropping to reasonable levels. And a Triumph will be in my stable some fine day.

    I just love motorcycles. Hardcore brand-loyalty is silly.

  • Matt O

    I favor Honda and Kawasaki, but its more like those brands seem to make more bikes I like than the brand itself.

  • notfishing

    Not really brand loyal just old and not wanting to learn how to maintain another Italian Motorcycle. Adjusting valves on a Guzzi takes me only 30 minutes and I’m messing about. Adjust valves in an Aprilia? Well that’s measured in days for me.

    • Lewis

      Actually, the shop manual for a valve inspection for a V4 Aprilia is 8 hours. I did quite a bit of research on the V4 Aprilias and it cooled my fire for that blue Tuono 1100.

      • notfishing

        A shop might take 8 hours and a good mechanic half that but I’m old and slow so I have to double or triple the time. Still I am getting faster……

  • HazardtoMyself

    So far only 6% for one brand. Curious which brand that is and if it’s the one most would expect.

    Have owned Kawasaki, Honda and Suzuki so far. Any brand will do though. If I like it and it’s reasonably reliable I will give it a shot.

    • TC

      I would guess that the ‘one brand’ is Harley, because Harley owners won’t ride anything else. That’s why they have Harley t shirts, hats, jackets, pants, boots, cup holders, and Harley decals on the pickups they tow their Harleys behind.

      • HazardtoMyself

        That would be my thought.

        Never know though, there are a lot of TaoTao enthusiasts out there too.

        • Jon Jones

          I have a TaoTao tramp stamp!

      • Jon Jones

        They are so married to the silly HD image. They’ll show up at an Easter gathering in their HD finery, as if it would kill them to just wear nice, normal appropriate clothing for a change.

  • Jack Meoph

    I have a Vespa, Ducati, Triumph, and Kawasaki in the garage. The only brand I won’t consider is Honda, because of what they did to Hayden after he won the MotoGP championship. Building the bike around Pedobot was a disgrace. In that time I’ve gone through about half dozen bikes. I can hold this grudge for the rest of my life, easy.

  • JMDGT

    6 Hondas
    2 BMWs
    2 Triumphs
    5 Sports Cars
    1 wife

    • Alexander Pityuk

      Wtf, only 1 wife?! It seems you don’t like riding her at all…

      • JMDGT

        One wife is a victory. Any more is a mistake.

        • Dimitry Kaplun

          Victory is now defunct.

  • DL Nielsen

    My preference seems to be for Yamaha since I currently own 7. The rest of the fleet consists of Hondas, Kawasakis, Triumphs, Piaggios, a Suzuki, a Moto Guzzi and an Aprilia.

    • Alexander Pityuk

      Jesus… Do you own a dealership with all those bikes or something?

      • DL Nielsen

        Nope. I just haven’t learned the art of trading one in. Nor have I quite got the hang of selling one on consignment because it usually ends up being a trade in, sort of.

    • Sayyed Bashir

      How many bikes do you have?

      • DL Nielsen

        Some days, too many. Other days, just enough.

    • Prakasit

      I envy you. I can afford to keep one bike at a time. So, it is a Kawasaki for now.

  • Goose

    Trying to remember…
    1 Kawasaki
    1 BSA
    1 Moto Guzzi
    2 Ducatis
    2 Harleys
    4 Hondas
    5 Yamahas
    12 BMWs

    But the one I’ve kept the longest and enjoyed the most is my Road Glide, over 11 years now.

    • Sayyed Bashir

      I love my Softail Custom too. 10 years.

    • Ok Campers

      With a name like “Goose” and having had a Moto Guzzi, one has to wonder if maybe, subliminally at least, it is that Italian you really fancy ! But 12 BMWs? Seems like you were looking for the “perfect” Beemer. Interesting stuff, Goose. You’ve clearly had enough variety on which to base your choice! Ride safe.

      • Goose

        You got me on the Guzzi, even though it wasn’t, objectively, a great bike I loved my V11 Sport. It was so beautiful, I could just stare at it, it sounded (with Saintunes slip ons) better than any bike I’ve ever owned. The name is a combination of the Guzzi nickname, (Jim) Goose from the movie Mad Max and “silly goose” which describes me sometimes.

        The BMW were a combination of a BMW centric riding friends, too much money (Silicon Valley) and a love of things Germanic. Never found a perfect Beemer but my R100GS was pretty great.

        I guess my history is why I’m so short tempered with “if you knew what I know you’d ride my style of bike” morons. In the last 48 years I’ve owned off road bikes, raced Super Bikes and production bikes, Adventure Toured long before it was called Adventure Touring, Toured on touring bikes, had fun little runabouts, etc. For the last decade plus my modified Road Glide has been my bike of choice. When I bought it it was one of five bikes. Now I have two with the XR1200 being for sale, the Road Glide I’ll probably have until I can’t hold it up at stop signs. I got to ride an M-8 Harley a few months ago, great bike but why does a near naked bike weigh more than my full dress RG?

  • Sayyed Bashir

    Boy oh boy, are you opening a can of worms! First of all you don’t have KTM up there (Europe’s largest motorcycle maker). But at least you have the other two brands I own and am loyal to. I feel that only by owning a motorcycle do you really understand its advantages and shortcomings. Everything else is just hearsay and prejudices. I love all my motorcycles.

  • tjeepdrv

    I always look at everything, but so far it’s been 3 Yamahas in a row. I plan to keep the FZ07, but the next one will either be an RSV4, Daytona, or R6. Probably an R6.

  • TC

    Owned BMW, BSA, Moto Guzzi, Buell, Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Suzuki. Currently own and ride BMW, Moto Guzzi, and Suzuki. I think all the major brands build good bikes, it just depends what you want.

  • Mike C

    Zero allegiance. All the companies have bikes I would like to have at some point and I’ve owned at least one of most major brands — and a few oddballs — at this point. Life’s too short to stick with one brand…

  • Tim Sawatzky

    I really am not brand loyal at all. But so far I’ve owned 6 Honda’s and 2 Kawasaki’s. I can’t afford the new bikes that interest me, so I guess I gravitate to older bikes I can afford. I really wanted a Stratoliner this last time, but a Valkyrie Interstate fell into my lap that I couldn’t pass up. What could I do? It’s a big bike to get off my lap.

    • Jon Jones

      Good call! I’d like both a Stratoliner and a Valkyrie Interstate.

    • John A. Stockman

      My MO has been to find a used machine, repair/replace/refurbish what it needs and put lots of miles on it. I’ve only bought one brand new bike ever, in 2008 a Suzuki Burgman 400. Changed my mind about “scooters” it did. Not against finding a neglected bike and giving it some love and care to get it back on the road. I answered an ad for an early 80s KZ440, low miles, etc. I went to the girl’s house, original owner, and asked to see the bike. She opened the garage door and all I saw was a huge pile of old furniture, up to the ceiling, covering about half the garage space. I saw no bike. It looked like they took a Bobcat and pushed it all into the garage in a heap. She said they didn’t have time to get the bike out yet, but they’d do it right now. She and her boyfriend moved the furniture (took about a half hour) out into the driveway. “We just moved in…”. There was the bike, laying completely on it’s side! Big dent in the side of the tank, battery acid corrosion all over the back of the bike and engine cases. Pulled it upright on the center stand. Low miles was right, only 700 miles! She hadn’t ridden it in 7 years. The goo in the tank and carbs was epic. Acid corrosion got all over everything under the seat including the electrical components, plus chain, swing arm, later I found some in the rear brake drum and on the shoes. I have never seen a bike that was for sale laying on its side. I could look past the crud, gas-goo and acid damage. They weren’t even embarrassed. I offered them $200 and took it home. What a giant mess. Took me 3 months of the usual parts searching (it was 1995, I had no internet back then), using some good parts from my previous KZ440, cleaning aluminum, polishing, etc. I took the engine apart, inspecting all the tolerances including the trans, it looked brand new and spec’d out as such, so no work needed there. I fixed the big dent in the gas tank myself and repainted it. A labor of love, as I enjoy doing that stuff. The kind of therapy and Zen/Motorcycle Maintenance activities that calm the soul. I put 10,000 miles on that bike in the first year, no issues at all. Here it is the first day she came out of the garage after the work was done. That’s how I got many bikes over the years, offering to take the old girl off people’s hands, then fix it up. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/9a84271e66e536906186846335963df9dc3580ab40e47194dbb6181a8f42db88.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/30f20079c061f079fc9a071e5d8e017f2e60957d4f35c4700b5e97cd775cb61c.jpg

      • Jon Jones

        Great story, awesome job!

      • sgray44444

        I bought an old CB350 that way back in the late 90’s. A neighbor of a friend had it, so I went to look. It was laying on its side under a tarp in the back yard. It was rusty and ugly, but all it took was to charge the battery, clean the carbs, and it fired right up, blowing soot out the exhaust all over the shed (landlord loved that!). I ended up sealing the gas tank and doing some electrical work (selenium rectifier was an issue), and rode it to work for a couple years before buying something newer. As someone new to motorcycles, it was a great learning experience and a lot of fun.

  • Dimitry Kaplun

    In my life I have had or owned 6 Ducatis, 2 BMWs, 1 MV Agusta, 1 KTM, 1 Benelli, 1 Suzuki, and 1 Honda. Being brand loyal is nice but silly–all brands have some interesting bikes. But I must admit I am a pasta burner type and definitely a bit of a Euro snob.

  • RyYYZ

    My first motorcycle as a kid was a Kawi, so I’ve always had a soft spot for them. Owned a few over the years, too – ’96 ZX6E, ’95 Concours, ’00 ZRX1100. But then I owned a V-Strom for 10 years, and now have a Yamaha Fazer 8.

  • Scott Ess

    There is something to brand loyalty as long as the brand stays loyal to it’s design and quality ethos. And I think everyone has a sweet spot of the brand their first bike was. That being said, my first was a Yamaha 550 Vision. Now I’ve got: Yamaha… 98 Vmax; BMW…. 88 K100, HP2 Sport and 2013 HP4; Honda…09 CBR600RR; and Ural…2013 Yamal Gear-up; Ducati 2007 Sport Classic Sport1000S. Mostly ride the Honda and Ural. All have been equally reliable though the Ural did require idle tinkering once due to extreme weather shift in terms of temperature.

    • Jon Jones

      Those Vision 550s helped me become a better mechanic as they had PLENTY of issues. Still, pretty cool, ahead-of-their-time motorbikes.

      • kawatwo

        The VIsion was my second bike ever and it had a great motor and was super comfy. Just ate starters and had a little head shake that not even a fork brace could quite fix. That motor though. WOW.

        • Jon Jones

          Very punchy, indeed.

  • Ok Campers

    I love my 1999 Moto Guzzi that I bought as a new leftover in 2001, still have and sometimes ride, but as I got older, I had difficulty throwing a leg over its 30+ inch seat height. The Corbin seat, seemingly styled after farm tractor seat in its width, made for unfavorable tippy-toe balancing at stop lights, too . The solution I opted for a couple years ago was a used 2009 Vstar 1300 Tour, which I bought on short notice out of necessity for use on an upcoming extended ride. It had what I was looking for at the time, mainly low seat and low price. It has turned out to be a very nice bike, but not necessarily one that generates brand loyalty in me, yet . Maybe in a few years (I’m 70 now) I’ll like it as I do the Guzzi, but right now my brand loyalty goes to the Italian. However, all that being said, when it comes to motorcycles….. as with guns…. I like ’em all.

  • wolzybk

    Not loyal to a brand, so much as loyal to a single bike. 24 years ago I bought a new Ducati Monster, and it was the perfect bike for me. So I’m still riding it, 262K miles later. My next bike stands a good chance of being a Ducati, although I have had and would consider others.

    • Jon Jones

      262K? WOW!

    • 12er

      Jeebus after my 15k service on my multi it may be my last. Assume you do your own valves.

      • wolzybk

        I can, but I generally don’t. I find it valuable to have a good professional get his hands on it at least once a year, to help find things that have gradually changed that I might not have noticed. After about 40K, everything settled in well, and the intervals needed for the valve checks became less frequent. For many years now, I’ve gotten the valves checked once a year (that’s typically between 11K and 15K miles), and the belts changed every two years. Everything else is just like maintaining any other bike.

        • Born to Ride

          Do you have collets installed on the valves or do you still use the half rings? I hear most people have to replace the half rings around 80-100k because they get brittle from work hardening and crack into pieces.

          • wolzybk

            I still use the stock setup and parts. It has worked fine for me.

      • Born to Ride

        The 2 valve engines are completely different and much easier to maintain than 4 valvers. Doing your own adjustments is a simple afternoon affair with no pulling of cams or aligning timing chains/guides. My local dealer charges 4-500$ to do the service, which is no more or less than a Japanese bike. The 1200 testastretta costs double for the same service I am told.

    • Alexander Pityuk

      I love how you specified exactly 260 and 2K miles 🙂

      • wolzybk

        Well, that’s what it’s at now, and I’m still riding it. 😉

  • Steve Benjamin

    Kawi green rules for now

  • Sam Birchill

    Had several Yamaha’s and liked them. Good quality and fun to ride. Went to Europe about 10 years ago and rented a BMW. It was fine but was missing something. When I came home I tested a BMW and for some reason tried a Triumph Tiger. I rode that Tiger for 10 years and 60,000 miles. Moved up to a Triumph Trophy SE. Even better. Much better than a RT.

  • TonyCarlos

    BMW invented sport touring. Their bikes still do it pretty damned well. If you know how to buy them and wrench them yourself, they’re affordable to mere mortals.
    I’ll never say never, but I’ve no motivation to change brands.

  • Brian Fistler

    Not brand loyal, open to almost any brand, however I won’t even consider a few brands, particularly any brand that wants to build it’s reputation on costume play and wanna-be bad boy image.

  • Chris

    I am the Unfortunate owner of a 15 HD Street 750. Has been in the shop for 2 weeks with a Trans Issue. Mech says my Trans has a second Neutral. Service Writer said something about a “False Neutral” Possible Shift Drum problem with 10k Miles.

    • John A. Stockman

      I know, not being able to ride your bike. I owned an XL until the local HD dealer refused to repair it’s obvious defects under warranty anymore. It got more miles on it from pushing it around the dealership than me riding it. I was blamed for it’s problems. I was told I didn’t know how to ride it or maintain it. It was brand new! The dealer got tired of seeing me and the bike. HD themselves said it was “at the dealer’s discretion” and would not make the dealer perform anymore warranty work since I was obviously abusing the bike for it to have that many issues. Wow, if at first you don’t succeed, fix the blame. I was originally proud of that bike, and I never abused any of my motorcycles. I still have my 1968 Honda Z50, in great condition. I rode the wee out of it, but took care of it quite well; if I didn’t maintain it myself and keep it clean, my dad and grandpa said I wouldn’t be riding it anymore, that was the deal. My aunt owned a late 60s Sprint 250, the Aermacchi Harley. Great bike, even used it for club racing. Until the XR1200, best handling Harley I ever rode. And I’ve ridden many. There was a huge improvement with handling after the FL frame update in 2008. I went to look at the new 750 and 500 models. The ergos and rider triangle, something was odd about it. The usual HD quality like welds, paint, finishes was definitely not up to par. Good luck with your bike, I’ve been there. Hopefully, you can put some miles on it before summer/fall ends. I took the loss on my XL, sold it after my grandfather and I repaired the problems and learned a lesson that I did not repeat.

      • Jon Jones

        Good cautionary post.

    • Jon Jones

      Yikes! Sorry to hear. Thanks for the post and warning.

    • Chris

      The Problem on mine started a few weeks back. Roughly couple hundred miles. Started with a Clanking sound. Then turned into a Shake when releasing the clutch in certain gears. Service Writer rode my bike. Shifts fine when cold. Happens when the engine/trans is hot.
      Priced out a Scout 60 and 100 today. The 100 would almost double my payments. The 60 would add about $70. Rock and a Hard Place.

    • Chris

      Spoke to my Chapels Service Dept today. He asked me for permission to open up the Transmission. To see what is actually happening. I called another Dealer, Who told me he has had Several in his shop with a Flashing N Light. While not actually in N. Potential Recall for Safety.

    • Chris

      Last night I filed a complaint with NHTSA. This could be a Safety Recall. N light on and not being in Neutral.

    • Chris

      UPDATE: Bike was left at Dealer on Aug 20 2017. “Finished” on Sept 4 2017. They replaced the N Switch. Rode it home. N Light wasn’t always coming on. Had trouble finding N. Pulled into a gas station to refuel. Shifted into N. Released the Clutch and Coasted to pump. Shut off and refueled. Would not Crank. Until I played with the Shift Pedal to get the N Light back on. Sept 5 2017 my Warranty expires. Now I have to call HD and the Dealer today. Hopefully the Dealer will send their truck to pick it up. So I don’t have to find a ride home.

  • elgar

    My very biased and favourite brands…Road Bikes: Suzuki, Kawasaki, Ducati, Triumph.
    Off Road Bikes: Suzuki, Honda, Maico, Can Am. I either own or have owned these brands and love them all!

  • W Donald

    Over the years I have had Honda , Yamaha , Kawasaki , Triumph and KTM , ironically never had a Suzuki although I had ordered a DRZ400 years ago but wasn’t willing to wait 3 months so bought something else instead . At the moment Honda and Triumph have bikes that I would purchase , but there are still some glaring gaps in the ranges of all the manufacturers .
    How about doing a poll on which brand has the most loyal owners .

  • mikstr

    Owned mostly Yamahas over the years and had grat luck with them (zero problems). Now have a Honda VTR which has over 150,000 miles (and many, many mods) and it still makes me smile. Am open to any brand that will be raliable and make me smile.

    As for Harley, it’s no longer loyalty but fanaticism

  • ColoradoS14

    Not so much to brand but definitely have preferences which tend to push me to bikes from certain countries/brands. I tend to like V-twin or V-four bikes and nakeds, as such Italian brands, KTM and some others typically top the list. I do like the new Yamaha cross-plane 1000 but man I could never buy a FZ-10 over a Tuono.

  • 12er

    At 6’6 I can’t be brand loyal, Model loyal maybe, but like clothes, cars and anything else, its what I can fit on that meets my needs.

  • Lewis

    I would have to say my favorite brand is Yamaha. I had a hot RD350 while in college which I adored. That being said, I have had approximately 50 to 60 bikes go through my garage. Mostly Japan Inc., except 1 HD, 1Buell, 1 Triumph, 1 Husky, and 2 Ducatis. Probably will stick with Japan Inc if it is my only bike. Multi bike scenario opens up the choices a bit though.

  • ChevalierMalFet

    I only have two bikes, but while they’re both Japanese, one’s a Yamaha XSR900 and one’s a Kawi Versys 1000. I used to own a Guzzi, but I’ve learned not to involve myself with Euro-bikes anymore. I think going forward I’m just going to keep it Japanese.

  • therr850

    Suzuki is my most comfortable brand. Love their street motor powerbands. Have had, and really liked, two Kawasaki Concours ZG1000’s. The Ninja 1000 has peaked my interest. First bike was a Triumph TR6T. Had a Sprint ST1050 and love those triples. That’s why I am in with the majority of the voters. Have a preferrence but am open to others.

  • Old MOron

    In terms of motorcycles I’ve owned German, Japanese and Italian, and I could own any of those again. But in terms of webzines, I guess I’m very loyal. I’m a MOron through and through.

  • sgray44444

    I started out being a Honda guy, but switched to Suzuki with my first V-strom. I was looking for something large enough and comfortable that was mid-displacement, and it was a great fit for me. So good that I bought another one after selling the first. I went with a Triumph later, and while it is a fun bike, I find that I lean much more toward the practical side. I don’t really have any brand loyalty, but I tend to like what Suzuki, Yamaha, and Kawasaki are doing these days. In theory, I would like to own a BMW, but I can’t get over the reliability issues and I don’t have the cash, or should I say, the willingness to part with the cash, any more. The one thing I’ve found is that being satisfied with what is in your garage is better than always looking for the latest and greatest thing, which is a never ending pursuit for perfection that doesn’t exist. I had a friend with an old R90/6, and while a lot of other bikes came and went, that bike always stuck around, in many different forms and colors, over the years.