2023 Motorcycle of the Year

It’s been yet another fantastic year in motorcycling. But, of course, isn’t motorcycling always fantastic? Each year we see varying levels of innovation from BNGs (bold new graphics) to evolutions, and inevitably entirely new machines gracing the motorcycle market. As enthusiasts, we are in a golden era of motorcycling, rife for choices backed with technology that makes it so much easier to own and ride.

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Best Value Motorcycle of 2023

Naked motorcycles of varying sizes have come out in force to the value category of our MOBOs for the past decade. Last year, an adventure bike stirred up the pot of naked domination. This year, we’re seeing Suzuki come in with a solid competitor from each class with its new 800 platform in the V-Strom 800 DE and GSX-8S. At $9k for the 8S and $11,600 for the Strom DE, both motorcycles represent an excellent value in their specific categories.

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Best Sportbike of 2023

Yep, we know this one is a bit of a shocker. How in the world can the Kawasaki ZX-4RR win our Best Sportbike of the Year award? At close to $10,000 and less than 60 horsepower (in stock trim), we’ve clearly lost our minds. Well, it comes down to two things:

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Best Naked Motorcycle of 2023
Best Sport-Touring Motorcycle of 2023
Best Standard Motorcycle of 2023
Best Cruiser / Bagger of 2023
Best Lightweight / Entry-Level Motorcycle of 2023
Motorcycle.com Best of 2023

Holy cow, is it nearly December already? It feels like we just took down our holiday decorations a few days ago, and already, Mariah Carey is haunting our radio stations. We’re not ready to say goodbye to 2023 yet, though, as there is still one important bit of business to take care of.

That’s right, it’s time once again for the Motorcycle.com Best Of (MOBO) awards.

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2022 Motorcycle of the Year

Each year, we gather as a staff for the task of choosing Motorcycle.com’s Motorcycle of the Year (MOTY). Sometimes the debate can be heated – and lengthy. This year, we reached consensus on the top two choices relatively easily. What caused the debate was the ranking of the two, but we were able to come to an agreement (some possibly reluctantly) as to their final standing. Remember, the MOTY is not about choosing the absolute best motorcycle of 2022. While the bike needs to be one of the best by winning one of our MO Best Of categories (MOBO), the bike needs to be something more; it needs to say something about the current state of motorcycling. The 2022 MOTY is no different. In fact, it was alone in winning two MOBO categories. When you combine the two, the motorcycle says a lot about its current class of motorcycles, in this case adventure-touring and value motorcycles. The 2022 Aprilia Tuareg 660 illustrates the continuing advancement and the maturity of the adventure-touring market.

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Best Adventure Motorcycle of 2022

It was a hard choice between winner and runner-up in the Adventure category which means we’re the real winners. There are so many great options not only in the middleweight category, but also the genre as a whole. The Ducati and Aprilia are two of the latest entrants into the segment and the Tuareg managed to eke out the win for precisely the reason we’ve seen it twice now in our MOBO selection – its exceptional value proposition.

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Best Sportbike of 2022

It seems a little crazy that anyone with the cash can just pull up to a Ducati dealer and walk away with a Panigale V4 S. What it has to offer would have seemed like science fiction just a decade ago. For starters, a decade ago who would have thought Ducati would deviate from its beloved L-Twin for its flagship superbike? Not only has Ducati doubled up its cylinders, but it has continued its winning ways. The 2022 Panigale V4 S is the byproduct of many of those lessons. It’s done so while keeping in mind that pros and regular schmucks like us ride these things too, so making it easier and more accessible to ride – and ride quickly – was also a focus. The convenient byproduct is that a bike that’s easier for average Joes to ride quickly also translates to a bike the really fast guys and gals can ride quickly, too.

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Best Naked Motorcycle of 2022

Allow me to say it before you do: this is cheating. I know. The Ducati Streetfighter V4 SP is bonkers. And while it technically meets our rules of being available for purchase by the time of posting, it also kinda doesn’t because each of these were spoken for within a week of its release. Sorry.

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Best Sport-Touring Motorcycle of 2022

From a pure performance standpoint, the Ducati in the runner-up position would wipe the floor with the Suzuki here. But every year it’s worth reminding readers that these awards are about more than just outright performance. We also factor in the intangible factors, like what a certain model means for the brand or for the category, and the GT+ is a sign that the traditional, non-adventure-based, sport-tourers are still alive and kicking. There’s also just the shock and awe factor. As in, we expected Suzuki’s GSX-S1000GT+ to be a nice motorcycle – but we didn’t expect it to be this nice.

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Best Value Motorcycle of 2022

It’s been a few years since an adventure-style moto made its way into this category – though with the popularity of the class still truckin’ along, it shouldn’t be a surprise to see another ADV rip its way into the ranks of the Best Value category. For 2022, the Aprilia Tuareg boldly displays its impressive package starting at $11,999. While $12k isn’t an insignificant sum, what you get for your money with the Tuareg transcends from being an excellent value in the ADV world to an excellent value overall.

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