Looking to purchase your first set of new wheels? But not so sure about having to learn how to change the gears on a motorbike before you’ve got to grips with riding one at all?
Well up until a few years ago it was the manual way or the highway, the majority of motorbikes in production were solely manual based. And whilst this is still the case, there are now a plethora of different automatic brands and models available making motorbike riding more accessible for all. But how do you ride an automatic motorbike? Should you consider getting one? And which are the best to consider?
How do you ride an automatic motorbike?
Whilst the design and specs of automatic motorbikes differ, operating them is a standard, pretty straightforward process. Powered by an electric motor, there’s no need to work through any gears or make any gear changes as you ride, you just need to twist the throttle and away you go.
However, there are a couple of differences to manual motorbikes you should be aware of. Firstly, braking isn’t quite the same. Some automatic bikes have the standard foot brake for rear braking, but a lot of models nowadays have a brake atop the handlebars (usually where the clutch would go on a conventional bike).
It’s also worth noting that downward gear shifting on a manual motorbike allows for greater controlled braking which is of course different with automatic bikes.
Why should you consider one?
Put simply, it can be argued that automatic motorbikes make the riding experience a whole lot easier. Especially if you’re someone who’s relatively new to it, wants one less thing to think about whilst getting used to controlling your bike, or are just looking for something to get you from A to B safely and smoothly.
Remember when automatic cars first came onto the scene? People complained it had taken all the fun out of the driving experience, and now automatic cars have taken the car industry by storm. There’s no reason why automatic transmission motorcycles can’t go the same way! So don’t be put off by those who are sceptical.
The most common automatic motorbikes
As mentioned, over the last few years, motorbike manufacturers have been adding an increasing amount of automatic transmission models onto their production lines. And here are some of the most popular:
- Honda CTX700 DCT – called a ‘modern cruiser’ by Honda because of its modern sleek lines and flat black finish. It has plenty of power and mod cons including an automatic DCT transmission and anti-Lock Brake System.
- Energica Eva EsseEsse9 – the electric motorbike company, Energica seem to have got a hell of a lot of things right in manufacturing their bikes. And they don’t seem to be showing any signs of slowing down. This model boasts a retro style with a modern performance that doesn’t require any gear shifting.
- Honda NC00X DCT – this DCT is very powerful for an automatic machine. It’d be a good choice for a learner bike as it’s, agile, versatile and stable and has a low centre of gravity.
If you’re looking for your first motorbike, or are looking to change for something a little different to ride, then an automatic transmission bike could be a new ball game that’s worth playing – especially since more brands are making the shift across to produce more.