Finding a halfway decent used motorcycle at a good price can be liberating—and it’s not as hard as you’d think. Even when armed with a fairly low budget of just $2,500, you still have a vast array of motorcycles from which to choose. Sure, you’ll come across a few shady listings and some overpriced bikes (even at $2,500), but there’s still an encouraging amount of motorcycles in good enough condition to tempt you to pull the trigger.
To help sort through the endless amount of affordable used motorcycles living online, we at Gear Patrol picked out a few we’d buy right now for less than $2,500.
1996 Honda XR 600R
Honda has a habit of making a perfect desert bike and then not updating it for years to come—the XR600R is a prime example—but that by no means should diminish said bike’s reputation. Introduced in 1985 and updated in ’88 and’92, the XR600R then remained unchanged until the year 2000. This XR600R is a bit of a mid-90s time capsule, from the graphics all the way to the design. It’s a bit worrying the seller doesn’t list the engine’s hours (since it’s an off-roader, it doesn’t have an odometer), but these bikes were known to be tanks, and cheap to maintain.
Location: Ventura, California
2019 Honda CBR300R
This 2019 Honda CBR300R is the exception to the “used” rule on this list, but it was too good to ignore. Around this time, dealerships will tack on a heap of incentives to help sell last season’s bikes to make way for new inventory. The Honda CBR300R is categorized as a “sport bike,” but considering its size, power and balance, it makes for one hell of a first bike.
Location: Chula Vista, California
1990 Kawasaki ZG1000
The ZG1000 is a bit of a sleeper. Originally introduced in 1986, the ZG1000 is based on the full-fledged Ninja 1000R sportbike, but Kawasaki made a few reasonable changes to make it more liveable. Less aggressive cams, carburetors, and a shaft drive help the ZG1000 become more civilized and better suited for longer rides.
Location: Commerce Township, Michigan
1970 Triumph Trophy
Admittedly, this Triumph is in the worst shape compared to the rest of the list. But, if you keep in mind its age and the fact that it still “runs,” it could make a promising Trophy TR25W restoration.