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A sunny day creates the urge to take a ride. Although you could get out there in a car, nothing beats a date with the open road like being on a trike.

Sure – motorcycles provide a lot of fun, but you can have a similar experience on three wheels. If you’re considering embracing this lifestyle, it’s important to weigh all the benefits to see if they apply to your situation.

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Motorcycle vs. Trike: Which Is the Better Investment?

It’s always a good day when you can hit the open road and feel the rush of wind as you reach cruising speed. Motorcycles and trikes provide this benefit while delivering affordable results for most bikers.

When looking at the motorcycle vs. trike debate, the three-wheeled design does offer some benefits that riders might wish to consider.

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1. Additional Riding Comfort

You can find plenty of comfortable motorcycles on the road – if you’re under 40 or don’t have knee and hip issues that cause chronic pain. Many trikes have a reclined seating design that feels more like what you’d get in a car while delivering the experience of being in the open.

Some trikes have backrests or additional padding in the seat. Most offer a wider design for extra support. Instead of gripping the equipment with the legs to lean into each curve, you can steer like a car while receiving the motorcycle experience.

2. Suitable for Almost Anyone

Trikes are a fantastic way to step into motorcycle culture for the first time. Most states have a 3W endorsement option for licensing that is easier to pass than the two-wheel option for motorcycles.

trike without a rider

Although some states classify trikes as motorcycles or require you to take your skills test on a two-wheeled vehicle to ride yours with three wheels, the rules and regulations in the United States have been changing over the past decade.

Some areas even allow you to drive certain three-wheeled vehicles with a standard driver’s license.

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You can eventually gain confidence while transitioning to a motorcycle or eliminate nervousness by sticking with what makes you comfortable. It’s much easier to handle passengers with a trike’s setup.

3. Unique Safety Features

Some trikes come equipped with seatbelts, especially if they fit into an autocycle category like Vanderhalls. The seats are often situated centrally with a stable center of gravity. Some designs have partial or complete walls or roll bars around and over the seats for protection if an accident occurs.

4. Stand Out on the Road

Before trikes became popular, people would see a motorcycle with a sidecar and remark about how those aren’t seen all the time. When operating a three-wheel vehicle, you stand out from the cars and motorcycles out there.

Autocycles deliver this benefit at another level. If you’re operating a Vanderhall, it almost feels like you’re in a sportscar. The Polaris Slingshot® is a trike that handles a lot like a dune buggy. You get fun moments while on the road, even if you’re only driving to work.

5. Stability Improvements

You’ll have more stability on the road when you operate a vehicle with three wheels instead of two. Although this benefit isn’t noticeable on long stretches of flat straightaways, you’ll see a difference on tight curves and winding backroads.

The most crucial stability difference a trike offers is on unstable surfaces. If you have gravel roads in your area, you’ll find it is much easier to be on gravel, uneven pavement, or crossing tracks when you’ve got three wheels supporting you.

6. Licensing Advantages

Some trikes fall into an autocycle category that you can operate with a standard driver’s license. Most states offer a three-wheel (3W) endorsement that lets you test skills and knowledge on this design instead of a motorcycle, allowing you to enjoy the riding experience with less time in class.

Also, don’t forget to get affordable insurance for your trike before taking it on the road.

Alabama provides one of the easiest ways to get a motorcycle endorsement in the United States. You can walk in, take the written test, and leave able to drive a bike or a trike legally.

7. Safety Gear Transitions

trike with passenger in back

You can wear the same safety gear for riding a motorcycle as you can for a trike. The helmet, jacket, body armor, and other essentials you prefer work on each option. If you want to transition to a bike eventually, you won’t need to invest extra cash to ensure you’re staying safe on the road.

Which one is safer for riding – a motorcycle or a trike? Here is the answer.

Are There Any Disadvantages to Owning a Trike?

Trikes provide a different riding experience. That can be a benefit if you get off a motorcycle feeling sore and tired each time since the three-wheeled design delivers extra comfort.

You also get a different experience of being one with the road when you’re on a trike. It’s a bulkier vehicle, consumes a little more fuel, and offers variable driving options based on the make and model you purchase. Some have steering wheels, while others use handlebars.

Some owners may find a trike’s bulky dimensions can cause some parking or storage issues. The larger design means extra weight must be pushed around if your make and model don’t come with a reverse system.

Motorcycle vs. Trike: Which Is Right for Me?

Trikes allow riders to extend their time on the road by several years with a simple switch. Adding an extra wheel gives you a stable experience while enjoying a beautiful day.

Although some models might require you to push things around, several designs ensure every rider can find one with the features they need to have a successful operating experience.

Trikes are easier to handle, provide support for long rides, and let you feel better after arriving at your destination. That’s why this design is worth considering.

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Author

Mike Navarette has more than a decade of experience in the auto insurance industry, but that's not his true passion. He loves getting on a motorcycle to explore roads he's never traveled. You'll find Mike in the garage working on something when he isn't helping clients or leaning into curves. It's sometimes a side hustle, more often a favor, but it keeps his hands busy doing something productive. Since the first time his father strapped on his helmet and took him for a ride, Mike has loved bikes. That passion, along with a desire to help others through a deep understanding of insurance policies, led to the creation of Motorcycle Ride Coverage.

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