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Jon
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Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 5:21 pm

I drive a Ford Probe GT '93 model, it's very heavy on gas, up here we pay about $1.25/l for gas, not sure what that is in gallons but I spend around CAD $100 / month on gas. Are motorcycles quite light on gas? I've been toying with the idea of getting one, learning to ride it and using it as primary transport between home and work. I'm not sure what bike to even consider at this point.
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SpotTheCat
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 5:40 pm

They'll be great relative to that car, but the mileage also varies a lot based on what you get and how you ride.
 
mattsteg
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 5:41 pm

You pay maybe 20% more than we do in the US for gas, it seems.

I've heard that motorcycle insurance can be very expensive in some parts of canada. Do check on that before planning on getting one for economic reasons. I pay less than $100 a year for basic coverage on my bike.

Your gas bill isn't THAT high, so there's a limit to how much you can save with it. Motorcycles can be pretty light on gas, especially smaller ones. They're also great fun. Personally, commuting on my motorcycle saves me as much in parking in a day as it does in gas in a week. A probe shouldn't be that heavy on gas - not great, but not truck-level. Getting one for purely economic reasons isn't likely to save all that much. Realistically, doubling your fuel efficiency, depending on driving conditions and style, is probably a fair estimate. A lot of bikes won't apprioach that, some might beat it. That's still 50 bucks a month. Realistically, much more than 6 months of riding isn't likely in Calgary, and there's potential for less. So, replacing all of your car driving with motorcycling during that time works out to maybe $300 a year. Take out licensing, insurance, and maintenance costs from that, and it becomes fairly clear that given what you've shared, you buy a motorcycle for enjoyment, not economics.
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Hance
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 6:39 pm

I am with mattsteg the odds of you saving any money are almost zero. My fuel bill is a couple of thousand a month so I would be really happy with a 100 a month fuel bill. Back when I had my motorcycle it actually got worse mileage than my 3/4 ton diesel pickup does. The motorcycle got 17 MPG and my truck gets 21 MPG if I keep my foot out of it.
 
Heiwashin
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 6:41 pm

Hance wrote:
I am with mattsteg the odds of you saving any money are almost zero. My fuel bill is a couple of thousand a month so I would be really happy with a 100 a month fuel bill. Back when I had my motorcycle it actually got worse mileage than my 3/4 ton diesel pickup does. The motorcycle got 17 MPG and my truck gets 21 MPG if I keep my foot out of it.


You must have a driving job.
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Hance
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 6:45 pm

Heiwashin wrote:
Hance wrote:
I am with mattsteg the odds of you saving any money are almost zero. My fuel bill is a couple of thousand a month so I would be really happy with a 100 a month fuel bill. Back when I had my motorcycle it actually got worse mileage than my 3/4 ton diesel pickup does. The motorcycle got 17 MPG and my truck gets 21 MPG if I keep my foot out of it.


You must have a driving job.


Nope I dont. I do enviromental compliance testing on underground fuel storage tanks in 14 states. I dont get paid to drive I get paid for the work I do on site but I cover a lot of miles between jobs.
 
Heiwashin
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 6:47 pm

Hance wrote:
Heiwashin wrote:
Hance wrote:
I am with mattsteg the odds of you saving any money are almost zero. My fuel bill is a couple of thousand a month so I would be really happy with a 100 a month fuel bill. Back when I had my motorcycle it actually got worse mileage than my 3/4 ton diesel pickup does. The motorcycle got 17 MPG and my truck gets 21 MPG if I keep my foot out of it.


You must have a driving job.


Nope I dont. I do enviromental compliance testing on underground fuel storage tanks in 14 states. I dont get paid to drive I get paid for the work I do on site but I cover a lot of miles between jobs.


I hope you get paid well for those jobs.
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Last edited by Heiwashin on Thu May 29, 2008 6:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Hance
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 6:50 pm

Well it aint minimum wage I can promise you that :wink:
 
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 6:52 pm

My ninja 650R gets about 40-50mpg, depending on the speed / RPM i average.
and yes in Canada we pay a lot for insurance. my bike costs $150 a month to insure, with a 43% discount. thats with collision, comprehensive. and it's not even a high CC engine - 1000's would be more for coverage.
if you only drive a bike, it'll be a lot less than a car for cost.
 
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 11:15 pm

As a general rule, heavier bikes with larger engines will get worse gas mileage. Likewise, chain drives & strap drives are more efficient than bikes with a driveshaft. Naturally, there are a lot of exceptions, but I can provide a few data points.

My first motorcycle was a 1994 Ninja 500. Two cylinders, about 430 pounds with a full tank of gas, top speed of around 120 mph. I regularly got about 55 to 60 miles/gallon.

My current motorcycle is a 2006 Kawasaki Nomad. Two big cylinders (1552cc), saddlebags, driveshaft. 770 lbs dry. I routinely get about 40 mpg on it.

I talked to the owner of a 2004 BMW 1200 LT earlier this week. 796 lbs, four cylinders, more gadgets than you can shake a stick at. He also gets about 40 mpg.
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Firestarter
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Thu May 29, 2008 11:25 pm

With a normal bike suitable for beginners, you'll get about 50 to 60mpg. Some very light and low powered bikes get 70mpg, but those aren't really suitable for the highway.
 
Hance
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Fri May 30, 2008 1:19 am

I had an RZ 350. The RZ had a 350cc two cylinder two stroke and was the last street legal two stroker. My RZ had a huge amount of engine work done to and was more of a race bike than anything else. It got all of 17 MPG and it didnt matter how you rode it. I could ride it 100+ mph down the highway or 50 mph site seeing and it got exactly the same mileage.
 
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Fri May 30, 2008 5:19 am

I don't understand why you guys drive such a powerful vehicles ... If it is about commuting than i would always prefer a vehicle that can do 120KMS max and gives me a good economy on fuel.

BTW i own 2 motorcycles, 1) 100CC Yamaha, 7.6 BHP, top speed: 60MPH and runs 60 kmpl (this is my daily commuter) 2) 250CC Yamaha 28 BHP top speed: 100MPH and runs 25 kmpl (weekend traveler), i also owned a car 2 years back, it was a Tata Sierra but that car was a diesel hog, she use to run 12 kmpl.
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Firestarter
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Fri May 30, 2008 6:54 am

Jigar2speed5095 wrote:
I don't understand why you guys drive such a powerful vehicles ... If it is about commuting than i would always prefer a vehicle that can do 120KMS max and gives me a good economy on fuel.

For me to be comfortable at cruising speed (which is 60 to 80 mph), the vehicle needs to be able to do at least 100mph, preferably more. Any slower and the acceleration at cruising speed is too slow for reasonable overtaking.
 
ztrand
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Fri May 30, 2008 7:16 am

If I drove carefully I got about 45MPG on my Hayabusa. That was a big bike though (1300cc, about 540lbs filled up) and as others have said, if you buy something light you can probably get away with 60MPG or so.
 
Darkmage
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Fri May 30, 2008 7:45 am

Jigar2speed5095 wrote:
I don't understand why you guys drive such a powerful vehicles ... If it is about commuting than i would always prefer a vehicle that can do 120KMS max and gives me a good economy on fuel.
In my case, my wife told me to get rid of my Ninja due to reliability problems. Luckily, she was okay with me owning a motorcycle, so she told me to go buy something new. The only caveats were 1) No chain drive, and 2) She wanted to be comfortable on the back. I wanted something with some hard bags, and the Nomad fit the bill.

I'm actually considering selling it. I'm not going to be riding for a long time come July and it would be a shame to just have it sit there. I'll probably replace it with something smaller when I get back into riding.
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Fri May 30, 2008 7:51 am

I don't need to jump on the highway, but using my bike for the commute, I get 70mpg on a Honda CMX250. I'm a lightweight guy (120 lbs), so I'm sure that helps a bit.
 
Jon
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Fri May 30, 2008 3:26 pm

Jigar2speed5095 wrote:
I don't understand why you guys drive such a powerful vehicles ... If it is about commuting than i would always prefer a vehicle that can do 120KMS max and gives me a good economy on fuel.


I got my car for free so at this point it doesn't make any sense to buy a new car with better fuel efficiency, I probably won't see any monetary benefit in doing so. The Probe GT will have to do, I'm driving very carefully, making sure not to accelerate too much un-necessarily and also not braking when turning corners so as to save minuscule percentages in gas usage whilst adhering to other gas saving techniques.

The gist I'm getting is that unless I'll be using the bike for entertainment purposes it's simply not worth going for one as long as I use a car. (And heck I need one for winter).

Thanks for the input all around.
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Fri May 30, 2008 4:04 pm

My bike get way better mileage than my car, and its 26 years old (82 Honda Nighthawk 750). I average 40+mpg with it. My car (02 Chevy Monte Carlo SS) averages about 23-24mpg.
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Firestarter
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Fri May 30, 2008 4:24 pm

Jon wrote:
Jigar2speed5095 wrote:
I don't understand why you guys drive such a powerful vehicles ... If it is about commuting than i would always prefer a vehicle that can do 120KMS max and gives me a good economy on fuel.

The gist I'm getting is that unless I'll be using the bike for entertainment purposes it's simply not worth going for one as long as I use a car. (And heck I need one for winter).

Who needs a car for the winter? :D
 
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Fri May 30, 2008 5:08 pm

Firestarter wrote:
Jon wrote:
Jigar2speed5095 wrote:
I don't understand why you guys drive such a powerful vehicles ... If it is about commuting than i would always prefer a vehicle that can do 120KMS max and gives me a good economy on fuel.

The gist I'm getting is that unless I'll be using the bike for entertainment purposes it's simply not worth going for one as long as I use a car. (And heck I need one for winter).

Who needs a car for the winter? :D
Anyone who lives where it's unsafe to use a motorcycle in winter, and where other alternatives are infeasible. Cold's no big deal, but snow and ice are unacceptable.
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bhtooefr
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Tue Jun 17, 2008 1:24 pm

jigar: Do realize that highway speeds are much higher in the US, and you need power to get out of the way of the idiots driving SUVs. ;)

Anyway, I've considered building a diesel motorcycle, but... there is the fact that, by far the cheapest and easiest route... top speed is 70, and that's on the flat, with no wind. Not gonna cut it for highway riding. Even if it can get 120 MPG easily. And 70 MPG on gasoline isn't worth it for the danger, when I could just get a Geo Metro and get 50.

FWIW, I take it this is a V6 Probe, not a 4-cyl?
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Tue Jun 17, 2008 2:04 pm

I dunno about the OP but to me safety is far more important than a few extra dollars/month for fuel. Even the crappiest cheapest 4-wheeled econobox is going to be far safer than pretty much any production motorcycle. To me that alone is worth having a car instead of a bike. I'm a big fan of fun on wheels (one of my cars is a small sports car) and I know bikes are great fun on their own but I'd never get one for mainly for this reason. Unless, of course, you are voluntarily trying to become an organ donor. If that's the case, then by all means get a bike, and a fast one.
Last edited by Synchromesh on Tue Jun 17, 2008 4:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
SpotTheCat
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Tue Jun 17, 2008 2:14 pm

My fiancee wouldn't let me get a bike when I was looking. I wanted a 250R :( Too unsafe she said.
 
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Re: Vehicle vs Motorcycle Gas Consumption

Tue Jun 17, 2008 4:27 pm

Before my wreck, my 500CC Vulcan got about 55mpg. The truck I'm driving now gets half that, it's a damn shame.
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