What Is a Motorcycle?

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A motorcycle (also known as a motorbike) is a two-wheeled powered vehicle with two wheels and an engine. It can be driven by one person or two people and may carry a passenger. It differs from a car in that it does not have four wheels, has a shorter chassis and is much lighter than a conventional car, with the power source being a petrol, diesel or electric motor.

Motorbikes are cheap at the outset, economical to run and take up a fraction of the space of a car. On the non-practical front, they are much more dynamic and involving to ride than a car because the rider’s body is part of the machine; movements affect weight transfer, steering and braking.

In addition, the fact that motorcycles often feature low-torque engines capable of delivering peak horsepower at high RPMs allows them to reach a relatively high top speed for their size. This is why so many new riders are now opting for 125cc scooters that offer the same performance as a small car and can be driven with a full licence, rather than the wheezing 49cc mopeds of old that could only manage around town.

To stay safe on a motorcycle, you should wear helmet and eye protection, ride within the speed limit, obey traffic signals, observe lane markings and always check behind before changing lanes. It is also important to attend training courses such as BikeSafe and the Enhanced Rider Scheme, which will help keep your skills sharp and up to date.