What is a touring? What are types of touring motorcycles?

What is a touring? A touring bike sounds just like its name, the ideal motorcycle for a long-distance trip. These motorcycles are extremely comfortable and have the ability to carry luggage to make your trips easy and comfortable and a larger gas tank so you can keep on cruising.

Touring motorcycles are built with endurance in mind, so you know they are made to be reliable. Having the right bike for those long-distance trips will give you more enhanced and meaningful riding experience. There are many other benefits from owning a touring motorcycle that we will go through to help you make sure this is the platform for you.

What is a touring?

Touring motorcycles are a class of motorcycle designed specifically for long-distance motorcycle trips. They generally feature large, powerful engines, cargo space or carriers for luggage, and an upright riding position. Most touring motorcycles also have a generous second seat to carry a passenger over a long distance comfortably.

What is a touring

Depending on the model, manufacturers can equip a touring motorbike with comfort features like a car’s, such as heated seats, stereos, GPS capability, and airbags.

What are the various types of touring motorcycles?

When it comes to subcategories, we can divide touring motorcycles into four categories:

True Tourers

“Real” touring motorcycles are known by many different names including true tourers, full-size tourers, full-dress tourers, and just full-dressers.

These bikes are exclusively designed from scratch for touring purposes, with no compromises. They are built on a massive frame and feature large fairings for optimum aerodynamics and protection.

Hard storage boxes and smaller storage units are often integrated into the body as well.

Depending on the make and model, touring motorcycles can be powered by inline 4/6 cylinder, flat, or V engines. You can expect to get the smoothest possible operation from inline 6-cylinder engines while V configurations provide more torque and a nice engine sound.

See also  What is an AGM battery? How long does an AGM battery last?

Regarding engine size, the displacement of these bikes ranges from 500cc up to 2000cc, but most models have 1000-1800cc engines.

Thanks to their features, tourers provide the best mix of handling, comfort, and engine power, supported by the most advanced technology.

Based on their weight, we can distinguish between lightweight, middleweight, and heavy touring motorcycles. The dry weight of touring motorcycles starts at 450 pounds and goes up to a whopping 900+ pounds.

The key advantage of lighter touring bikes is their smaller dimensions, easy handling, and lower price tags. They are powered by smaller-displacement engines, which also provide great fuel economy.

What’s more, certain models come with removable storage boxes and windscreens, which offer great flexibility. Luxury-touring motorcycles also represent a pure class that includes the high-quality, richly-equipped flagship models.

Sport Tourers

Sport tourers uniquely blend the features of touring with sport motorcycles. They borrow their high-performance engines from sport bikes but are just as comfortable as touring bikes.

Therefore, with a sport tourer you can have the best of both worlds!

A sport touring motorcycle offers a sporty riding position and better handling, which allows for a more aggressive riding style. They are also faster and come with different gearing than conventional touring bikes.

While most motorcycle manufacturers keep only one sport tourer in their fleet, certain companies like BMW and Honda offer no less than 3-4 models in this class.

Some of these machines like the Kawasaki Ninja 1000SX Performance Tourer and the Suzuki GSX-S1000 GT look like a sport bike, while others inherit more features and design elements from the touring line.

Adventure Tourers

Adventure tourers are the result of a marriage between adventure and sport motorcycle classes. Compared to conventional touring bikes, adventure tourers have a narrower body, higher ground clearance, and lighter weight.

What is a touring

They often feature skid plates, knobby tires, navigation systems, and other useful features. Therefore, adventure tourers have great off-road capabilities but they also do a good job on long-range tours. So, it’s no surprise that adventure tourers are commonly used in Dakar and other gruelling rally events.

See also  What is a pocket bike? What is the point of a having Pocket?


Although full-size tourers and baggers are often classed together, the latter represents a unique class. Baggers are basically big-inch V-twin cruiser motorcycles equipped with side bags, fairings, and windshields.

They come in a more classic style with fewer fairings than purpose-built touring bikes, but they offer almost the same level of safety and comfort.

Many Harley riders claim that the term “bagger” is reserved exclusively for touring Harley-Davidsons. Others argue that any V-twin touring motorcycle is considered a bagger, regardless of the brand.

What are the pros and cons of touring motorcycles?

Touring models are some of the best motorcycles for long-distance travel, but they have drawbacks, too. When shopping for a touring bike, consider the following:

Touring motorcycle pros

  • Comfortable, ergonomic riding position: A touring motorcycle’s neutral riding position is more comfortable over long distances than other styles.
  • Lots of space for gear: Panniers, hard bags, top boxes, and more are available or come as standard equipment on touring bikes to customize your luggage setup.
  • Long-range: Touring motorcycles have larger gas tanks than other styles, so you’ll stop less often to fill up.
  • Power and high torque: Touring motorcycles are at home on the highway, so you won’t be pushing high RPMs while you cruise.
  • Visibility: A touring bike’s size makes it easy to see and is good for leading a group motorcycle ride or just trying to stay visible to others on the road.

Touring motorcycle cons

  • Weight: The size of touring motorcycles makes them much heavier than most other styles.
  • Less nimble: Touring models may be less maneuverable than other common motorcycle types since they’re made for long rides with gentle curves rather than sporty riding.
  • Fuel efficiency: Due to their size and weight, touring motorbikes often get fewer miles to the gallon than other bikes.
  • Cost: Bike prices vary considerably by make and model, but some touring models can cost as much as — or more than a car.

Should I buy a touring motorcycle?

A touring motorcycle can make long-distance motorcycle travel more rewarding, but you need to ensure you’ve got the right one. Think about how long you plan to spend in the saddle each day you travel, how much luggage you’ll be bringing with you, what options and upgrades are available, and how easily you can find a qualified mechanic for your bike.

See also  What is an Enduro motorcycle? Where can I buy Enduro motor?

What is a touring

The ultimate test is how it feels to ride, but it isn’t always possible to test drive a motorcycle at the dealer or from a private party. If possible, try test riding the motorcycle before you buy and if you need further testing, consider renting a motorcycle like the touring motorcycle model you want for a day or two.

Even if you can’t take the bike you want for a ride before you buy, you should at least ask to sit on it and see if the seat height, handlebar height, and riding position are comfortable. Sit for at least a few minutes to get a better idea. You’re buying a touring motorcycle for long distances, and some comfort and fit issues may not immediately be apparent.

Finally, consider how you’ll use the bike most of the time. While touring motorbikes make great travel motorcycles, they aren’t always the best choice for other circumstances. For instance, touring motorcycles may not be the best motorcycle for new riders because their weight and power take some experience to handle.

Or, if you use a motorcycle to commute or get around the city, you may find bikes with better fuel economy and more agile handling are a better option.


What is the difference between touring and non touring motorcycles?

While cruiser motorcycles are built for city riding, touring motorcycles are built for long-distance rides. These models are crafted with endurance in mind – both for the motorcycle’s engine and for the rider. You won’t find superfluous accessories that only offer an aesthetic benefit.

What is special about touring bikes?

A touring bike’s geometry will favour stability too. It will typically have a long wheelbase and chainstays, and slack frame angles. The longer wheelbase also means that it’s less likely that luggage or a front mudguard will get in the way of your pedal stroke.

Are touring motorcycles good for beginners?

Touring bikes can be challenging for beginners, as the heavier build requires more strength and confidence to handle effectively. However, a great alternative for this is lightweight adventure bikes like the Honda CB500X and Suzuki V-Strom 650.

Above is information about What is a touring? that we have compiled. Hopefully, through the above content, you have a more detailed understanding of What are the various types of touring motorcycles? Thank you for reading our post.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *