Adventure bikes are one of the most popular styles of motorbikes on the road today due to their versatility and comfort. Adventure bikes can range from cheap, small-capacity models to technologically advanced models with almost as many buttons as the Starship Enterprise.
Due to the wide variety of adventure bikes available, prices and insurance premiums can also vary wildly.
What are adventure bikes?
Adventure bikes are, as their name suggests, bikes that are designed for adventuring.They're generally able to handle both on and off-road riding and long distances. Adventure bikes have an upright riding position to give the rider a commanding view of the road ahead, and to help with control during off-road riding.
Exactly when the adventure bike was born is a little unclear, though any point to the BMW R80G/S as the first real adventure bike. Compared to today's adventure bikes the G/S was extremely basic, with little bodywork and very little in the way of technology. Since the G/S was introduced in 1980 adventure bikes have become bigger and more advanced. Today they're some of the most technologically advanced bikes available, with features such as cornering headlights and cornering ABS.
Popular adventure bikes
The most popular adventure bike is without doubt the BMW R1200GS. The GS series of motorcycles was thrust into the public eye when Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman embarked on their Long Way Round adventure in 2004. Since then the R1200GS has been the most popular adventure bike.
But it's not in a class of one. With the rise in popularity of the R1200GS many other manufacturers also started to launch their own adventure bikes.
KTM have been producing adventure bikes almost as long as the GS has been around and with their extensive off-road knowledge they know a thing or two about making a capable adventure bike. KTM have an adventure bike to suit everybody, from their more road-focused 1090 Adventure and 1290 Adventure S models to the 1090 Adventure R and 1290 Super Adventure R models, which are geared more towards off-road riding.
Sticking with European manufacturers, the Ducati Multistrada 1200 is also a very popular adventure bike and suits those who are perhaps looking for something with a bit more performance. There are also loads of other adventure bikes on the market, such as the Honda Africa Twin, Kawasaki Versys 1000 and Yamaha Super Tenere.
Adventure bikes aren't restricted to bigger engine sizes, though. There's the Honda CRF250 Rally and CCM GP450 Adventure and soon there'll be a 700cc Yamaha adventure bike.
How can I get cheaper adventure bike insurance?
Check out our cost-busting insurance tips here!
Alternatively you can shop around for motorcycle insurance using our free tool on MCN Compare.