2015 Motorcycle Reliability Award

Posted by Canstar Blue September 26th 2016

When everything is going right, not much can beat the sheer thrill of riding your motorcycle.

blue-msc-motorcycles-reliability-2015

Most Satisfied Customers | Harley Davidson

Canstar Blue sought to find out which motorcycle brands have the best reputation for reliability by asking more than 700 bike owners. And we’re able to report that Honda and Harley-Davidson are out in front for reliability, according to our survey respondents.

When everything is going right, not much can beat the sheer thrill of riding your motorcycle.

But the reality is that not every motorcycle owner gets to experience the unrelenting joy of their hobby without a few frustrations along the way. Imagine waking up in the morning to discover that the starter has failed again and your planned road trip isn’t going to happen. Or imagine heading out on a trip in the fear of being left stranded on the side of the road with a snapped clutch cable.

Reliability should be a significant factor when deciding which motorbike to buy, especially for those who rely on it for their daily commute to and from work.

With that in mind, Canstar Blue sought to find out which motorcycle brands have the best reputation for reliability by asking more than 700 bike owners. And we’re able to report that Honda and Harley-Davidson are out in front for reliability, according to our survey respondents.

Of course, brand is not the only predictor of motorcycle reliability. The type of bike you own is also a key factor, with research suggesting that Cruisers are often found to be the most reliable.

Common reliability problems

A survey of motorcycle owners by Consumer Reports found electrical faults to be the most common cause of motorcycle reliability issues, followed by accessories and brakes. But despite being extremely powerful, motorcycles can be fragile machines and numerous other things could lead to breakdowns.

Parts that malfunction and need repairs:

  • Electrical systems 24%
  • Accessories 19%
  • Brakes 18%
  • Fuel system 13%Clutch 8%
  • Body panels 6%
  • Drive system 6%
  • Valvetrain 5%
  • Front suspension 5%
  • Cooling system 4%
  • Piston 4%
  • Transmission 4%

No brand or motorcycle model can ever guarantee 100% reliability, but choosing to buy from a brand with a good reputation for reliability will probably tilt your odds in favour of avoiding those disrupting breakdowns and regular trips to the repair shop.

Harley Davidson and Honda’s Customer Satisfaction Rating for Reliability: 5 stars

Read our motorcycle customer satisfaction ratings for more.

Frequently asked questions

Canstar Blue commissioned I-view to survey 882 Australian motorcycle riders in order to measure and track customer satisfaction. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who currently own and have ridden a motorcycle in the last 3 years (excluding scooters and mopeds) – in this case, 733 Australians.

Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then alphabetically. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.