Test riding bikes at dealerships... - Sportbike Forum: Sportbike Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-06-2002, 11:41 PM Thread Starter
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Question Test riding bikes at dealerships...

Hey guys,

Quick question that'ss been on my mind for a while now. I am wanting to move up to a 600 from my GS500 and so I have been really looking into the sportbikes lately. I always read of everyone saying "go to the dealerships and test ride the bikes to find out which one best suits you". Well, my question is, after having gone to the local dealerships. There was only one that said they do demo rides. Now, being 19 I know they look at me like I'm crazy when I ask to demo a bike, but I've been riding bikes for several years now. I want to know how I'm supposed to test ride these bikes to see which one fits me the best when no one lets you test them?

Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-07-2002, 12:03 AM
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I'm not sure who told you to go and "test ride" bikes. But the only dealers where I have been allowed to test ride bikes are at Buell dealerships. Normally the only way to "try before you buy" is to find a friend (a good friend!) that has the bike you want to buy that will let you ride it.

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-07-2002, 03:04 AM
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im 20, and look 16. I rode up there on a motorcycle and said im looking to buy a bike in a week or two. They photocopy my license and then i test rode a Triumph 955i daytona and then a kawasaki 1100zrx
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-07-2002, 07:11 AM
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Red face

Welcome to the eternal question!
SOME dealerships will allow test rides on used bikes, but not many. Pretty much what Robert said. Unless you have a friend who will let you test their bike out, you'll have to settle for just sitting on bikes and seeing which one you think fits you best. Don't feel age-discriminated though. This is the common policy at most dealerships regardless of age.
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-07-2002, 09:37 PM
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The best way I found to test ride bikes, and test ride a bunch, is to sign up for it thru the manufacturer when they are at motorcycle events.

That may mean contacting Suzuki yourself and asking someone in the sales department when they will be allowing test rides at an event near you (or elsewhere).

I have been able to test ride bikes. Granted, I am older than 19. Sometimes it was year old slightly used units but riding them gave me the information I needed to buy a new one.

I have not seen Suzuki do this, but I got to ride Hondas and Kawasakis at Biketoberfest last fall. I know that Kawasaki does test rides at some AMA races. Not sure about Suzuki.

Yes, being 19 is a severe handicap.

I plan to test ride any bike I buy, from this point forward. Even if I have to go to Montana to do it. But I can tell you, if I have to go to Billings to test ride a bike, guess who gets my business? It isn't going to be the dealer that refused the test ride.


"...If you can meet with triumph and disaster, and treat those two imposters the same....you'll be a Man, my Son!"

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-10-2002, 09:48 AM
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You have to have a motorcycle endorsement on you driver's license. They get you to sign a paper saying you'll pay for damages to the bike and not sue if you break your spine.

I've never had a problem test riding bikes at dealerships. Some places actually pressure me to take them out. This is in Georgia and Maryland, at Honda and BMW dealerships. I can't imagine a dealer expecting someone to buy a motorcycle without riding it.
In fact, the test rides are what convinced me to spend $2000 more for a VFR over an F4i (though now I wonder if I made the right choice )

Good luck. I'm 29, so I guess I look like an adult.
You should go to the dealership looking serious about buying a bike. Wear nicer clothes, take your helmet, etc. I'm not trying to sound patronizing, but I've been at a dealer and have seen guys in muscle shirts and shorts trying to get a salesman to take them seriously. Duh.

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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-10-2002, 02:58 PM
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It's pretty common here to expect a test ride, especially on a newly released model. Funnily enough, it's the biggest dealer in Belfast who won't let too many out for test rides. I think they lose a lot of sales in that respect as I personally wouldn't buy a new bike without a test. Therefore, I bought my vtec from a small family run dealer who gave me two rides before I bought. The first ride was about 40 minutes long, the second, I was gone for 3 hours and did 100 miles. When I returned, I ordered a new bike.
All the dealer asked for was a photo copy of my license and a signed disclaimer in-case of damage. Have to say, we get it pretty good in some ways over here. Now all I need to get fixed is the weather.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-10-2002, 03:08 PM
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Not calling anyone a liar, but I've never heard of any dealer ever giving test rides on bikes, especially sportbikes. I've gone to the dealer roundups that all the local serpents (salesmen) attend at military bases (they'll do ANYTHING to get you to buy) and even THEY
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-10-2002, 03:10 PM
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even THEY won't let anyone test-ride one. So, don't take offense.....just the way things go.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-10-2002, 03:19 PM
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Well, a dealer would have to be a moron to give free rides on new bikes at a military base. Jesus, talk about a high-risk demographic.
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