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Motorcycle Glossary Dictionary Term - Motorcycle

Motorcycle: A motorcycle is a 2-wheel vehicle patterned after a bicycle but powered with an engine and supported with a much heavier frame. Early motorcycles were actually bicycles fitted with small internal combustion engines. There was a gradual evolution as numerous motorcycle manufacturers entered the market and competed against each other.

Motorcycle: 1994 H-D Sportster XLH1200

A motorcycle works using a complex interrelated set of parts controlled by both hands and feet and requires coordination and skill not required to drive an automobile.

Motorcycles have been a part of transportation for a long time. They were once much more prevalent than automobiles until such pioneers as Henry Ford found out how to mass produce cars at a lower price.

Over the years, the motorcycle has come to fit a variety of needs beyond basic transportation.

Today's rider may use a motorcycle for commuting or everyday use. Some ride as part of their lifestyle. Some ride on lengthy cross-country tours.

Motorcycles have evolved to include 3-wheel vehicles called trikes. A motorcycle is sometimes fitted with a sidecar.

In the United States, only one company, Harley-Davidson, has been able to survive over 100 years, producing models every year since its first model in 1903. In fact, to most non-motorcyclists, the words "motorcycle" and "Harley-Davidson" are used interchangeably.

Although many motorcycle brands exist, the most prominent besides Harley-Davidson are Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Suzuki, BMW, and American made Victory.

Also Known As: Scooter, Bike, Scoot, Motorbike

Photo © 2005-2008 Walter Kern

Next Motorcycle Term >>

Symbols, A - C: (2-Second Rule => Custom Motorcycles)

D - H: (Daytona => Hurt Report)

I - P: (Inline 4 => Pushrods)

Q - S: (Rake & Trail => Swing Arm)

T - Z: (T-Bone => Zen)

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