Motorcycle
Overview
 
A motorcycle is a single-track
Single-track vehicle
A single-track vehicle is a vehicle that leaves a single ground track as it moves forward. Single-track vehicles usually have little or no lateral stability when stationary but develop it when moving forward or controlled...

, two-wheeled motor vehicle
Motor vehicle
A motor vehicle or road vehicle is a self-propelled wheeled vehicle that does not operate on rails, such as trains or trolleys. The vehicle propulsion is provided by an engine or motor, usually by an internal combustion engine, or an electric motor, or some combination of the two, such as hybrid...

. Motorcycles vary considerably depending on the task for which they are designed, such as long distance
Touring motorcycle
A touring motorcycle is a type of motorcycle designed for touring. Although any motorcycle can be used to tour with, manufacturers have brought specific models designed to address the particular needs of these riders...

 travel, navigating congested urban traffic, cruising
Cruiser (motorcycle)
Cruiser is the term for motorcycles that mimic the design style of American machines from the 1930s to the early 1960s, including those made by Harley-Davidson, Indian, Excelsior and Henderson. The market for models evocative of the early cruisers has grown to embrace 60 percent of the U.S...

, sport and racing, or off-road
Off-roading
Off-roading is a term for driving a vehicle on unsurfaced roads or tracks, made of materials such as sand, gravel, riverbeds, mud, snow, rocks, and other natural terrain.-Off-road vehicle:...

 conditions.

Motorcycles are one of the most affordable forms of motorised transport in many parts of the world and, for most of the world's population, they are also the most common type of motor vehicle.
Discussions
Encyclopedia
A motorcycle is a single-track
Single-track vehicle
A single-track vehicle is a vehicle that leaves a single ground track as it moves forward. Single-track vehicles usually have little or no lateral stability when stationary but develop it when moving forward or controlled...

, two-wheeled motor vehicle
Motor vehicle
A motor vehicle or road vehicle is a self-propelled wheeled vehicle that does not operate on rails, such as trains or trolleys. The vehicle propulsion is provided by an engine or motor, usually by an internal combustion engine, or an electric motor, or some combination of the two, such as hybrid...

. Motorcycles vary considerably depending on the task for which they are designed, such as long distance
Touring motorcycle
A touring motorcycle is a type of motorcycle designed for touring. Although any motorcycle can be used to tour with, manufacturers have brought specific models designed to address the particular needs of these riders...

 travel, navigating congested urban traffic, cruising
Cruiser (motorcycle)
Cruiser is the term for motorcycles that mimic the design style of American machines from the 1930s to the early 1960s, including those made by Harley-Davidson, Indian, Excelsior and Henderson. The market for models evocative of the early cruisers has grown to embrace 60 percent of the U.S...

, sport and racing, or off-road
Off-roading
Off-roading is a term for driving a vehicle on unsurfaced roads or tracks, made of materials such as sand, gravel, riverbeds, mud, snow, rocks, and other natural terrain.-Off-road vehicle:...

 conditions.

Motorcycles are one of the most affordable forms of motorised transport in many parts of the world and, for most of the world's population, they are also the most common type of motor vehicle. There are around 200 million motorcycles (including moped
Moped
Mopeds are a type of low-powered motorcycle designed to provide economical and relatively safe transport with minimal licensing requirements.Mopeds were once all equipped with bicycle-like pedals , but moped has been increasingly applied by governments to vehicles without pedals, based on their...

s, motor scooters
Scooter (motorcycle)
A scooter is a motorcycle with step-through frame and a platform for the operator's feet. Elements of scooter design have been present in some of the earliest motorcycles, and motorcycles identifiable as scooters have been made from 1914 or earlier...

, motorised bicycles
Motorized bicycle
A motorized bicycle, motorbike, cyclemotor, or vélomoteur is a bicycle with an attached motor and transmission used either to power the vehicle unassisted, or to assist with pedaling. Since it always retains both pedals and a discrete connected drive for rider-powered propulsion, the motorized...

, and other powered two and three-wheelers) in use worldwide, or about 33 motorcycles per 1000 people. This compares to around 590 million cars
CARS
Cars, or automobiles, motor cars, are wheeled motor vehicles used for transporting passengers.Cars or CARS may also refer to:-Entertainment:* Cars , a Disney/Pixar film series...

, or about 91 per 1000 people. Most of the motorcycles, 58%, are in the developing countries of Asia — Southern and Eastern Asia, and the Asia Pacific countries, excluding Japan — while 33% of the cars (195 million) are concentrated in the United States and Japan. In 2006 China had 54 million motorcycles in use and an annual production of 22 million units. , India with an estimated 37 million motorcycles/mopeds was home to the largest number of motorised two wheelers in the world. China came a close second with 34 million motorcycles/mopeds.

History

The first internal combustion
Internal combustion engine
The internal combustion engine is an engine in which the combustion of a fuel occurs with an oxidizer in a combustion chamber. In an internal combustion engine, the expansion of the high-temperature and high -pressure gases produced by combustion apply direct force to some component of the engine...

, petroleum
Petroleum
Petroleum or crude oil is a naturally occurring, flammable liquid consisting of a complex mixture of hydrocarbons of various molecular weights and other liquid organic compounds, that are found in geologic formations beneath the Earth's surface. Petroleum is recovered mostly through oil drilling...

 fueled motorcycle was the Petroleum Reitwagen
Daimler Reitwagen
The Daimler Reitwagen or Einspur was a motor vehicle made by Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach in 1885, and is widely recognized as the first motorcycle. Daimler is often called "the father of the motorcycle" for this invention...

. It was designed and built by the German inventors Gottlieb Daimler
Gottlieb Daimler
Gottlieb Daimler was an engineer, industrial designer and industrialist born in Schorndorf , in what is now Germany. He was a pioneer of internal-combustion engines and automobile development...

 and Wilhelm Maybach
Wilhelm Maybach
Wilhelm Maybach was an early German engine designer and industrialist. During the 1890s he was hailed in France, then the world centre for car production, as the "King of constructors"....

 in Bad Cannstatt, Germany in 1885.
This vehicle was unlike either the safety bicycle
Safety bicycle
A safety bicycle is a type of bicycle that became very popular beginning in the late 1880s as an alternative to the penny-farthing or ordinary and is now the most common type of bicycle. Early bicycles of this style were known as safety bicycles because they were noted for, and marketed as, being...

s or the boneshaker bicycles of the era in that it had zero degrees of steering axis angle and no fork offset, and thus did not use the principles of bicycle and motorcycle dynamics
Bicycle and motorcycle dynamics
Bicycle and motorcycle dynamics is the science of the motion of bicycles and motorcycles and their components, due to the forces acting on them. Dynamics is a branch of classical mechanics, which in turn is a branch of physics. Bike motions of interest include balancing, steering, braking,...

 developed nearly 70 years earlier. Instead, it relied on two outrigger wheels to remain upright while turning. The inventors called their invention the Reitwagen ("riding car"). It was designed as an expedient testbed for their new engine, rather than a true prototype vehicle. Many authorities who exclude steam powered
Steam engine
A steam engine is a heat engine that performs mechanical work using steam as its working fluid.Steam engines are external combustion engines, where the working fluid is separate from the combustion products. Non-combustion heat sources such as solar power, nuclear power or geothermal energy may be...

, electric or diesel two-wheelers from the definition of a motorcycle, credit the Daimler Reitwagen as the world's first motorcycle.

If a two-wheeled vehicle with steam propulsion is considered a motorcycle, then the first was the French Michaux-Perreaux steam velocipede
Michaux-Perreaux steam velocipede
The Michaux-Perreaux steam velocipede was a steam powered velocipede made in France sometime from 1867 to 1871, when a small Louis-Guillaume Perreaux commercial steam engine was attached to a Pierre Michaux manufactured iron framed pedal bicycle...

 of 1868. This was followed by the American Roper steam velocipede
Roper steam velocipede
The Roper steam velocipede was a steam-powered velocipede built by inventor Sylvester H. Roper of Roxbury, Boston, Massachusetts, United States sometime from 1867–1869. It is one of three machines which have been called the first motorcycle, along with the Michaux-Perreaux steam velocipede,...

 of 1869, built by Sylvester H. Roper
Sylvester H. Roper
Sylvester H. Roper was an inventor from Roxbury, Boston, Massachusetts, and a pioneering builder of early automobiles and motorcycles. In 1863 he built a steam carriage, one of the earliest automobiles...

 Roxbury, Massachusetts
Roxbury, Massachusetts
Roxbury is a dissolved municipality and current neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts, United States. It was one of the first towns founded in the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1630, and became a city in 1846 until annexed to Boston on January 5, 1868...

. Roper demonstrated his machine at fairs and circuses in the eastern U.S. in 1867, and built a total of 10 examples.

In 1894, Hildebrand & Wolfmüller
Hildebrand & Wolfmüller
The Hildebrand & Wolfmüller was the world's first production motorcycle. Heinrich and Wilhelm Hidebrand were steam-engine engineers before Alois Wolfmüller agreed to finance them to produce their internal combustion Motorrad in Munich in 1894....

 became the first series production motorcycle, and the first to be called a motorcycle .

In the early period of motorcycle history, many producers of bicycle
Bicycle
A bicycle, also known as a bike, pushbike or cycle, is a human-powered, pedal-driven, single-track vehicle, having two wheels attached to a frame, one behind the other. A person who rides a bicycle is called a cyclist, or bicyclist....

s adapted their designs to accommodate the new internal combustion engine. As the engines became more powerful and designs outgrew the bicycle origins, the number of motorcycle producers increased.

Until World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

, the largest motorcycle manufacturer in the world was Indian
Indian (motorcycle)
Indian is an American brand of motorcycles. Indian motorcycles were manufactured from 1901 to 1953 by a company in Springfield, Massachusetts, USA, initially known as the Hendee Manufacturing Company but which was renamed the Indian Manufacturing Company in 1928. The Indian factory team took the...

,
producing over 20,000 bikes per year.
By 1920, this honour went to Harley-Davidson
Harley-Davidson
Harley-Davidson , often abbreviated H-D or Harley, is an American motorcycle manufacturer. Founded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, during the first decade of the 20th century, it was one of two major American motorcycle manufacturers to survive the Great Depression...

, with their motorcycles being sold by dealers in 67 countries.
By the late 1920s or early 1930s, DKW
DKW
DKW is a historic German car and motorcycle marque. The name derives from Dampf-Kraft-Wagen .In 1916, the Danish engineer Jørgen Skafte Rasmussen founded a factory in Zschopau, Saxony, Germany, to produce steam fittings. In the same year, he attempted to produce a steam-driven car, called the DKW...

 took over as the largest manufacturer.

After World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, the BSA Group
Birmingham Small Arms Company
This article is not about Gamo subsidiary BSA Guns Limited of Armoury Road, Small Heath, Birmingham B11 2PP or BSA Company or its successors....

 became the largest producer of motorcycles in the world, producing up to 75,000 bikes per year in the 1950s. The German company NSU
NSU Motorenwerke AG
NSU Motorenwerke AG, normally just NSU, was a German manufacturer of automobiles, motorcycles and pedal cycles, founded in 1873. It was acquired by Volkswagen Group in 1969...

 held the position of largest manufacturer from 1955 until the 1970s.

In the 1950s, streamlining began to play an increasing part in the development of racing motorcycles and the "dustbin fairing" held out the possibility of radical changes to motorcycle design. NSU and Moto Guzzi
Moto Guzzi
Moto Guzzi is an Italian motorcycle manufacturer. It is one of seven brands owned by Piaggio.Established in 1921 in Mandello del Lario, Italy, the company is noted for its central historic role in Italy's motorcycling manufacture, its prominence worldwide in motorcycle racing, and a series of...

 were in the vanguard of this development, both producing very radical designs well ahead of their time. NSU produced the most advanced design, but after the deaths of four NSU riders in the 1954–1956 seasons, they abandoned further development and quit Grand Prix motorcycle racing
Grand Prix motorcycle racing
Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix is the premier championship of motorcycle road racing currently divided into three distinct classes: 125cc, Moto2 and MotoGP. The 125cc class uses a two-stroke engine while Moto2 and MotoGP use four-stroke engines. In 2010 the 250cc two-stroke was replaced...

. Moto Guzzi produced competitive race machines, and by 1957 nearly all the Grand Prix races were being won by streamlined machines. The following year, 1958, full enclosure fairings were banned from racing by the FIM
Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme
The Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme is the governing body of motorcycle racing. It represents 103 national motorcycle federations that are divided into six regional continental unions....

 in the light of the safety concerns.

From the 1960s through the 1990s, small two-stroke motorcycles were popular worldwide, partly as a result of East German
German Democratic Republic
The German Democratic Republic , informally called East Germany by West Germany and other countries, was a socialist state established in 1949 in the Soviet zone of occupied Germany, including East Berlin of the Allied-occupied capital city...

 Walter Kaaden's engine work in the 1950s.

Today, the motorcycle industry is mainly dominated by Japanese companies such as Honda
Honda
is a Japanese public multinational corporation primarily known as a manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles.Honda has been the world's largest motorcycle manufacturer since 1959, as well as the world's largest manufacturer of internal combustion engines measured by volume, producing more than...

, Kawasaki, Suzuki
Suzuki
is a Japanese multinational corporation headquartered in Hamamatsu, Japan that specializes in manufacturing compact automobiles and 4x4 vehicles, a full range of motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles , outboard marine engines, wheelchairs and a variety of other small internal combustion engines...

, and Yamaha, although Harley-Davidson
Harley-Davidson
Harley-Davidson , often abbreviated H-D or Harley, is an American motorcycle manufacturer. Founded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, during the first decade of the 20th century, it was one of two major American motorcycle manufacturers to survive the Great Depression...

 and BMW
BMW Motorrad
BMW Motorrad is the motorcycle brand of the German company BMW, part of its Corporate and Brand Development division. The current General Director of the unit is Hendrik von Kuenheim....

 continue to be popular and supply considerable markets. Other major manufacturers include Piaggio
Piaggio
Piaggio based in Pontedera, Italy encompasses seven brands of scooters, motorcycles and compact commercial vehicles. As the fourth largest producer of scooters and motorcycles in the world, Piaggio produces more than 600,000 vehicles annually, with five research and development centers, more than...

 group of Italy, KTM
KTM
KTM Sportmotorcycle AG is an Austrian motorcycle, bicycle and moped manufacturer.The company was founded in 1934 by engineer Hans Trunkenpolz in Mattighofen. It started out as a metal working shop and was named Kraftfahrzeuge Trunkenpolz Mattighofen...

, Triumph
Triumph Motorcycles Ltd
Triumph Motorcycles Ltd is the largest surviving British motorcycle manufacturer, which was established in 1984 by John Bloor after the original manufacturer Triumph Engineering went into receivership...

 and Ducati.

In addition to the large capacity motorcycles, there is a large market in smaller capacity (less than 300 cc) motorcycles, mostly concentrated in Asian and African countries. An example is the 1958 Honda Super Cub, which went on to become the biggest selling vehicle of all time, with its 60 millionth unit produced in April 2008. Today, this area is dominated by mostly Indian companies with Hero Honda
Hero Honda
Hero MotoCorp formerly Hero Honda is a motorcycle and scooter manufacturer based in India. Hero Honda started in 1984 as a joint venture between Hero Cycles of India and Honda of Japan. The company is the largest two wheeler manufacturer in India...

 emerging as the world's largest manufacturer of two wheelers. Other major producers are Bajaj
Bajaj Auto
Bajaj Auto is a major Indian vehicle manufacturer started by Jamnalal Bajaj from Rajasthan in the 1930s. It is based in Pune, Maharashtra, with plants in Chakan , Waluj and Pantnagar in Uttaranchal. The oldest plant at Akurdi now houses the R&D centre Ahead...

 and TVS Motors
TVS Motors
TVS Motor Company is the third largest two-wheeler manufacturer in India.It is the flagship company of the parent TVS Group employing over 40,000 people with an estimated 15 million customers. It manufactures motorcycles, scooters, mopeds and auto rickshaws...

. For example, its Splendor
Hero Honda Splendor
The Hero Honda Splendor is a motorcycle manufactured in India by Hero Honda. It has an electronic ignition and a tubular double cradle type frame with a 97.2 cc engine. , Splendor models were selling at a rate of one million per year....

 model has sold more than 8.5 million to date.

Technical aspects

Construction

Motorcycle construction is the engineering, manufacturing, and assembly of components and systems for a motorcycle which results in the performance, cost, and aesthetics desired by the designer. With some exceptions, construction of modern mass-produced motorcycles has standardised on a steel
Steel
Steel is an alloy that consists mostly of iron and has a carbon content between 0.2% and 2.1% by weight, depending on the grade. Carbon is the most common alloying material for iron, but various other alloying elements are used, such as manganese, chromium, vanadium, and tungsten...

 or aluminium
Aluminium
Aluminium or aluminum is a silvery white member of the boron group of chemical elements. It has the symbol Al, and its atomic number is 13. It is not soluble in water under normal circumstances....

 frame
Motorcycle frame
A motorcycle frame includes the head tube that holds the front fork and allows it to pivot. Some motorcycles include the engine as a load-bearing, stressed member. The rear suspension is an integral component in the design. Traditionally frames have been steel, but titanium, aluminium, magnesium,...

, telescopic forks
Motorcycle fork
A motorcycle fork connects a motorcycle's front wheel and axle to its frame, typically via a pair of triple clamps. It typically incorporates the front suspension and front brake, and allows the bike to be steered via handlebars attached to the top clamp....

 holding the front wheel, and disc brake
Disc brake
The disc brake or disk brake is a device for slowing or stopping the rotation of a wheel while it is in motion.A brake disc is usually made of cast iron, but may in some cases be made of composites such as reinforced carbon–carbon or ceramic matrix composites. This is connected to the wheel and/or...

s. Some other body parts, designed for either aesthetic or performance reasons may be added. A petrol powered engine
Motorcycle engine
A motorcycle engine is an engine that powers a motorcycle.Motorcycle engines may be two-stroke or four-stroke, reciprocating or Wankel, single-cylinder or multicylinder , or single-rotor or twin-rotor . The engine typically drives the rear wheel, but some small bikes such as the Velosolex have a...

 typically consisting of between one and four cylinders
Cylinder (engine)
A cylinder is the central working part of a reciprocating engine or pump, the space in which a piston travels. Multiple cylinders are commonly arranged side by side in a bank, or engine block, which is typically cast from aluminum or cast iron before receiving precision machine work...

 (and less commonly, up to eight cylinders) coupled to a manual
Manual transmission
A manual transmission, also known as a manual gearbox or standard transmission is a type of transmission used in motor vehicle applications...

 five- or six-speed sequential transmission drives the swingarm
Swingarm
A swingarm, or "swinging arm" is the main component of the rear suspension of most modern motorcycles and ATVs...

-mounted rear wheel by a chain, driveshaft
Driveshaft
A drive shaft, driveshaft, driving shaft, propeller shaft, or Cardan shaft is a mechanical component for transmitting torque and rotation, usually used to connect other components of a drive train that cannot be connected directly because of distance or the need to allow for relative movement...

 or belt
Gilmer belt
Gilmer belt is a trade name for a type of belt used for transferring power between axles in a machine. The belt itself has ribs on the inner side to engage special pulleys mounted to the axles....

.

Fuel economy

Motorcycle fuel economy varies greatly with engine displacement and riding style ranging from a low of 29 mpgU.S. (12.3 km/L) reported by a Honda VTR1000F rider,
to 107 mpgU.S. (45.5 km/L) reported for the Verucci Nitro 50 cc Scooter.
A specially designed Matzu Matsuzawa Honda XL125 achieved 470 mpgU.S. (199.8 km/L) "on real highways - in real conditions."
Due to low engine displacements (100 cc–200 cc), and high power-to-mass ratios, motorcycles offer good fuel economy. Under conditions of fuel scarcity like 1950s Britain and modern developing nations, motorcycles claim large shares of the vehicle market.

Electric motorcycles

Very high fuel economy equivalents are often derived by electric motorcycles. Electric motorcycles are nearly silent, zero-emission
Zero emission
Zero emission refers to an engine, motor, or other energy source, that emits no waste products that pollutes the environment or disrupts the climate.-Zero emission engines:...

 electric motor-driven vehicles. Operating range and top speed suffer because of limitations of battery technology. Fuel cells
Fuel cell vehicle
A Fuel cell vehicle or Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle is a type of hydrogen vehicle which uses a fuel cell to produce electricity, powering its on-board electric motor...

 and petroleum-electric hybrids
Hybrid vehicle
A hybrid vehicle is a vehicle that uses two or more distinct power sources to move the vehicle. The term most commonly refers to hybrid electric vehicles , which combine an internal combustion engine and one or more electric motors.-Power:...

 are also under development to extend the range and improve performance of the electric motors.

Dynamics

Different types of motorcycles have different dynamics and these play a role in how a motorcycle performs in given conditions. For example, one with a longer wheelbase provides the feeling of more stability by responding less to disturbances. Motorcycle tyres
Motorcycle tyres
Motorcycle tyres provide the only contact with the ground, via the contact patch under normal conditions, and so have a very large influence over motorcycle handling characteristics. Motorcycle tyres have a round cross section to facilitate the leaning necessary when a motorcycle turns...

 have a large influence over handling.

Motorcycles must be leaned in order to make turns. This lean is induced by the method known as countersteering
Countersteering
Countersteering is the technique used by single-track vehicle operators, such as cyclists and motorcyclists, to initiate a turn toward a given direction by momentarily steering counter to the desired direction...

, in which the rider momentarily steers the handlebars in the direction opposite of the desired turn. Because it is counter-intuitive this practice is often very confusing to novices — and even to many experienced motorcyclists.

Short wheelbase motorcycles, such as sport bike
Sport bike
A sport bike, also written as sportbike, is a motorcycle optimized for speed, acceleration, braking, and cornering on paved roads, typically at the expense of comfort and fuel economy in comparison to less specialized motorcycles...

s, can generate enough torque at the rear wheel, and enough stopping force at the front wheel, to lift the opposite wheel off the road. These actions, if performed on purpose, are known as wheelie
Wheelie
In vehicle acrobatics, a wheelie is a vehicle maneuver in which the front wheel or wheels come off the ground due to extreme torque being applied to the rear wheel or wheels. Wheelies are usually associated with bicycles and motorcycles, but can be done with other vehicles such as cars, especially...

s and stoppie
Stoppie
The stoppie , is a motorcycle and bicycle trick in which the back wheel is lifted and the bike is ridden on the front wheel by carefully applying brake pressure. It is also sometimes called a front wheelie.-General description:...

s respectively. If carried past the point of recovery the resulting upset is known as an "endo" (short for "end-over-end"), or "looping" the vehicle.

Accessories

Various features and accessories may be attached to a motorcycle either as OEM
Original Equipment Manufacturer
An original equipment manufacturer, or OEM, manufactures products or components that are purchased by a company and retailed under that purchasing company's brand name. OEM refers to the company that originally manufactured the product. When referring to automotive parts, OEM designates a...

 (factory-fitted) or after-market. Such accessories are selected by the owner to enhance the motorcycle's appearance, safety, performance, or comfort, and may include anything from mobile electronics
Automotive electronics
Automotive electronics are the electronics used in the automobiles.It includes body electronics, in car entertainment, carputers, chassis electronics and telematics.Automotive electronics...

 to sidecar
Sidecar
A sidecar is a one-wheeled device attached to the side of a motorcycle, scooter, or bicycle, producing a three-wheeled vehicle.-History:A sidecar appeared in a cartoon by George Moore in the January 7, 1903, issue of the British newspaper Motor Cycling. Three weeks later, a provisional patent was...

s and trailers
Motorcycle trailer
Motorcycle trailer is a term used to describe a trailer used either to carry motorcycles or to be pulled behind a motorcycle in order to carry additional gear.-For carrying motorcycles:...

.

Popularity

In numerous cultures, motorcycles are the primary means of motorised transport. According to the Taiwanese government, for example, "the number of automobiles per ten thousand population is around 2,500, and the number of motorcycles is about 5,000." In places such as Vietnam, motorised traffic consist of mostly motorbikes due to a lack of public transport and low income levels that put automobiles out of reach for many.

The four largest motorcycle markets in the world are all in Asia: China, India, Indonesia, and Vietnam. The motorcycle is also popular in Brazil's frontier towns. Amid the global economic downturn of 2008, the motorcycle market grew by 6.5%.

Recent years have seen an increase in the popularity of motorcycles elsewhere. In the USA, registrations increased by 51% between 2000 and 2005. This is mainly attributed to increasing fuel prices and urban congestion. A Consumer Reports
Consumer Reports
Consumer Reports is an American magazine published monthly by Consumers Union since 1936. It publishes reviews and comparisons of consumer products and services based on reporting and results from its in-house testing laboratory. It also publishes cleaning and general buying guides...

 subscribers' survey of mainly United States motorcycle and scooter owners reported that they rode an average of only 1000 miles (1,609.3 km) per year, 82% for recreation and 38% for commuting. Americans put 10000–12000 mi (16,093.4–19,312.1 ) per year on their cars and light trucks.

Subcultures


Around the world, motorcycles have historically been associated with subcultures. Some of these subcultures have been loose-knit social groups such as the cafe racers of 1950s Britain, and the Mods and Rockers
Rocker (subculture)
Rockers, leather boys or ton-up boys are a biker subculture that originated in the United Kingdom during the 1950s. It was mainly centered around British cafe racer motorcycles and rock and roll music....

 of the 1960s. A few are believed to be criminal gangs. Books about motorcycle subcultures include Hunter S. Thompson
Hunter S. Thompson
Hunter Stockton Thompson was an American journalist and author who wrote The Rum Diary , Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail '72 .He is credited as the creator of Gonzo journalism, a style of reporting where reporters involve themselves in the action to...

's Hells Angels (1966), Lee Gutkind
Lee Gutkind
Lee Gutkind is an American writer.Gurkind is the founder of the literary magazine Creative Nonfiction and the author or editor of over a dozen books. He started the first ever MFA program in creative nonfiction at the University of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh...

's Bike Fever (1974), and Daniel R. Wolf's The Rebels (1991).

Social motorcyclist organisations
Motorcycle club
A motorcycle club is a group of individuals whose primary interest and activities involve motorcycles.In the U.S. the abbreviation, MC or MCC, can have a special social meaning from the point of view of the outlaw subcultures, and is usually reserved by them for those clubs that are mutually...

 are popular and are sometimes organised geographically, focus on individual makes, or even specific models. Example motorcycle clubs include: American Motorcyclist Association
American Motorcyclist Association
The American Motorcyclist Association is an American not-for-profit organization of more than 300,000 motorcyclists that organizes numerous motorcycling activities and campaigns for motorcyclists' legal rights...

, Harley Owners Group
Harley Owners Group
The Harley Owners Group is a sponsored community marketing club, operated by Harley-Davidson for enthusiasts of that brand's motorcycles. The HOG is "the grandaddy of all community-building efforts," serving to promote not just a consumer product, but a lifestyle...

 and BMW MOA
BMW MOA
The BMW Motorcycle Owners of America is a private, nonprofit membership association for owners and admirers of BMW motorcycles. , it had 39,700 members.BMW MOA was founded in 1972 in Chicago by five enthusiasts....

. Some organisations hold large international motorcycle rallies
Motorcycle rally
A motorcycle rally is a gathering of motorcycle enthusiasts. Rallies can be large or small, and one-time or recurring. Some rallies are ride-in events, whereas some like the Iron Butt Rally involve days of riding and an actual gathering only at the end of the ride.-North America:Notable annual...

 in different parts of the world that are attended by many thousands of riders.

Whereas many social motorcycle organisations raise money for charities through organised events and rides, some other motorcycle organisations exist only for the direct benefit of others. Bikers Against Child Abuse (BACA) is one example. BACA assigns members to individual children to help them through difficult situations, or even stay with the child if the child is alone or frightened.

In recent decades, motorcyclists have formed political lobbying organisations in order to influence legislators to introduce motorcycle-friendly legislation. One of the oldest such organisations, the British Motorcycle Action Group, was founded in 1973 specifically in response to helmet
Motorcycle helmet
A motorcycle helmet is a type of protective headgear used by motorcycle riders. The primary goal of a motorcycle helmet is motorcycle safety - to protect the rider's head during impact, thus preventing or reducing head injury or saving the rider's life...

 compulsion, introduced without public consultation. In addition, the British Motorcyclists Federation
British Motorcyclists Federation
The British Motorcyclists Federation is a motorcycle riders' rights group in the United Kingdom. The BMF was founded in 1960 as the Federation of National One Make Motorcycle Clubs to counter accusations of "leather jacketed hooligans". It renamed itself the BMF in 1965.-Activities:The BMF...

 (BMF), originally founded in 1960 as a reaction to the public perception of motorcyclists as leather-jacketed hooligans, has itself moved into political lobbying.
Likewise, the U.S. has ABATE, which, like most such organisations, also works to improve motorcycle safety
Motorcycle safety
Motorcycle safety concerns many aspects of vehicle and equipment design as well as operator skill and training that are unique to motorcycle riding.-Accident rates:...

, as well as running the usual charity fund-raising events and rallies, often for motorcycle-related political interests.

At the other end of the spectrum from the charitable organisations and the motorcycle rights activists are the "outlaw motorcycle gangs". These are defined by the Provincial Court of Manitoba as: "Any group of motorcycle enthusiasts who have voluntarily made a commitment to band together and abide by their organisations' rigorous rules enforced by violence, who engage in activities that bring them and their club into serious conflict with society and the law". The Federal Bureau of Investigation
Federal Bureau of Investigation
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is an agency of the United States Department of Justice that serves as both a federal criminal investigative body and an internal intelligence agency . The FBI has investigative jurisdiction over violations of more than 200 categories of federal crime...

 (FBI) and Criminal Intelligence Service Canada
Criminal Intelligence Service Canada
Criminal Intelligence Service Canada is an inter-agency organization in Canada designed to coordinate and share criminal intelligence amongst member police forces. The CISC has a central bureau in Ottawa and ten bureaus in each province offering services to over 380 law enforcement agencies in...

 have designated four MCs as Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs (OMGs), which are the Pagans
Pagans MC
Pagan's Motorcycle Club, or simply The Pagans, is a one-percenter outlaw motorcycle gang and an alleged organized crime syndicate formed by Lou Dobkin in 1959 in Prince George's County, Maryland, United States...

, Hells Angels
Hells Angels
The Hells Angels Motorcycle Club is a worldwide one-percenter motorcycle gang and organized crime syndicate whose members typically ride Harley-Davidson motorcycles. In the United States and Canada, the Hells Angels are incorporated as the Hells Angels Motorcycle Corporation. Their primary motto...

, Outlaws MC, and Bandidos
Bandidos
The Bandidos Motorcycle Club, also known as the Bandido Nation, is a "one-percenter" motorcycle gang and organized crime syndicate with a worldwide membership. The club was formed in 1966 by Don Chambers in Texas. Its slogan is We are the people our parents warned us about. It is estimated to have...

, known as the "Big Four".

Mobility

While people choose to ride motorcycles for various reasons, those reasons are increasingly practical, with riders opting for a powered two-wheeler as a cost-efficient alternative to infrequent and expensive public transport systems, or as a means of avoiding or reducing the effects of urban congestion. In places where it is permitted, lane splitting
Lane splitting
Lane splitting refers to a two-wheeled vehicle moving between lanes of vehicles that are proceeding in the same direction. More narrowly, it refers to passing stopped or slower moving traffic between lanes at a speed greater than surrounding traffic....

, also known as filtering, allows motorcycles to use the space between vehicles to move through stationary or slow traffic.

In the UK, motorcycles are exempt from the £10 per day London congestion charge
London congestion charge
The London congestion charge is a fee charged for some categories of motor vehicle to travel at certain times within the Congestion Charge Zone , a traffic area in London. The charge aims to reduce congestion, and raise investment funds for London's transport system...

 other vehicles must pay to enter the city during the day. Motorcycles are also exempt from toll charges at some river crossings, such as the Severn Bridge
Severn Bridge
The Severn Bridge is a suspension bridge spanning the River Severn between South Gloucestershire, just north of Bristol, England, and Monmouthshire in South Wales, via Beachley, a peninsula between the River Severn and River Wye estuary. It is the original Severn road crossing between England and...

, Dartford Crossing
Dartford Crossing
The Dartford - Thurrock River Crossing, Dartford River Crossing is a major road crossing of the River Thames in England, connecting Dartford in the south to Thurrock in the north, via two road tunnels and the Queen Elizabeth II Bridge. It opened in stages, the west tunnel in 1963, the east tunnel...

, and Mersey Tunnels
Mersey Tunnels
The Mersey Tunnels connect Liverpool with the Wirral Peninsula, under the River Mersey. There are three tunnels: the Mersey Railway Tunnel , and two road tunnels, the Queensway Tunnel and the Kingsway Tunnel...

. Some cities, such as Bristol
Bristol
Bristol is a city, unitary authority area and ceremonial county in South West England, with an estimated population of 433,100 for the unitary authority in 2009, and a surrounding Larger Urban Zone with an estimated 1,070,000 residents in 2007...

, allow motorcycles to use bus lane
Bus lane
A bus lane or bus only lane is a lane restricted to buses, and generally used to speed up public transport that would be otherwise held up by traffic congestion...

s and provide dedicated free parking. In the United States, those states that have high-occupancy vehicle lane
High-occupancy vehicle lane
In transportation engineering and transportation planning, a high-occupancy vehicle lane is a lane reserved for vehicles with a driver and one or more passengers...

s also allow for motorcycle travel in them. Other countries have similar policies.

In New Zealand motorcycle riders are not required to pay for parking that is controlled by a barrier arm; the arm does not occupy the entire width of the lane, and the motorcyclist simply rides around it.
Many car parks controlled in this way supply special areas for motorcycles to park, so as not to unnecessarily consume spaces.

In many cities that have serious parking challenges for cars, such as San Francisco, California
San Francisco, California
San Francisco , officially the City and County of San Francisco, is the financial, cultural, and transportation center of the San Francisco Bay Area, a region of 7.15 million people which includes San Jose and Oakland...

, and Melbourne
Melbourne
Melbourne is the capital and most populous city in the state of Victoria, and the second most populous city in Australia. The Melbourne City Centre is the hub of the greater metropolitan area and the Census statistical division—of which "Melbourne" is the common name. As of June 2009, the greater...

, Australia, motorcycles are generally permitted to park on the sidewalk, rather than occupy a space on the street which might otherwise be used by a car.

Safety

Motorcycles have a higher rate of fatal accidents than automobiles or trucks and buses. United States Department of Transportation
United States Department of Transportation
The United States Department of Transportation is a federal Cabinet department of the United States government concerned with transportation. It was established by an act of Congress on October 15, 1966, and began operation on April 1, 1967...

 data for 2005 from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System
Fatality Analysis Reporting System
Fatality Analysis Reporting System was created in the United States by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to provide an overall measure of highway safety, to help suggest solutions, and to help provide an objective basis to evaluate the effectiveness of motor vehicle safety...

 show that for passenger cars, 18.62 fatal crashes occur per 100,000 registered vehicles. For motorcycles this figure is higher at 75.19 per 100,000 registered vehicles – four times higher than for cars. The same data shows that 1.56 fatalities occur per 100 million vehicle miles travelled for passenger cars, whereas for motorcycles the figure is 43.47—28 times higher than for cars (37 times more deaths per mile travelled in 2007). Furthermore for motorcycles the accident rates have increased significantly since the end of the 1990s, while the rates have dropped for passenger cars.

The two major causes of motorcycle accidents in the United States are: motorists pulling out or turning in front of motorcyclists and violating their rights-of-way and motorcyclists running wide through turns. The former is sometimes called a , an acronym formed from the motorists' common response of "Sorry mate, I didn't see you". The latter is more commonly caused by operating a motorcycle while intoxicated. Motorcyclists can anticipate and avoid some of these crashes with proper training, increasing their conspicuousness to other traffic, and separating alcohol and riding.

The United Kingdom has several organisations which are dedicated to improving motorcycle safety by providing advanced rider training over and above what is necessary to pass the basic motorcycle test. These include the Institute of Advanced Motorists
Institute of Advanced Motorists
The Institute of Advanced Motorists is a charity based in the United Kingdom and serving nine countries, whose objective is to improve car driving and motorcycle riding standards, and so enhance road safety, through the proper use of a system of car and motorcycle control based on Roadcraft...

 (IAM) and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents
Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents is a British charity which aims to promote safety. It is particularly known for its vocal campaigns on issues of road safety, including Tufty the road crossing squirrel, the Cycling Proficiency Test and the Green Cross Code, as well as on issues of...

 (RoSPA). Along with increased personal safety, riders with these advanced qualifications often benefit from reduced insurance costs.

In South Africa, the Think Bike
Think Bike
The Think Bike Campaign was started by biking enthusiasts in South Africa, and is run by bikers, in the interests of road safety and public awareness. Many motorcycle accidents happen because of a lack of awareness of the issues among the general motoring public...

 campaign is dedicated to increasing both motorcycle safety and the awareness of motorcycles on the country's roads. The campaign, while strongest in the Gauteng province, has representation in Western Cape, KwaZulu Natal and the Free State. It has dozens of trained marshals available for various events such as cycle races and is deeply involved in numerous other projects such as the annual Motorcycle Toy Run.

Motorcycle Safety Education is offered throughout the United States by organisations ranging from state agencies to non-profit organisations to corporations. Most states use the courses designed by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation
Motorcycle Safety Foundation
The Motorcycle Safety Foundation is a United States national, not-for-profit organization, founded in 1973, and sponsored by the U.S. manufacturers and distributors of BMW, Ducati, Harley-Davidson, Honda, Kawasaki, KTM, Piaggio/Vespa, Suzuki, Triumph, Victory and Yamaha motorcycles...

 (MSF), while Oregon
Team Oregon
Team Oregon Motorcycle Safety Program, known as Team Oregon, is an American, Oregon-based motorcycle safety partnership between the Oregon Department of Transportation and Oregon State University. Headed by Steve Garets, it is funded by ODOT through motorcycle endorsement fees and student tuition...

 and Idaho developed their own. All of the training programs include a Basic Rider Course, an Intermediate Rider Course and an Advanced Rider Course.

In the UK (except Northern Ireland) and some Australian jurisdictions, such as Victoria
Victoria (Australia)
Victoria is the second most populous state in Australia. Geographically the smallest mainland state, Victoria is bordered by New South Wales, South Australia, and Tasmania on Boundary Islet to the north, west and south respectively....

, New South Wales
New South Wales
New South Wales is a state of :Australia, located in the east of the country. It is bordered by Queensland, Victoria and South Australia to the north, south and west respectively. To the east, the state is bordered by the Tasman Sea, which forms part of the Pacific Ocean. New South Wales...

,
the Australian Capital Territory
Australian Capital Territory
The Australian Capital Territory, often abbreviated ACT, is the capital territory of the Commonwealth of Australia and is the smallest self-governing internal territory...

, Tasmania
Tasmania
Tasmania is an Australian island and state. It is south of the continent, separated by Bass Strait. The state includes the island of Tasmania—the 26th largest island in the world—and the surrounding islands. The state has a population of 507,626 , of whom almost half reside in the greater Hobart...


and the Northern Territory
Northern Territory
The Northern Territory is a federal territory of Australia, occupying much of the centre of the mainland continent, as well as the central northern regions...

, it is compulsory to undertake a rider training course before being issued a Learners Licence.

In Canada, motorcycle rider training is compulsory in Quebec
Quebec
Quebec or is a province in east-central Canada. It is the only Canadian province with a predominantly French-speaking population and the only one whose sole official language is French at the provincial level....

 and Manitoba
Manitoba
Manitoba is a Canadian prairie province with an area of . The province has over 110,000 lakes and has a largely continental climate because of its flat topography. Agriculture, mostly concentrated in the fertile southern and western parts of the province, is vital to the province's economy; other...

 only, but all provinces and territories have Graduated Licensing programs which place restrictions on new drivers until they have gained experience. Eligibility for a full motorcycle licence or endorsement for completing a Motorcycle Safety course varies by province. The Canada Safety Council
Canada Safety Council
The Canada Safety Council is a national, non-profit, charitable organization dedicated to safety. They work to prevent deaths and injuries by promoting education and awareness across Canada.-External links:**...

, a non-profit safety organisation, offers the Gearing Up program across Canada and is endorsed by the Motorcycle and Moped Industry Council. Training course graduates may qualify for reduced insurance premiums.

Types

There are three major types of motorcycle: street, off-road, and dual purpose. Within these types, there are many different sub-types of motorcycles for many different purposes.

Street bikes include cruisers
Cruiser (motorcycle)
Cruiser is the term for motorcycles that mimic the design style of American machines from the 1930s to the early 1960s, including those made by Harley-Davidson, Indian, Excelsior and Henderson. The market for models evocative of the early cruisers has grown to embrace 60 percent of the U.S...

, sportbikes, scooters
Scooter (motorcycle)
A scooter is a motorcycle with step-through frame and a platform for the operator's feet. Elements of scooter design have been present in some of the earliest motorcycles, and motorcycles identifiable as scooters have been made from 1914 or earlier...

 and moped
Moped
Mopeds are a type of low-powered motorcycle designed to provide economical and relatively safe transport with minimal licensing requirements.Mopeds were once all equipped with bicycle-like pedals , but moped has been increasingly applied by governments to vehicles without pedals, based on their...

s, and many other types. Off-road motorcycles include many types designed for dirt-oriented racing classes such as motocross
Motocross
Motocross is a form of motorcycle sport or all-terrain vehicle racing held on enclosed off road circuits. It evolved from trials, and was called scrambles, and later motocross, combining the French moto with cross-country...

 and are not street legal in most areas. Dual purpose machines like the dual-sport
Dual-sport
A dual-sport, colloquially known as "dualie" or an "on-off road bike" is a type of street-legal motorcycle that is designed for both on and off-road use. The terms All-road and Dual-purpose are also used...

 style are made to go off-road but include features to make them legal and comfortable on the street as well.

Each configuration offers either specialised advantage or broad capability, and each design creates a different riding posture.

Motorcycle rider postures

The motorcyclist's riding position depends on rider body-geometry (anthropometry
Anthropometry
Anthropometry refers to the measurement of the human individual...

) combined with the geometry of the motorcycle itself. These factors create a set of three basic postures.
  • Sport — the rider leans forwards into the wind and the weight of the upper torso is supported by the riders arms (at low speed) and air pressure (at high speed, e.g., above 50 mph (80.5 km/h). The footpegs are below the rider or to the rear. The reduced frontal area cuts wind resistance and allow higher speeds. At low-speed this position throws the weight of the rider onto the arms, and this can be tiring to the rider's wrists. The sports position makes it more difficult for the rider to look around and foot through traffic.
  • Standard — the rider sits upright or leans forwards slightly. The feet are below the rider. These are motorcycles that are not specialised to one task, but may not excel in one area either. The standard posture is used with touring
    Touring motorcycle
    A touring motorcycle is a type of motorcycle designed for touring. Although any motorcycle can be used to tour with, manufacturers have brought specific models designed to address the particular needs of these riders...

     and commuting as well as dirt and dual-sport bikes, and may offer advantages for beginners. The rider enjoys the benefits of freedom of head movement, good visibility in all directions, and easier use of the feet while moving through stationary traffic.
  • Cruiser — the rider sits at a lower seat height with the upper torso upright or leaning slightly rearwards. Legs are extended forwards, sometimes out of reach of the regular controls on cruiser pegs. The low seat heights can be a consideration for new or short riders. Handlebars tend to be high, and wide. Harley-Davidson
    Harley-Davidson
    Harley-Davidson , often abbreviated H-D or Harley, is an American motorcycle manufacturer. Founded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, during the first decade of the 20th century, it was one of two major American motorcycle manufacturers to survive the Great Depression...

    s are exemplars of this style. The emphasis is on comfort, while compromising cornering ability because of low ground clearance and the greater likelihood of scraping foot pegs, floor boards, or other parts if turns are taken at the speeds other types of motorcycles can do.


Factors of a motorcycle's ergonomic
Ergonomics
Ergonomics is the study of designing equipment and devices that fit the human body, its movements, and its cognitive abilities.The International Ergonomics Association defines ergonomics as follows:...

 geometry that determine the seating posture include the height, angle and location of footpegs, seat and handlebars. Factors in a rider's physical geometry that contribute to seating posture include torso, arm, thigh and leg length, and overall rider height.

Legal definitions and restrictions

A motorcycle is broadly defined by law in most countries for the purposes of registration, taxation and rider licensing as a powered two-wheel motor vehicle. Most countries distinguish between mopeds of 49 cc and the more powerful, larger, vehicles (scooters do not count as a separate category). Many jurisdictions include some forms of three-wheeled cars as motorcycles.

Environmental impact

In 2007 and 2008, motorcycles and scooters, due to good fuel efficiency, attracted interest in the United States from environmentalists and those affected by increased fuel prices.
Piaggio Group Americas supported this interest with the launch of a "Vespanomics" website and platform, citing lower per-mile carbon emissions of 0.4 lb/mile (113 g/km) less than the average car, a 65% reduction, and better fuel economy.

Other sources, however, claim that while motorcycles produce much less pollution in terms of greenhouse gases, a motorcycle can in some cases emit 10–20 times the quantity of nitrogen oxides (NOx) when compared to the NOx emissions of a car. This is because many motorcycles lack a catalytic converter
Catalytic converter
A catalytic converter is a device used to convert toxic exhaust emissions from an internal combustion engine into non-toxic substances. Inside a catalytic converter, a catalyst stimulates a chemical reaction in which noxious byproducts of combustion are converted to less toxic substances by dint...

 to reduce NOx emissions, and while catalytic converters have been used in cars long enough that they are now commonplace, they are a relatively new technology in motorcycles. Many newer motorcycles (such as later models of the Yamaha R1 and Suzuki GSXR1000, as well as most BMWs which have included catalytic converters since the 1990s) now have factory fitted catalytic converters. Along with other technologies that have taken longer to appear in motorcycles (e.g. fuel injection, anti-lock brake systems), catalytic converters are becoming increasingly commonplace.

United States Environmental Protection Agency
United States Environmental Protection Agency
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is an agency of the federal government of the United States charged with protecting human health and the environment, by writing and enforcing regulations based on laws passed by Congress...

 2007 certification result reports for all vehicles versus on highway motorcycles (which also includes scooters),
the average certified emissions level for 12,327 vehicles tested was 0.734. The average "Nox+Co End-Of-Useful-Life-Emissions" for 3,863 motorcycles tested was 0.8531, for a difference of about 16%, not the claimed 10X factor. Likewise, if one looks at how many of the 2007 motorcycles tested were also catalytic equipped, 54% of them, 2,092, were equipped with a catalytic converter.

United States emissions limits

The following table shows maximum acceptable legal emissions of the combination of hydrocarbon and nitrous oxides, as well as carbon monoxide, for new Class III motorcycles (280 cc or larger displacement) sold in the United States.
Tier Model year HC+NOx (g/km) CO (g/km)
Tier 1 2006–2009 1.4 12.0
Tier 2 2010 and later 0.8 12.0


The maximum acceptable legal emissions of hydrocarbon and carbon monoxide for new Class I and II motorcycles (50 cc–169 cc and 170 cc–279 cc respectively) sold in the United States are as follows:
Model year HC (g/km) CO (g/km)
2006 and later 1.0 12.0

Europe

European emission standards
European emission standards
European emission standards define the acceptable limits for exhaust emissions of new vehicles sold in EU member states. The emission standards are defined in a series of European Union directives staging the progressive introduction of increasingly stringent standards.Currently, emissions of...

 for motorcycles are similar to those for cars. New motorcycles must meet Euro III standards, while cars must meet Euro V standards. Therefore, the difference in total pollution between motorcycles and cars that pass European emission standards would be small, certainly much smaller than the 10X factor claimed by the referenced LA Times article. Motorcycle emissions controls are being updated and it has been proposed to update to Euro IV in 2012 and Euro V in 2015

See also

  • List of motorcycle manufacturers
  • Outline of motorcycles and motorcycling
    Outline of motorcycles and motorcycling
    The following outline is provided as an overview of motorcycles and motorcycling:Motorcycle – single-track, engine-powered, two-wheeled motor vehicle...

  • Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme
    Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme
    The Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme is the governing body of motorcycle racing. It represents 103 national motorcycle federations that are divided into six regional continental unions....

    (FIM) - the governing body for international motorcycle sport, which also lobbies for the rights and interests of motorcyclists.
The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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