Bike Buyer Guru: What Bike Should You Buy?
Craig Langton has quite the CV. Here at The Bike Show we refer to him as King Midas because, as you might’ve guessed, everything he touches turns to gold. Apart from previous businesses that were massively successful under his watch, he is the owner of Fire It Up in Fourways and within a year of opening its doors it has become the biggest selling motorcycle dealer in the country by a long way. Much of this is down to good honest hard work by him and his team, but much of it also has to do with decades of dealing in motorcycles, spotting trends and noticing nuances. Craig will be passing on much of this knowledge to our esteemed readers in his regular Bike Buyer Guru column. Herewith his next column:
Buy the bike you love!
It is wise however to follow a few simple guidelines. I have always said it matters more where you buy than what you buy…make sense? Whatever you end up buying, besides your home and car, your motorcycle might be the next most expensive item. Taking this into consideration, peace of mind, value for money or paying the right price become almost more important. For example, buying your dream bike only to find out it’s a rebuild once you’ve already registered it in your name – this happens more often than you would think these days.
Once you have decided to purchase a motorcycle, do some research online until you have decided on one or two bikes that you really want. Now the fun begins and you can start shopping. Then, importantly, ask yourself the following questions and perform the following checks before purchasing:
- If buying privately, have you done all the necessary checks to ensure the integrity of the motorcycle? Remember that when buying privately you have no recourse should something go wrong.
- Is there a warranty in place? If you’re buying new, perfect. If you’re purchasing a pre-owned motorcycle, a warranty is critical with the cost of repairs these days. Unfortunately, most motorcycles in South Africa are no longer serviced by the authorised dealer once out of warranty.
- Ask the dealer if there is some form of guaranteed buy back or guaranteed trade-in facility. If there is, you have peace of mind that the dealer is happy to buy his product back from you and that the original selling price was not inflated nor was the bike rebuilt etc.
- Do some research on service costs and make sure they fit this into your budget. Servicing modern motorcycles according to manufacturer’s recommendations is critical.
- Shop around for insurance and be very mindful to check the T&C’s including the excess’s applied. The monthly premium is often lowered to attract potential customers but if you claim there could be harsh penalties leaving you without a bike and the balance of a finance contract
- Ask if there is an exchange policy in place if less than 50 to 100km’s are travelled. More often we find customers buy the bike they think they want and end up not bonding with it. In this instance the dealer will take back the bike at no charge on condition that you choose another bike for the same value.
Price is a large factor when purchasing a motorcycle so take your time and shop around. The integrity of the motorcycle and peace of mind is, in my opinion, probably more important.