If you’re a fan of off-roading, you may have been curious about the popular off-road motorcycle – the pit bike. Another curious question you may have is, why are they so popular? Why are they so inexpensive? Isn’t it just a dirt bike afterall?
A pit bike is a small recreational trail bike. They are shorter compared to all other off-road motorcycles. They were initially made as utility bikes on the pit areas near the motocross race tracks. Since then they have become popular because they offer an inexpensive dirt biking experience. They are ideal for novice and beginners who want to do just for fun off-roading.
In this article, you’ll explore what exactly a pit bike is and delve into its origins. Additionally, you will acquire insight into the typical cost of these bikes and the reasons behind their pricing.
What are Pit Bikes?
What is a pit and what is a pit bike? Pit is a designated area adjacent to the motocross race track that can run parallel to the track. A pitbike is a miniature version of a full-sized off-road bike with small engines. It is noteworthy that while they may be similar in design to a motocross bike, they are built differently. Their engines does not have the same level of performance, suspensions that a motocross dirt bike does.
These days many people use them for leisure trail riding, catering to kids, youth, teens, and adults. Their low seat height and small non-aggressive engines makes them a popular choice at off-roading training centers. Due to the absence of headlights, tail lights, and turn signals, so pit bikes lack street-legal status.
“On a pit bike, you don’t get fully-geared up and you don’t experience the aggressiveness of being out on an actual track…”Willy Browning– Pit bike master
While a pitbike is a smaller off-road motorcycle, it differs in many ways from a regular motorcycle. Here’s how both compare to each other:
|Size and weight
|Compact and lighter
|Larger and heavier
|Engine size and power
|Smaller engine size
Usually 50cc – 125cc
Usually 4-stroke low speed
|Larger engine size
Usually 100cc to 1800cc2 stroke and 4 stroke higher speed
|Off-road activities in pit and staging areas, trails
|Multi-purpose (commuting, touring) and off-road riding (dual-sport bikes)
|Street-legal with licensing requirements
One of the key characteristics of a pit bike is its smaller frame and engine size. Their engine displacements can vary, ranging from 50cc to 125cc. Although a few manufacturers produce as high as 160cc. In comparison to their larger motocross counterparts, they have shorter wheels.
What are they Used For?
Riders and their equipment relied on pit bikes for transportation around race tracks. But over time, with their growing popularity, this role evolved into recreational activities. As a result of this evolution, organizers arranged pit bike racing events specifically for riders of pit bikes. These races often take place on short tracks with minimal obstacles.
Pit bikes also feature in:
- Major motocross events as a support class exhibition
- Training centers for off-road riding
- Non-competitive riding on private tracks, or other designated public riding off-road trails
- Depending on city by-laws, ridden around your house with large yard or farm house
- Performing stunts, usually after some modifications to the stock pit bike
Who is it For?
Due to the lesser powerband of pit bikes, they are suitable for a wide range of riders. This includes both novice and experienced riders. Notably, their compact stature makes the 50cc and 110cc variants popular choices among children and young riders. Adults frequently opt for engines with a capacity of 125cc or larger.
Perfect for New Riders
Pit bikes are an excellent choice for new riders starting their off-road learning. In comparison to their motocross counterparts, they provide a less daunting riding experience. Essentially, it allows beginners to gain confidence. They also master basic riding techniques such as balancing and cornering.
Pit bikes for Kids
The lower seat height is of indispensable value when getting pit bikes for kids. There are also bikes with smaller engine displacements. The power generated by these bikes is not overwhelming for kids.
Pit bikes for Adults
Low cost and fewer maintenance requirements are some advantages of pit bikes for adults. People commonly employ them for recreational purposes or engage in casual racing with friends. Adults can also make modifications to their pit bikes. This can increase their speed and performance, but don’t expect a motocross bike like performance.
Why are Pit Bikes So Cheap?
Several factors contribute to the cheaper cost of pit bikes. They include:
1. Size and materials
Pit bikes are smaller in size and constructed with simpler materials. Unlike regular motorcycles made of steel, pit bikes can be constructed with lightweight alloys. Also, their construction design is less complex with smaller engine displacement. This means less engineering, lower manufacturing cost, and a low-cost price.
2. Components and features
Considering their simple construction, pit bikes are not well-suited for extensive racing or demanding riding pursuits. This removes the need for advanced components in comparison to regular motorcycles. Their electronics, braking, and suspension systems are simple. This reduces manufacturing costs and selling prices.
Like in a pit bike vs dirt bike comparison, the brand and its reputation can influence the cost price of a pit bike. Some pit bike brands may have lower manufacturing and marketing costs. Others may have more build quality than others. This makes the pricing of the pit bikes more affordable.
How Much Do Pit Bikes Cost?
As you move up in engine size, the cost of pit bikes increases. Mid-range pit bikes with engine sizes from 110cc can fall within the $1000 to $2500. These models often offer improved suspension and more power with higher-quality components.
The cost of a pit bike also fluctuates depending on the features and brand type.
Some of the best pit bikes include:
- Honda CRF50 with a base MSRP of $1,699
- Yamaha TTR50 costs $1,749 and has an electric start
- Kawasaki KLX110R L is the tallest 110cc brand name bike at $2,849
- Pitster Pro MXR 125 Semi-auto e-start costs $2, 259
- Piranha P125-E has a retail price of $1,899
Pit bikes are smaller bikes used for off-road riding. They are popular among beginners, kids, and adults alike. Pit bikes have a straightforward design and are suitable for different skill levels.
They are also affordable due to their smaller size, simpler construction, and features. But this price can vary based on brand and features. Pit bikes provide a cost-effective way to get involved in off-road riding and racing.
Common Questions About Pit Bike
Why are pit bikes popular?
The compact size of pit bikes contributes to their popularity. This makes it easier for them to navigate tight spaces in pits and tracks. Additionally, their comparatively lower cost in comparison to full-size dirt bikes adds to their appeal for many individuals.
Are pit bikes street legal
Pit bikes are not street-legal. Their design caters to off-road usage within the pit areas of tracks. They do not come with the necessary equipment for on-road use. However, individuals can make them street-legal by incorporating the required features such as proper lighting, mirrors, and registering them.
Is a pit bike just a kids bike?
No, it’s not just a kid’s bike. Pit bikes differ from regular motorcycles in terms of their smaller size and engine capacity. Typically equipped with a 4-stroke engine, they generate less power than 2-stroke engines. These versatile bikes are suitable for both kids and adults, making them ideal for recreational use.
Are pit bikes for adults?
Adults can utilize pit bikes just as much as children can. The suitability for an adult may depend on their size and weight. It is not an uncommon experience for adults to say they are uncomfortable on pit bikes. Taller adults opt for a 230cc trail bike.
What is the average price for a pit bike?
The average price can vary depending on several factors. These factors include brand, size, and features. But typically pitbike price range from $500 to $2,000.The Chinese brands produce some of the cheapest pitbikes. Models like the Kawasaki KLX 110 cost over $2,500.
How fast will a pit bike go?
A pit bike’s top speed can vary depending on a few factors. These factors include engine size and gearing. A 50cc pit bike can muster a top speed of about 15 mph (24.1 km/h). While pit bikes with bigger engine sizes can go as high as fast as 50 mph (80.5 km/h).
How fast is 125cc pit bike in mph?
The top speed of a 125cc pit bike in mph is between 40 mph to 50 mph (64.4 km/h to 80.5 km/h). The actual speed can depend on the bike’s design, brand, and even the experience level of the rider.