10 New Motorcycles That Won’t Ever Get Stolen

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Motorcycles That Won't Ever Get Stolen

Some bikes won’t last five minutes on a city street unattended. But others can sit out there, key in ignition, “free motorcycle” sign on the seat, and never, ever disappear. What are they and why? Here’s 10 new motorcycles that won’t ever get stolen.

Why do thieves steal bikes? Three reasons: to ride them, to part them out and simply because there’s an opportunity to. That means thefts center around bikes that are fun to ride — sportbikes, supermotos and dirt bikes — are crashed often, resulting in a high demand for parts — sportbikes, dirt bikes — or just bikes that are left vulnerable. According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, 24 percent of all bikes stolen in America are Hondas, which makes sense as they sell the highest volume of sportbikes and dirt bikes. But, there’s also demand for Harleys; 3,120 of those were stolen in the US in 2011.

Unfortunately, if your bike is stolen, it’s very unlikely you’ll ever see it again. Of the 46,667 motorcycles taken in 2011 only 15,017 were ever recovered.

What we can learn from those behaviors and statistics is which types of bikes are unpopular with thieves, which bikes they’re not interested in and which bikes are simply too difficult to steal.

Honda Gold Wing
Honda Gold Wing

Honda Gold Wing
Why It Won’t Be Stolen: At 904 lbs (curb) and 99.1 in. in length, the Gold Wing is an exceptionally heavy, exceptionally large motorcycle. Loading it into a van or a truck when you have the key and using engine power is hard enough. Without? We’d wager it would be impossible. While the Gold Wing is one of America’s best selling motorcycles, owners like to upgrade, not replace stock parts, so there would by little value in selling, say, the standard shock on Craigslist.

Ural M70
Ural M70

Ural Sidecar
Why It Won’t Be Stolen: Another heavy, huge bike. Not only will one of these not fit into the back of a pickup or Econoline van, but tiny sales volumes and a passionate owner base means there’s simply no market for stolen parts. Plus, they look like something straight out of World War II.

Triumph Rocket III Roadster
Triumph Rocket III Roadster

Triumph Rocket III Roadster
Why It Won’t Be Stolen: Another heavyweight at 803 lbs and 2,300 cc, and another relatively rare motorcycle. Because the Rocket doesn’t really share significant components with other, lesser, motorcycles there’s limited demand for its parts. Too difficult to steal with little payoff makes this bike relatively safe.

Moto Guzzi Norge 1200 8V
Moto Guzzi Norge 1200 8V

Moto Guzzi Norge
Why It Won’t Be Stolen: In revised, 8V form, the Norge is actually a really great sport tourer. But, those Dame Edna headlamps and bulbous styling do it no favors with either customers or thieves. It’s a big ol’ thing too, at 566 lbs (dry) and hails from a relatively rare brand. There’s little street recognition of what it is, so thieves will just pass it by.

Triumph Tiger Explorer 1200
Triumph Tiger Explorer 1200 (Not Actual Size)

Triumph Tiger Explorer 1200
Why It Wont Be Stolen: The biggest ADV bike out there, it weighs 586 lbs and, when fitted with its plastic panniers, is several inches wider than a Gold Wing. Good luck getting this thing into a truck. Limited sales equal little demand for stolen parts.

Up Next: Victory Vision Tour — Page 2 >>

  • bammerburn

    Also, see: streetfightered SuperSports. Missing fairings, yet still boasting mighty engines and superior suspension setups. Thieves shy away from streetfightered bikes because of the possible reliance factor (crashed, questionable-condition look), and the obviously-missing fairings.

    Been street- and carport-parking my streetfightered 2004 Ninja ZX-6R in a city and nobody has messed with it.

    • NOCHnoch

      Where exactly? If you can provide times you leave it alone as well as an address that’d be great, thanks.

      • bammerburn

        I’m usually out during the workday and it’s parked at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington DC – a tiny bit of security but should be easy enough to get through.

        • NOCHnoch

          thx bro i’ll be the guy in the black and white striped shirt and mask that only covers around my eyes.

          • sixgunsteve


  • NKMiUM

    Cue all the people who say they’ve had their bike from this list stolen, or have a friend with a bike from this list stolen.

    • sixgunsteve

      I had my bike from this list stolen AND have a friend with a bike form this list that was stolen.

    • IRS4

      I tried to steal this very list, but it was heavy reading.

  • Brian

    crack on the Victory Vision, but riding one of those things is as comfortable if not moreso than a Goldwing. They are a really nicely designed motorcycle. Most wouldn’t think of stealing it though because they aren’t sure where the thrusters ignition button for Buck Rogers blast off is.

    • Davidabl2

      I am waiting to see the first Vision that get ‘fightered” or, better,yet, get chopped.

      • Wayne Moyer

        Most of the ones that have been chopped where the less expensive Vegas Vision’s. I own a Vision Tour and I can’t see someone doing that to the full boat version.

        • Davidabl2

          …until after a crash has taken out a lot of the plastics?

          • Wayne Moyer

            Well it has those guards so that when it goes down on its side it doesn’t kill the plastics. If it gets into a real accident it would get real expensive very quick and become a candidate for a chop job.

            • Davidabl2

              And as soon as there’s any number of them out there there will be a good market for take-off parts. I know that folks chopping/modifying late model Harleys usually recoup a good part of their expenses by selling off their take-offs.

  • CruisingTroll

    Gee, they missed an opportunity to rag on the Honda DN-01 and the Husky Terra & Strada 650….

    • Joe Bielski

      Ermahgerd, I just googled the Honda DN-01……WTF???

    • Mr.Paynter

      I think those things will be collectable at some point just because of how much guys rag on them!

      • Douglas Gallagher

        I agree with ya there, it’s pretty radical, a cruiser bike in sport bike’s clothing.

    • http://metabomber.com/ Jesse

      In order for them to be stolen, they would first have to leave the dealership.

      • BigHank53

        There was a joke floating around about holding a raffle at the local Honda dealer…

        First prize: a Honda DN-01.
        Second prize: Two Honda Dn-01s….

  • http://statesofmotion.blogspot.com/ FastPatrick

    Mostly obvious list is mostty obvious, as would be the opposite partner list (anything GSX-R or CBR or whatever). Kinda curious about general theft rates for other popular bikes – SV650s in particular, but early info on the Honda 500s too.

    • Justin McClintock

      I can tell you SV650′s seem to get stolen plenty. Mine was, right out from between a Honda F3 and an F4i.

      • http://statesofmotion.blogspot.com/ FastPatrick

        I would “up” this but it’s too sad for that, so, like, manly-shoulder-slap and a beer.

      • Davidabl2

        Think it was repainted and “taken to the track?”

        • Justin McClintock

          I actually found out what happened to it. Meth head stole it, repainted it rattle-can black and rode it around like it was his for a year….right up until he was arrested with a whole HOST of charges, one of which was grand theft auto for stealing that bike. Cops called me, but insurance had already paid it off, so it was theirs. Tried to get it back from insurance, but they were kinda clueless.

          • Davidabl2

            Interesting story, very. And now maybe it HAS been taken to the track.

  • Mark D

    All the Honda Rebels I see on CL are shockingly expensive. They are great starter bikes, and one from 1986 is likely just as good as one from 2001. People ride them for 3 months, then re-sell them.

  • Sunshine1011

    What a moronic article, most of your reasons are because they are heavy bikes. A new Harley Ultra Classic weighs 861 pounds dry weight, about as much as some of these others, why not say it wouldn’t be stolen either???

    • Corey Cook

      Because Harley’s are extremely popular and they are the most common place motorcycle in America. They get stolen all the time, every model. Well, maybe except that trike…

      • Piglet2010

        A Buell Blast is probably pretty theft-proof, even if you leave it parked with the key in the ignition.

  • Darwood Martin

    Not a Burgman but I had a Chinese 250 Touring Scooter stolen from in front of an apartment that also had a couple of sportbikes two Zumas a BV and a Vespa. Explain that.

    • Ben Barbeau

      Because Chinese 250 touring scooter are cheap as dirt and are all over the place in warm climates. In Vegas they are the mechanical version of mosquitos, annoying, all over the place and if you hit one, they’ll probably splatter like a real one because of lack of helmets. Most don’t require registration, thus, if its stolen, good luck finding it and proving it’s yours.

    • runnermatt

      It was easy to steal and they just needed a ride across town. My brother used to be a Cop in Richmond, VA and he said a person would steal a car to drive across town to the mall, do their shopping, then steal a different car to go home.

  • Mark D

    Somebody with a bigger garage and a more entrepreneurial spirit than myself could make a killing. Buy 3 or 4, and rent them out for like $150/mo. You’d have to figure out insurance, but it’d be pretty sweet. Especially if you bought a bunch at wholesale and fixed them up yourself.

  • runnermatt

    I’ve always assumed my CBR250 is unlikely to get stolen for several reasons. It is “just” a 250 so the desirability isn’t there. 600′s and liter sport bikes are more likely to get crashed and need replacement parts. Lastly, because it is built in Thailand the replacement parts are really cheap. I read online that a guy lowsided his at a track day after he put frame sliders on it. He had to replace the $300+ frame slider, but he found out that the tank was only $220 and a fairing only $76. With parts that cheap their isn’t much profit to be had from stolen bikes.

  • gregory

    I don’t think the Yamaha Morphous or the Suzuki Gemma will ever be stolen, either.

  • Piglet2010

    I worry more about someone opening the panniers with a pry-bar or vandalizing my Honda Deauville out of spite than stealing it, since only 17 or so were sold in the US.

  • imprezive

    You are making an erroneous assumption that most stolen bikes are stolen via truck when most are actually hot wired so weight isn’t really an issue. The thief who did an AMA on reddit put it well.

    “There is this common misconception that a few guys load bikes into trucks and vans. The people who get CAUGHT load bikes into trucks and vans. Your career will be very short if you’re loading a 185mph rocket (that likely has a tracking system) that will outrun the police into the back of an 85mph van that will take you to the scene of your arrest.”


  • eddi

    I make mine thoroughly unappealing very easily, A disc lock with that orange cable going to the grip. It says very loudly “more work than that squid’s toy over there”.

  • Brammofan

    Wut? In the “Any Electric Motorcycle” category: “Also most of the ones on the road have exceptionally poor component quality.” My Brammo Enertia has Marzocchi forks, Brembo brakes, Elka shock, Avon tires… And the Brammo Empulse is chock full of high end components. I’ll agree they aren’t likely to be stolen – mostly because no one knows what they are (yet) and there isn’t a need for aftermarket parts – because nothing (except for the chain, tires, and brakes) ever wears out. Really, Wes… what were you thinking?

    • HoldenL

      Early this year, I went to a county fair and there was a Zero on display. I had exactly the same thought as Wes: mountain bike components. I remember specifically the front brake, straight off a midprice mountain bike. Everything else looked chintzy. The plastics (fenders, for example) were a smidgen too thin. Everything about it felt cheap, as if they were shooting for a price point instead of trying to wow people with something well-made, but at an aspirational price.

      I haven’t seen or touched a Brammo, but I think Brammo took the opposite tack — producing something excellent for middle-income folks to lust after, with the implicit promise that prices will eventually go down enough for those middle-income people to afford. I’ll bet Brammo is capitalized for the long haul, while I have a hunch that Zero has to sell stuff now, and improve quality gradually, as money comes in.

    • Zanpa


    • http://RideApart.com/ Wes Siler

      Which brand has sold the most electric bikes Harry?

      • IRS4

        Nameless Chinese Cheapies, mostly

  • Jeffery Boaz

    My friend had a Moto Morini Camel stolen in Ca, so some times esoteric does not help. lol

  • http://metabomber.com/ Jesse


  • Mykola

    To Whom it May Concern at RideApart Inc.,

    While I can and do skip over articles featuring four-wheeled wastes-of-my-time, I find the insertion of three-wheeled abominations into motorcycle articles such as the Harley-Davidson Tri-Glide Ultra Classic motortricycle featured in this article to be offensive and distasteful, and respectfully request that your writers refrain from such actions in the future. (This does not include three-wheeled vehicles that turn by counter-steering in the manner of a conventional motorcycle, such as the Piaggio MP3 and various one-off vehicles.)

  • Davidabl2

    “Of the 46,667 motorcycles taken in 2011 only 15,017 were ever recovered.”
    I’d be curious to know how many of the recovered bikes were dismantled carcasses, with breakdown
    by bike mfg.’s and style.. It’d be kinda a “dirtbag” detector, unless the parts are sold to legitimately unsuspecting buyers…Presumably really rare/expensive bikes are sold whole to criminal networks that
    transport them and re-register? Perhaps to the same places that human-traffic and drug-traffic to the USA?
    Or are do those folks buy Dualsports,Adventure bikes..and H.-D.’s?

  • Davidabl2

    The NCIB article is kind of piss poor, since it doesn’t categorize bikes recovered by bike type,recovered stripped vs unstripped, recovered crashed. Which would tell us something about what type of thief goes after the kind(s) of bike each one of us has. For example, Mr. McClintlock tells us that his SV650 was stolen by a meth addict who rode it for a year until he was apprehended for other crime(s). It is hard to imagine the same scenario with a H.-D. RoadKing..

    • Russell P

      My friend had his Road King stolen. And about a year later, it was discovered while being involved in an accident. It was in a town, about 40 miles away.

  • Mike McCall

    I would like to see the reverse of this list, which bikes are stolen the most. I’ve seen the list and know the order by manufacturer, but it would be interesting to see models and the components on those models that thieves are most after.

  • notfishing

    High capacity Electrics will get stolen once the thieves figure out how to sell the batteries.

    As one Journalist that I admire has said Electrics are like riding a $6,000 motorcycle with $ 6,000 in batteries. Those batteries will become as easy to sell as Catalytic Converters are now.

  • Will

    Love the articles on here, but… I just got a Honda Rebel 2 months ago and it already got stolen. So maybe the title should read “10 Motorcycles That Won’t Ever Get Stolen…Maybe” I was so bummed after it got stolen and I immediately remembered this article. At least I got a little laugh out of it.

  • Johnny Nightrider

    I had my 88 Kawasaki Ninja 750 in the shop being fixed.I knew this dude who was a friend at the time and he wanted to go somewhere that weekend.So he was walking home to his apartment and saw a Honda rebel 250 with its keys in it.He rode it to my house and said lets go to SAnta Barbara so we did.He was driving and got stopped by the CHp because the license plate was bent because of our weight on the bike.The CHP let us go and told me to drive because I had a Motorcycle license.It was a stolen bike.Also he had changed the plate from another rebel so it wouldn’t come back stolen.I told him to put the bike back with its real license plate with the keys in it and don’t ever do that again.I broke the friendship off also because He liked to steal stuff and I didn’t want to end up in jail down the road with him.So the thing about Honda rebels not being stolen.If you leave the keys in any bike it might get stolen.REmember to take your keys and choose your friends wisely.

  • rudedog4

    don’t fool yourself, girl, it’s looking right at you-hoo