TOP TIPS 9buying
Things to check before a pre-loved bike Don’t just dive in – a little research goes a long way on a secondhand deal
If you’re going to pee on your own fire, do it early. Get insurance quotes for the bike you’re mulling over before investing time, or money for that matter, in searching. You don’t want to torture yourself by put ting a deposit down, only to find your location, age or job is too highrisk to get a sensible insurance quote. It may also be that certain bikes (expensive sportsbikes, for example) require alarms, trackers or garaging overnight before they’ll even consider quoting.
3Get the history
Changing exchange rates in recent years saw many bikes exported to nations able to take advantage of the weak pound, so there are now fewer to go around. Unfortunately, the increased demand means people try to pass off written-off bikes as honest machines – the boom in finance incentives also opens you to buying a bike where money is still owed, and finance companies can still stake a claim on the bike. MCN offer HPI checks from as little as £5.53. See motorcyclenews.com.
Recalls are usually carried out for free, but they’re very important. Manufacturers issue recalls and dealer bulletins for everything from flaky finish to frame failure. You can check for large official recalls on any vehicle stretching back decades by searching for ‘VOSA recall check’. When you’re speaking to a dealer about servicing, probe them on any detail tweaks or replacement parts you need to know about too.
9Join the community
Name just about any bike, and there will be a forum and/or owners’ club for it. They’re an invaluable resource – even if you just want to talk to like-minded folk. You shouldn’t just take a stranger’s word as gospel, but careful filtering of owner wisdom can help you buy, maintain and improve your bike in addition to the services of dealers or specialists.