Heavy Motorcycles

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Heavy Motorcycles

Postby SlowRain » 22 Feb 2012, 20:19

Does anyone have any experience getting their heavy-motorcycle license and buying a bike here in Taiwan? I know it's a bit of an ordeal and the prices are ridiculously expensive, so I'd be very grateful for any information you could share.
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Re: Heavy Motorcycles

Postby llary » 22 Feb 2012, 23:08

Not really an ordeal, you take the test for a regular motorcycle <250cc then wait a year and take another test for an unrestricted license. I sold my bike just before they announced trials to open up freeway access :doh:
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Re: Heavy Motorcycles

Postby omerojs » 23 Feb 2012, 09:19

llary wrote:Not really an ordeal, you take the test for a regular motorcycle <250cc then wait a year and take another test for an unrestricted license. I sold my bike just before they announced trials to open up freeway access :doh:


are they opening the freeways anytime soon? I know there is a freeway on trial but that may last for years...
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Re: Heavy Motorcycles

Postby plasmatron » 23 Feb 2012, 10:09

I haven't heard anything about the freeway program, but if it's in any way based on the same anti-logic and utter pissing into the wind of common sense approach that has defined every element of Taiwan normalizing "big" bikes over the last few years, I expect it to be shot down or else pass with the requirement that only bikes over 2000cc are allowed. Cynicism aside I would be very interested in knowing the likely outcome, I'm about to buy another bike to use the expressway to get to my new cross town office.
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Re: Heavy Motorcycles

Postby SlowRain » 23 Feb 2012, 12:01

Thanks. I was under the impression there was a mandatory (and expensive) riding class.

While I'm at it, are there any features or specs that I should be looking at in a cruiser or sport-touring bike given Taiwan's heat in the summer; small, twisty mountain roads; and broken, excessively manholed pavement? (I'm not looking for a sport bike or anything for too much city driving, and I can't afford a touring bike.)
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Re: Heavy Motorcycles

Postby omerojs » 23 Feb 2012, 15:12

SlowRain wrote:Thanks. I was under the impression there was a mandatory (and expensive) riding class.

While I'm at it, are there any features or specs that I should be looking at in a cruiser or sport-touring bike given Taiwan's heat in the summer; small, twisty mountain roads; and broken, excessively man-holed pavement? (I'm not looking for a sport bike or anything for too much city driving, and I can't afford a touring bike.)


Hi, for the "big bike license" you need to pay for a class that would cost you around 10k Ntd... so that would get you a driver license for heavy motorcycles in Taiwan.

as for the kind of bikes... you should look at red plates, that means over 550cc because only red plates are allowed in expressways, now I know of a highway that was opened for heavy bikes as a test, that should be somewhere between taichung and nantou.. but I don't know which one exactly, i only know because a friend of mine told me about it..
what do you really need in Taiwan... well you don't need anything bigger than 600cc as Taiwan is a Tiny country and you can do a trip around Taiwan within 2 days.. a street bike has better riding position so they are better for cruising, superbikes are more fun in the mountains here as they are full of nice twisty roads.. getting something above 1000cc is useless as you will hardly get to 200km/h in a expressway... and the most important thing here is your budget as big bikes are very expensive in taiwan compared with other countries, for example for a ninja 600cc you should be ready to pay from 280kNTD to 400kNTD depending on how old and well maintained they are...

anyways I hope you get one as they are a blast!!
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Re: Heavy Motorcycles

Postby SlowRain » 23 Feb 2012, 21:15

Just to clarify, is the riding class mandatory, or can you just show up and take the test?

My concern with the ~600cc bikes is that they won't be as comfortable after 2 hours as the ~900cc ones, but I get your point. I'll do anything to get the price to something more reasonable.

I was thinking front and back disc brakes and liquid cooled (LC more so for future emissions requirements and longevity than for hot days). I'd like to know what to get for the most comfortable suspension considering Taiwan's roads. A new seat is pretty much a given--perhaps Mustang.

I should add I want it primarily for two-up riding.
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Re: Heavy Motorcycles

Postby maunaloa » 24 Feb 2012, 02:51

Engine displacement has nothing to do with comfort. Comfort is all about riding ergos.
http://cycle-ergo.com/

For me, the best union of touring, commuting, 'wan potholes, landslide-induced cracks and steps, and comfort is a big trailie (dual sport). A BMW F800GS, Triumph Tiger 800 XC, a Strom (need to be tall), all wonderful bikes. The perfect fit,from a value standpoint, would be a Kwak KLR650, but they are not sold in the 'wan. The Kwak Versys is an option, but not a true dual sport, it's a commuter bike, with longer than average suspension travel. A true dual sport has a larger front wheel diameter than the rear wheel diameter. Used DL650 Stroms appear for sale occasionally and will cost less than an F800GS or Tiger 800. Of the three, the Strom is best two-up.

If you're loaded with moolah, the Yammie Super Tenere, the Beemer boxers, the Katoom 950 Adventure, Triumph Tiger 1050 ... wonderful stuff. Of the four, I think only the boxers are in the 'wan. The 1000cc+ trailies are the best two-up (except the Katoom, enduro seat). Big pillion and big power.

Two-up.... I'd want ABS.
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Re: Heavy Motorcycles

Postby SlowRain » 24 Feb 2012, 21:44

Thanks for that and for the link. The Suzuki V-Strom was what I had in mind when I said sport-touring, but I guess I got the classification mixed up.

My concern about engine size was the possibility that manufacturers would skimp too much on the smaller bikes to keep the price down--disc brakes, seat, liquid cooling, suspension. That was all. I'm just looking for something comfortable, not necessarily big or fast.
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Re: Heavy Motorcycles

Postby DesertSpider » 25 Feb 2012, 19:15

There's a Harley dealer in town with lots of big bikes in the window.... I'm certain that you could roll in there (looking interested) and get all of your questions answered in < 5 min. flat.

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