10 Best Affordable Cruiser Motorcycles

I. Introduction

Many of us think that expensive cruiser motorcycles are the best and the quality of the motorcycle increases with the price. This need not be true always. There are affordable cruiser motorcycles that offer excellent riding experience and have many qualities of the high-end cruiser motorcycles.

Medium-range cruiser motorcycles are affordable and good for beginners as well as leisure motorcycle riders for city rides, commuting, and short-distance tours.

The following cruiser motorcycles are selected for review in this article. The cruiser motorcycles from serial numbers 1 to 8 are well below USD 9000 (base price) and those at serial numbers 9 and 10 are marginally more than USD 10000 (base price). A few buying tips are added at the end of the article.

1 Honda Rebel 300

View on Honda

2 Royal Enfield Meteor 350

View on Royal Enfield

3 Royal Enfield Interceptor 650

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4 Honda Rebel 500

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5 Kawasaki Vulcan S

View on Kawasaki

6 Honda Rebel Shadow Aero

View on Honda

7 Yamaha Bolt- R

View on Yamaha

8 Suzuki Boulevard C 50

View on Suzuki Cycles

9 Harley Davidson Iron 883

View on Harley-Davidson

10 Indian Scout Bobber 60

View on Indian Motorcycle

II. 10 best affordable cruiser motorcycles

The word ‘cruise‘ means to travel or tour, and that is exactly what a cruiser motorcycle is meant to be. A cruiser has comfortable seats (compared to a sports bike) and you can enjoy your ride.

The characteristics of a cruiser motorcycle are a softer suspension for a smooth ride, comfortable seat, and seat heights, and foot pegs towards the front of the motorcycle for a comfortable rider posture, and all these make it an excellent motorcycle for beginners as well as experienced riders for commuting, leisure weekend rides, and short distance tours.

1. Honda Rebel 300 CMX 300

Source: honda.com

  • 286 CC, liquid-cooled, single-cylinder, four-stroke engine.
  • Six-speed transmission.
  • Seat height-27.2 inches
  • Curb weight- 364 pounds
  • Hydraulic disc brakes at front and rear.
  • Fuel capacity- 2.9 gallons
  • 78 MPG under standard conditions
  • Choice of colors- Pearl blue and matte gray metallic

Honda Rebel CMX 300 comes with a low seat height of 27.2 inches, and the latest technology like LED lighting and an optional ABS. The 286 CC single cylinder water cooled engine with slipper/assist clutch delivers good performance to keep you on the move.

Standard features are a front and rear hydraulic disc brake, 41 mm fork front suspension with4.8 inches of travel, and dual shocks rear suspension with 3.8 inches of travel. Honda Rebel is an affordable cruiser motorcycle for beginners.

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2. Royal Enfield Meteor 350

  • 349 CC, single-cylinder, four-stroke, air-oil cooled engine.
  • 5-speed constant mesh gearbox.
  • A wet, multi-plate clutch
  • Seat height- 12 inches
  • Fuel capacity- 3.96 gallons.
  • Curb weight- 421 pounds
  • Dual channel ABS disc brakes

Royal Enfield is a British classic style motorcycle, presently manufactured and exported from India. Comes with a wide and comfortable seat, and disc brakes at front and rear with ABS, LED head, and tail lights and is available in 7 colors including supernova blue, supernova brown, stellar black, and stellar red.

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3. Royal Enfield Interceptor 650

  • 648 CC, parallel twin, four-stroke, air/oil-cooled engine
  • 6-speed constant mesh gearbox
  • Seat height- 31.6 inches
  • Fuel capacity- 3.62 gallons
  • Curb weight- 445 pounds (without fuel).
  • Front and rear disc brakes with ABS

Royal Enfield is a British classic style motorcycle, presently manufactured and exported from India.  Standard features include a 41 mm front fork suspension with 110 mm (4.3 inches) travel, twin coil-over shocks rear suspension with 88 mm (3.4 inches) travel, LED head and tail lights, and a comfortable seat for a laid-back upright riding position. There are many accessories to choose from for your travel requirement.

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4. Honda Rebel 500, Model CMX 500

Source: honda.com

  • 471 CC, four-stroke, liquid-cooled, parallel twin engine
  • 6-speed transmission
  • Seat height- 27.2 inches
  • Fuel capacity- 2.9 gallons
  • Fuel consumption- 67 MPG (under standard conditions)
  • Hydraulic disc brakes at the front and rear
  • Curb weight- 408 pounds

Honda Rebel 500 with its comfortable seat and seat height, 41 mm fork front suspension (4.8 inches travel), dual shocks rear suspension (3.8 inches of travel), manageable curb weight, and LED lights is a modern cruiser built for a stylish look and comfortable rides.

Available in two colors, pearl organic green, and matte gray metallic. Optional ABS is available.

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5. Kawasaki Vulcan S

Source: kawasaki.com

  • 649 CC, four-stroke, two-cylinder, DOHC, liquid-cooled engine
  • 6-speed transmission with positive neutral finder
  • Seat height- 27.8 inches
  • Fuel capacity- 3.7 gallons
  • Front and rear disc brakes
  • Curb weight- 496.1 pounds

Kawasaki Vulcan S with its 649 CC powerful engine, front telescopic fork suspension, lay-down offset rear shock absorber with linkage and adjustable preload, and comfortable seat height makes your commuting to work or a short tour filled with pleasure. The ERGO-FIT® feature of Vulcan S helps you to find your fit for a comfortable riding position.

The Kawasaki Vulcan S motorcycle brings an exhilarating sports cruiser performance to enhance the joy and fun of every ride. Vulcan S is available with an optional ABS at an additional price.

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6. Honda Rebel Shadow Aero

Source: honda.com

  • 745 CC, four-stroke, liquid-cooled, 52-degree V-twin engine.
  • Wide-ratio, 5-speed transmission
  • Seat height- 25.9 inches
  • Fuel capacity- 3.7 gallons
  • Fuel economy- 56 MPG (under standard conditions)
  • Disc brake in the front and drum brake in the rear
  • Front suspension- 41 mm fork, 4.6 inches of travel
  • Rear Suspension- Dual shocks with 5 positions, spring preload adjustability, and 3.5 inches of travel
  • Curb weight- 560 pounds

The 745 ccs V-twin engine provides plenty of torque and the dual chrome-plated exhaust makes the motorcycle sound great. Honda Rebel Shadow Aero has a comfortable seat, low seat height, and 5-speed transmission for a joyful ride on the street. The ABS option is available at an additional cost.

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7. Yamaha Bolt R

  • 942 CC, four-stroke, air-cooled, SOHC, V-twin engine, 4 valves
  • 5-speed, multi-plate wet clutch transmission and final drive by belt
  • Seat height- 27.2 inches
  • Hydraulic disc brakes at the front and rear
  • Front suspension- Telescopic fork, 4.7 inches travel
  • Rear suspension- Dual piggyback shocks, 2.8 inches travel
  • Fuel capacity- 3.4 gallons
  • Fuel economy- 51 MPG (under standard conditions)
  • Wet weight- 542 pounds

Yamaha Bolt R has minimal chrome that gives the motorcycle an urban performance Bobber look and its advanced technology creates a superior riding experience. Yamaha Bolt R offers sufficient customization to motorcycle buyers. The slim body and the low seat design of the Yamaha Bolt give the rider superior maneuverability and a feel of stable handling.

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8. Suzuki Boulevard C 50

  • 805 CC, four-stroke, liquid-cooled, SOHC, 45°, V-twin engine
  • 5-speed constant mesh transmission
  • Wet, multi-plate type clutch
  • Seat height- 27.6 inches
  • Fuel tank capacity- 4.1 gallons
  • Front disc brake and rear drum brake
  • Curb weight- 611 pounds
  • Front suspension- Telescopic, coil spring, oil damped
  • Rear Suspension- Link style, solo shock, coil spring, oil damped
  • Choice of colors- Candy daring red and solid iron gray

Suzuki Boulevard C 50 impresses you with its traditional cruiser styles including a kicked-out fork, stylish fenders, comfortable seat, and chrome-plated dual exhaust system. This cruiser motorcycle has an 805 cc V-twin engine to give you sufficient power and torque, and along with its smooth suspension allows you to cruise comfortably on the road.

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9. Harley Davidson Iron 883

  • 883 CC, four-stroke, air-cooled, V-twin Evolution® engine
  • 5-gear manual transmission
  • Final drive by belt
  • Seat height- 29.9 inches
  • Fuel capacity- 3.3 gallons
  • Curb weight- 564 pounds
  • Fuel economy- 51 MPG (under standard conditions)
  • Front and rear disc brakes
  • Available colors-Black denim, gunship gray, and white sand pearl

View on Harley-Davidson

Iron 883 is an entry-level cruiser motorcycle from Harley Davidson, and it is a simple motorcycle without any modern electronic aids. Iron 883 has the power of an 883 cc V-twin engine for successful navigation on urban streets and freeways. There is an ABS option at an additional cost.

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10. Indian Scout Bobber 60

  • 1000 CC, four-stroke, liquid-cooled, 60 degrees V-twin engine with split dual exhaust
  • Gear drive- Multi-plate wet clutch transmission with 5-speeds
  • Fuel capacity-3.3 gallons
  • Seat height-25.6 inches
  • Front and rear disc brakes
  • Weight with full tank-548 pounds
  • 41 mm telescopic fork front suspension (4.7 inches travel)
  • Dual shocks rear suspension (2 inches travel)

Indian Scout Bobber 60 is an all-American motorcycle and with its 1000 cc engine, it is the biggest on our list. This motorcycle has the classic look of its iconic design and it is powerful, yet manageable at 548 pounds.

However, this may not be the correct cruiser for a beginner due to its weight as well as the price. If you can afford this iconic motorcycle and are confident about riding it, it can be a good investment for years to come.

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III. Few buying tips

  • If you are buying an entry-level cruiser motorcycle now and planning to go for a medium or high-end cruiser after 2 or 3 years, you can consider a used cruiser motorcycle for now, and then go for a new cruiser motorcycle after 2 or 3 years. This will save you from unnecessary expenditures.
  • Go through all the features of the motorcycle and if they are appealing to you then view the price.
  • Visit the dealers of your shortlisted motorcycle and make as many test rides as you need and make your selection based on your test ride experience also.
  • Select a brand that is known for its quality, durability, and service backup. Japanese brands like Yamaha, Suzuki, and Honda motorcycles are known for their quality, affordability, and reliability and have their showroom and service center near you. Harley Davidson and Indian are American brand motorcycles, known for their excellent quality and durability, and are made in the USA. Other new and upcoming brands in the affordable range of cruisers are Royal Enfield motorcycles.
  • Proper maintenance of a cruiser motorcycle is very important to have a trouble-free enjoyable riding experience and to enhance the life of the motorcycle. Hence, it is important to ensure that the dealer selling you the motorcycle has service centers in your place of residence. Please ensure this from your dealer and visit the service center to get first-hand information.
  • Follow the recommendations in the owner manual regarding servicing schedules and oil change schedules strictly.
  • The manufacturer/ motorcycle dealer may offer you limited flexibility to get your motorcycle with a seat height, handlebar width, and footrest pegs suiting your height. Discuss with the dealer and make use of the flexible design facility.
  • Verify the warranty, its scope, and terms and conditions.

IV. Conclusion

Riding a motorcycle can be a fun activity for some riders and for others it is a mode of commuting to the workplace or college. Whatever the needs may be, the wide range of cruiser motorcycles allows you to select one to suit your needs and budget.

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