Are you looking for a versatile motorcycle that can handle both on and off-road terrains? Then you might want to consider getting a dual sport or a supermoto. Both of these motorcycles are great for adventure and adrenaline seekers, but they have their differences. In this blog post, we’ll compare and contrast dual sport and supermoto motorcycles, so you can decide which one is better for you.
Main Differences Between Dual Sport Vs Supermoto
One of the main differences between Dual Sport and Supermoto is the terrain they are designed to ride on. Dual Sport bikes are designed to handle both on and off-road terrain, meaning they have the versatility to travel on paved roads as well as unpaved trails. Supermoto bikes, on the other hand, are designed to be ridden mostly on paved roads, making them a great choice for riders who want to take their bikes to the track or on a street ride.
The suspension system on a Dual Sport bike is designed to handle rugged terrain, including jumping and landing. It has a longer travel suspension that can absorb bumps and shocks from off-road tracks. Supermoto bikes, on the other hand, have a more sophisticated suspension system designed for fast cornering, high-speed stability, and smooth riding on paved roads. They are not meant for off-road rides, but they can take jumps and tight corners with ease.
The type of wheels also plays a significant role in differentiating Dual Sport and Supermoto bikes. Dual Sport bikes usually come with knobby tires that provide excellent traction on off-road surfaces. They have larger tires than supermoto bikes, making them more stable when off-roading. Supermoto bikes, however, have smaller and smoother tires that provide improved handling and more precise control when taking tight turns on paved streets. They can also reach higher speeds than Dual Sport bikes.
Dual Sport bikes are ideal for riders who love both off-road and on-road terrains. Riders who want to take their bikes on a full day of adventure and explore the great outdoors can opt for Dual Sport bikes that offer greater versatility. Supermoto bikes are perfect for riders who want to experience speed and agility on paved roads. They are designed for racing and performing tricks on a track, but they are not suitable for long-distance rides.
The price difference between the two types of bikes is also a significant factor to consider. Dual Sport bikes are usually more affordable than Supermoto bikes since they are built for versatility rather than racing. Additionally, Dual Sport bikes are rugged and durable and can withstand harsh conditions, making them more cost-effective in the long run. On the other hand, Supermoto bikes are expensive, with high horsepower ratings and high-power engines.
Dual Sport Vs Supermoto Bikes: A Guide for Choosing
What is a dual-sport motorcycle?
Dual-sport motorcycles are designed for both on-road and off-road riding. They are versatile and can handle a wide range of terrains. These bikes are typically lightweight, have long suspensions, and high ground clearance. Dual-sport motorcycles have wide handlebars, which give the rider better control when navigating through uneven terrain. These bikes also have knobby tires, which provide better traction in dry or wet conditions. To be street legal, dual-sport motorcycles have headlights, tail lights, turn signals, and other features that make them safe and legal to ride on roads.
Benefits of dual-sport motorcycles
One of the main benefits of dual-sport motorcycles is their versatility. You can take them on-road, off-road, or anywhere in between. With dual-sport motorcycles, you can explore different terrains and enjoy different riding experiences. Dual-sport motorcycles also have better maneuverability and handling than other types of motorcycles. They can easily navigate through obstacles and tight spaces. Plus, their lightweight and high ground clearance make them easier to handle in tricky situations.
Drawbacks of dual-sport motorcycles
While dual-sport motorcycles are versatile, they are not the best at any one thing. They are okay for off-road riding, but they are not as capable as dedicated off-road bikes. They are okay for street riding, but they are not as comfortable as touring bikes. Another potential drawback is that dual-sport motorcycles can be expensive to maintain, as they require frequent oil changes, tire changes, and other maintenance tasks. Finally, dual-sport motorcycles can be less comfortable for longer rides, especially if you’re not used to the riding position.
What is a supermoto?
A supermoto is a type of dual-sport motorcycle that emphasizes street riding performance over off-road capabilities. Supermotos are lightweight, have lower suspensions, and smaller wheels than other dual-sport bikes. These bikes usually have more road-oriented tires, which provide better grip on pavement. Supermotos also have bigger brakes and more responsive suspensions than other dual-sport motorcycles.
Benefits of supermotos
Supermotos are ideal for people who want the agility and handling of a dirt bike, but also need the power and speed of a street bike. They are perfect for riders who love to take corners at high speeds and want a fun and exciting experience. Supermotos are also easier to maneuver in traffic, thanks to their lightweight and nimble handling. Eating up stop and go traffic on the daily commute is easy with a supermoto. Plus, supermotos are more fuel-efficient than traditional street bikes.
Drawbacks of supermotos
One major drawback of supermotos is that they are not ideal for long-distance rides. They are built for short and quick trips, but not for extended touring. Supermotos also have a harsher ride than other dual-sport bikes, thanks to their stiff suspension and small tires. They also require more maintenance than traditional street bikes due to their off-road heritage.
One of the primary differences between dual sport and supermoto motorcycles lies in their tires. Dual sport motorcycles have tires that are specifically designed to perform equally well on different kinds of terrains. They are made to handle both off-road and on-road situations, providing the rider with the ability to tackle any kind of road challenge. Their tires are typically wider and deeper in their treads, providing increased traction during off-road adventures.
On the other hand, supermoto motorcycles have tires that are much narrower and smoother than dual sport tires. The tires used on these motorcycles are designed for pavement riding, providing excellent grip and handling at high speeds. The tires used on supermoto motorcycles are often made with a harder compound, providing better mileage and durability on pavement.
Another significant difference between dual sport and supermoto motorcycles is in their brake rotors. Dual sport motorcycles usually have a larger and thicker brake rotor to accommodate its wider tires and more substantial frame. Their brake rotors are designed to provide significant stopping power even in off-road situations, where the bike may encounter mud, sand, or rocks.
Conversely, supermoto motorcycles have a smaller brake rotor than dual sport motorcycles. This design feature is because supermoto motorcycles are geared toward pavement riding, where the need for stopping power is less critical. Supermoto motorcycles have a high-performance braking system, which features dual or quad piston calipers mounted on the brake rotor to provide excellent stopping power at high speeds.
The front suspension is an essential part of any motorbike, and it directly affects your riding experience. Dual sport and supermoto bikes have different types of front suspensions designed for different types of riding.
Dual sport bikes are designed to ride on a variety of surfaces, including dirt, gravel, and pavement. As such, they usually feature a conventional fork in the front, which provides adequate suspension for off-road riding. These forks are designed to travel a long distance, which allows the bike to absorb bumps and rough terrain. However, this type of suspension is not ideal for high-speed riding on paved roads, as it can be too soft, resulting in a lack of stability and control.
On the other hand, supermoto bikes are designed mainly for street riding and have to handle hard pavement, tight corners, and sudden stops. They usually feature an upside-down fork, which is stiffer and provides better stability on paved roads. The upside-down fork also has better braking performance, which is essential for supermoto racing. However, this type of suspension is not ideal for off-road riding, as it does not have the necessary travel distance to absorb bumps and rough terrain expected in dirt roads.
Another difference between dual sport and supermoto bikes’ front suspension is the fork’s diameter. Dual sport bikes usually feature larger diameter forks, which provide better stability on rough terrain. Supermoto bikes, on the other hand, have smaller diameter forks, which make them more nimble and agile for street riding. The difference in fork diameter also affects the suspension’s stiffness, providing the necessary support for various riding styles.
Another key difference between the front suspension of dual sport and supermoto bikes is the set-up. Dual sport bikes are usually set up for off-road riding, with softer suspension settings and lower pre-load. Supermoto bikes, on the other hand, have stiffer suspension settings and higher pre-load, designed to handle hard pavement, tight corners, and sudden stops. The adjustable suspension is critical in both bikes to provide the rider with the required travel distance for various types of riding, making a significant difference in the bike’s overall handling and stability.
First of all, it’s essential to understand what ground clearance is and why it matters. Ground clearance is the distance between the lowest point of your motorcycle and the ground. The more significant the ground clearance, the better the motorcycle is at clearing obstacles and riding over rough terrains. Dual sport motorcycles are designed to handle both off-road and on-road riding, which means they generally have higher ground clearance than supermotos. Dual sports’ typical ground clearance is around 10-12 inches, making them suitable for off-road riding.
On the other hand, supermoto motorcycles are designed for paved surfaces and have lower ground clearance than dual sport bikes. Supermotos’ ground clearance is usually between 6-8 inches, making them suitable for high-performance riding on asphalt but not off-road terrains. It’s worth noting that some supermotos come with higher ground clearance, but they are not very common.
If you’re looking for a motorcycle that can handle both on and off-road terrains, a dual sport motorcycle with its higher ground clearance is the better choice. Dual sport motorcycles allow the rider to ride on rough terrains, such as gravel, sand, and dirt, without worrying about scraping the undercarriage. Supermoto motorcycles are perfect for those who love high-performance riding on paved surfaces. The lower ground clearance provides stability and a better grip on the road.
Another factor to consider is the rider’s height. Taller riders might prefer a motorcycle with higher ground clearance because it provides more tuck-and-roll ability in off-road situations. Lower ground clearance may feel less stable for taller riders because they will be more top-heavy. But if you’re a shorter rider, especially if you’re below 5’7, the lower ground clearance of a supermoto is perfect because it provides better stability and makes stopping and starting more manageable.
Dual Sport Vs Supermoto: The Winner
Whether you choose a Dual Sport or a Supermoto, you can rest assured that you’ll have an excellent time exploring both off-road and on-road terrains. With their combined versatility and exciting performance, these hybrid bikes are a great investment for any rider. Ultimately, your decision should depend on your personal preferences and riding style. So, measure your preference carefully and select the bike that aligns with your desires, and you will undoubtedly appreciate your riding experience for years to come.