A nice sport bikes doesn’t have to break the bank, and especially with the time of the year, deals can be found! Obviously, you can do a few things to ensure any purchase is a good purchase such as making sure the bike comes with the right legal paperwork and has a service history. If you’re satisfied with that, check out the bike and see how it sounds, what shape the tires in, and whether there are any mechanical issues that need to be addressed.
Follow those basic steps and you’ll make sure you get a good ride. If you want to get further ahead, pick one of the bikes on this list below. All of these bikes are 90s or early 2000 models, they scored well on reliability, have cheap parts available and are fun to ride.
2003 Yamaha YZF-R6 – $3,000-$4,000
If you can find a 2003 Yamaha YZF-R6 bike you’ll be getting a supersport motorcycle for a entry bike price tag. The R6 handles incredibly well, and the 2003 was the first R6 model to get fuel injection while packing a decent amount of power in the upper mid range. The only real issue with these is that the nuts, bolts and fastenings ted to rust up but this a cheap and easy fix.
1994 Honda CBR600F2 – $1,500-$2,000
I’m a big fan of early 90s motorcycles, they are cheap at the moment but are quickly becoming investments as they get more desirable. The 1994 Honda CBR600F2 embodies everything that is Honda, rock solid reliability without any of the modern bike issues. The engine is literally bulletproof, an inline four that gives excellent midrange and top end power to keep you entertained. With a 600 you’re still getting a relatively easy bike to ride that won’t be hard for new riders either. The cheapest bike on the list!
1996 Suzuki GSX-R750 – $2,000-$3,000
The 1996 Suzuki GSX-R750 can be somewhat of a unicorn on this list. If you can find one in decent shape it will go for $2,000-$3,000, but unfortunately most are beat up. If you can find one, you’ll get a 749cc engine that puts out 130 hp, and weighs 390 lbs. This makes the power to weight ratio incredible, especially when you consider this is almost a 25 year old bike at this point. The suspension is decent but if you want to make things more interesting, you can easily upgrade the forks for cheap.
2008 Kawasaki Ninja 250R – $2,000-$3,000
If you want a sporty looking bike but do not want the big displacement, you should consider a 2008 Kawasaki Ninja 250R. You’ll get the newer and nicer bodywork on a 2008, with a better engine that gives more torque in the low and midrange. The Ninja 250R handles well with a tweaked suspension and upgraded brakes over previous model years. You can easily find these on the cheap and they are fantastic sport bikes to learn on.
2002 Yamaha YZF-R1 – $3,500-$4,500
The Yamaha R1 has been an incredible model for Yamaha and it’s hard to say you would be going wrong with any generation. With that said, 2002 was the first model year to come equipped with fuel injection. This was also the first year that Yamaha adjusted the Deltabox III frame to be lighter, making it handle amazing well and offering a superb power to weight ratio. The best part is the bike never reached the popularity of the Suzuki GSX or Honda CBR equivalents, so you can find them on the cheap.