Generally speaking, the average motorcycle tank can hold 3-6 gallons of gas. You can find the smallest, 1.5-4-gallon fuel tanks in 50cc-250cc motorcycles while the heavy adventure and cruiser motorcycles have the highest fuel capacity on the market. The tank size of these bikes ranges from 5 up to a whopping 8.5 gallons, which gives them really good fuel ranges.
If you would like to find out more about motorcycle fuel capacity, you are in the right place.
We at PowerSportsGuide, have gathered the average motorcycle gas tank sizes under one roof. Without further ado, let’s compare them in one chart!
Motorcycle Fuel Capacity Charts
Average Motorcycle Fuel Capacity Chart
|Motorcycle Category (cc)||Average Gas Tank Sizes (Gal.)|
|50||1.5 – 3|
|125||2 – 4|
|250||2 – 4|
|300 – 500||3 – 5|
|600||4 – 6|
|700 – 950||4 – 7|
|1000-||4 – 8.5|
Since there are many different motorcycles on the market, you may find some models that have smaller or even larger fuel tanks than those shown in the table.
However, based on our research the fuel capacity of most production motorcycles falls into these ranges. As a reference, we’ve listed the tank sizes of 50 different bikes from 50cc up to 7500cc!
Motorcycle Gas Tank Sizes of 50 Popular Motorcycles
|Model||Gas Tank Capacity (Gal)|
|Honda Rebel 300||3.0|
|Harley-Davidson Iron 1200||3.3|
|Harley-Davidson Iron 883||3.3|
|Honda X-ADV 750||3.4|
|KTM 390 Duke||3.5|
|Harley-Davidson Street 500||3.5|
|Harley-Davidson Street Rod||3.5|
|Harley-Davidson Softail St.||3.5|
|Aprilia RS4 50||3.8|
|Kawasaki W800 Café||4.0|
|Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R||4.5|
|Suzuki GSX-R 750||4.5|
|Harley-D XL1200C Sportster||4.5|
|Kawasaki Ninja 500||4.8|
|Honda Africa Twin 1100||5.0|
|Harley-Davidson Sport Glide||5.0|
|Harley-Davidson Fat Boy 114||5.0|
|Suzuki GSX1300R Hayabusa||5.5|
|Ducati Desmosedici 800RR||5.7|
|Harley-Davidson Road King||6.0|
|Harley-Davidson Street Glide||6.0|
|Benelli TNT 600GT||7.13|
|Honda ST1300 Pan European||7.7|
|BMW R80 G/S Paris Dakar||8.45|
|Boss-Hoss bikes (6000-7500cc)||8.5|
These figures are for informational purposes only! Tank sizes may differ by model year. For exact specifications please visit the manufacturer’s website.
In the following paragraphs, we’ll take a closer look at the motorcycle fuel capacity figures according to the main engine categories.
How Many Gallons of Gas Does a Motorcycle Tank Hold?
The Fuel Capacity of Lightweight Motorcycles
From the tiny Honda Groom to the more powerful 300-400cc models, the fuel capacity of lightweight motorcycles varies widely.
You can find the smallest fuel tanks in the 50cc motorcycles, as many of these machines offer a fuel capacity of 1-3 gallons.
If you are looking for a bigger bike, 125-250cc motorcycles typically have a fuel tank of up to 4 gallons and get around 50-130 MPG. The most powerful motorcycles in this category are powered with 300-400cc engines and offer a fuel capacity of 3-5 gallons.
Middle-weight Motorcycle Gas Tank Sizes
When it comes to middle-weight motorcycles, it’s safe to say that most of them come with a 3-7-gallon fuel tank. The popular 4-cylinder 600cc-950cc sportbikes can typically hold 4-6 gallons.
If you are looking for a higher fuel capacity, you should take a look at the adventure and touring bikes. Many of them have a bigger fuel tank, which offers a fuel capacity of 5-8 gallons.
These machines are meant to cover long distances, so the designers tried to achieve the highest possible fuel ranges.
Heavy Motorcycle Gas Capacity
Finally, let’s talk about heavy motorcycles.
These machines are typically powered with 1000-2000cc engines, which can produce up to 300 HP.
And to feed these ponies, you need plenty of gas! This is the reason why the fuel capacity of heavy motorcycles ranges from 4 up to 8.5 gallons.
Weight is always a big concern on a sportbike, which is why the fuel capacity of most 1000-1300cc sport motorcycles is as low as 4-5 gallons.
You can find slightly bigger tanks on full-size cruiser motorcycles, as the bikes in this category can hold about 4.5-6 gallons of gas.
Are you wondering which motorcycle has the highest fuel capacity?
Which Motorcycle Has the Largest Fuel Tank?
There is no question that Boss-Hoss cruiser motorcycles have the biggest fuel tank on the market. These large cruisers feature 6000-7500cc engines, which put out an amazing 400-600 HP. As you might assume, these engines are quite thirsty. To get a reasonable fuel range, Boss-Hoss motorcycles come with a generous 8.5-gallon fuel tank.
If that isn’t enough for you, auxiliary fuel tanks are also available for these machines with a capacity of 2-4 gallons.
Regarding “ordinary” motorcycles, 700-1300cc adventure bikes have the highest fuel capacity right now. Some examples for gas tank sizes in this class are as follows:
- BMW R1200RT: 6.6 gallons
- Honda ST1300 Pan European: 7.7 gallons
- BMW R80 G/S Paris Dakar: 8.45 gallons
What is Reserve Fuel Capacity in Bikes?
Reverse fuel capacity in motorcycles refers to a portion of the gas tank’s fuel capacity. The benefit of this feature is that it can protect the rider from running out of fuel. When the level of gas drops below a certain level in the tank, the rider can access the reserve fuel by using the “reserve switch.”
Do all Motorcycles Have a Reserve Tank?
Contrary to popular belief, the majority of motorcycles feature only one fuel tank. This means that there is no separate “reserve tank” in most motorcycles! Instead, the reserve and main fuel settings are using gas from the same tank. The trick here is that there are two outlets installed on the gas tank of motorcycles.
The “reserve fuel outlet” is located near the bottom of the tank, while the normal outlet is located higher up on the tank.
With the reserve switch (also known as a reserve valve) you can choose which output you want to use. There are typically three positions: NORMAL, RESERVE, and OFF.
Here’s a great video on how a motorcycle’s reverse valve works:
Can You Run Your Motorcycle on Reserve All the Time?
Yes you can run your motorcycle on reserve all the time, however it’s not recommended. The reserve valve is on your motorcycle for reason, as it can save you from running out of fuel. If you use your bike on reserve all the time you risk completely draining your tank before you even notice.
This can easily happen especially on those motorcycles which are not feature fuel gauge.
How do You Put Extra Gas on Your Motorcycle?
If you mainly ride in developed countries, refueling your bike is not an issue as you can find a gas station on almost every corner. But if you are planning on traveling in remote regions like deserts, jungles, or the Bolivian Altiplano, you had better take some extra fuel with you.
If you want to expand your fuel range, you can put some extra gas on your motorcycle in three different ways:
- Strapping extra fuel cans on the bike
- Replacing the stock fuel tank with a bigger one
- Installing a second (known as “auxiliary”) fuel tank
Let’s take a closer look at each of these solutions.
Extra Fuel Cans
The easiest way to carry extra gas on you is to strap fuel cans on your motorcycle. Although this may work in emergency situations, it’s definitely not recommended in the long run. This is because strapping down the can on the bike is rather difficult and a small mistake can result in a dangerous situation.
Therefore, if you are looking for a more convenient and safer solution, you should consider stackable motorcycle gas cans.
These cans can typically be attached to the rear racks and give you 1-4 gallons of extra gas per can. You can even mount up to two of them on either side of the machine.
Oversized Motorcycle Tanks
If you are looking for the safest way to increase your motorcycle’s fuel capacity, you may want to install an oversized tank on your bike.
These aftermarket tanks are available for many touring and adventure motorcycles and can even reach a fuel capacity of 10-11 gallons. These oversized motorcycle tanks can be really useful, but unfortunately they make your bike pretty heavy.
The trick here is that you don’t need to top off this tank if it’s not absolutely necessary. If you know that you can easily find gas stations on your way, you should have enough if you just fill it with 5-6 gallons.
Oversized tanks are often used on dirt bikes as well. Since the stock fuel tank on dirt bikes can only hold 1.5-2 gallons, it’s hard to cover longer distances on them.
This is where special oversized tanks come in handy. Some of them fit in with the design of the bike, while others are transparent to show how much gas is left.
Auxiliary Motorcycle Fuel Tanks
Another great way to increase a bike’s fuel capacity is to install an auxiliary motorcycle fuel tank. These extra tanks are typically connected to the fuel line and you can switch them on and off by turning a tap. Auxiliary tanks on motorcycles can hold about 1-5 gallons of gas.
How Many Gallons Does a Harley-Davidson Hold?
Harley-Davidsons hold about 2 to 6 gallons of gas depending on the model and engine size. The fuel capacity of the smallest Harley is 2.1-3.5 gallons, while you can expect a capacity of 5-6 gallons on the flagship models. For your convenience, we’ve gathered the gas tank sizes of some popular Harley-Davidson motorcycles below:
- Harley-Davidson Forty-Eight: 2.1 gal.
- Harley-Davidson Roadster: 3.3 gal.
- Harley-Davidson Iron 883: 3.3 gal.
- Harley-Davidson Iron 1200: 3.3 gal.
- Harley-Davidson Street Rod: 3.5 gal.
- Harley-Davidson Street 500: 3.5 gal.
- Harley-Davidson Softail Standard: 3.5 gal.
- Harley-Davidson XL1200C Sportster: 4.5 gal.
- Harley-Davidson Sport Glide: 5 gal.
- Harley-Davidson Fat Boy 114: 5 gal.
- Harley-Davidson Road King: 6 gal.
- Harley-Davidson Street Glide: 6 gal.
- Harley-Davidson CVO Street Glide: 6 gal.
How Many Gallons Does a Sportster’s Tank Hold?
Harley-Davidson Sportsters hold about 2.1-3.3 gallons of gas. The smaller Forty-Eight feature a 2.1-gallon fuel tank, while all the Iron 883, Iron 1200, and Roadster have a fuel capacity of 3.3 gallons.
How Many Gallons of Gas Can a Kawasaki Ninja 250R Hold? A Kawasaki Ninja 250R can hold 4.8 gallons of gas.
How Many Gallons Does a Suzuki GSXR 600 Hold?
The Suzuki GSXR 600 holds 4.5 gallons of gas.
How Many Gallons of Gas Does a Yamaha R1 hold?
Just like the 600cc Suzuki GSX-R, the fuel capacity of the Yamaha R1 is exactly 4.5 gallons.
How many gallons of gas does a motorcycle hold? – This is a common question of many beginners, and with good reason. Motorcycles’ fuel capacity heavily affects their fuel range, which is why the size of the fuel tank is always an important purchasing consideration.
Generally speaking, motorcycles typically hold about 1.5 – 8.5 gallons of gas, but the majority feature a gas tank with a capacity of 3 – 6 gallons.
If you are looking for a motorcycle with the highest fuel capacity available, then the middle-weight and heavy adventure bikes are for you. Many of these machines can hold a generous 6-8.5 gallons of gas!
If you want to expand your motorcycle’s fuel capacity, best practice is that you install stackable gas cans, an auxiliary fuel tank, or replace the stock fuel tank with a bigger one.