How fast can the average motorcycle go? The average motorcycle can go as fast as 80-165 mph, and the top speed of the most popular motorcycle categories are as follows:
- 125cc motorcycles: 60-75 mph
- 250cc motorcycles: 80-110 mph
- 500cc motorcycles: 90-120 mph
- 600cc motorcycles: 90-165 mph
- 1000cc motorcycles: 100-186 mph
You will see that the top speed of a motorcycle depends on many factors in addition to its engine performance!
If you would like to learn more about these factors or compare the average motorcycle top speeds by category in one chart, this post is for you.
We at PowerSportsGuide have done the research and gathered the speed numbers of the main categories under one roof.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at the main factors that affect the top speed of a motorcycle.
Factors that Affect a Motorcycle’s Top Speed
Many different factors affect the top speed of motorcycles, but the most important are as follows:
- Type, performance, and weight of the motorcycle
- Year and condition of the machine
- The features of the transmission and drivetrain
- Size of the wheels
- Speed limiters and aftermarket modifications
- Rider’s weight, size, and skills
- Road conditions
- Weather conditions
Since these factors differ from one motorcycle to the next, the top speed of different motorcycles varies widely.
What’s more, many of these factors like altitude or weather conditions can even change within a day, meaning that the available maximum speed on a motorcycle is constantly changing within certain limits.
The three main factors that play a role in this game are the features of the motorcycle, environmental conditions, and rider characteristics.
Features of the Motorcycle
There is no question that the top speed of a motorcycle is strongly dependent on its engine displacement and performance. The more powerful the engine on a motorcycle, the faster it can go.
The number of cylinders also has a major impact on performance. You can expect higher top speeds on 4-cylinder (I4) motorcycles, while single-cylinder and twin engines typically offer significantly less horsepower and top speeds.
Besides its performance, the type of machine is no less important. Cruiser and touring motorcycles are designed for long trips, so they usually offer lower top speeds and better gas mileage. The majority of medium and full-size cruisers top out at 90-100 mph.
In contrast, sportbikes offer the highest top speeds and best acceleration of all engine categories. The most powerful models can hit a shocking 186 mph.
The weight of the machine is also very important. Less weight results in a better power/weight ratio, which is why designers try to shave as many pounds as they can off each model.
Besides the main features like weight and performance, many smaller factors affect the top speed and acceleration of a motorcycle like its transmission, the drivetrain, and the size of its wheels. Just replacing the rear sprocket with a smaller one can noticeably increase the top speed.
It’s also good to know that many motorcycles come with a factory-installed speed limiter. Therefore, their performance is electronically restricted. Bypassing these speed limiters or with some aftermarket modifications, the top speed of these bikes can increase by up to 10-30 mph. (Beware that this is illegal in many cases!)
Finally, keep in mind that motorcycle speedometers are inaccurate in most cases, so the actual speed can only be measured with GPS.
It’s a lesser-known fact that the characteristics and skills of the rider can also affect the top speed of a motorcycle.
A large rider means more weight, which decreases the power to weight ratio while increasing air resistance. The bigger the rider the more weight the motorcycle has to carry, which eventually robs power.
That’s why MotoGP racers are typically smaller people!
Besides body size, the skills of the riders are no less important.
The fastest motorcycles can reach an incredible top speed of 180-190 mph, and let’s face it, not everybody can handle a machine at such a high speed.
Finally, don’t forget about environmental conditions.
The quality of the road/terrain, altitude, wind, temperature, humidity, and many other conditions all affect the performance of the engine.
Although these factors don’t have as much effect on top speed as the aforementioned ones, changes in environmental conditions can surprise many riders.
Motorcycle Top Speed Chart
As you see, the top speeds of motorcycles vary from one model to the next, so it’s not easy to categorize them.
Nonetheless, we’ve done the research and compiled the average numbers into one motorcycle top speed chart!
|Motorcycle Displacement (cc)||Average Top Speed (mph)|
The chart is for general informational purposes only and shows the average motorcycle top speed numbers!
Keep in mind that if you do extensive research, you may find a few models that are slightly faster or even slower in each category. However, it’s safe to say that the top speed of most motorcycles fall within these ranges.
In the next chapters we’re going to talk in more detail about each category!
Motorcycle Top Speed by cc
How fast is a 50cc motorcycle?
50cc motorcycles can go as fast as 30-50 mph depending on the make and model. You can mainly find scooters and “scooter-like” motorcycles in this category. These machines typically feature a CVT (automatic) transmission and their top speed is electronically limited to 25-35 mph. Without the speed governor most 50cc motorcycles could reach a top speed of 40-50 mph without any issues.
Speaking of racing 50cc motorcycles, these high-performance 2-stroke machines can even exceed an incredible 100 mph. Not bad from a tiny 50cc engine!
How fast can a 100cc motorcycle go?
The average top speed of 100cc motorcycles is about 45-65 mph, but most production machines can go as fast as 50-60 mph. In contrast, the world speed record on a 100cc motorcycle is above 116 mph!
Some samples in this category:
- Lifan Chimp 100: 44 mph
- Hi Speed Alpha 100cc: 50 mph
- Honda CRF100F: 60 mph
How fast does a 125cc motorcycle go?
You can expect a top speed of 60-75 mph on a 125cc motorcycle. One of the fastest production 125cc motorcycles ever made was the Aprilia RS125, which topped out at 100 mph. Unfortunately, it’s already out of production. The newest MotoGP motorcycles in the 125cc class can exceed an outstanding 150 mph.
The top speed of some popular production 125cc bikes are as follows:
- Honda CB125F: 65 mph
- Keeway Superlight 125: 70 mph
- Yamaha MT125: 70 mph
- Yamaha YZF-R125: 75 mph
How fast is a 150cc motorcycle?
Featuring a similar engine displacement as the 125cc class, you can expect more or less the same performance on a 150cc bike. This means the majority of 150cc motorcycles top out at 60-75 mph.
2-stroke 250cc bikes always offer significantly more power and better acceleration, especially going from 0 to 30 mph. Here are some examples in this class:
- Motobravo 150cc Hornet SR1 LKY: 70 mph
- Yamaha FZ16: 70 mph
- Yamaha RX 100: 70 mph
How fast is a 200cc motorcycle?
Stock 200cc motorcycles can reach a top speed of 65-90 mph. These motorcycles are typically powered with 20-40 HP, mainly 4-stroke engines and feature a 5 or 6-speed transmission. Unfortunately, the supply in this segment is not nearly as large as in the 250cc category.
Some popular models in the 200cc class are as follows:
- KTM Duke 200: 85 mph
- KTM RC200: 87 mph
- Suzuki DR200: 65 mph
What’s the top speed on a 250cc motorcycle?
250cc motorcycles are among the most popular small-bore motorcycles, and with good reason. They deliver plenty of power but still come with reasonable price tags. Their smaller weight and dimensions make them a great choice for beginners, smaller and female riders.
Thanks to their 30-40 HP engines, street 250cc motorcycles can hit an amazing top speed of 80-110 mph. It also has to be mentioned that many models are limited to 80 mph. Regarding 250cc dirt bikes, many of them offer a top speed of 55-70 mph, while the fastest 250cc bikes in the MotoGP can reach 150 mph!
Three of the most popular bikes in this category:
- Kawasaki Ninja 250: 105 mph
- Honda VTR250: 105 mph
- Honda CRB250RR: 110 mph
How fast can a 300cc motorcycle go?
Similar to 250cc models, 300cc motorcycles can reach a top speed of 90-115 mph. These machines usually come with 30-40 HP twin engines and 350-380 pounds of dry weight.
Some examples of 300cc motorcycle top speed numbers:
- BMW G310GS: 89 MPH
- Honda CBR300R: 100 MPH
- Kawasaki Ninja 300: 112 MPH
How fast does a 500cc motorcycle go?
500cc single-cylinder motorcycles can reach a top speed of 90-100 mph with their 40-50 HP engines. If you are looking for something faster, you should take a look at multi-cylinder models since these 500cc bikes can go as fast as 100-120 mph. When it comes to the fastest 500cc motorcycles in the MotoGP, they typically top out around 200 mph!
Examples in the 500cc class:
- Honda Rebel 500: 95 mph
- Kawasaki Ninja 500: 118 mph
- Honda CBR500R: 118 mph
How fast can a 600cc motorcycle go?
There is no question that 600cc middle-weight motorcycles are among the most popular models on the market.
Compared to their smaller-displacement siblings, these bikes are significantly faster and offer a much better power to weight ratio (especially the 4-cylinder models). However, as there are many models in this class, the top speed of these machines varies widely. While the average top speed of 600cc motorcycles is about 90-140 mph, the fastest 600cc sportbikes can hit a whopping top speed of 165 mph!
The best 600cc sportbikes are arguably made by the Japanese “big four”:
- Suzuki GSXR 600: 155 mph
- Yamaha R6: 160 mph
- Kawasaki Ninja ZX6R: 164 mph
- Honda CBR600RR: 165 mph
Why are 600cc bikes faster than 650cc?
The reason why 600cc bikes go faster than 650cc bikes is because the 600cc class is typically powered with 4-cylinder (I4) engines, which produce significantly more power. In contrast, most 650cc motorcycles have “twin” engines, which means these power sources feature only 2 cylinders, which means much less HP.
That’s why 650cc motorcycles are a better choice for beginner riders than 600cc machines.
How fast can a 750cc motorcycle go?
You can find many different types of motorcycles in the 750cc class. Cruiser bikes like the popular Harley-Davidson 750 offers a top speed of 110 mph, while adventure touring bikes in this family can usually reach 120-130 mph. The fastest 750cc sportbikes can even reach the 160-170 mph range. Finally, it’s safe to say that most 750cc motorcycles can go as fast as 90-170 mph depending on the model.
Some of the most well-known models in this category are as follows:
- Yamaha Star Bolt: 101 mph
- Harley-Davidson Street 750: 110 mph
- Honda NC750X: 122 mph
- Suzuki GSX-R 750: 170 mph
How fast does an 800cc motorcycle go?
Simply put, 800cc motorcycles can go as fast as 90-186 mph. Yes, the highest speeds of these bikes vary widely. From the 2-cylinder, air-cooled Ducati Scrambler to the most powerful sportbikes, there are many different models in this class. Unlike production machines, MotoGP racing motorcycles in the 800cc class can reach a whopping 220 mph!
As a reference, here are some top speed numbers of some popular 800cc bike:
- Suzuki VS800GL: 102 mph
- Kawasaki W800 Café: 110 mph
- Kawasaki Z800: 135 mph
- Triumph Tiger 800: 130 mph
- Yamaha FZ8: 140 mph
- Ducati Desmosedici 800RR: 186 mph
How fast can a 900cc motorcycle go?
Featuring similar displacement engines, you can expect around the same top speeds on 800cc and 900cc motorcycles. (Keep in mind that many “900cc” motorcycles have a displacement of 850-899cc.) This is the reason why 900cc motorcycles offer a top speed of 90-170 mph.
- Yamaha XSR 900: 120 mph
- Triumph Tiger 900: 125mph
- Yamaha FJ-09: 140 mph
- Ducati 900SS: 142 mph
- Honda CBR900RR: 160 mph
- Kawasaki ZX-9R Ninja: 170 mph
How fast can a 1000cc motorcycle go?
If you are a performance-minded rider, then 1000cc motorcycles are for you. In the world of motorcycles there is nothing that can beat these powerful machines. That’s why they are called “crotch rockets” as well. When it comes to performance, 1000cc motorcycles offer an amazing 100-186 mph (limited) top speed.
Why are motorcycles limited to 186 mph?
Simply put, manufacturers wanted to prevent owners from speeding and street racing. That’s why they electronically restricted the performance of these machines. Since there is a “gentlemen’s agreement” among the main motorcycle manufacturers, the top speed of the most powerful motorcycles is limited to 186 mph (299 kmph).
Without any speed limiter, racing 1000cc motorcycles can even hit 220 mph. Of course, these machines are not street legal.
Some examples of 1000cc bikes:
- Aprilia RSV4: 180 mph
- Honda CBR1000RR: 186 mph
- Yamaha YZF-R1: 186 mph
- BMW S1000RR: 186 mph
How fast is 1100cc motorcycle?
Just like their 1000cc brothers, 1100cc motorcycles can go as fast as 100-186 mph. If you are looking for a bike in this class, don’t hesitate to take a closer look at these models:
- Honda VT1100C2: 107 mph
- Ducati 1098S: 170 mph
- Ducati Panigale V4R: 180 mph
- Honda CBR1100XX Super Blackbird: 186 mph
How fast can a 1200cc motorcycle go?
You can find 1200cc power sources in many cruisers as well as naked bikes. But if you are looking for a 1200cc sportbike, don’t worry as you can find many of them in this category. Performance? These powerful machines typically offer 130-170 HP and a top speed of 100-186 mph.
Some of the best models in this class are as follows:
- Harley-Davidson Iron 1200: 118 mph
- Harley-Davidson XL1200C Sportster: 118 mph
- BMW R1200GS: 137 mph
- Ducati Monster 1200 R: 155 mph
- Horex VR6 1200: 155 mph
- Honda VFR1200F: 157 mph
- Kawasaki ZX-12R: 182 mph
How fast can a 1300cc motorcycle go?
You can only find a few motorcycles with 1300cc engines on the market. 1300cc motorcycles usually have top speeds of 100-186 mph and 70-200 HP depending on the make and model. Yes, this means even the top speed of the legendary Suzuki GSXR1300R Hayabusa is restricted to 186 mph!
Here is another popular model in this category:
- Honda VT1300: 100 mph
- BMW K1300S: 186 mph
- Suzuki GSX1300R Hayabusa: 186 mph
How fast can a 1500cc motorcycle go?
Let’s move on to 1500cc motorcycles. Cruisers in this category can reach top speeds of 100-105 mph, while sportbikes can reach a (restricted) 186 mph without any issues. What’s more, they can do the 0-60 run in less than 3 seconds!
- Kawasaki VN1500: 105 mph
- Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14R: 186 mph
How fast is a 2000cc motorcycle?
It’s a trend in the motorcycle industry that the engines of these machines are growing larger and larger. When it hit the market, the 1500cc Honda Gold Wing was considered a huge bike, while today you can find many motorcycles with a displacement of 1600-2200cc!
How fast can a 2000cc motorcycle go? – You may be surprised but 2000cc motorcycles can reach a top speed of 100-140 mph, meaning that they are noticeably slower than the 1000-1500cc class. Are you wondering why?
First, let’s face it, most of these huge motorcycles are cruisers and touring bikes. Therefore, they are not designed to be fast. Furthermore, they are pretty heavy which also reduces the available top speed.
The most iconic machines in this category are as follows:
- Kawasaki VN2000: 125 mph
- Yamaha VX1900: 125 mph
- Honda Goldwing GL1800: 135 mph
- Triumph Rocket III: 140 mph
Conclusion – How Fast Can the Average Motorcycle Go?
From the slowest 50cc bikes to the fastest race-inspired sportbikes, the top speed of motorcycles varies widely. Even the slowest motorcycles can reach a top speed of 30-50 mph, while the fastest can hit an amazing 186 mph. Finally, it’s safe to say that average motorcycles can go 80-165 mph.
As a takeaway, here are the top speed numbers of some of the most popular motorcycle categories:
- 125cc motorcycles: 60-75 mph
- 250cc motorcycles: 80-110 mph
- 500cc motorcycles: 90-120 mph
- 600cc motorcycles: 90-165 mph
- 1000cc motorcycles: 100-186 mph
As you can see, they are really fast!