What is a reverse trike? As their name implies, reverse trikes have two front wheels and one in the rear. That’s why these machines are also known as “wheels forward trikes.” Reverse trikes are typically driven by their single rear wheel and steered by the front wheels. Because of this, they are safer and more stable compared to motorcycles and regular trikes.
If you would like to learn more about reverse trikes, this post is for you.
We at PowerSportsGuide have gathered all the key info on these amazing machines under one roof.
What is Reverse Trike?
If you take a close look at the picture above, you can see the differences between each type of trike.
As you can see, reverse trikes stand out in a crowd since this is the only trike design that features two front wheels. What’s more, there are two main types of reverse trikes, rigid and tilting/leaning reverse trikes.
Rigid trikes also include a special type known as “reverse cargo trikes.” These heavy-duty trikes are designed to haul heavier weights on their platform. However, these machines are quite rarely seen in developed countries.
In the past, rigid reverse trikes were more prevalent since their front suspension features simpler technical solutions. Therefore, they are easier and cheaper to manufacture and require less maintenance.
On the other hand, there is a major disadvantage of this design.
Since the front wheels of rigid reverse trikes cannot be tilted, these machines offer an ATV-like riding experience. This means that instead of counter-steering, you simply turn them with the handlebar.
Many riders say that leaning into the turns is the essence of motorcycling, which is why tilting reverse trikes are becoming more and more popular these days. Thanks to their special front suspension, these trikes can lean into the turns just like their 2-wheel siblings.
If you want to compare the different suspension systems in action, don’t miss this great review of three popular reverse motorcycles!
Are Reverse Trikes Safer Than Motorcycles?
Yes, it’s common knowledge that reverse trikes are safer than motorcycles. This is because they are more stable and easier to control, which results in improved safety. Reverse trikes are also much wider compared to motorcycles, so other drivers can more easily notice them in the traffic.
Moreover, trikes require less physical effort to control, which results in less fatigue on long rides. They also offer perfect stability at lower speeds. That’s why reverse trikes are so popular among senior and disabled riders!
What’s more, it also has to be mentioned that reverse trikes are even safer than regular trikes. Why?
This is because the reversed wheel design offers the most stability when it’s needed. When you brake with a trike the center of mass moves toward the front. But since these reverse trikes have two front wheels, they ensure better stability.
On the other hand, in the corners, the weight shifts toward the outside wheel which can offer increased traction.
Are Reverse Trikes Safe?
Although they are somewhat safer than ordinary motorcycles, keep in mind that reverse trikes are not at all totally safe! Why? Simply put, since trikes don’t offer any protection, your body is completely exposed to injuries in an accident. This is why riding a reverse trike is considered dangerous.
In an accident, you can easily fall off the saddle and hit the surface of the road or another vehicle. Even if you wear the appropriate clothing, such an accident can have serious consequences.
In contrast, cars offer you much better protection. They have many safety features such as airbags and safety belts, as well as a massive metal body. Since in a car you sit inside of this enclosed space, you are much safer compared to riding a reverse trike.
Despite the dangers involved, riding trikes and motorcycles is still a popular activity in the U.S.
If you are considering buying one, you probably want to know where you can find a reverse trike for sale. Let’s move on and take a look at the best reverse trike manufacturers!
Reverse Trikes for Sale
Reverse Trike Manufacturers
The most well-known rigid reverse trikes on the market are arguably the Can-Am trikes. The Canadian manufacturer (BRP) offers two different models with different engine options.
The more powerful Can-Am Spyder is powered with a 1330cc, 3-cylinder Rotax engine that puts out 105 HP. Its smaller brother, the Ryker comes with 600/900cc engines and a significantly smaller body.
Although this vehicle features a car-like design, we also have to mention the Polaris Slingshot, which is also considered to be a rigid reverse trike.
If you are looking for a factory reverse trike but you prefer tilting front wheels, you can’t go wrong with a Yamaha Niken GT.
Reverse Trike Scooters
If you are in the market for a reverse trike scooter, the good news is that you can choose from many different models. The most well-known reverse trike scooter is probably the Piaggio MP3 500, which is already available in the U.S.
The Japanese competitor of this 3-wheeler Piaggio is the Yamaha Tricity, which is available with 125, 150, and 300cc engine options.
Reverse Trike Kits
For the delight of many senior riders, more and more reverse trike kits have appeared on the market. If you are looking for a rigid reverse trike conversion, you should take a look at the trike kits from Motor Trike.
This manufacturer offers reverse trike kits for Honda CTX700 and Honda GL1800 Goldwing bikes.
If you prefer tilting reverse trike kits, then you should consider investing in a conversion kit from Tilting Motor Works. Their leaning reverse trike kits fit on several Harley and Honda motorcycle models.
This is why you see Honda reverse trike motorcycles on the road!
Electric Reverse Trikes
Besides gas-powered machines, electric reverse trikes are gaining in popularity.
One well-known brand on the electric reverse trike market is Arcimoto. The American manufacturer has three different models in its fleet, namely the FUV (Fun Utility Vehicle), de Deliverator, and Rapid Responder.
These innovative trikes are powered by an 81 HP electric engine and can reach a remarkable top speed of 75 mph.
Reverse trikes are easily recognizable since they feature one rear and two front wheels. There are two major types of these machines, rigid and leaning reverse trikes.
Since they feature tilting front wheels, leaning reverse trikes offer a very similar riding experience to a regular motorcycle.
In contrast, rigid reverse trikes work like ATVs since you control them solely with the handlebar.
Regarding safety, keep in mind that although reverse trikes are considered safer than motorcycles, riding them still involves many risks!