Finding the right bike for you can be a hassle. While many motorcycles may have the speed and performance you want, they often suffer, in terms of comfort. Some models are only suitable for short-distance rides, while others have comfort features for long distances. Whether it’s a cramped leg or a painful wrist, you can definitely feel the effects of an uncomfortable bike shortly after the ride is over. However, models with features like heated grips, windscreens and low seats can help you have a comfortable ride – regardless of the distance.
Brands like BMW and Honda have mastered the balance of comfort and luxury in their motorcycles. Their models greatly vary in price, but maintain a high performance standard, along with excellent comfort features. Below, you’ll find a list of the top 10 comfortable bike models for short- and long-distance riding.
As one of the top-selling bikes worldwide, the BMW R 1200 GS lives up to the hype. This bike was once dubbed a bike for older riders, but its performance proves otherwise. The R 1200 GS provides a smooth ride for riders on all terrains, while maintaining dynamics and performance. Its robust build allows riders to have a strong command without sacrificing comfort. Features like the heated grips and various seat heights make this model one of the most comfortable motorbikes on the market.
The Triumph Tiger 800 XRT is an adventure-touring motorbike that combines luxury with comfort. With five riding modes, riders can customize their rides for optimal comfort, based on the terrain. In addition, there are heated seats and grips, as well as pillion seats to ensure a smooth ride. This model has standout features, like a shorter-ration first gear and a more responsive engine. This makes for a more intuitive and adventurous ride. Moreover, rider aids, like the hand guards and larger screen, make the Triumph Tiger 800 XRT a top choice for all riders.
This model has long been a favorite for long-distance riders. It was recently updated for a sleeker look, but maintains features for a comfortable ride. The V-Strom is known for being one of the most comfortable motorcycles, which is why it’s a top choice for endurance rides. This model allows riders to sit in a natural riding position with comfort features, such a two-up seat, heated grips and handguards and a height-adjustable windscreen. With the V-Strom 650, riders get a blend of comfort, stability and performance.
The Honda NC700X is one of the few motorbikes that works for everyone. This model is at an affordable price point, which makes it ideal for new riders. Beyond price, its broad capabilities extend to the features. It has low and slim seats that allow new and experienced riders to comfortably manage the vehicle. The windscreen allows for protection against harsh winds and a smoother ride, overall. Additionally, this model works in both short- and long-distance rides, as it has an excellent fuel economy, compared to other models.
The Honda Gold Wing F6B is a leaner and lighter alternative to the original Honda Gold Wing. It has improved agility and handling, which makes for a smoother ride. This model is low and long, adding to its handling performance and long-distance comfort. Mover, the short windscreen features make for better weather protection. The passenger backrest is a standout feature in the motorbike, along with the heated grips and self-cancelling turn signals. When it comes to adventure touring, the Gold Wing F6B is among one of the most comfortable.
This new, streamlined model is equipped with premium amenities that are ideal for long-distance riding. One of the key comfort features of the Indian Chieftain Limited is the plush gunfighter leather seat, which can be heated for an additional cost. There is also the rear-cylinder deactivation feature, which allows riders to be more comfortable at reduced speeds. Riders can now also customize their driving experience by choosing between three riding modes: tour, standard and sport. Beyond comfort, this model is agile and powerful, with an aggressive style.
While this motorcycle comes at a higher price, it’s definitely worth it. This long-range touring bike expertly balances comfort, style and power. The Harley-Davidson CVO Limited comes equipped with custom seats, with heated pads and leather inserts. Although the weight of the bike may be a turnoff for some riders, it has front and rear suspension with dual bending that improves handling. This Harley model is a top-of-the-line touring bike that provides comfort and high performance.
The FJR 1300 has remained under the radar for a while, despite its excellent track record when it comes to comfort. This sport touring motorcycle was updated in 2016 to provide features that improve the overall ride. What makes this Yamaha model stand out is its high-performing torquey motor, which allows for better handling on all terrains. Features like heated grips, plush seats and an adjustable widescreen make the FJR 1300 a dependable motorcycle for both long and short journeys.
This Kawasaki model is an oldie, but goodie. It has been around for a while, and has maintained its position as one of the most comfortable sport touring motorcycles on the market. The Concours 14 was built to travel long distances without compromising speed. It has a better ergonomic shape and front cutaways that make it easier for riders at high and reduced speeds. With advanced technology and amenities, Kawasaki Concours continues to be a favorite among riders.
BMW makes a second appearance on this list with the BMW K 1600 GTL Exclusive, which has great tech features. This touring bike is a result of luxury and powerful performance. One of the best features on the motorcycle is the rotating headlight, which allows riders to drive with more confidence at night. Longer rides are easier on this bike, as it also has a backrest and heated seat. It’s clear that while performance was a high priority when building this bike, so was comfort.