Motorcycle sidecars can be a tricky subject. The weight of motorcycle sidecars is also important, especially if you are trying to get some quotes on shipping it or have some work done on it.
This begs one question, namely, how much do the different sidecars weigh.
How much does a motorcycle sidecar weigh? Most motorcycle sidecars weigh between 120 and 275 lbs. Motorcycle sidecars are usually offered with additional options, which can add another 40 to 70 lbs to the sidecar’s weight. Thus, some motorcycle sidecars can weigh up to 345 lbs. Motorcyclists can also add up to 100 lbs of ballast to their sidecars.
As you can see, compared to most motorcycles, sidecars weigh less.
Below I share with you more information about motorcycle sidecar weights as well as give you some examples of common motorcycle sidecars and their weights.
Examples of motorcycle sidecar weight
Not all sidecars are created equal. This is why to give you a more hands-on idea of how much the different motorcycle sidecars weigh, I have researched the weight of some of the more popular motorcycle sidecars out there.
Below I give you an example of 15 different motorcycle sidecars and their weight. Of course, these numbers can vary, thus, should be taken only as a general guideline.
- Transmoto M102: 275 lbs
- M72D: 210 lbs
- Velorex 552: 154 lbs
- Velorex 563: 170 lbs
- Champion Legend: 190 lbs
- Champion Escort: 190 lbs
- Hannigan SP2 Sidecar: 235 lbs
- Dauntless Enduro: 150lbs
- Harley-Davidson TLE: 234 lbs
- Ural: 264 lbs
- MZ Super-Elastik Sidecar: 199 lbs
- Watsonian GP700: 220 lbs
- 71-72 American Spirit: 120 lbs
- Duna: 155 lbs
- Hannigan BMW Sidecar: 190 lbs
With motorcycles weighing on average between 300 and 1,000 lbs, this means that almost always, a motorcycle will be heavier than the sidecar. Of course, there are lighter motorcycles (and scooters). However, generally, they are not used with a sidecar.
Motorcycle sidecar weight fluctuations
Motorcycle sidecars will generally weigh between 120 lbs and 275 lbs. However, these numbers can vary from model to model.
It should be noted that manufacturers also offer additional options that the buyer can purchase, which could end up bringing the base weight of a sidecar up with as much as 40 to 70 lbs in some instances. This can bring the average weight of motorcycle sidecars in certain cases between 120 to 345 lbs.
Such additional options that can make a motorcycle sidecar to weight more are, but not limited to:
- The overall build quality and materials used.
- The wheels and discs.
- Electric tilt.
- The A-arm.
- The seat and interior.
- Additional accessories.
Because of the many different factors that can come into play, the sidecar’s base weight should not be taken for granted and used only as a general guideline.
Is motorcycle sidecar weight important?
The weight of the sidecar will ultimately affect the attitude and handling of the rig. This is why the topic of weight distributions is pretty big among riders that ride with sidecars.
The rule of thumb is that the sidecar’s weight should be about 1/3 of the weight of the motorcycle. In other words, a motorcycle that weighs 750 lbs should be paired with a sidecar that weighs about 250 lbs or so. And a motorcycle that weighs 900 lbs should be paired with a sidecar weighing about 300 lbs.
The weight of the rider and any passengers should also be taken into account.
However, this rule is just a general estimation and a rough guide. In reality, the numbers may, and most certainly, will vary depending on the rider’s preferences and the type, construction, and weight distribution of both the motorcycle and the sidecar.
In other words, it is not always that easy to match the weight of the motorcycle with the weight of the sidecar. And a heavier or a lighter sidecar does not mean a better sidecar. Of course, there multiple aspects of the sidecar like its build quality, frame, and wheels that will affect its weight distribution and handling.
Mismatching the weight of the sidecar with the weight of the motorcycle can not only make it harder for you to ride your motorcycle with the sidecar but also more dangerous.
This is also why some riders will often use ballast to fine-tune the sidecar’s weight. Because of that, you can often see riders adding between 20 to 100 lbs of extra weight to the sidecar depending on its weight, feel, and motorcycle and rider’s weight as well.
Another reason why the weight of a motorcycle sidecar can be important is when it is being shipped. Shipping heavier parcels can end up being pretty expensive so understanding how much your motorcycle sidecar weights is vital in order to ensure you get the best quote possible.
Often because of its heavier weight shipping, a motorcycle sidecar can cost between $300 to $750 depending on where the sidecar is being shipped to or from.
Transportation and service
And lastly, sometimes you may need to disassemble the sidecar and transport it or move it to a different place for storage purposes or maintenance. This is why knowing how much the sidecar weighs is important depending on how you will move and transport it.