Checklist: Buy used motorcycle

This is what you should pay attention to when buying a used bike

Gebrauchtes Motorrad kaufen Checkliste
Before the visit
  • Do not set to a specific model
  • also consider alternatives
  • Set the price limit (price for a new vehicle as a reference point)
  • Read test reports and inform about childhood diseases
  • Plan enough time for the visit
  • Friend take away: Four eyes see more than two

Visual inspections
  • What is the care impression of the bike?
  • Are there any fall-by-lapse damage (see exhaust below, cladding), scratches, fall damage?
  • Is there rust, has it been repainted?
  • Check liquid conditions (water, brake fluid, oil)
  • Check the condition of the cables (bowden pulls smooth, porous hoses)
  • Chain: Rust, wear, still game to re-tension?
  • Tyres: Tread depth better than 1.6mm? Tyre type entered, age of the tires?
  • Accessories: Onboard tool available, condition suitcase, washers etc.

Functional tests before the test drive
  • Cockpit: light, high beam, blinker, brake light, warning flasher, horn, killswitch
  • Electrical: battery charge and liquid condition, fuses, cables, tightness
  • Mechanics: Fold in/out of side and main stand, the gimbal makes noise
  • Suspension: Struts leaking? Normal springing in and out?
  • Wheels: Is there a game when the wheels wobble sideways? Does the rear wheel swing game?
  • Steering stop: In both directions the same and without rest points when steering and relieved front wheel?
  • Key: Check all keys for functionality (don't forget the handlebar lock)
  • Exhaust gases: Should neither blue (oil is burned) nor white (cooling liquid is burned)

Before the test drive, check the engine for heat. If the engine is warm, the machine was probably deliberately warmed by the seller. In this case, ask the seller for the reason - the vehicle may have problems in cold operation. In case of doubt, wait an hour and only then start a test drive.
  • Brakes: braking effect, required braking force, pressure point, ABS test, fading, full braking (!)
  • Suspension: Straight exit, pulls the machine to the left or right, behavior in curves
  • Gearbox: Gear change (noise), find idle, clutch force, does the clutch slip through?
  • Cockpit: Do speedometers, rev counters, indicator lights, kilometer and day-kilometre meters work?
  • Assistance systems: Do quickshifters, driving modes, cruise control, wheelie control, handle heating, etc.?
  • Engine: Start behavior, throttle response, noise, load change, misfires, jerking when accelerating?

Before the price negotiation
  • did you like the motorcycle and aroused emotions? If not or only half -> do not buy!
  • Are you still undecided? Then sleep over it one night and talk to other people.
  • Look at the papers, e.B. the seller is entered in the letter (show ID)
  • Check the TÜV report
  • Number of previous owners correct?
  • are all subsequently attached parts registered?
  • Matching frame number
  • Mileage as indicated?

During the price negotiation
  • Ask sellers for hidden defects (e.B. oil loss)
  • old invoices and service booklets, mileage plausible?
  • if the seller reacts negatively to these requests -> Fingers away from the purchase
  • always insist on a purchase contract
  • do not accept promises, but fix all relevant agreements in writing in the sales contract
  • Acknowledge down payments or bring your own receipt?

Download this checklist