The naked bike, or streetfighter, style of motorcycles is a popular one.
But, what exactly is a “naked” motorcycle? Can you buy one from the dealership, or do you have to earn your battlescars?
Continue reading to learn more about naked bikes.
What is a Naked Bike?
On its surface, a naked bike looks like a stripped down street bike or sport bike, but it’s a little more nuanced than that.
The streetfighter is truly a utilitarian motorcycle – it looks the way it does out of function and necessity rather than style and appearance – unlike some iterations of the cafe racer.
Some typical features of a naked bike include:
- Stripped down body work.
- Simple controls and basic features.
- Racing bars.
- Compact, basic styling.
- Upright seating position.
History of Streetfighter Motorcycles
Like the cafe racer, the streetfighter can be traced back to Europe.
European sportbike riders in the 80s and 90s needed to find solutions to keeping their bike on the road after a crash.
The solution was to patch or strip what was broken and get it to a running and city-ready state.
The result often took the form or stripped off body work exposing the frame and engine, small fairings, and racing bars that would put the rider more upright.
The naked bike solution served two ends. For one, it took on a style of its own that celebrated not only the engineering beauty of some of these machines, but also the type of riding that the bike and rider have endured. Two, it made for a motorcycle much more suited for city-riding and navigating traffic.
Like most style of motorcycle, manufacturers caught on and factory-stock naked bikes are pretty much a standard class of their own.
Factory-Stock Naked Bikes
The naked bike really gets back to the motorcycles roots. It does away with all the frills, styling, and upgrades, and takes the motorcycle to its basic form – an engine, in a frame, built for speed and handling.
Some examples of factory-stock streetfighters include:
- Ducati Monster.
- Honda CBR600F
- Kawasaki Z
- Suzuki SV
- Triumph Speed Triple
- Yamaha MT