Motorcycling is a popular hobby in Michigan. If you travel on the state’s roads regularly, you’ve likely seen someone riding a motorcycle with three wheels, also called a “motor trike.” Many believe they are safer than traditional two-wheeled motorcycles while offering a similar riding experience.
But are motor trikes safer than motorcycles? It depends on who you ask. Keep reading to learn more from the motorcycle accident attorneys at Christensen Law.
Are Three-Wheeler Motorcycles Safer Than Traditional Bikes?
Some features of motor trikes make them safer than motorcycles. Having three wheels makes motor trikes less likely to tip over, especially in slippery road conditions or bad weather. Riders can sustain catastrophic injuries when motorcycles fall, and the design of a motor trike gives it more stability.
Another factor that makes motor trikes safer than motorcycles is that trikes have a more prominent visual profile. Because two-wheeled motorcycles are much smaller than cars and have a narrow silhouette, drivers sometimes have difficulty seeing them. Trikes are usually configured with two wheels in the rear and one wheel in front, giving them a much wider stance than motorcycles. This makes trikes easier to see, especially for drivers in cars or large trucks.
That said, motor trikes and two-wheeled motorcycles are equally dangerous in other regards. Both types of motorcycles leave riders exposed to the open air, and neither offers much protection in the event of a direct collision with a larger vehicle.
Ways Motor Trikes Handle Differently Than Motorcycles
The three-wheeled design of a motor trike makes the driving experience different in several ways:
- Stability — Trikes have more contact points with the ride, giving them a smoother and more stable ride than two-wheeled motorcycles.
- Comfort — Riding a motor trike instead of a traditional motorcycle takes the pressure off your knees and leg muscles because you don’t need to lean your body to steer. The better balance and more rigid frame make for a more comfortable ride.
- Better visibility — One major cause of motorcycle accidents is visibility problems. Motorcycles have a slight frame, and drivers who aren’t attentive might fail to see them, especially in blind spots. By virtue of their size and design, three-wheeled motorcycles are easier to see.
Are Trikes Easier to Ride Than Motorcycles?
Riding a motor trike might be easier to ride than a motorcycle because of the increased stability. But again, this doesn’t necessarily mean that riding a motor trike is safer than riding a motorcycle. Some of the same safety hazards still exist, including the lack of protective frame, airbags, and other protective technology commonly found in passenger vehicles. If you are involved in a motor trike crash, you would likely be at risk of suffering the same severe injuries as you would on a motorcycle.