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Should You Buy a New or Used Dirt Bike? (Pros & Cons)

With several opinions you have heard, seeking an answer to buying a new or used dirt bike is essential. Whether you’re purchasing your first dirt bike or an additional one or getting one as a gift for someone, having the right information ensures you’re making the right decision. After all, you will shell out thousands of dollars on one dirt bike.

So, should you buy a new or used dirt bike? There is no definite answer to this question since you must consider several pros and cons of buying a brand-new dirt bike and a used unit. Your decision will rely on your (or the person you’re buying it for) needs, wants, and circumstances.

With that said, let’s discuss the key reasons why you should and shouldn’t purchase a new dirt bike and why you should and shouldn’t buy a used one. And to help you decide better, I’ll share with you certain circumstances when you should buy a new or used dirt bike.

Why Buy a New Dirt Bike?

Man Riding Yellow and White Dirt Bike

Investing your hard-earned money in a new dirt bike is a good idea for many obvious reasons, including: 

Less Maintenance Required

Apparently, new dirt bikes have new parts installed and are fresh from quality control inspection and testing. It only means that your bike won’t experience any issues for a few years, saving you money and the stress from constant repairs and part replacements.

You only have to make sure you stick to the regular maintenance schedule the manufacturer provided. Most of the time, you also don’t need to pay for the maintenance for a certain period.

Comes With Improved and Advanced Features

Undoubtedly, new dirt bike models from any brand come equipped with new and improved features. Some of them even have features you won’t find on older models.

Even when you choose to purchase from the stocks of one to two-year-old models available in the dealership, you will get to enjoy features you won’t find on older, used dirt bikes.

More Choices Are Available To You

While it’s just mostly aesthetics, you get to pick the color of your dirt bike when you opt for brand-new units. Whether it may be your favorite color or one that matches your gear, you have many options. Some dealerships also give freebies for every dirt bike you purchase!

Not only that, but you also get to pick some additional features, although each accessory or part will come with a price. Still, you get to own a dirt bike that matches your taste, lifestyle, wants, and needs.

Comes With a Manufacturer Warranty

A warranty is one of the ways manufacturers attest to their products’ quality, especially since you can scratch, dent, or crash your dirt bike. Hence, it isn’t uncommon for dirt bikes to come with years of warranty. It can be a warranty for parts, labor, or a combination of both.

Although the warranty will expire, you can choose to extend it for a year or more. You just have to pay for the extension. Nonetheless, you have peace of mind knowing you won’t have to worry about expensive labor and parts.

Easier To Resell

Some dirt bike users upgrade to a new model for many reasons, such as wanting new features that can’t just be installed into their current bike. Dirt bikes with just one previous owner are easier to resell than those passed on from one owner to another. The same goes for units that are only a few years older unless they’re a collector’s item.

Why Shouldn’t You Buy a New Dirt Bike?

Just because you’re purchasing a dirt bike straight from the dealership doesn’t mean it’s all rainbows and sunshine. There are also some disadvantages that you need to consider, including:

Higher Initial Cost

With all the perks you get to enjoy when buying and owning a new dirt bike, one unit will cost you thousands of dollars. Expect that the downpayment and monthly amortization are not cheap.

Limited Supply of Some Models

While you have a good selection of colors and add-on features, it isn’t an assurance that you will get the specific unit you want.

Why? That’s because manufacturers only produce a limited number of each model every year.

Thus, it isn’t surprising for a dirt bike model to become out of stock in one or more dealerships. This practice allows manufacturers to sell out their inventory before launching a new model.

Higher Taxes To Pay

It isn’t a secret that the more money you shell out, the more taxes you need to pay, whether you purchase an item offline or online. Therefore, expect to pay higher taxes when buying a brand-new dirt bike than when buying a used unit.

Why Buy a Used Dirt Bike?

Dirt Bike Rider With Red Helmet

When you’re doubtful about purchasing a used dirt bike, consider the following advantages:

More Affordable

Of course, many dirt bike owners prefer used units because they’re far cheaper than new ones. Although you may need to replace some parts or want to upgrade others, the total amount won’t be the same as a brand-new unit.

Often Comes With Freebies

Most riders selling their dirt bikes will give you all the accessories and parts they bought, such as an extra tire and light and all-weather protective dirt bike cover (view on Amazon). After all, they most likely won’t be compatible with the next bike they plan to buy.

Some owners selling their bikes also plan to upgrade all their gear, so you might even receive a free heavy-duty security chain with a lock (view on Amazon).

You’ll Receive Great Advice From an Experienced Biker.

The only person who knows the dirt bike you’re about to purchase is the person who has been driving it for a while. So when you buy a used dirt bike, you’ll get first-hand tips and tricks on how to ride your future bike in the rain, snow, and challenging terrains, when and how to maintain it, and more.

Why Shouldn’t You Buy a Used Dirt Bike?

Some of the risks that come with buying a used dirt bike you need to keep in mind are:

Lower Quality

You won’t expect a used dirt bike to have a quality close to or the same as a new one. That’s why it’s essential to take all the necessary precautions when purchasing one. Look at the seller’s maintenance record, ask how and where the seller usually uses the bike, and have a trusted mechanic check the unit you plan to purchase.

Hidden Problems

Unfortunately, you will deal with used dirt bike sellers who are dishonest. They won’t tell you about issues like worn-out or mismatched parts. Some might even sell stolen dirt bikes!

Hence, be very vigilant. As I mentioned, have a trusted mechanic check the unit. You must also take the time to check and verify all the documents.

Limited to No Warranty

Most used dirt bikes sold no longer have warranties because the owner no longer paid for an additional one. Other units might have a limited warranty because they no longer qualify for a full warranty.

Limited Choices

You’ll buy from a previous owner or a used vehicle dealership, so you won’t expect to be presented with different colors for a specific unit. You might not even find the particular model that you want.

Should You Buy a New or Used Dirt Bike?

Man Riding Motorcycle Dirt Bike on Dusty Ground

While the pros and cons can already help you decide which one to purchase, knowing when to buy a new or used one will help you decide better. So, let’s look into the specifics of when you should buy a new or used dirt bike.

When Should I Get a New Dirt Bike?

Before deciding to invest in a new bike, make sure to consider the following:

You Have the Budget for It.

When I say “dirt bike budget,” you must not only consider the down payment for the new bike. It would be best to make sure that paying the monthly amortization won’t leave you worrying about your monthly needs, like bills and food.

It Isn’t Your First Dirt Bike.

Experienced riders will be better off riding a new bike than those new to owning one, as they won’t likely scratch or dent the bike. You need to learn techniques and skills to drive a dirt bike safely and efficiently, which is different from driving a car or even a typical motorcycle.

You Will Use the Dirt Bike in Competitions.

If you love joining dirt bike riding competitions, a new bike will perform better than a used one. That is unless you have made several upgrades to the used unit.

When Should I Get a Used Dirt Bike?

The circumstances as to when you should buy a used dirt bike are as follows:

You Are on a Tight Budget.

If you need a dirt bike but don’t have enough extra cash to burn, choosing a used dirt bike over a new one isn’t rocket science. Expect to pay lower downpayments and monthly amortizations.

Since these bikes are more affordable, you can even save up to purchase one in cash. No more monthly amortizations to worry about!

You’re Still Learning How to Ride a Motorcycle.

A used bike is more practical when you’re still learning the hoops of dirt bike riding. You will fall off, crash, and give your bike major dents and scratches as you drive it through different trails and terrains.

It’s also the perfect choice for learning how to drive a motorcycle on the streets. That’s because they’re more robust than ordinary motorcycles, making them safer to drive than standard motorcycles.

You Won’t Often Use It in Competitive Riding.

If riding a bike is just a hobby, or you only wish to use it as a personal transportation system, a used unit is more ideal than a new bike. As I mentioned, that is unless you have upgraded some parts and conditioned them to be used roughly on a regular basis.

Deciding Between a New or Used Dirt Bike

Now that you have the essential information, you’ll be more confident to decide between a new or used dirt bike.

So, should you buy a new or used dirt bike? Your main considerations should be your skill level and how you plan to use the dirt bike.

A new dirt bike is ideal for an experienced, competitive rider. But it doesn’t mean you can’t purchase a used unit, especially if you know how to check for issues and maintain the bike or if you plan to upgrade some parts.

Meanwhile, new dirt bike (even motorcycle) riders should purchase used units, especially those who will use the bike occasionally. However, it’s best to find a used unit made by a reputable brand to ensure you’re purchasing a quality dirt bike.

That said, whether you purchase a new or used dirt bike, don’t forget to invest in a high-quality, full-face dual-sport helmet (view on Amazon) to ensure your safety.