Mileage vs. Price Curves for Two Popular Dual Sport Motorcycles

Like cars and trucks, the prices of new motorcycles declines rapidly the moment they leave the showroom floor. The charts below show mileage vs. price data for two popular dual sport motorcycles, the Suzuki DRZ400 and the Yamaha XT250. I compiled data on used models from Craigslist, CycleTrader, and MotoHunt in September 2020.

Both bikes are renowned for their reliability and longevity, but are purchased for completely different reasons by entirely different types of riders. The DRZ is three bikes in one: a hard core dirt bike, a supreme on-road wheelie machine for suburban squids (supermoto), and a great light adventure bike capable of around the world tours. The XT, on the other hand, is a farm bike made for getting from one side of the ranch to the other, changing irrigation water, and making quick trips to town to grab a part or lunch. The XT is the slow and steady workhorse, while the DRZ is the animal of the lightweight dual sport category.

Turning to the charts, we see that in both cases a significant price decline occurs after a bike racks up about 2500 miles. The trendlines approximate their respective price declines and provide a useful guide for the prospective buyer.

A new DRZ400 runs about $7500 from the dealer. A like-new bike with ~3000 miles on it will run you ~$5000, a 30% discount from new. A pricing floor exists around $3500 due to demand from a broad market (off-road, supermoto, adventure travel riders), cheap parts, and reputation. In the chart above, very high mileage bikes retain anomalously high values. This is because their owners have modified them, added extra do-hickies like luggage racks, big fuel tanks, or upgraded suspension components, and/or have rebuilt major components. All of which effectively resets their age (the bike's age, not the owner's age despite high hopes). DRZs owners tend to repair their bikes instead of scrapping them.

The XT250 is a much cheaper bike with a showroom price of $5200. A like-new XT with 3000-5000 miles on it will run you ~$4000 (20% discount from new). They also hold their value well, but unlike the DRZ, the XT is not typically modified or upgraded. People buy stock bikes and just wear them out over many years. The trendline shows the price decline for used XTs. A pricing floor exists around $2000 due to extreme reliability; the things just don't die.

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