Walking into a dealership as a shorter rider, or as someone who just wants a smaller ride, can feel a little limiting. You stroll by impressive and imposing machines that you might admire but don’t want to fight with as your main bike. You might find one or two models off in the back that are a comfortable fit, but you’re disappointed that there aren’t any more options to choose from. Luckily, options for smaller motorcycles are growing, and we’ve compiled those options into three Best Motorcycles for Smaller Riders list. 

In our first Best Motorcycles for Smaller Riders post, we focused on bikes with seat heights under 30 inches. That seat height limit meant almost all the models on that list were cruisers, and while we certainly enjoy cruisin’, we like a little variety too. With this second Best Motorcycles for Smaller Riders post, we’re excited to include some sportbikes, minimotos, and an ADV. And while the seat heights may be taller than on the first list, many of the models on this list weigh and cost less than the shorter-seated cruisers. 

This list consists of motorcycles with a seat height between 30.0 and 30.9 inches. When possible, we’ve included a link to our test ride review or a review on our sibling website, RiderMagazine.com, so you can get a sense of how each bike performs in action. We’ve also included the 2022/23 model year’s U.S. base MSRP (as of publication), claimed wet weight, and seat height. On models with options to lower the seat height or suspension, we’ve listed the standard and lowered seat heights. You can also click on a model’s name to go to the manufacturer’s webpage for a full list of specifications and details.   

We also have a list of motorcycles with seat heights between 31.0 and 31.9 inches.

The models in this list are arranged by seat height, with the first model having the shortest seat height and the last model having the tallest seat height in the list.  


Honda Grom 

Best Small Motorcycles Honda Grom

Honda Grom 

$3,499  

30.0-inch seat  

223 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2022 Honda Grom First Ride Review 


Honda Navi 

Best Small Motorcycles Honda Navi

Honda Navi 

$1,807  

30.0-inch seat  

234 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2022 Honda Navi First Ride Review 


Royal Enfield Meteor 350 

Best Small Motorcycles Royal Enfield Meteor 350

Royal Enfield Meteor 350 

$4,899 

30.1-inch seat  

421 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2021 Royal Enfield Meteor 350 Road Test Review 


Triumph Speed Twin 900 

Best Small Motorcycles Triumph Speed Twin 900

Triumph Speed Twin 900 

$9,895 

30.1-inch seat  

476 lb 

Read our 2019 Triumph Street Twin (former name) First Ride Review


BMW G 310 R 

Best Small Motorcycles BMW G 310 R

BMW G 310 R 

$4,995 

30.9-inch seat (optional lower seat to 30.3 inches) 

362 lb  

Read our 2017 BMW G 310 R First Ride Review 


BMW F 900 R 

Best Small Motorcycles BMW F 900 R

BMW F 900 R 

$8,995 

32-inch seat (optional lower seat to 31.1 inches and lower suspension to 30.3 inches) 

465 lb  

Read Rider‘s 2020 BMW F 900 R and F 900 XR Road Test Review 


BMW F 750 GS 

Best Small Motorcycles BMW F 750 GS

BMW F 750 GS 

$9,995 

32.1-inch seat (optional lower seat to 31.1 inches and lower suspension to 30.3 inches) 

493 lb  

Read Rider‘s 2019 BMW F 850 GS and F 750 GS Road Test Review 


CFMOTO Papio

Best Small Motorcycles CFMOTO Papio

CFMOTO Papio

$2,999

30.5-inch seat

251 lb

Read Rider‘s 2022 CFMOTO Lineup First Ride Review


Ducati Monster Plus 

Best Small Motorcycles Ducati Monster Plus

Ducati Monster Plus 

$12,995 

32.3-inch seat (optional lower seat to 31.5 inches and lower suspension to 30.5 inches) 

366 lb dry  

Read Rider‘s 2021 Ducati Monster First Ride Review


Honda Monkey 

Best Small Motorcycles Honda Monkey

Honda Monkey 

$4,249 

30.5-inch seat 

231 lb 

Read our 2019 Honda Monkey First Ride Review 


Benelli TNT 135

Best Small Motorcycles Benelli TNT 135

Benelli TNT 135

$2,699

30.7-inch seat

266 lb


CFMOTO 300SS

Best Small Motorcycles CFMOTO 300SS

CFMOTO 300SS

$4,499

30.7-inch seat

364 lb

Read Rider‘s 2022 CFMOTO Lineup First Ride Review


CFMOTO 650NK

Best Small Motorcycles CFMOTO 650NK

CFMOTO 650NK

$6,499

30.7-inch seat

454 lb

Read Rider‘s 2022 CFMOTO Lineup First Ride Review


Ducati Scrambler Icon 

Best Small Motorcycles Ducati Scrambler Icon

Ducati Scrambler Icon 

$10,995 

31.3-inch seat (optional lower seat to 30.7 inches) 

408 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2023 Ducati Scrambler Range First Look Review


Ducati Scrambler Full Throttle 

Best Small Motorcycles Ducati Scrambler Full Throttle

Ducati Scrambler Full Throttle 

$12,195 

31.3-inch seat (optional lower seat to 30.7 inches) 

408 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2023 Ducati Scrambler Range First Look Review


Ducati Scrambler Nightshift 

Best Small Motorcycles Ducati Scrambler Nightshift

Ducati Scrambler Nightshift 

$12,195 

31.3-inch seat (optional lower seat to 30.7 inches) 

421 lb

Read Rider‘s 2023 Ducati Scrambler Range First Look Review 


Honda CBR300R 

Best Small Motorcycles Honda CBR300R

Honda CBR300R 

$4,899 

30.7-inch seat 

354 lb

Read our 2023 Honda Returning Models First Look Review  


Honda Super Cub C125 

Best Small Motorcycles Honda Super Cub

Honda Super Cub C125 

$3,849 

30.7-inch seat 

238 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2019 Honda Super Cub 125 ABS First Ride Review 


Indian FTR 

Best Small Motorcycles Indian FTR

Indian FTR 

$13,499 

30.7-inch seat 

514 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2022 Indian FTR S First Ride Review


Indian FTR Sport 

Best Small Motorcycles Indian FTR Sport

Indian FTR Sport 

$15,749 

30.7-inch seat 

522 lb 

Read our 2023 FTR Sport First Look Review 


Moto Guzzi V7 Stone 

Best Small Motorcycles Moto Guzzi V7 Stone

Moto Guzzi V7 Stone 

$9,190 

30.7-inch seat 

492 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2021 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone First Ride Review 


Moto Guzzi V7 Special 

Best Small Motorcycles Moto Guzzi V7 Special

Moto Guzzi V7 Special 

$9,590 

30.7-inch seat 

492 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2021 Moto Guzzi V7 Special First look Review


Moto Guzzi V7 Special Edition 

Best Small Motorcycles Moto Guzzi V7 Special Edition

Moto Guzzi V7 Special Edition 

$9,990 

30.7-inch seat 

480 lb 

Read Rider‘s New and Updated 2023 Moto Guzzi First Look Review 


Yamaha YZF-R3 

Best Small Motorcycles Yamaha YZF-R3

Yamaha YZF-R3 

$5,499 

30.7-inch seat 

375 lb 

Read our 2019 Yamaha YZF-R3 Road Test Review 


Yamaha MT-03 

Best Small Motorcycles Yamaha MT-03

Yamaha MT-03 

$4,999 

30.7-inch seat 

373 lb 

Read our 2020 Yamaha MT-03 First Ride Review 


Kawasaki Ninja 400 

Best Small Motorcycles Kawasaki Ninja 400

Kawasaki Ninja 400 

$5,299 

30.9-inch seat 

362 lb 

Read our 2018 Kawasaki Ninja 400 ABS First Ride Review 


Kawasaki Ninja 400 KRT Edition 

Best Small Motorcycles Kawasaki Ninja 400 KRT Edition

Kawasaki Ninja 400 KRT Edition 

$5,499 

30.9-inch seat 

362 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2023 Kawasaki Returning Models First Look Review


Kawasaki Z400 ABS 

Best Small Motorcycles Kawasaki Z400 ABS

Kawasaki Z400 ABS 

$5,399 

30.9-inch seat 

364 lb 

Read our 2019 Kawasaki Z400 ABS First Ride Review 


Moto Guzzi V9 Bobber 

Best Small Motorcycles Moto Guzzi V9 Bobber

Moto Guzzi V9 Bobber 

$10,490 

30.9-inch seat 

463 lb 

Read Rider‘s 2017 Moto Guzzi V9 Bobber First Ride Review 


Suzuki SV650 

Best Small Motorcycles Suzuki SV650 ABS

Suzuki SV650 

$7,399 

30.9-inch seat 

432 lb 

Read our 2017 Suzuki SV50 First Ride Review 

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8 COMMENTS

  1. I have a 28″ inseam. I rode a stock Indian Scout (1133cc). Great option for us shorties that wasn’t on your list.

    • Thanks for your question, Bambi. While the Harley touring bikes have seat heights lower than any bike on this list, those motorcycles are heavy and expensive, making them not the best options for beginners. Keep in mind that as a beginner, you’ll likely drop the bike a few times as you get used to it. Having a lighter weight bike that’s easier to maneuver and less expensive to repair will make learning to ride much easier.

      If you haven’t yet, taking a Basic RiderCourse by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation (if you’re in the U.S.) is a great way to learn the basics, and since you’ll use a provided motorcycle, you don’t have to risk damaging your own. Best of luck!

  2. This is an excellent article for the vertical and financially challenged. The succinct verbiage is accurate, refreshing and welcome.

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