Pocket bikes have been around for years, and are a perfect entry level motorcycle for kids as well as adults looking for some fun around the home or local go-kart track.
With prices starting as low as $275, these mini moto's are barely 3ft high, capable of hitting speeds up to 50km/h and require little maintenance, making them perfect presents.
When combined with good protective gear, they can be a great introduction to motorcycle racing for younger kids, and offer a thrilling ride for adults who've still got flexible knees.
Today we'll be looking at the best pocket bikes Australia has to offer to suit every budget.
1. The Pocket Rocket
The cheapest pocket bike you'll find in Australia, offering a fast yet reliable pee wee motorcycle, that is suitable of riders up to 120kg.
Powered by a 49cc, 2 stroke single cylinder air cooled motor, this pocket rocket is automatic and packs a lot of grunt from 0 to the top speed of 45km/h (rated for a 50kg rider).
Suspension is pretty decent considering the price, built out of steel and a single shock. You get a front and rear disc lock for the brakes which wrap around racing tyres.
This mini moto comes with an electric pull starter motor, fold up pedals and a straight exhaust. The handlebars are foldable which reduces your shipping cost dramatically.
A range of colour schemes are available, my person favourite is the black or the blue and orange.
2. Mini ATV Quad Bike
This mini quad bike is a kids (or adults) dream, capable of travelling up to 40km/h across various terrain's thanks to it's rugged tyres and adequate suspension.
For a mini quad priced at $340 you can't expect a lot, but this model delivers a lot of value for the price tag. You get a 49cc, 3.4hp 11,000rpm engine that is 2-stroke, single cylinder and air cooled.
It comes as standard with dual front and single rear shock absorbers and front and rear disc brakes and this is accompanied by a single speed automatic clutch chain drive system.
The tank size is a rather low 1 litre meaning you won't get far before a top up is required. This model is powered by a pull starter, includes a built in ignition key and engine kill switch. Lastly a chain protection cover will keep your kids legs and pants away from danger.
It's available in a wide range of colours including black, blue, red and green. Some sellers have pink on offer too. At $340 and low nationwide shipping, it's easy to see why this mini quad has been purchased over 10,000 times by Australian's.
3. Mini Dirt Bike
These mini dirt bikes from Xtra-Aussie pack a lot of punch thanks to their 49cc single cyclinder, air cooled 2-stroke engine, capable of propelling a 9 to 15 year old up to 40km/h.
Available in blue, green and my personal favourite orange, these bikes are centrifugal clutch chain drive bikes that weigh approx 25kg. They come with hydro disc brakes on front and rear and include heavy duty alloy rim's 2.50-10 suitable for off-road fun.
Unlike the pocket rockets, the seat height is raised up to 60-65cm, making it better for larger riders who cannot bend their knees to get them on the pegs.
Fuel tank is a decent 2 litres, meaning you can run longer and with minor assembly required you'll be up and running fast. It's easy to see why this bike is so popular in the Australian market.
4. Mini Dirt Bike Pee Wee
If you want a cheaper mini dirt bike then this pee wee bike that costs less than $300 might be your best option. The smaller wheels and cheaper components, bring the price down. This is a better alternative for younger riders such as 4-9 year olds.
However the engine size is still the same, a 49cc 2-stroke single cylinder air cooled, accompanied with a starter pull, it can get up to speeds of 40km/h.
Tank size is smaller, only 1 litre so you'll need to fill up more frequently. The weight is a modest 22kg and the bike comes with a single shock and centrifugal clutch chain drive.
This mini dirt bike is available in red, blue, green, pink, black and yellow. The exhaust looks badass thanks to it's dual tip. Given the super low price, it's easy to see why it's been sold thousands of times around the world.
5. Esky Cooler Scooter
What better way to get the party started than to rock up on your own mini cooler scooter. This 49cc 2-stroke four wheeler is capable of carrying a passenger and a cooler load of beers.
While the top speed isn't anything to rave about in comparison to the other pocket rocket's mentioned here today, it's definitely a head turner wherever you go!
Thanks to the large 1.3 litre fuel tank, you can run for 40km/h before needing a refill. Aside from that there's a rear mono bar, a running board, fender and disc brakes.
The perfect show off unit for festivals, markets, picnics and down the beach.
How to choose the best pocket bike?
When it comes to choosing the best one for your needs, you should look at the various features.
Most pocket bikes come with a 49cc 2 stroke engine however more expensive bikes may come with a 125cc engine that could be 4 stroke. These bikes are also commonly referred to as mini bikes.
Pocket bikes are designed to be simple to maintain so they nearly always come with a single cyclinder, air-cooled engine. Most of the smaller models will be automatic, as it's far too difficult to incorporate a clutch and lever in their small size.
Larger bikes will nearly always offer manual transmission. I'm a huge fan of manual pocket bikes, but for this you'll have to spend more than $300.
Most pocket bikes operate on a mixing system with petrol. This is usually 1:25. Unlike a traditional motorcycle you can't simply use petrol from a gas station. Think of them like a lawn mower or 2 stroke engine, you need to add oil to the fuel.
Some larger mini bikes that are 4 stroke may accept 91 unleaded petrol.
Nearly all pocket bikes offer a pull starter however some of the more expensive models may come with an electric start. Pull starters do break from time to time, so you can usually pickup a replacement on eBay for under $50.
Brakes and Suspension
The industry standard for pocket bikes is now disc brakes that are usually found on the front and rear, much like a normal motorcycle. Of course cheaper bikes will likely have been made with cheaper materials.
As all bikes are designed for off-road use, be sure to test brakes before going full throttle to see how responsive they are.
Suspension is usually a single shock rear shock and a front steel shock. You may find some models come with a double shock. Using on flat ground a single shock is sufficient for most uses.
Most pocket bikes come with a max load rating and this is usually between 100-120kg. However the optimal rating is usually much less, around 50kg. To get those top speeds you'll need to be under the optimal weight rating which is why kids will always get faster speeds than adults.
Following on, subject to your load, you can usually get speeds from 30-50km/h. Some models offer speeds of up to 80km/h which can feel twice as fast given your close proximity to the ground and the tiny frame beneath your crotch.
Can you fold your knees while sitting on a 48cm high seat. That's what the average seat height is on a pocket bike in Australia. If you can't you might need to look for a model that offers a higher seat, although it's rare.
Not all pocket bikes have enough power to handle rapid inclines. The average gradient is around 15-20 degrees so check to see what rating your pocket bike has especially if you've got a hill on your driveway. These small bikes are designed for flat surfaces only.
Can your son or daughter lift the bike if they fall off? The average weight is around 20-25kg but some larger models may be up to 30-40kg which is too heavy for a child to push back up by themselves. If they will be riding alone, a lighter bike is much safer, especially if it falls ontop of them.
Can you attach training wheels to the model you're buying? If it's for a new rider these can make learning much more safer. Is there an automatic kill switch or a remote control that a guardian can control? Is there a speed limiter? These are all possible on more expensive models but less common on the cheapest pocket bikes.
How to setup a pocket bike for use?
Your pocket bike will likely have a 2 stroke engine and this means the petrol must be mixed with 2-stroke oil. The ratio between petrol and 2T oil is 25:1. You need to make sure you're using motorcycle two-stroke engine oil.
Check The Bike
Before riding be sure to check the bike for any loose screws. Given the low price and the engine working overtime, from time to time bolts, screws, nuts and spokes can come loose, so be sure to tighten these up to avoid injury.
Also check the air pressure in the tires and that the chain is within scope. If it's not, then be sure to fix it before riding. You should regularly check the air filter is clean and chain lubricated.
- Starting The Bike
Be sure to ensure the switch is turned on. Usually there's a red on switch. If your bike has a kill switch be sure to ensure it's off. Ensure the petrol tap is switched on and if your bike has a choke this is in the up position during cold weather and down in warmer climates.
Start the bike with a quick pull of the starter. If no dice, shake the bike and ensure the fuel is getting through the bike. You may also need to press the throttle to open the carburettor while attempting to start the bike. Lift the reader wheel and rev the engine if you've got an automatic. Lastly push the choke back down into the normal position.
Ride Your Bike
Be sure to put on your protective gear. At a bare minimum this should be a helmet, even if you're riding off-road. Pocket bikes are intended for off-road use only and aren't road legal.
You're now ready to ride. If it's your first ride, you'll need to break the engine in. Operating at a sensible speed during the first few weeks will increase future performance.
How to fix pocket bikes?
Due to the low price, you can find spare parts that offer a universal fit on eBay. Most models offer similar sizes of common parts that are likely to fail through normal wear and tear. You can check sites such as eBay or Gumtree for these parts.
In the first instance go back to your retailer and ask for the parts, if they have them. If they don't they may be able to order them in for you, or recommend an alternative.
Given the cheap nature of these bikes, some customers simply replace the whole bike when issues arise as it can be cheaper than sourcing spare parts and manual labour.
Pocket bikes are a great way to get kids into motorcycling and learning how to use them safely on private property. They are also great gift ideas for teenagers and adults a like. They are ultra affordable and offer hours of fun, capable of high speeds and can even be using in mini moto races. The question is, which one will you buy?