All-time High: 14% Of US Riders Are Women

Published January 18, 2016

According to new data produced by the Motorcycle Industry Council, the amount of female riders is at a record high. 14% of the country’s riders are women, compared with the previous 8% recorded back in 1998. Interestingly, the details mention that members of the younger generation are more likely to saddle up and ride on two wheels than any other female demographic.

The MIC states: “Among younger generations of owners, the percentage of women is even higher. Slightly more than 17 percent of Gen X owners, and 17.6 percent of Gen Y owners, are women. Among Boomer owners, women make up 9 percent.


The data is also supported by Sarah Schilke of BMW Motorrad USA, who’s also the chairwoman of PowerLily, a group of female industry professionals. PowerLily have estimated that a quarter of the USA’s riding population in 2014, were women. And by “riding population” we mean: those who rode at least once in that year.

According to the MIC Motorcycle Owner Survery, women prefer cruiser style motorcycles and 34% of the female rider category are cruiser owners. The next most preferred type of two wheeler was the scooter, with 33% of female riders favoring them. Sports bikes, however, are only chosen by a mere 10% of female riders. This was the most surprising, considering our female following on Gear Heads, who seem to exclusively favor sports orientated machines.

The data also highlighted some interesting facts, such as the average age of an American female rider, 39, which is much younger than the same stat for men, which is 48. Another statistic showed that 57% of ladies bought new bikes, and 49% of them carry out their own maintenance or outsource it to a friend or relative, rather than taking it to a shop.

And here’s something that isn’t particularly surprising: 60% of the female motorcycling population have taken riding safety courses and further riding education, compared to the low figure of 42% of male riders.

The data stated that “Fun and Recreation,” “Sense of Freedom,” and “[To] Enjoy the Outdoors/Nature,” as the most important reasons why ladies decide to learn how to ride a motorcycle.

It’s excellent news; the more people that are on two wheels, the better. And a rise of 6% since 1998 may not seem like much, but it’s a great step in the right direction!


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Joe Appleton
About Joe Appleton

I’ve done a bit of work here and there in the industry – I’ve even ridden a few bikes for actual money but what it comes down to is this: I ride bikes, build bikes and occasionally crash ‘em too. I like what I like but that certainly doesn’t make my opinion any more valid than yours…

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