What Gas Price will Cause a Motorcycle Boom?

The price of crude oil reached an all time high today, at $70.40 per barrel. The situation with Iran and their development of nuclear cap...

The price of crude oil reached an all time high today, at $70.40 per barrel.

The situation with Iran and their development of nuclear capabilities, and what is seen by many as an eventual military showdown with the USA, is sending prices sky high.

And it's not even summer yet.

The past month, I've been taking my motorcycles to run errands, my Road Star when I don't have to carry anything, or my Ultra Classic when I do.

I'm expecting a trend towards buying mid-sized motorcycles, 600cc to 1000cc, in lieu of buying compact cars. Here in Southern California, compact cars are purchased by middle-income families solely as commuter vehicles. Such families still buy SUVs and pick up trucks for their needs, but often drive the smallest cars for commuting to work.

A couple of neighbors of mine have been riding their Harleys to work for the past year now. Some other guys in my riding club have been doing so for quite some time. In fact most motorcycle owners I know are doing this.

What's the price that pushes people over the edge towards buying a commuter motorcycle? Will it be $4.00 a gallon? $5.00 a gallon?

Perhaps there's a price-point when commuting becomes so expensive that folks can't afford to live so far from work, that it will cause a paradigm shift in deciding where we live. If we can't afford to live so far from our place of employment, then we'll either move closer, or we'll telecommute from our homes. We might see a situation where families sell their homes in the sprawling suburbs, because they can't afford to live so far from the city.

But that's an extreme scenario. I'm betting people will exchange their mid-sized sedans for a motorcycle before they sell their homes. I just don't know what gas price will cause this trend.

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