Can’t Afford to Drive? Ride.

It’s sad that it takes $5 gas to force most Americans to consider being efficient. As Winston Churchill put it: “Americans will always do the right thing. When they absolutely have to.”

Gas is really pretty cheap. But I’ve always kept the price of gasoline in perspective. Consider the fact that you can walk into most any convenience store in this country and drop a buck on a liter of water. Until recently, gas was cheaper than water.

So with the threat of $5 a gallon looming on our dashboard horizon, we collectively pause to consider the options. Apparently many people are considering two wheels instead of four…

Survey shows gas prices cause more people to consider motorcycles
Powersports Business
Friday June 27, 2008

More than one-quarter of U.S. consumers are considering purchasing a motorcycle or scooter, according to a survey released by Consumer Reports National Research Center.

Eighteen percent are thinking of buying a motorcycle while 14 percent are contemplating motor scooters. The survey also revealed that men are more apt to make the switch with most of them being between the ages of 18-34. In 2007, consumers said they would reduce driving when gas hit $3.50 per gallon. That has proven true as year-to-date 20 billion fewer miles have been traveled compared to the same period last year, stated the U.S. Department of Transportation.

The survey was a random, nationwide telephone survey from June 5-8, 2008. Interviews were conducted with 884 adults, ages 18 years or older, who drive a vehicle and whose household owns at least one vehicle.

This is an excellent time to mention Ride to Work Day is July 16, 2008.

Riding my BMW R1150R near Keatonville
Rex rides his BMW for work and play.
Around here motorcycles are typically considered recreational vehicles. But consider the efficiency with which they can move people from point A to point B with no appreciable wear and tear on our roads, using very little fuel and requiring no modification to existing infrastructure. The reduction in traffic congestion alone would seem to have far-reaching economic repercussions. Not to mention less parking space, reduced consumption of foreign oil and fewer carbon emissions.

The practical side of scooters and motorcycles was overlooked while we were filling our SUVs. Maybe now we’ll reconsider.

Resources for the potential motorcyclist…

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