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10 Most Dangerous Motorcycles Ever Produced

10 Most Dangerous Motorcycles Ever Produced

There are many motorcycles we have seen and heard about that are being referred to as the most dangerous bikes ever produced. Our immediate reaction after seeing such bikes used to be like this: “Wow! That looks insane.” Some of the recently produced bikes are considered dangerous due to their super-quick acceleration and breathtaking top speeds.

However, merely large-displacement engines, high horsepower, and impressive torque figures are not the only factors that make a motorcycle dangerous. A bike that seems harmless at first glance can also be dangerous if it is beyond the rider’s abilities or has modifications that make it less safe.

A dangerous motorcycle is designed and built wrong with many flaws, resulting in safety risks. It has a compromised braking system or has little to no cornering clearance. The most dangerous bike is considered to be the one that is likely to put rider safety at risk, causing more road accidents.

Undoubtedly, a powerful engine can transform a motorcycle into a rocket. However, experience, appropriate riding skills, and treating the bike with respect can make your riding experience safer. Continue reading this article to learn in detail about the 10 most dangerous motorcycles ever produced and the flaws that made them unsafe for riders.

1. What Makes a Bike the ‘Most Dangerous’

Have you ever felt extremely thrilled to watch a motorcycle movie scene featuring loud motorcycles chasing each other? You may have heard about the nickname ‘widow maker’ usually associated with some motorcycles that are extremely powerful and agile. Motorcycles that are more powerful than their size and capability and have a flawed braking system and chassis are referred to as the most dangerous bikes.

Not every motorcycle with a high-powered engine can be termed as dangerous. A motorcycle, capable of producing impressive horsepower, can be a comfortable and fun-to-ride bike with the right attitude, training, and mindset.

Let’s talk about the factors that make a motorcycle more dangerous:

1.1 Raw Power

There are many top-end powerful motorbikes available in the market popular among trained riders. To ensure a safe riding experience, there has to be a controlling factor that controls the amount of power produced by a large displacement or a turbo-charged motorcycle engine.

Raw power, alone, does not make a motorcycle unsafe, it is the lack of a motorcycle’s ability to stay stable making rides very challenging. The high power output of a motorcycle must be complemented by a strong and reliable braking system and a rigid frame and chassis to make rides more safer.

On the other hand, the way engine power is delivered is also a significant factor. If the power output is distributed evenly across the rpm range, it will make the ride smoother and exciting. However, if the engine fails to produce smooth power output, it will make the ride jerky and unpredictable for riders.

1.2 Missing Safety Features

Today’s modern bikes have both comfort and technology, making them perfect to ride in different conditions. Most old motorcycles that are considered dangerous usually do not include necessary additions such as ABS or traction control to stop the tires from slipping. These are some of the features that can make a big difference, especially for riders who are still practicing how to balance and stop the bike effectively.

1.3 Build-Quality, Design, and Aerodynamics

In the case of the most dangerous motorcycles ever produced, the common things include poor build quality, design flaws, and compromised aerodynamics. Talking about the most dangerous motorcycles ever produced, engineers likely failed to design a motorbike that meets the required safety standards. There were several design flaws, like extremely low ground and cornering clearance which made bikes highly dangerous while attempting to turn a corner.

A poor-quality chassis and suspension can result in extremely unstable maneuvers, causing riders to lose confidence while riding such a poorly designed motorbike. The aerodynamics also play a crucial role in keeping the air drag minimum to avoid jerky movements and keeping the ride smooth and safe.

1.4 Inexperience and Reckless Behavior

Any motorcycle can be dangerous if it’s more than what you can manage and handle. An experienced rider understands that a high-power motorcycle is not a toy but a powerful machine. He knows how to treat a powerful bike with respect and control.

A trained rider has a lesser chance of finding himself in an unfortunate situation compared to a new rider who recently got his license and wants to start with a powerful bike.

On the other hand, the reckless behavior is an invitation to a motorcycle accident. It doesn’t matter whether you ride the Kawasaki Ninja H2R or a scooter, if you don’t follow the traffic rules and you are irresponsible, you are a threat to everybody’s safety on the road.

2. 10 Most Dangerous Motorcycles Ever Produced

2.1 Kawasaki H2 750 (1972): The Unforgiving Widow Maker

Kawasaki H2 750 (1972): The Unforgiving Widow Maker
Photo Credit: Motorcyclist Online

The Kawasaki H2 750 was a 750 cc two-stroke bike with incredible power figures. However, it was not all about exceptional power; there was another side to the story as well due to which it earned the title of the “widowmaker”. The H2 750 was quite unforgiving and it used to speed up like a road rocket, but it seemed to lack control. Here's what made it so dangerous:

Brakes from the Stone Age

Consider driving a supercar with the braking equipment of a bicycle. This was the case with the Kawasaki H2 750. When you ride a motorcycle like the H2 750 with impressive power, braking becomes very challenging particularly for new riders as they are not used to stopping such a high-speed motorbike.

An Unforgiving Powerband

The Kawasaki H2 750, like all two-stroke engine motorcycles, delivers power in an irregular manner where the power surge is available at a narrow range of RPMs.

The powerband of the H2 750 was truly unforgiving. It offered a sudden and quick acceleration that could easily make the rider fall off the bike. This unpredictable power surge made the smooth and consistent riding a challenging endeavor.

Frame Flex

A motorcycle frame is the backbone of the bike as it supports the motorcycle’s structure. However, the Kawasaki H2 750’s frame was not rigid and was prone to flexing particularly when accelerating at high speeds. This ultimately led to unpredictable handling at high speeds.

2.2 Suzuki TL1000S (1997): Another Widow Maker

Suzuki TL1000S (1997): Another Widow Maker
Photo Credit: Hot Cars

This Suzuki TL1000S is another highly dangerous motorcycle, also referred to as a “Widowmaker,” but for a different reason. While there was no shortage of power in the TL1000S, the bike’s handling was very poor. Here's why it earned a bad reputation:

Nervous Handling

The TL1000S was not capable of stable handling. It could get shaky at high speeds, making riders lose their confidence while handling this bike. The shakiness made it hard to keep this bike stable which could quickly become a wobble or a tank slapper.

A wobble, also known as the ‘Death Wobble’ is a situation in which the handlebars start to vibrate aggressively. It was not suitable at all for those riders looking for a stable and smooth ride.

Irregular Power Delivery

Like the Kawasaki H2 750, the Suzuki TL1000S had the same irregular power delivery. The power output was quite non-linear and unpredictable, making it difficult for less-experienced riders to control the throttle smoothly.

Lack of Safety Features

The 1997 TL1000S had certain safety features missing from it, such as reliable braking, the Anti-locking Braking System (ABS), and Traction Control. These features can be of great help in a situation when a rider feels uncomfortable and shaky while riding. They can also be a crucial factor in avoiding a dangerous situation. The absence of such useful safety features in the TL1000S was compensated only by riders’ skills.

2.3 Yamaha V-Max (1985): The Unforgiving Muscle Cruiser

Yamaha V-Max (1985): The Unforgiving Muscle Cruiser
Photo Credit: Top Speed

The Yamaha V-Max VMX1200 made it obvious from its design that it is built for riders who love to go at high speeds. It was a pure muscle cruiser inspired by sports and naked bikes. Here's why the V-Max made it to the list of one of the most dangerous motorcycles ever built:

The Drag Racer

The Yamaha V-Max was a drag-racing motorcycle. It was built to be used on roads as well. The V-Max was designed to accelerate quicker thanks to its short gearing and impressive power output. If the rider was unprepared for the sudden power surge, it could become uncontrollable.

No Room for Mistakes

There is a common phrase frequently used in the motorcycling world that says: “Respect the power”. The Yamaha V-Max asked for that respect. Any mistake, such as getting into a corner wrong, or slamming on the brakes in a panic situation, can end up having serious consequences. The unforgiving nature of the V-Max made it very dangerous, especially for those who are not trained.

Low Center of Gravity

The fuel tank of the Yamaha V-Max was placed under the seat, ensuring a low center of gravity. Though it made the bike perform exceptionally well while accelerating in a straight line, it also made it difficult to handle on busy and curvy roads.

2.4 Harley-Davidson V-Rod (2002): The Low-Slung Bike with High Risks

Harley-Davidson V-Rod (2002): The Low-Slung Bike with High Risks
Photo Credit: Top Speed

Harley-Davidson is highly recognized for its legendary classic cruisers, but the V-Rod was different from What H-D is known for. While it packed a powerful engine and a stylish look, its design had some inherent issues:

Low and Slow through the Corners

While the H-D VRSC V-Rod was designed and manufactured by Harley Davidson, it was not a traditionally designed Harley. It was extremely compact and low to the ground. The low center of gravity provided the V-Rod with good straight-line stability but it became a nightmare to turn corners on this bike. It was not easy to lean on a motorcycle like the Harley-Davidson V-Rod to take sharp turns.

There are high chances that you will scrap the belly of the V-Rod in an attempt to turn corners. Also, the motorcycle loses control as you scrap the belly while taking a sharp turn, resulting in a motorcycle crash.

Questionable Stability at High Speeds

Due to the low placement of the overall motorcycle mass, it was very stable while riding in straight lines. However, while riding at high speeds, the V-Rod felt quite unstable. If the rider is not familiar with the unique characteristics of the H-D V-Rod, this bike could make the riding experience extremely uncomfortable and unsafe.

Not the Typical Harley

One of the most significant attractions of Harley bikes is the superior comfort level and the laid-back cruising style. The V-Rod, however, was a different breed; belonging to a different era of the cruiser model altogether.

The H-D V-Rod had a very powerful engine but it did not offer stable handling, especially during cornering. The V-Rod ensured an aggressive riding style which did not attract most Harley enthusiasts.

2.5 Brough Superior SS100 (1924): A Vintage Beauty with an Unstable Chassis

Brough Superior SS100 (1924): A Vintage Beauty with an Unstable Chassis
Photo Credit: Dylan Miles

A Blast from the Past

This vintage motorcycle was a classic head-turner and a powerful option for its time, but it lacked the basic safety features. Motorcycle culture in the 1920s was also different from what we have today.

The Brough Superior SS100 did not have modern features such as anti-lock brakes and traction control that make the motorbike safe. However, it did not even have a stable chassis. The tires installed on this bike lacked grip and brakes were also below average.

Unstable Handling

The Brough Superior SS100 became known for its hard suspension and stiffer handling. The riding experience could become highly uncomfortable as soon as you hit a less-maintained or bumpy road. Facing a sudden maneuver on this bike could be extremely challenging for the rider. The Brough Superior SS100 was unsafe for both new and experienced riders alike due to its unpredictable ride quality.

A Collector's Item, Not a Daily Ride

Considering the type of bike it is and its vintage class, the Brough Superior SS100 can be a collector item but not a bike for everyday riding. Due to the lack of safety features, it is not a practical motorcycle at all.

2.6 Vincent Black Shadow (1948): A Magnificent Bike with an Unsafe Flexible Chassis

Vincent Black Shadow (1948): A Magnificent Bike with an Unsafe Flexible Chassis
Photo Credit: Auto Evolution

Poor-Quality Chassis

The aerodynamics of the Vincent Black Shadow was quite flawed, leading to several issues faced by riders. The chassis installed on this bike was quite flexible resulting in extreme vibrations when turning corners.

Brakes That Belong on a Bicycle

This British motorcycle was a speed demon of its time with a top speed of 125 mph, but its stopping power and comfort level left a lot to be desired. Its braking equipment was insufficient for the amount of power that the bike had.

Suspension stiffer than a Board

The Black Shadow’s suspension was very rigid, making every road bump and imperfection a challenge to the rider. It not only led to uncomfortable experiences during the ride but also negatively affected the overall control while cornering.

A Thrill for the Daring, Not for the Faint of Heart

The Vincent Black Shadow was not an easy-to-handle beginner-friendly bike. It had minimal safety features, making the ride extremely unsafe.

2.7 Suzuki TM400 Cyclone (1971): The Lightweight Dirt Bike with a Powerful Engine

Suzuki TM400 Cyclone (1971): The Lightweight Dirt Bike with a Powerful Engine
Photo Credit: Silodrome

This motocross machine dominated the lightweight class, but its success came with several hidden dangers:

A Powerful Engine in a Lightweight Frame

Imagine installing a monster truck engine on a go-kart. This was the case with the Suzuki TM400 Cyclone. The lightweight frame used in this motorcycle was not designed to support a powerful 396 cc engine and off-roading. The installation of a less-supportive lightweight frame resulted in unstable handling. The handling became even worse at high speeds.

The Suzuki TM 400 Cyclone’s frame was prone to bending even if you were riding on smooth terrain. The power delivery of the 396 cc engine was extremely unreliable as it could come at any point between 3,500-5,000 rpm, making this bike extremely unpredictable.

Not Beginner-Friendly

Beginners often consider lightweight bikes as a useful option to start motorcycling. Regardless of being lighter, the Suzuki TM400 Cyclone was far from being easy for beginners to handle due to its high horsepower and unpredictable nature. The high power output and aggressive nature of the TM400 required a skilled rider to control this bike effectively.

2.8 Kawasaki GPZ750 Turbo (1983): A Less Practical Turbo-Charged Bike

The Unexpected Power Surge

Turbo-charged engines are all about power, and the 1983 Kawasaki GPZ750 Turbo came with this element. Turbochargers are boosters that give an extra needed power at a certain RPM range. For an ordinary rider, especially those riding turbocharged bikes for the first time, such a sudden surge in speed is dangerous, making the rider lose control.

The Kawasaki GPZ750 Turbo offered an aggressive riding style. It required impressive throttle control and a solid understanding of how the engine power works. While turbocharged engines might have been an exciting feature for some, others who never expected such an abrupt change in power could encounter a dangerous situation.

Heating Issue

Introducing a turbo-charged engine at that time wasn’t a practical solution to build more agile and powerful bikes. The engine made the bike extremely heavy and the overheating became a prominent issue. It was quite difficult to dissipate such a large amount of heat coming out of the turbo-charged engine.

2.9 Honda CX500 Turbo (1981): A Middleweight Turbo-Charged Bike

Honda CX500 Turbo (1981): A Middleweight Turbo-Charged Bike
Photo Credit: Shannons Club

The 1982 Honda CX500 Turbo joins the list of “dangerous motorcycles” because of being overly capable of its size and class. Here's why this innovative bike earned a reputation as a ticking time bomb for some riders:

Being Overly Capable

It was one of the boldest decisions that Honda took to install a turbocharger onto a mid-sized bike. Even though the turbo-charged engine ensured remarkable power for the middleweight category, the Honda CX500’s frame and suspension were not built for this kind of performance.

Highly Unsuitable for Beginners

For new riders who are thinking of a regular motorcycle ride, this bike can get them into a dangerous situation in an attempt to manage the CX500 Turbo.

The Illusion of Safety

Loyal Honda owners know that the Honda logo on a motorcycle implies dependability and ease of use. This may have convinced some riders to go for the CX500 Turbo. It was an advanced bike for its time with features such as fuel injection; however, its turbo characteristics and poor stability made it challenging for riders.

2.10 Heavily Modified Bikes

Heavily Modified Bikes
Photo Credit: Rumah Populer

It is important to mention the heavily modified motorcycles while discussing the most dangerous bikes ever produced. While modifications can be cool and can personalize your ride, if done without proper consideration, they can introduce a whole new level of danger.

Unnatural Modifications

It is often seen that those riders who get extremely passionate about motorcycles, get carried away with modifications. Using parts borrowed from other bikes that are incompatible with the original bike’s architecture, will affect the bike’s stability, maneuverability, and also its braking abilities. Unnecessary and over-the-board modifications must be avoided as they result in the creation of a machine that is both unpredictable and potentially risky.

Brakes that Don't Match the Engine

Another frequent motorcycle modification is the engine upgrade to enhance the power output. If you go for the engine upgrade and the brakes are not updated to meet the new power, then disaster is unavoidable.

Suspension Issues

Suspension upgrades are always a common thing, but if they are implemented in the wrong way, they can make the handling of the bike worse. An improper and unsuitable suspension upgrade can make the bike unstable at high speeds and while turning corners, resulting in motorcycle accidents.


Modifications must be done by an expert custom builder or mechanic as he has more knowledge. He knows how any change made to the motorcycle can alter its performance. Safety always comes first and any modifications should improve the motorcycle’s capability to handle and stop instead of reducing its performance.

Viking Bags , a leading name in the motorcycle luggage bags and aftermarket parts industry, offers customization options that improve the comfort and long-distance capabilities of a bike without interfering with its engine parts.

The company produces a range of superior-quality products, including saddlebags , tank bags , backpacks , sissy bars , backrests , crash bars , and fairing to improve your touring experience.

3. Tips for Beginners

What type of motorcycle should one purchase if they are new to riding? Here are some key tips:

3.1 Start Small, Dream Big

Do not start with a big and powerful bike that you cannot even handle when the engine power is off. New riders should pick a motorcycle that is less complicated and less powerful.

3.2 Training Makes the Rider Perfect

If you’re planning to ride on the road for the first time, it is wiser to take a motorcycle riding safety course. Get yourself enrolled in a safety course or hire an instructor.

3.3 Respect the Machine

Motorcycles are marvelous pieces of technology, but they should always be respected. Being a motorcyclist, always ensure that you wear the right protective gear such as the DOT-approved helmet, leather jacket, pants, motorcycle boots, and gloves. Be very conscious of your surroundings while riding. More importantly, ride slowly, safely, and sensibly. Do not risk your life.

4. Takeaway

Motorcycling culture is quite dynamic. If you are a responsible rider, you know the true essence of motorcycling is safety, freedom, adventure, fun, and a connection with the road and the community. Though you must avoid riding the above-mentioned most dangerous motorcycles, you must also avoid riding any motorcycle that is above your capabilities. Do not only respect the motorcycle; respect your skillset and capabilities as well.

Choosing the right motorcycle; always taking necessary safety precautions; getting trained, and never underestimating the role of proper maintenance in reducing the risk of an accident are key to safety. Understanding the potential risks involved and knowing the right decisions make your riding experience full of fun.

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