You’re never too young to be inspired by a passion that could stay with you for the rest of your life…
And what better passion is there than motorcycling? Teaching physical balance, focus, discipline and fun, whether it’s simple balance bikes for toddlers, foot-to-floor toys for kids to scamper around on or more advanced powered motorcycles to kick up the dirt (and ruin your garden), a gift of two-wheels could be a gift for life.
Better still, you’ll also be getting them out in the fresh air, which is surely healthier than watching the same Paw Patrol episode for the 867th time or prising the iPad out of their hands…
But what to get them? Check out BikeSocial’s Best First Motorcycle Guide for Children for some inspiration...
£145.99 [with gloves and helmet]
Ages: 18mts to 5-years old
We all have to start somewhere, which is why (pedal-less) balance bikes are the perfect way to fuel a budding passion while aiding motor functions from a young age.
Googling ‘balance bike’ will throw up myriad options of varying sizes, prices and styles - such as basic wooden frames, MX-style designs and shrunken imitations of full-size motorcycles - but none are as cool as Kiddimoto’s selection of MotoGP liveried balance bikes.
Available in the colours of Suzuki Ecstar, you can also facilitate your ‘stanning’ for Marc Marquez and/or his brother Alex with balance bikes decked out in their personal liveries.
Or, if you have a rather wicked sense of humour, you can also teach your kid to hold their balance while looking like Evel Knieval… no, really.
Ages: 2-years old +
You can’t go far wrong than wanting your child to emulate six-time WorldSBK Champion Jonathan Rea and while they may be a little way off trying to beat his records just yet, this Kawasaki-inspired KX-M Bud Racing Team foot-to-floor MX-style bike is both excellent value and looks cool.
Extra wide tyres aid stability, making it ideal for kids that have maybe outgrown a balance bike but are still prone to the odd tip off, while the more cautious or distracted parents out there won’t be able to lose the lurid Kawasaki-signature colour scheme easily!
Ages: 3-years old +
If you’ve got a boy and/or girl racer on your hands, then there is nothing racier than a replica sportsbike for them to tuck in on.
While the full thing might be a bit out of reach for the young’uns - literally, their feet won’t reach the ground - then this foot-to-floor Honda CBR tribute looks the part and comes in at less than £100.
Ages: 3-years old +
Who says play has to be all about maximum energy? This stable one-front, two-back trike should encourage your child to sit back, get comfortable and cruise across the playground without tuckering themselves out.
Check the wing mirrors, toot the horn and push the pedal, your kid will soon be on their way with 6v of electric power underfoot for wind-in-the-hair thrills (well, if it’s particularly gusty…), while the extra stability means there is no fear of falling off (unless it is really gusty…)
Ages: 3-years old +
It’s an icon, it’s a legend… and now not just for adults. Si, the Vespa is the quintessential style statement for kids in the playground.
Available with a 6v motor, the Vespa really looks the part with its accurate design detailing, right down to the sewing box seating compartment and even the GTS-style rims.
Stabilising wheels prevent you from damaging the bodywork, allowing your little ones to zip through Littlest Italy in sophisticated style.
Ages: 3-5-years old
Having spotted a gap in the market for electric mini-motorcycles after building one for his young son, Oliver Smith formally founded OSET bikes, one of the industry’s most intriguing success stories of recent times.
Fuelled by a passion for all things sustainable on two-wheels, OSET - recently snapped up by the biggest British brand of them all, Triumph - offers a range of different size mini-motorcycles for varying ages, all electric.
If you want to start them young on something with a bit of poke then the entry-level OSET 12.5 Racing with a 600W 12v motor for 3-5-years olds is - compared with like-for-like rivals - easy on the wallet and cheap to run, while providing an excellent starting point and bridge to something like the Yamaha PW50.
Ages: 5 to 8-years old
The original and arguably still the best choice to get kids going on a powered two-wheeler for the first time, the Yamaha PW50 (PeeWee 50) was the motorcycle that got many of today’s most prominent racers up and running over the last 40 years.
With a fully-automatic 50cc two-stroke engine puttering them along, the PW50 comes with a throttle limiter to ensure safer training, a low seat, durable bodywork and lightweight materials for easier handling, while knobbly tyres will have them green laneing in no time
£3,920 for ‘3’ - £5,370 for ‘5’
Ages: 3 to 10-years old
If you are dead set on your kid becoming the next off-roading superstar like Toni Bou, Dougie Lampkin, Sam Sunderland or Emma Bristow - and are willing to invest in it - then look no further than the Pierer/KTM Group’s expansive range of low capacity, child-friendly motorcycles.
Also available in petrol [50 SX - £3,870] guise, an extra £50 will get you the entry level ‘SX-E 3’ electric version with 3.9kW, which should both save on running costs, avoid pesky noise complaints and prepare them for a fossil fuel free future too.
Dubbed a ‘Mini-crosser’, KTM hasn’t skimped on applying its extensive off-roading know-how into the SX-E 3 with a durable, lightweight construction, while the motor is dust and waterproof too. For the more ‘advanced’ child, there is also a more powerful 5kW SX-E 5 variant available for £5,370
With identical models also offered by KTM’s sister brands - the Husqvarna EE-3 and GasGas MC-E - choosing between them comes down to whether your child’s favourite colour is orange, white/blue or red…
110: £3,719.99 [Automatic] - £4,199.99 [4-Speed]
Ages: 8 to 14-years old
Ages: 10 to 14-years old
Few endorsements in motorsport command as much respect as BSB race winner and Isle of Man TT lap record holder Peter Hickman’s, which explains why his Ohvale UK mini-bikes brand has become such a success story in recent years.
Mimicking the look of a MotoGP bike - albeit one put through a very hot wash - the Ohvale GP-0 is a fun little mini-bike that provides youngsters (and adults) the chance to feel a little bit like Valentino Rossi, while maybe - just maybe - it might even set them on the path towards a career in racing.
The entry-level 11bhp Ohvale GP-0 110 is available in Automatic and 4-Speed guises a little either side of £4,000 respectively and is aimed at children aged 8 to 12-years old, while the more powerful 15bhp GP-0 160 for riders 10 to 14-years old costs £4,499.
Better still, if you think you have a little champion on your hands, you can even enter into the the Ohvale UK Cups - both 110cc and 160cc - that traverses the country in a 10-round championship, while tuition, instruction from BSB riders and media management too.