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Bike Condition is More Important Than Mileage For Vehicle Values

FORT WORTH, Texas — Mileage is a factor in measuring the value of a car, but in powersports how many miles are on the bike is less important than its physical condition, industry experts told attendees at PowerSports Finance 2018.

“Condition … is more important,” said Lenny Sims, vice president of business development and strategy at J.D. Power, who spoke on a panel about vehicle values. “Bikes are better made today, some would argue. Components are better, and bikes last longer.”

Mileage can be misleading, he said. For example, a Honda Gold Wing enthusiast may rack up thousands of miles but take meticulous care of the vehicle. On the other hand, a different rider may only put 100 miles on a bike, but they may not take care of it and it may be in terrible condition. In these scenarios, mileage isn’t an accurate measure of the vehicle’s value.

“In general, motorcycles do not get ridden a lot,” said Jim Woodruff, chief operating officer of National Powersports Auction. “So, whether it’s got 5,000 miles or 8,000 miles, and it’s three or four years old, it doesn’t really affect the value that much. The number of miles driven is so small that the mileage impact is small as well.”

In the NPA Value Guide the auction house produces, mileage and condition are broken down in a matrix to provide a better look at what is coming through auction.

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As Associate Editor of Powersports Finance, Matt Wood reports on the latest developments and trends of the powersports finance world, from innovation to new partnerships. He's also a movie/TV show buff and is willing to argue about Lost anytime. Former bylines include Scout Media and CinemaBlend.

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