Trike Motorcycles and Conversion Kits

By: On: August 25th, 201020 Comments »Updated: July 26, 2013

BMW motorcycle trike motorcycleTrike motorcycles are gaining popularity, especially as the baby-boomer population ages.  Regardless of a rider’s age, three-wheeled street bikes have a cool factor that is hard to resist!

There are a few ways to go about becoming a three-wheel motorcycle owner.  In this guide, we show several examples of trike motorcycles to get you thinking.  We also list some of the interesting conversion kits that are on the market since most trikes started out life as regular 2 wheel motorcycles.

Three-wheeled motorcycles keep getting better as manufacturers are making better engineered conversion kits, more attractive body panels and more dealers networks to build, support and service these machines.

Trike cost factor:

Of course, becoming a trike owner does not come cheap.  A brand new three-wheeled motorcycle, based on a Honda Shadow 750 will be a little over $15,000 from some builders, but most larger displacement new three-wheelers can easily cost $25,000.  A fully equipped touring model can be near $40,000 depending on the manufacturer, and you may want to tow a matching trailer with it while you are at it.

A Harley-Davidson or a Honda GoldWing trike are always among the top choices for riders.  That probably will always be, especially because of the heavy-duty nature of these full size touring motorcycles.  They can take the extra weight and have power to spare.   Harley-Davidson offers a Street Glide trike that they listed at $27,499 new for a 2011 model.

Most of the manufacturers listed below have conversion kits for Honda GoldWing and Harley-Davidson touring motorcycles. However;  many of these trike conversion companies are doing some really cool conversions based  other motorcycles too.  We should also point out that while we did not include the Can-Am Spyder in this guide, it is a vehicle well worth considering too.

Conversion kit manufacturers:

Yamaha Trike motorcycle California Sidecar Vantage kitCalifornia Sidecar Trikes (CSC Trikes) – Located in Arrington, Virginia USA.  Offers all bolt-in trike conversion kits with no welding required.

Conversion kits currently offered by California Sidecar are the Harley Daytona, Volusia, and Custom trike kit; Honda Cobra, Sport, Valkyrie, and Valkyrie Interstate kit; and the Yamaha Vantage kit.  The Vantage kit is for 2006 and up Stratoliner and Roadliner conversions and starts at $7895.  Warranty for the kits is 3 years/50k miles.  californiasidecar.com

GoldWing GL1800 Champion Trike motorcycleChampion Trikes USA – Located in Gardena Grove, California. In 2000, Champion moved beyond sidecars and accessories and created Champion trike conversion kits.

Now Champion Trikes offers kits for Sportster trike (cost about $5k), Harley FL trike with independent rear suspension, GoldWing GL 1500 and GL1800 trike with independent rear suspension (cost about $8k), Harley Softail, Honda VTX 1300, VTX 1800 and VTX 1800 with independent rear suspension, and a Yamaha Road Star trike kit too.  championsidecars.com

Harley Dyna trike motorcycleDFT Trikes – Located in Addison, Illinois USA.  Offers Harley motorcycle conversion kits and Honda conversion kits.

Conversion kits for Harley-Davidson motorcycles are available for FL, Softail, Dyna, Road Glide, Sportster and custom jobs too.

Honda kits are available for GL1500, GL1800 and Valkyrie.  dfttrikes.com

Harley VRod Trike motorcycleHannigan Trikes – Hannigan Motorsports is located in Murray, Kentucky USA.  Hannigan has recently added a Harley-Davidson VRod trike kit (about $8k base price), and an Indian Chief kit (also about $8k base price).

Hannigan conversions are also available for BMW trike K1200LT, (a beautiful blue BMW trike by Hannigan is pictured above).  Other popular conversion kits from Hannigan are for Kawasaki 1500 and 1600 Vulcan or Nomad, Yamaha Royal Star Venture or Tour Deluxe kits, Honda GoldWing conversion and a cool GL1800 roadster kit, and of course, Harley FLH trike conversion kits too (about$8300 base price). Hannigan’s Yamaha Royal Star Venture Trike conversion is featured in the March 2011 issue of Rider Magazine.  hannigantrikes.com

Harley-Davidson trike motorcycleHarley-Davidson Trike – For 2010, Harley-Davidson has the Street Glide Trike available starting at $26,999 ($27,499 for 2011 model) in black, or $28,299 for 2011 with orange color option.

Harley-Davidson says their trike is “not created from a bolt-on aftermarket kit”, and is “engineered and road tested as a whole”.  The trunk holds 4.4 cubic feet of cargo weighing up to 50 pounds.  harley-davidson.com

Victory trike motorcycle from Lehman TrikesLehman Trikes – located in Spearfish, South Dakota USA and founded by John Lehman and is a publicly traded company.  Lehman designs and manufacturers conversion kits for Harleys (kits start at $8745) , Honda GoldWing GL1800 (kits start at $8545), Suzuki Boulevard kits for C50, C90 ( kits start at $8180, $8545) and Victory motorcycles.

Lehman Victory trikes, model names “Pit Boss” and “Cross Bow” come factory-assembled ready to ride, starting at around $27k.  Very impressive looking and award-winning designs.

Lehman dealers often have three-wheeled motorcycles for sale ready to ride, in addition to the conversion kits.  “Lehman Pride” is the official Lehman owners group that was started in 2000.   lehmantrikes.com

Liberator trike motorcycle for wheelchair accessLiberator Trikes – located near Canby, Minnesota USA.  Specializes in rear engined trikes designed for people that use a wheelchair.

Liberator motorcycles have a special seat that can swivel to make it a little easier to move on to and from a wheelchair.  They also include space behind the seat to store a wheelchair when riding.

Several different custom designs are posted on their site, including the one shown here.  Their tag line is “delivering the freedom of the open road” and is quite appropriate.  The standard V8 engine should certainly provide an added thrill-factor in owning a Liberty trike.  liberatortrikes.com

Honda Shadow 750 trike motorcycleMotor Trike – Troup, Texas.  Conversions for Hondas, Kawasaki Vulcan, Triumph Rocket Victory, Harley.  Fully assembled trikes ($15k-$19k) including Motor Trike 750 Scooter (Honda Shadow 750), Honda VTX 1300 trike.  Motortrike.com

Harley trike motorcycle with voyager classicMTC Voyager – located in Ottawa, Illinois USA.  A Voyager is a different approach to converting a motorcycle into a trike.

The Voyager is actually a bolt-on rear frame section that has two independently suspended wheels that act as outriggers.  Because the rear wheel of the motorcycle stays in tact and continues to be the drive wheel when the additional wheels are added, the result is 3 wheels at the rear.

The Voyager Standard starts at $4095, and the Voyager Classic sells for $5470.  The Classic comes standard with fiberglass fenders and rear section, and tail lights too.  The outrigger-like assembly can be removed for whenever you want to ride the bike as a standard motorcycle.   The company claims this can be done in 5 minutes.  mtcvoyager.com

Roadsmith Trikes – located in White Bear Lake, Minnesota USA, also known as The Trike Shop.  Roadsmith offers conversion kits for 2004 and up Harley Sportster, 1996 and up Harley Touring motorcycles (has “Classic” and “Vintage” kits for these), and a “Retro” and an “American Cruiser” trike kit for 1985 and newer Harley Softail.

For Honda GoldWing trike conversions, there are the “Ultimate Touring Machine” for GL1800 with 6 cubic feet of trunk space, and a “Classic Touring Machine” kit for 1988-2000 GL1500.  Other Honda trike kits offered are for VTX 1300 or VTX 1800 (R or S models), and for a Valkyrie.

Another Roadsmith trike that caught our eye is the Ridley RT.  Ridleys are American-made v-twin automatic motorcycles.  This conversion kit features independent rear suspension and dual rear disc brakes.  Roadsmith’s optional electric reverse gear would be a very convenient feature to select for this trike, but especially if someone had selected an automatic machine because of a disability or could not easily back up a trike by using their feet (not exactly an easy task for anyone).  trikeshop.com

SS Trikes custom trike motorcycle with automatic transmissionSS Trike – located in Rudolph, Wisconsin USA with dealers in Elkridge, Maryland and Clearwater, Florida.  Manufacturing custom automatic trikes using 117 cubic inch S&S X-Wedge engine and a 2 speed automatic transmission.

Wild, Big Wheel style with a very low 13 inch seat height (option of 2 inch higher),  super tall 24 inch front wheel, and pair of small 14 inch rears make the SS Trike really unique.  sstrikes.com

What’s the bottom line on these 3-wheelers?

Things we learned while putting this Trike Motorcycles Guide together were:  (1) there are way more options available than the traditional GoldWing trikes.  (2) GoldWing trikes keep getting nicer and nicer as competition gets fiercer.  (3) Independent rear suspension and dual rear discs are just about mainstream.  (4) We would like to see more trike innovations when it comes to the needs of older folks and those with disabilities for ease of shifting and riding three-wheeled motorcycles.

About John Clay

John Clay is the author of MotorcycleInfo.Org. He and his family reside in North Carolina in the United States. A graduate of the Motorcycle Safety Foundation's Experienced Rider Course, he enjoys riding his Moto Guzzi in charity rides and serves as a volunteer motorcycle marshal for an annual bicycle charity event in the Carolinas.

» has written 130 posts

20 Responded

  1. Mean Gene says:

    I would like a nice low profile conversion kit that not going to cost more than my Honda VTX very low mileage will all is worth. I don’t want a Training wheel conversion.
    You guy’s would sell a lot more kit if you all did want to get rich over night.

    I can do my conversion if your parts are manufacture correctly. Show me what you got for 5K.

  2. joe cina says:

    Interested in the K1200LT Conversion and the pricing. What is the timeframe to completion. Also, is there any part of the expense which I can offset or are these kits sold for their owners to install.

  3. lldaniels says:

    I wanted to know doyou do a kit for the Vision without buying the whole bike. I have the vision tour bike, but want a kit for it. Is it possible.
    Thanks,
    Linard

  4. John says:

    Lehman Trikes in Spearfish, SD seems to have set the standard for Victory Vision trikes. Their toll free number is 1-888-3WHEELS (1-888-394-3357).

  5. Jaime Fardonk says:

    I am interested in converting my Shadow Aero 2006 into Trike and I want to know if anyone sells a system for this?

  6. Jim says:

    Is there a trike kit for a 2010 Honda Stateline v trin

  7. John says:

    VTX 1300 yes, but have not seen a Stateline trike kit offered yet.

  8. Jaime F Fardonk says:

    Sr.Jaime hello I have a bike Fardonk F vt 750 and you want to make trikes and I find the system to make it, please send me all relasionado to this system, my address, Urb Villa Rica Calle Ana AB-8 Bayamon Puerto Rico 00959

  9. Plazmon says:

    Looking at my options

    1) Trike my BMW R1150R

    2) Buy a Can Am Trike

    Please advise

    Thanks

    Henry

  10. John says:

    Henry, since those two options are very different, I suggest that you first test-ride the Can-Am. Let us know how you liked it.
    John

  11. John Kubis says:

    any conversions for 2005 Yamaha Midnight Silverado

  12. lonnie blanton says:

    does aneyone in the trike kits for motorcycles sell themotor trike kit for the 1800 goldwing. in the okc area

  13. Ross Wyman says:

    Have an 05 Kawasaki Vulcan. Is there a conversion kit and how much would it cost to have it installed. I am no mechanic.

  14. Kim says:

    Is Motor Trike the only available option for doing a full trike conversion on a 2002 Honda Aero 750?

  15. Dick M says:

    I’m looking for retractable wheel kit for my GL 1500

  16. Tessie Santistevan says:

    WOULD LIKE TO KNOW IF YOU HAVE A REVERSE GEAR FOR 1200 SPORTSTER WITH A LEHMAN KIT CONVERSION.

    2006 XL SPORTSTER

  17. Taylor says:

    Looking for a trike kit for 09 yamaha v star 950… Any thoughts???

  18. James says:

    can I get an address so I can come and see 3 wheeler kit for 08 Yamaha Stratoliner I live in Maryland

  19. terri wells says:

    Trying to find a trike kit for yamaha star bolt

  20. Michael Carter says:

    I’ve got a 87 Goldwing 1500 I’ve been told that you can buy a kit that fit on the drive shaft works on 12 volt to give fertility for reversing is there such a kit can’t seem to find any