Classic motorcycle emissions "so small as to be almost invisible," report finds

The Honda C90 is the most popular classic motorcycle in the UK, while classic bike emissions have been calculated at 0.05% of the UK total.

BSA Goldstar

A study from an automotive PR firm has found that the Honda C90 is the UK’s most popular classic motorcycle, and that classic bikes account for less than 0.1% of all transport emissions.

The Honda C90 is undoubtedly one of the most iconic bikes in the history of motorcycling, and as the most-produced model it is also one of the most common. 

By now, the C90 is considered a ‘classic’, and Honda’s apparent desire to make a contemporary electric version is - in a way - testament to that classification. 

In 2022, a report from Loop, an automotive PR firm, found that the Honda C90 is the most popular classic bike in the UK. Additionally, Honda - with 36,000 classic bikes registered - was found to be the most popular brand for classic bikes in the UK. For the Japanese marque, the C90 was backed up by the VFR750F.

Behind Honda lay its Japanese rivals - Kawasaki, Yamaha, and Suzuki - but there were also smaller brands following closely, such as Matchless, AJS, and Velocette. Further, BSA was the second-most popular brand, with 29,000 classic bikes registered. 

Loop also calculated that the average CO2 emissions per year for a classic motorcycle in the UK is 209.9kg, and for all classic bikes the emissions total 57,723 tonnes per year. “In the context of the UK’s overall emissions,” the report says, “the environmental impact of every classic motorcycle in the country is so small as to be almost invisible, accounting for just 0.05% of all transport emissions.”

Alex Kefford, loop’s Technical Writer and author of the report, said: “By trawling through millions of datapoints and delving into decades of archive data, we’ve been able to paint a fuller picture of the UK’s classic motorcycle scene.

“As a result, we’ve seen the effect popular culture has had on the rise and fall of the powered two-wheeler, as well as the impact of the occasional oil crisis. But what’s surprising is how intent bikers are on keeping their motorcycling heritage alive and on the road. In fact, the average age of a UK motorcycle is now more than 15 years – the oldest figure on record.”

2022 BSA Gold Star Review | The Most Authentic British Modern Classic Motorcycle?

2022 BSA Gold Star Review | The Most Authentic British Modern Classic Motorcycle?