The Harley Fat Boy. Possibly the quintessential Cool Bike.
"Bikes are not 'nice'. Bikes are cool."
So you've got a badass
. Or a loner
. Or an Action Hero
or Action Girl
. Now (s)he needs a suitable way to get from Point A to Point B. Because walking isn't very impressive unless you're calmly walking away from the carnage you just caused
, or power walking
toward the carnage you intend to cause.
Now you could always go for a cool-looking car
. But how about something more personal, and much more impressive?
Easy. Give them a Cool Bike. No, not a bicycle. The big, shiny, loud, sexy, purely awesome motorcycle. The motorcycle is to a modern character what the big black horse is to the Western or Fantasy character
: an identifier, a mark of status, and above all, an accessory that adds to their overall coolness.
Ever since the end of World War Two, motorcycles have been seen as the absolute coolest way to travel. Whether they are traveling through the desert, city streets, a coastal road
, or up a wall
, the bike can promote an aura of awesome that is unmatched by an other everyday vehicle. Riding a motorcycle lends an aura of independence and attractive danger
to the rider.
Cool Bikes come in different types, and the type of bike generally says a lot about the type of character who rides it. A chopped, stripped Harley is virtually almost always the choice of a Badass Biker
, and it's also often the choice of the Sociopathic Hero
and the Villain Protagonist
, while a sleek crotch rocket is more likely to be ridden by an Action Girl
, an older Kid Hero
or a Jerk Jock
. If the Harley is chopped or
stripped or neither, the rider could be The Atoner
, The Drifter
, a major-league Action Girl
, an Action Hero
, a Supporting Leader
, or The Ace
. The Adventurer Archaeologist
tends toward the lighter, more nimble sport bikes, or even better, an old military bike. Big, heavy Goldwings and other touring bikes aren't usually cool, although their riders may think so.
The Badass Biker
and the Biker Babe always
have a Cool Bike. An Anti-hero is likely
to have a Cool Bike. Action Girls
may have Cool Bikes. Cool Bikes may have a Cool Sidecar
. See Monowheel Mayhem
when awesome only needs one wheel.
Oh, and remember
that you don't drive
a bike; you ride
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Anime & Manga
- Most of Go Nagai's main characters ride and have cool bikes. Some examples are:
- Norman from The Big O rides a Cool Bike which comes equipped with a rocket launcher, and the bike in question seems to be pretty durable and maneuverable, given how it went toe to toe with freaking Megadeus in a highway chase scene and had not a scratch on it by the end thanks to Norman's driving.
- The first appearance of Hyoma Nagare from Combattler V had him riding a bike and performing crazy maneouvers with it.
- The first time we saw Kenichi Go from Voltes V he was practicing in a firing range by shooting AND riding at once.
- Kaneda's red motorbike in AKIRA most definitely qualifies.
- FLCL: Haruko's yellow vespa is also undeniably cool, which is interesting as it's a scooter.
- Soul from Soul Eater too believes in the power of cool bikes, which is why he has one.
- The Garland units in Mega Zone 23 combine Cool Bikes with Transforming Mecha.
- Some of the D-Wheels from Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds would probably fall under this trope, especially since some are designed to be some of the coolest wheels in the anime: one based on the ride of the hero in Ghost Rider, a dragster, a steamroller... After all, cool bikes MUST be the centerpiece on an anime which features card games on motorcycles.
- Many of them have awesome names to boot, whether in the series itself, as with Dark Glass's "Delta Eagle" and Jack Atlus's "Wheel of Fortune", which in the dub has its name changed to "Phoenix Whirlwind", or in supplemental material. Some of the other names include the main character's "Yusei Go", which appears to be a reference to "Speed Racer", as well as Blackbird, The Beast(dub-series only, unnamed in the original), Giganto L, T-666/Terrible Omen, and Bloody Kiss.
- Orbital 7, Kite's little robotic assistant in Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL can turn into this.
- Genesis Climber MOSPEADA (AKA, the third series of Robotech) has motorcycles that transform into Powered Armor.
- The Motoslaves of Bubblegum Crisis also serve as small Transforming Mecha. Priss and Sylvie also ride cool regular motorcycles. And there's the Highway Star.
- A subversion in Durarara!!. Celty's Cool Bike is actually a Cool Horse disguised as one. You can tell by the fact that it makes no noise, only whinnies and it has the shadow of a horse.
- Beelzemon of Digimon Tamers has a cool, living bike called Behemoth. And if you aren't Beelzemon, it will possess you and drive all across the landscape.
- And better, it wasn't made for him or anything like that. Beelzey was just the only one powerful enough to tame the cursed bike that had terrorized a town with its original rider (and then Guilmon, who knocked the original rider off only to become possessed himself.)
- Kenji's Raikouba bike in Kotetsushin Jeeg transforms into Jeeg's head.
- Smoker from One Piece has his Blower Bike, which is actually a large motorized tricycle with wide wheels, powered by his Devil Fruit.
- Baxinger is made of this. Five motorcycles that shoot lasers, fly both in air and in space AND become the components to a giant robot.
- The vehicles in Rideback are essentially Cool Bike meets Transforming Mecha. Ditto the mecha in Viper's Creed.
- In Devil May Cry: The Animated Series, Lady has a red 1974 Ducati 750 Supersport.
- éX-Driver (or, to capitalize it properly, éX-Driver) is an anime about cars - the glitch-prone AI-controlled ones all normal people drive, and the old, all-manual sports cars the protagonists drive in order to catch the aforementioned AI ones. So it's all the more surprising when one of the protagonists turns up on a Ducati, which has a lot less trouble catching the runaway cars than the old cars do.
- Moto-Mechazawa from Cromartie High School.
- Jiggy Pepper from Tegami Bachi has one that runs on the power of heart.
- Jun the Swan's G3 from Science Ninja Team Gatchaman. It has portable buoys that when lowered under the bike can allow it to ride on water surfaces. Later in the series, it gets a missile launcher.
- The motorcycles ridden by Toho Heavy Industries' artificial humans in Biomega.
- Heat Guy J: Daisuke Aurora has one massive ride, plus a Cool Sidecar for his android partner J to ride. It is loaded: massive engines for incredible speed, heads-up display, converts to an even more badass mode when J rides it, and it's amphibious!
- Bakugan New Vestroia gives us Mira, a Badass Biker girl who rides a Subterra colored motorcycle in her first appearance.
- Gundalian Invaders give us new forms of Battle Gear, the Mobile Assault Gear. And what do Drago and Talean ride? The motorcycle based ones.
- Masumi Sera from Detective Conan rides a Yamaha Artesia bike XT 400. The reason it's an Artesia? Mobile Suit Gundam, though maybe you didn't know that since Detective Conan is a mystery manga.
- Yukiko also rides a Cool Bike on a trip to Gunma.
- Blassreiter is all about cool bikes.
- Kino's Journey: Hermes, the sentient motorbike who is Kino's only companion and closest friend.
- Judge Dredd has his Lawmaster, equipped with bulletproof tyres, Nitro Boost, on-board AI and bike cannon.
- Ghost Rider's bike is cool mundanely. It's even cooler in Ghost Rider mode, what with the chains and skull and flames. And it leaves a trail of flaming tire tracks... and can ride up even vertical walls.
- Johnny and Danny's bikes represent two distinct types - Johnny's is a chopper, while Danny's is a speed bike.
- Hot Pursuit, an Alternate Universe Barry Allen who lacks his Super Speed, drives a bike that is powered by the Speed Force. Its wheels appear to be made of pure speed energy.
- The Spy Cycle from Spy Boy.
- In the German comic Werner: Lots. The fact that Brösel is a motorcycle nut and draws extremely realistic (but often still wacky) bikes helps a lot.
- Hawkeye of The Avengers has a flying bike called the Sky-Cycle.
- Werewolf by Night's Jack Russell rides one. And unlike his cars, he has thus far managed to not crash it once.
- In Bazooka Jules super-thief, Eddie Daytona's motorcycle has sensors, weapons, and can repair itself.
- In Shaman's Tears, Joshua Brand travels on a classic Indian Chief motorcycle.
- In Poet Anderson: The Dream Walker, Ayo and the Anderson brothers use them to travel outside Genesis.
- Evangelion 303: Asuka owns a very cool-looking red bike.
- In From Fake Dreams Shirou gets Saber an enchanted, nitro-boosted 1999 Suzuki Hayabusa. She loves it.
- Lightstorm rides one in Sailor Moon: Legends of Lightstorm. He can summon it with his utility belt, perform death-defying stunts with it while navigating the city, ride at tremendous speeds, and apparently doesn't need to fill it up with gas.
Films — Animation
- Clouds Custom Motorcycle "Fenrir" in Final Fantasy VII Advent Children. Bonus cool points for having a built in sword rack.
- The Remnants have some pretty sweet rides, too— naturally, there are at least two high-speed chase-battles.
- In the 2007 TMNT CGI movie, in his Nightwatcher guise, Raphael rides a motorcycle covered with plate steel. Michelangelo himself comments on how awesome this is.
- Aachi and Ssipak loves this trope seeing as how every character has a cool motorcycle or at least motorcycle-like vehicles. Special mention goes to the character of Geko, a Bad Ass cyborg who has a bike with plenty of weapons.
Films — Live Action
- The BMW R 1150R Rockster used by Ben Affleck's character in Paycheck.
- The Ducati 996 ridden by Trinity in The Matrix Reloaded film during the highway chase.
- Marlon Brando riding a Triumph Bonneville in The Wild One is one of the events that started this trope.
- Will Smith's character's Black MV Augusta F4 in I Robot.
- The Bike that is built into the front steering system of the Batmobile in The Dark Knight, referred to officially in the movie as the "Bat-Pod". It features built-in autocannons and apparently sports a gyro-stabilizer for the driver and engine, allowing it to make impossible turns, recover from wipeouts, and drive straight up a wall, flip over upside-down, and land upright again.
- We see it return in The Dark Knight Rises, and has the distinction of being the only Bat-vehicle that survives through more than one movie in the Nolanverse.
- Steve McQueen's stolen Triumph SR6 650 in The Great Escape. Pure Rule of Cool. There's nothing like that whole scene at all, in the book the movie was based on. But the chance to put Steve McQueen on a Triumph for a chase scene was simply irresistible.
- Arnie's iconic black 1990 Harley-Davidson Fat Boy in Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
- Possibly the best-known film motorcycle, Peter Fonda's "Captain America" chopper from Easy Rider. Both this and Dennis Hopper's more conservative chopper started life as Harley Davidson Hydra Glides.
- The Lightcycles from TRON. They're fast, deadly, and fold right up into the handlebars for easy storage!
- In TRON: Legacy, the motorcycle Sam rides in the opening is his own. It's later established that Sam inherited his dad's insanely-fast Ducati, fixes it after it's been sitting in a shed for 20 years, and is even more of a daredevil with it than his old man was. Likewise, the comic based on Tron 2.0 establishes Jet's ride of choice as one of these. It ends up saving their butts on the Game Grid.
- Torque has plenty of very nice bikes, but the turbine-powered Y2K definitely takes the cake.
- Fiona Volpe's BSA Lightning with the built-in missile launchers in Thunderball.
- Arcee, Chromia, and Elita-1 from Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.
- From the movie toyline, we also have Brimstone (and its repaint, Chopsaw), which transforms from a chopper into a spindly, wicked looking robot using the front wheels as saw blades.
- The Delta Force has Chuck Norris on a dirt bike with dual rocket launchers, machineguns, and rear-facing grenade launchers. Twice.
- The police hoverbike from the latest Star Trek film. The trailer even made it seem as if the cop was a robot with a metallic voice. Since Trailers Always Lie, the cop in the actual movie had a normal voice.
- They don't ride motorcycles, but the bikes in Mystery Team ARE pretty cool.
- The green Harley-Davidson WLA Liberator that Captain America rides in Captain America: The First Avenger. It even comes with machine guns, and a rope-launcher.note
- Young Boris's rather satanic looking bike from Men In Black 3.
- In Return of the Jedi they introduce speeder bikes. Back then they may have been a reference to horses, but in the prequel trilogy and the expanded universe they are treated like motorcycles, complete with speeder bike gangs.
- "The Return of the Jedi Sketchbook" has many concept drawings from the movie development, and the comments mention custom and hotrodded motorcycles. They're definitely not referencing horses.
- In Spy Kids 3D: Game Over they have a race utilizing cool vehicles, specifically motorcycles. Kinda weird that they have that much experience driving and riding when most of them don't look old enough to get a permit, but hey it's a video game.
- In X-Men, the Cyclops' motorcycle that Wolverine *ahem* borrows to get to the train station.
- The Harley-Davidson Logan acquires at the Hudsons' farm in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
- In The Lost Boys the eponymous vampires also ride cool bikes. In the novelisation David's bike is explicitly mentioned as being a Triumph.
- In G.I. Joe: Retaliation a motorcycle that splits apart and turns into explosive projectiles is used by Firefly to help break Cobra Commander out of prison.
- Oblivion (2013) : Harper's motorcycle-which is collapsible so it can be carried on the Bubble Ship's storage space, has integral winch and sensors, and is pretty rugged. Pity that it gets stolen early in the movie, and then soon after Harper gets it back it runs out of gas.
- In the James Bond movie Skyfall the opening chase scene includes Bond and his quarry riding motorcycles through Istanbul, and even on the rooftops. It's hard to get much Rule Of Cooler than that.
- The demon-possessed Norton Commando in I Bought a Vampire Motorcycle. Any Norton Commando is cool, but a man-eating demonic one is even cooler. Albeit evil.
- In Snow Crash, Hiro Protagonist's smart bike has its own operating system. And Raven's bike. You know, the one with a hydrogen bomb built into its sidecar.
- Sirius in Harry Potter had a flying motorbike, which he gave to Hagrid to help him get Harry from Godric's Hollow to his uncle's house. It appeared again in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, where Hagrid used it to get Harry safely from his home to the Weasley's house. In the end Harry inherited it. A Triumph Bonneville and a Royal Enfield were used for the films.
- The bike created by the Librarian, and ridden by Death in Soul Music. It actually falls to bits quite early on, but the idea of the bike remains, resembling light reflecting off a gleaming machine, only without the machine. Unfortunately, because it was created in accordance with rock music tropes, it isn't designed to slow down, much less stop safely. It's meant to crash at the end of the eighth verse. Eighth, as the whole sequence is an extended tribute to Meat Loafs Bat out of Hell, down to the silver black phantom bike.
- And because eight is a magically significant number in the Discworld.
- In Robert Asprin's Phule's Company, CH (Chocolate Harry) gets official permission to use his personal hoverbike instead of a Legion vehicle.
- Murphy occasionally rides around on a Harley in The Dresden Files. Harry claims it's because a motorcycle is actually a giant vibrator.
- Please Don't Tell My Parents I'm a Supervillain: Penny's Light Bike is a futuristic Hard Light motorcycle that she can beam out of a device on her chest.
Live Action TV
- Kamen Riders, obviously (that's where the "Rider" comes from); while the main Rider always has a Cool Bike, more recent seasons have started to introduce Second Riders who don't have them. In order:
- The Showa Riders' bikes typically just have custom cowlings, due to special effects limitations of the 1970s, though they're all faster and more powerful than standard bikes, sometimes allowing them to ride along walls and up cliff faces. X-Rider's can be used as an underwater vehicle and Super-1's actually flies using rockets. The bikes were a much bigger part of the series in the earlier years; more recent seasons have it as The Artifact (how many times did we see Kamen Rider Kiva's bike, three?) It may have something to do with the Rider helmets losing the eyeholes.
- Kuuga's TryChaser 2000 can combine with the sentient mecha-beetle Gouram, giving it extra armor and blades on the front. Partway through the series it's damaged and rebuilt as the BeatChaser 2000, which is also affected by Kuuga's Mid-Season Upgrade Rising Forms.
- Agito's Machine Tornador can become a hoverboard. G3, Gills, and Another Agito have custom bikes (GuardChaser, Gills Raider, and Dark Hopper, respectively) modified to resemble them.
- Ryuki's and Knight's Bond Creatures could become motorcycles when in Super Mode - still remaining very much sentient. All Riders in the series have access to a common type of bike called the Ride Shooter, taking the Rider through the portal to the mirror world. The American adaptation Dragon Knight actually added more, by having the characters' normal motorcycles transform along with them when they became Kamen Riders. The Riders also have awesome real-world bikes during non-spandex time. There's an awesome scene near the end with six Riders, finally on the same page - even The Hero and the Evil Twin! - riding out of M.I.B. headquarters unmorphed as a Cool Bike-riding, cool jacket-wearing squad, ready to kick butt and take names.
- More bike awesome from KRDK: Mirror world bike chase. The sneaky Torque found out that Xaviax is too smart for The Starscream, and new The Dragon, polite but sociopathic Strike, is hunting him. Torque rides for his life, and on the street, it looks like a guy riding crazily for no reason. Only we can see that in the reflections in doors and windows, Strike is right on his tail. Torque eventually thinks he's lost Strike, when several stories up, the reflected Strike emerges into reality and drops in right behind him.
- Faiz has the Autovajin, which can transform into a robot with its own AI; in this form one wheel is a Gatling while the other is a jetpack and its handlebar becomes Faiz's Laser Blade. Its highest-priority directive is not "obey Faiz." Kaixa's Side Basshar turns into a walker mecha with tons of missiles that can deploy even more missiles. Delta doesn't get a unique bike, but he's usually associated with the Jet Sliger, a rocket- and weapon-laden behemoth every Rider apparently has but only he really uses. (Faiz has one, but it gets blown to scrap in its introduction episode during a battle with Delta. Kaixa presumably has one if the other two do, but it is never summoned.) Also, its wheels are spheres, and it can travel sideways if desired.
- The BOARD Riders' bikes can all channel the power of the Rouze Cards, allowing the Riders to use them for special attacks. Chalice's, like the later Dragon Knight, is an ordinary bike that changes when he does.
- Hibiki is the subversion; he gets a completely unmodded Honda Valkyrie Rune (see below under Real Life). This presumably plays into the fact that Hibiki, unlike his fellows, is not a Badass Biker. (He's certainly a badass. He just can't ride all that well.)
- Kabuto and Gatack have their own custom machines (Kabuto and Gatack Extender) which can transform into more battle-oriented forms, Kabuto's gaining a battering ram and Gatack's turning into a flying hoverboard; they're also affected by the Riders' Clock Up systems. The other Riders simply get slightly customized versions of the common Machine Zectron bike.
- All the bikes in Kamen Rider Den-O double as the control units for their respective Cool Trains.
- Kiva's Machine Kivaa has the brain of a horse monster, turns invisible at high speed, and has an enhancement booster that nullifies wind resistance. It's also the only chopper-style Rider machine, and is generally awesome-looking. Ixa's Ixalion, despite the cool name, is simply a custom bike; Saga doesn't have a unique bike, but Taiga owns a Honda DN-01, which he never uses as Saga.
- Decade's Machine Decader can transform into past Rider machines via AttackRide cards; Decade changes it into the Autovajin in the first episode and the Side Basshar in the Grand Finale movie.
- Double's HardBoilder is modular, its rear half being swappable with jetski and flight wing attachments; it's also armed (machineguns in all forms, plus torpedoes for the water form). Accel is his own Cool Bike, and can combine with the sentient tank Gunner A for combat situations (he also owns a red Ducati called the Diablossa which he uses as a civilian). Skull's SkullBoilder is essentially the same as Double's bike without the option parts.
- OOO's Ride Vendor, as the name implies, can change into a vending machine which dispenses can-shaped helper robots called Candroids. Interestingly, the Ride Vendor is mass-produced by OOO's support organization and anyone with appropriate clearance (and Cell Medals) can use one.
- Kamen Rider Core from the Double/OOO movie was a monstrous...thing made from the dark memories of all Kamen Riders powered up by a few Core Medals. It could turn the bottom half of its body into a flaming motorycle.
- Fourze's Machine Massigler, fitting with the show's theme of space travel, is shaped like a shuttle and is spaceworthy; the Powerdizer exoskeleton can even transform into a launchpad for the Massigler. Meteor has his own ride, the Meteorstar, which is styled like a satellite.
- Wizard's Machine Winger can combine with the Dragon Phantom to enhance the dragon's flight abilities, and more importantly act as a Restraining Bolt when it's being disagreeable.
- The cast of Kamen Rider Gaim all get bikes, with two models available: the Sakura Hurricane and the Rose Attacker. They have the ability to cross dimensions from Earth to the Helheim Forest and back once they get up to speed. There's also a third hoverbike model introduced later called the Dandeliner.
- Played with in Kamen Rider Drive, where Drive does not get a motorcycle but instead gets a Cool Car called Tridoron. The Rival Mashin Chaser and Drive's ally Kamen Rider Mach are the ones with the bikes; which are named Ride Chaser and Ride Macher respectively and can combine into a buggy-like vehicle called the Ride Crosser. Mach also has a full-fledged motorcycle theme going, using miniature Signal Bikes to transform and having a suit that looks like motocross gear. It's a breach of franchise tradition to deny the lead Rider a motorcycle, to be sure, but some fans have pointed out that the vehicles in some series were The Artifact anyway; which isn't the case here even if one isn't a bike.
- In Super Sentai and Power Rangers, most teams had at least one or two bikes. Some teams would get a full set of bikes for each member Sixth Ranger often being left out if there was one), while other teams only had bikes for certain members, forcing the others to ride on a sidecar equipped on one of the bikes or use a different vehicle. However, they were gradually phased out in the the late 90s and 00s in favor of more fantastical vehicles or upgrades to their mecha. This wasn't much of an issue for Power Rangers, where the teams mainly used teleporters in the early seasons and the bikes were only kept just for the toys. However, several seasons gave everyone (or almost everyone) a bike where Sentai did not.
- Power Rangers also had no less than five flying bikes, each for a single Ranger in its season (Wes, Cole, Hunter, Ethan, and Will). They'd transform from motorcycles to various types of flying gear. Funnily enough, they seem to be the one piece of gear exempt from the Protagonist Powerup Privileges, as the latter three went to The Lancer instead of the Red Ranger. There's also Carter's Trans-Armor Cycle, which turned into armor and extra weaponry.
- Whether it's cool or not is up to the individual, but the most unique bike was the one belonging to the Omega Ranger / DekaBreak. It was a motor-unicycle! And those actually exist, some looking quite like the one in the show. Also, Omega Ranger's/DekaBreak's Humongous Mecha is a giant motorcycle that other robots can ride.
- No Ranger in Power Rangers Samurai has a bike at all, or any vehicles for that matter, but their mentor Ji does. Mike even asks if he, as a traditional samurai, should have a horse instead; Ji only replies "Have you ever had to clean up after a motorcycle?" Though the lack of transport for the team kind of begs the question of how they would actually get to the battlefield.
- Then Came Bronson, a loner Walking the Earth action-adventure show starring Michael Parks that ran for only one season in 1969 and '70. He does his wandering on a 1969 XLH 900cc Harley-Davidson Sportster.
- Happy Days: The Fonz. In one episode, Richie acquires a bike of his own and asks Fonzie whether he thinks it's "nice". Fonzie's reply is the page quote.
- Street Hawk was a short-lived 1985 Knight Rider ripoff which used a (non-talking) super-bike instead of a car.
- Dark Angel put its Action Girl protagonist Max on a black Kawasaki.
- Spike gets one of these in Season Six of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
- Reno Raines rides one in Renegade.
- Tin Man : DG's ride of choice appears to be a vintage 40's era motorcycle. It's also implied by her interaction with Officer Gulch that she Drives Like Crazy on it.
- House MD series 2 has its medical diagnosis genius protagonist, Gregory House, buy a used 2005 Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade in Repsol race replica colours. He gets the bike at a good price as it's had an accident with very minor cosmetic damage that is not noticeable in later episodes. He adds to the coolness of the bike by stating its top speed as 180 mph, not 160 as presumed by his best friend, oncologist Wilson.
- In the Babylon 5 episode "Eyes", Garibaldi and Lennier assemble from parts a black 1992 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-11. Garibaldi thinks it's too bad they can't ride it since they've got no gasoline, but Lennier had the forethought to install a power source of Minbari design. Leading to a Crowning Moment of Funny when Ivanova says she's glad life on the station is back to normal ... then Garibaldi and Lennier go zooming by.
- In Crusade, Captain Gideon goes for a cruise through an abandoned alien city on a flying motorcycle, complete with shades and a leather jacket. He ends up having to use the jetcycle to evade alien Attack Drones that try to shoot him down, escaping only because his bike was smaller than they were.
- The Top Gear "1949" episode involves a race from London to Edinburgh (some 400 miles) in state-of-the-art vehicles of the time - Richard was ecstatic over choosing the legendary Vincent Black Shadow, but soon came to regret the decision over the long, long ride.
- In the last episode of iCarly: Spencer is restoring a motorcycle for Socko's cousin Ryder, a 1964 Sterling, which is actually a Triumph like Fonzie's, but when Socko and Ryder get in a fight Socko lets Spencer keep it, who then gives it to Sam.
- Sons of Anarchy is made of this trope. The titular bikers mostly ride custom Harley Davidson Dynas, with a few exceptions.
- CHiPs. 'Nuff said.
- While most of the main cast tend toward Cool Cars, Doug Penhall of 21 Jump Street instead rides a Triumph Bonneville.
- (The Great) Biker Build-Off takes the idea, two bike builders, and makes a competition out of it: Who can make the cooler bike?
- Ninja Turtles: The Next Mutation gave Raphael a motorcycle. Despite Master Splinter's disapproval of the thing (A roaring loud engine is NOT HELPFUL when you trying to be stealthy), the idea proved popular enough to be used in the second cartoon. See below.
- Every employee from Pizza has a scooter
- In Galactica1980 the colonial multicycles (motorbikes with flight capabilities) come achingly close, only to miss the target completely. Not unlike the rest of the series…
- The Light Cycles from TRON: Legacy, prominently shown on the cabinet side art.
- In Terminator 2: Judgment Day, the Terminator can be seen riding a Harley-Davidson Fat Boy during the video for "Chase Loop".
- The Bat-Pod in Stern Pinball's Batman, prominently featured on the sides of the cabinet.
- The Evel Knievel pinball shows Evel riding his famous Harley Davidson XR-750.
- The protagonist's futuristic bike in Space Riders, complete with tapered nosecone, tailfins, and rocket thrusters.
- Naturally, the various Harley Davidson pinballs feature Cool Bikes from the company.
- The first game includes a FXSTC Softail front and center.
- The original table from Sega Pinball has models of the FLSTS Heritage Springer, FLSTS Springer Softail, and FXDL Dyna Low Rider on the playfield.
- Stern Pinball's "2nd Edition" and "3rd Edition" releases use models of the 1999 FLSTF Fat Boy, the 2000 FLSTF Fat Boy, and the 2001 FLSTS Heritage Springer.
- Warhammer 40,000 is littered with cool bikes. And cool jetbikes. And cool two-wheeled daemonic engines of destructive horror.
- Macho Women With Guns has only three character classes ... and one of them is Motorcycle Nun.
- Steve Jackson Games' catalog once contained a fictitious entry for Kung Fu CB Mamas on Wheels vs. the Motorcycle Aztec Wrestling Nuns. Despite not actually being a real game, if it did exist, it would have had one side entirely on Cool Bikes.
- From LEGO:
- LEGO Technic and LEGO Racers have produced many fine and crazy bike sets.
- Millennia from Slizers had two forms, one of which was a large, wide-wheeled bike ridden by his small robot form.
- Robo Riders were bizarre, alien, motorbike-shaped Humongous Mecha. A strange but fine idea, however the even weirder execution (not giving them characterization and having the riders be the wheels... oh, and the wheels are also the ammunition) lead to the line becoming a failure because kids didn't know where to put the concept.
- The Furno Bike and Speeda Demon's ride from Hero Factory.
- The Destral Cycle from BIONICLE. So cool, it was the only one in their universe, and a villain stole it so that only he could ride it.
- The Nintendo 64 game Extreme-G is centered around racing impossibly cool bikes.
- In Everything or Nothing, the Q-Bike James Bond has.
- In Metal Gear Solid 3, EVA's BMW R75 with optional Cool Sidecar, and the way she drives it would put Evel Knievel to shame.
- The Triumph Bonneville ridden by Eva/Big Mama and the Speed Triples ridden by her subordinates in Act 3 of Metal Gear Solid 4; it helps that they're also real world cool bikes.
- Test Drive Unlimited 2 features three bikes as a new DLC pack, the Trope image Harley above and both a Ducatti Diavel Carbon and a Desmosedici RR that can pull off wheelies. Unfortunately, they require Atari Tokens to unlock. Meaning you have to pay real money for them.
- Being a game centered around a whole collection of badass bikers, The Lost And Damned has no shortage of cool bikes, ranging from classic 1950s/1960s-style Easy Rider and modern custom choppers to exotic Italian and Japanese crotch rockets.
- Final Fantasy VII, the bike chase after escaping the Shinra building
- Travis's bike, the "Schpeltiger", in No More Heroes.
- Wes from Pokémon Colosseum has a hoverbike monstrosity that could count as this. It even has a side car that his Espeon and Umbreon ride in (Rui takes the seat once he rescues her).
- It's just barely cool, but Michael in Pokémon XD has a scooter of his own that he drives around Orre. It eventually upgrades into a hovering model as well.
- The Brotherhood of Nod's attack bikes in the Command & Conquer: Tiberian Series are motorbikes, with rocket launchers attached to them.
- Final Fantasy XIII. Snow's bike is composed of not one, but two women called the Shiva Sisters, Styria and Nix.
- Final Fantasy VIII. The Galbadian Army doesn't use paratroopers. They use motorcyclists who ride out of the tops of buildings, then deploy jetpacks in mid-air.
- The Hoverbikes in X-COM: Apocalypse. Nothing like watching massive Flying Saucers fall down with ease before the might of a Hoverbike Swarm.
- While they end up being useless once you can build Goliaths and Siege Tanks, Starcraft's Vulture units definitely qualify.
- Trish in Devil May Cry and Lady in Devil May Cry 3 both have very cool bikes.
- Mercenaries 2 introduces several motorcycles, including one with mounted miniguns.
- Shadow the Hedgehog gives Shadow his very first motorcycle.
- Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing gives Shadow a second motorcycle as his standard vehicle.
- Mario Kart
- Mario Kart Wii introduced bikes to the series. Especially cool ones include the Sneakster, Spear, Wario Bike, and Bubble Bike.
- As part of a DLC pack for Mario Kart 8, Not only does Link join the roster, but there's also a new bike called The Master Cycle, which kind of resembles a horse. In German it's known as The Eponator.
- Mr. Grimm of Twisted Metal is always driving some variant of a weapon-equipped motorcycle. Always.
- Bayonetta gets to ride a Cool Bike for a little while midway through the game. Later, so does Jeanne when she rides up the side of a rocket to rescue Bayonetta and stop the awakening of Jubileus.
- Saints Row 2 introduced a selection of cool bikes, from Harley Davidson choppers to Japanese racing bikes. The coolest, however, would have to be the Kaneda, ride of choice for Ronin leader Shogo, which features neon trims and the ability to ride up walls.
- Full Throttle, a game about a biker gang's Bad Ass leader Ben, naturally features a variety of Cool Bikes. Ben's eventually gets the (limited) ability to fly, even.
- World of Warcraft: The Mekgineer's Chopper and Mechano-Hog in Wrath of the Lich King, then the Champion's Treadblade and Warlord's Deathwheel in Warlords of Draenor.
- Road Rash 64 has the "Insanity Mode" bikes named "Executioner" and "Hammerhead". Both bikes can travel upwards of 200mph. A skilled player can utilize their speed to jump over entire sections of some courses with them (including bypassing long winding turns and mountains). The Executioner appears to be a V-24 engine with wheels and a seat. The Hammerhead is a more high-tech bike that appears to have more of a jet engine. The bikes are, in fact, too souped-up for regular gameplay, but can be obtained from the beginning with a cheat device such as the Gameshark. In order to even hope to do well on most regular tracks with them, the player will have to lay off the throttle for most of the game. Jumping over a car at full speed may cause the bike to fly so far off the course that the player will not catch back up to the other racers.
- Yasha's Corvette from Asura's Wrath is a Jet Bike!
- Syndicate (2012) has flying jet bikes for the Aspari syndicate.
- The fourth boss of Lollipop Chainsaw, Lewis the Rock and Roll Zombie, has a bike that can transform into an elephant Mini-Mecha, at which point Nick stops caring about the weird shit he's seen.
- The Flare-S Swoop from Jedi Academy is a Star Wars version of a sport bike, with mounted blasters. In the Zonju V mission, the protagonist rides it in a fight/race to the death with the Star Wars version of Hells Angels.
- In Progress Quest, one of the playable races is "Enchanted Motorcycle", and it can get one of many Fantasy Character Classes. And since you fight just about every D&D monster in the game...
- In Kingdom of Loathing, playing as the Avatar of Sneaky Pete gives you access to Sneaky Pete's trusty motorcycle, which has a built-in AI and a soothing female voice. As you level up, you can trick out the motorcycle with a variety of gadgets. As for its name, that's up to the player.
- Robopon has Cycool, a robot motorcycle that you can drive around on.
- The SWAT Kats Cyclotron. Launches right from the Turbokat... Comes in both one and two seat varieties, has all sorts of weapons, fires miniature versions of a lot of the Turbokat's missiles. And it has a jet engine.
- Robin in Batman: The Animated Series rides one of these from time to time. He gets cool bikes across the DC multiverse.
- Biker Mice from Mars, where the Cool Bikes used by the protagonists were not only cool, and armed to the teeth, but sentient as well.
- From Code Lyoko, Ulrich's "Overbike". A mono-wheeled, flying bike with a reactor. Virtual, but certainly cool. It has a real-world close equivalent◊. Main difference is the color. (And that it doesn't fly, obviously.)
- In the later seasons of ReBoot, the virus Megabyte gets an upgrade from cool limo to Cool Bike, which is later acquired by Andraia. In her own words: "Now that is a nice bike!◊"
- Most people only remember the short-lived 80s toon Spiral Zone for the numerous armed bikes belonging to both heroes and villains.
- As the team's resident Badass, Raphael from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2003 had a bike.
- Both Prowl and Oil Slick from Transformers Animated. Prowl is a Japanese-style racing bike, Oil Slick is a positively demonic looking chopper.
- Arcee's vehicle form in Transformers Prime, loosely based on her live-action film incarnation, which was in turn loosely based on her Energon incarnation (times three.)
- David gets one of these from Doc in Invasion America. You don't get much cooler than a bike that you pilot with your mind, and which doubles as a hovercraft.
- Danny Phantom: in the first draft Danny was supposed to ride a Harley and Johnny 13 does.
- The Tornado Z in Zorro Generation Z.
- Zooms bike The Chopper in Hot Wheels Battle Force Five, it is called this because it is both a motorcycle and a helicopter!
- Kai's sword of fire from Ninjago Masters Of Spinjitsu is revealed to be able to transform int an even cooler motorcycle, the Blade Cycle.
- M.A.S.K had several: Condor, Piranha, Vampire, Iguana and Bullet.
- C.O.P.S. Highway's Bluestreak Motorcycle and C.R.O.O.K.S. Air Speeders.
- The Spider-Cycle from Ultimate Spider-Man.
- Following suit from the original Batman animated series, Robin from Teen Titans rides one.
- Motorcity: Chopper Mutt in the finale.
- Legends Of Chima has the Speedorz, one wheeled motorcycles that make the sound effects of their tribe's beasts.
- In the Grojband episode "Soulin' Down the Road", Mina rides a motorcycle with a sidecar.
- In the Poet Anderson: The Dream Walker short, all of the main Dream Walker characters have one.
- Although all bikes are generally cool, there are some models that are quintessentially cooler than the rest. They tend to have the name "BMW" (Eg: the R90/S, the K 1200R, R 1200R and the R 1150R Rockster), "Triumph" (namely the Bonneville, the Daytona, and the Speed triple), "Ducati" (Particularly the Monster) or "Harley Davidson" on them.
- The Can-Am Spyder built by BRP. One look at it will tell you why.
- Subverted though in that since it's technically a trike, certain motorcycle enthusiasts mock Spyder owners for "wanting to ride a motorcycle, but they don't actually get a motorcycle". Also in some states, you don't need a motorcycle license to ride one.
- "MV Augusta's" F4 and Brutale bikes. They only make a handful of these per year, by hand.
- The BMW R75◊ and Zündapp KS-750◊ couple from World War II were more about utility than coolness, yet they were the workhorses of the Wehrmacht, they had an automobile-like powered rear axle, locking differentials, offroad gears and usually could go where no sane driver of a Jeep or Kubelwagen would ever attempt to.
- The modified "Indian" Scout used by Burt Munroe at the Bonneville salt flats; it still holds the land speed record for motorcycles under 1000cc.
- Most Indian motorcycles of the late 1930s to the early 1950s, but above them all the Indian◊ Four◊. One can hardly be more Diesel Punk than that.
- Henderson four-cylinder◊ motorcycles were among the earliest brands to hit regularly 100 mph in full road trim, which made them the favorite brand of police forces in the 1920s. Before Harleys, Moto Guzzis or even Indians.
- The "Vincent" Black Shadow
- The Y2K bike, due to it being powered by a jet turbine from a helicopter.
- Enclosed motorcycles, for those who like a more futuristic look, like the Peraves Monotracer or the TECA Technologies concept bike◊.
- The Honda Valkyrie Rune◊. Oh, the Honda Valkyrie Rune...
- Dodge Tomahawk◊. It uses the exact same engine that the Dodge Viper sports car does. What sort of engine is that, you ask? A V-10. A very high-displacement V-10. Unfortunately this makes the bike a case of Awesome but Impractical, as the weight and size of the engine meant that it had to have 4 wheels and the fuel tank had to be mounted way at the front to avoid the heat the engine gives, and has a fuel economy figure of about 60 feet to the gallon.
- You could be forgiven for believing it safer to just take the warhead off a missile and ride that instead. (It'd probably still be just as safe with the warhead left in place.)
- Bimota's Tesi line of motorcycles, especially the Tesi 3D◊, with its much sleeker looks compared to its predecessors - The idea behind the design seems to be to put as much emphasis on its two-wheeled-ness as possible without impairing its functionality as a speedbike.
- The unique front suspension (technically called a hub-center steering system) also serves a practical purpose: the traditional front suspension, consisting of telescopic forks, have a constantly varying rake (degrees from vertical) as the bike pitches forwards and backwards, which can upset the bike's handling. The hub-center steering system maintains a constant rake, preventing this.
- One does not talk about cool bikes without mentioning a Confederate.
- The 1999 Suzuki Hayabusa is the only street-legal motorcycle in the world capable of going faster than 300kph. The main reason for this is because in 2000 all the motorcycle manufacturers agreed to install safety measures to prevent bikes from going above that when they realized that few people can safely handle bikes going faster than that.
- The MTT Turbine Superbike, which is one of the few commercially jet engine motorcycles. As cool as this sounds, with its 320 shaft horsepower engine and aggressive looks, it's subverted in the sense that it's really loud, produces jet wash, and its something of a Dancing Bear in the land of motorcycles.