Though adventure biking isn’t something we have been able to do a lot of lately, it doesn’t change the fact that adventure bikes are growing increasingly popular in the UK.
Providing a fantastic mix of versatility, fun and an abundance of style, adventure bikes really are becoming the steed of choice for many bikers, plus they don’t perform too badly in the oh so glorious British weather!
The downside, however, is that a lot of these bikes do carry quite a heavy price tag, not everyone is going to have a spare £18/19 grand to spend on an all singing all dancing motorcycle. However, manufactures are more than aware of this and have some great affordable options available. This list will comprise of our absolute favourite adventure bikes you can buy for less than £10,000, so let’s get started!
First up is the Benelli TRK 502 X
After a complete restyling in 2020, the TRK is the first of our adventure bikes under 10k. Being A2 compliant this is a great option for most riders looking to get their on and off-road thrills on a budget. New features such as adjustable handlebars with new back lit switch gear, seat and aluminium swing arm with central mono-shock make this an obviously attractive option for new and experienced riders!
The 500cc liquid cooled engine will provide around 47bhp and 46Nm of torque so you'll have plenty of power to play with, especially for an A2 motorcycle! A newly refined exhaust system places the pipe in a higher position allowing you to tackle even the most uneven road surfaces comfortably.
In terms of looks this one is definitely eye-catching – a host of sharp lines look great in any of the four colour ways available, so you definitely won’t feel out of place against any of the bigger boys. Prices start at £5,299 for this extremely budget friendly and awesome motorcycle.
Next up is the Honda CB500X
One of the most budget friendly and accessible options, the CB500X is fully A2 compliant making it a fantastic choice for most riders. It hasn’t got quite the same power as some of the bigger boys on this list but rest assured because it’s 471cc 2-cylinder engine provides plenty of go. Honda have also included a couple of nice components including a slipper clutch and pre-load adjustable suspension.
Like a lot of the more premium adventure bikes on the market, the CB500X is a fantastic all-rounder, both touring and commuting are done with ease, as well as riding on rougher surfaces such as gravel, although it may struggle in slightly tougher and more challenging terrains.
All in all, the CB500X is a great option for all riders, especially those just starting out in adventure riding, either way for £6,119 there really is a lot to love about this one!
3rd on our list is the Kawasaki Versys 650
The Versys 650 is the budget friendly adventure bike from Kawasaki. Boasting a 650cc liquid cooled parallel twin engine the Versys will produce 64bhp and 64Nm of torque – it may not sound like much compared to some of the more premium options, but you’ll be surprised by the punchy power this one delivers.
Like most bikes from Kawasaki, the overall look and build quality is absolutely brilliant – available in 3 colour options (grey, white and green), Kawasaki have done an awesome job infusing their renowned sporty aesthetics into an adventure bike which makes for a totally stunning machine.
There are some optional extras available on the Versys 650 including ABS and heated grips, but keep in mind these will increase the price. As standard though expect an adjustable screen, larger mirrors, indicators and a rubber mounted engine to stop vibration, so any long journeys will be nice and comfortable! Starting from £7,349 this is a great price for a brand-new adventure bike, especially as this one includes that legendary Kawasaki badge!
Up next is the Ducati Scrambler Desert Sled
Now, you might find this one to be a bit of a curve ball, but the Desert Sled is one of our favourite motorcycles from Ducati and it’s placement on our list is fully deserved! Noticeably different from most modern adventure bikes you will find on (or off) the roads, the Desert Sled pays homage to the off roaders of the 60s and 70s.
Similar to the other models in the Scrambler range, the Desert Sled boasts a stunning stripped back design which looks fantastic, however here you will find increased ground clearance and adjusted suspension purposely designed for handling rougher terrain, the frame has also been reinforced for larger impacts. On top of this, switchable ABS, knobbly tyres, protective plates and large mudguards are all thrown in making this retro two-wheeler a fully-fledged adventure machine.
This is a non-intimidating option for new riders looking for a versatile motorcycle to carry them through, expect to pay towards the top end of the budget though at £9,995, but let’s be fair, it is a Ducati!
Coming in next is the KTM 790 Adventure
Introduced back in 2019, the 790 Adventure is the baby brother to KTM’s 790 Adventure R. Although this one does favour the road, it certainly doesn’t shy away from the off-road action, as KTM themselves say, this one has KTMs off-road genes built within making it an awesome budget option and a MUST for this list.
This model has a 799cc liquid cooled parallel twin motor, which will put out 95bhp and 88Nm of torque. According to KTM you can expect to achieve around 280 miles between fuel stops, allowing for plenty of exploring! Weighing in at only 189kg you can be confident that you will have full control of this machine both when riding and manual handling.
As you would expect, it comes fully equipped with some lovely tech for you to enjoy, including cornering ABS, specific road and off-road settings, a TFT dash, motorcycle traction control and smartphone connectivity. As an optional extra you can have BOSCH electronics that allow for different engine modes, including a Rally variation.
Although usually priced at a smidge over £11,000, the KTM 790 Adventure is currently on sale at £9,799 – act quick if you want this for a great deal!
Suzuki V-Strom 650
Hailed as ‘The Ultimate do-it-all’ from Suzuki, the V-Strom 650 is a value for money machine that will provide a fun riding experience in all environments.
A 645cc, liquid-cooled V-Twin engine will keep the V-Strom going through all terrains, whether it be everyday commuting, back road twisties or off-road exploring, you can be confident throwing this about (nice and safely of course!). Front and rear disc brakes provide strong stopping performance, other nice components on this one include the Advanced Traction control system, low RPM Assist and the Suzuki easy start system.
This really is a fantastic bike, and the fact it only costs £7,049 makes it an absolute bargain, not to be missed! So, if you are a fan of adventuring and of Suzuki – this is the bike for you!
BMW F850 GS
The F850 GS is BMW’s mid-range entry motorcycle to the adventure market, but make no mistake, this is still a serious bit of kit. The F850 offers all the same versatility as it’s bigger brother, both on the roads, as a commuter and off the beaten track as a fully-fledged adventure bike. An 853cc in-line twin engine puts out around 95bhp offering very good performance, especially with a lower kerb weight of 229kg.
The base model (which admittedly does start at a smidge over £10k) comes with lots of tech as standard, including ABS, automatic stability control, multiple rider modes and an on-board computer. For the shorter riders out there, the F850 offers a low seat option at 835mm, plus a suspension lowering kit bringing it down to 815mm.
A sport version, including heated grips, dynamic traction control and suspension adjustment, is also available but expect to see the price bumped up.
Royal Enfield Himalayan
I’m just going to come right out with the price on this one – the Royal Enfield Himalayan is a certified STEAL at £3,999. This motorcycle follows in Royal Enfield’s traditional offerings – it’s a stripped back bike that won’t offer loads of fancy bells and whistle, but rather focuses on the pure enjoyment of taking your bike off the beaten track.
Being A2 compliant, the Himalayan is accessible to most riders and with a 410cc engine (that puts out 24.5bhp) you can expect to reach speeds of 75mph very comfortably - just don’t expect it to get there as fast or as smoothly as some of the others on this list.
Where this one really comes into its own is where it matters though and that’s adventuring. The Himalayan is built for all roads and will handle itself extremely well - it really is a bike that can handle any muddy green lane you throw at it.
The main selling point is that great price of £3,999 and that's what makes it's pure value for money! So, if you are looking for a bit of fun on a tighter budget then this could be the option for you.
Yamaha Ténéré 700
This truly is an adventure bike made to impress. Released back in 2019 the Ténéré 700 is the rally bred adventure bike that has it all, the looks, the performance and the premium feel that will please any biker from novice to pro – as most Yamaha’s do.
The Ténéré’s aesthetics are distinctive and forceful, which is something quite unique in the modern adventure bike market. A compact instrument pane, switchable ABS and a slim long fuel tank really highlight its rally inspired nature, and a double-cradle, tubular steel frame, short wheelbase and slender body give quite a minimalist feel. It’s agile, lightweight and comfortable enough to challenge most off-road landscapes easily.
The Ténéré is the bike that will cover huge distances comfortably and effortlessly and is the perfect penultimate pick – prices start at £9,147!
Hot off the press the all new Triumph Tiger 850 Sport secures the final spot on our list
Built to be perfect in all environments the 850 Sport is Triumph’s new base model for the Tiger range, housing the same 888cc engine used in the Tiger 900, you can expect 84bhp and 60ft.lb of torque. Triumph have provided the power earlier on in the rev range making the ride easier to handle, whilst also making it better to ride in towns and cities, so it’s definitely worth considering for your daily commute. For any newer riders on the A2, don’t worry you can purchase one of these with an A2 kit from Triumph.
Tech wise, Triumph have sprinkled some lovely components into this model, but I’m sure that’s no surprise – a 5 inch TFT dash, riding modes, ABS, switchable traction control, LED lighting, a power socket to charge your phone, all as standard, and of course there are plenty of optional extras to choose from – but again this will pump the price up.
Other nice components on the Tiger 850 Sport include Brembo Brakes and adjustable Marzocchi suspension so you can rest assured the ride is going to be nice and smooth whether you are riding to work or into the unknown! The Tiger has been made to fit you, adjustable bars, screen, two seat heights and a lovely comfortable upright seat position allow for a confident ride that won’t be intimidating.
This new Tiger boasts a striking aesthetic, sharp lines and sleek curves from head to toe that are set to catch and impress the eye – it certainly looks good clean, but I imagine this one has been designed to look even better when muddy! Prices for this stunning and versatile all-rounder start from £9,300 so get it while you can!
The last word
So, there you have our favourite adventure bikes for under £10k! Which one would you pick? What’s your favourite adventure bike of all time? Do you currently ride an adventure bike? As always let us know in the comments!
If you do have the budget and are looking for something over that £10k mark then make sure you check out our top 10 adventure bikes list! We've got some cracking picks for 2021!