If your child wants to start riding dirt bikes, it can be daunting to find the right one. It’s not just about picking a bike and giving it to them, and you need to know what type of engine you need.
Then, there’s your child’s height. Every 13-year-old grows at a different pace, so if your teenager wants to start, it’s better to start them off right.
Kids tend to grow quickly, and teenagers aren’t an exception to this. If you get a dirt bike that fits right, you’ll know that your child will ride comfortably and gain confidence quickly.
But, you don’t want to think that getting a size up will be better for your child. If you get a dirt bike that’s too big for a 13-year-old, they might have difficulty controlling the bike.
The last thing you want is for your teenager to hurt themselves just because you wanted to save a few quick bucks.
With these factors in mind, we’ll help guide you through what you should look for when buying your 13-year-old their first starter bike.
A successor to the Honda CRF230F, the Honda CRF250F is a 250cc engine dirt bike that’s great for beginners.
It’s a heavier model, but it has a low seat that improves your center of gravity. It has an electric start and a 250cc engine which should be regularly oiled.
The suspension requires some improvement, but it’s a great starter bike for your teenager.
- Low Seat – Improves the rider’s center of gravity.
- Electric Start – You don’t have to worry about kick-starting the bike, so you don’t need to warm it up. You just have to turn the key in the ignition to go.
- 250cc Engine – It’s got a powerful 250cc engine that’s torque-based. It’s relatively easy to maintain, so long as you remember to keep it oiled.
- Weight – It’s a heavier bike, but it shouldn’t be an issue for casual riders. If your 13 year old is taller, they shouldn’t have difficulty controlling it.
- Suspension – You will still feel any shocks in the trail, but this is more of an issue if your teen plans on going faster. It’s great at slow speeds, but it does get a little rough when you start pushing the limits.
If your 13-year-old is a more cautious rider, then the Razor MC650 might be a good fit. It’s quiet, which makes it a good choice for going around the neighborhood, and it goes up to speeds of 17mph.
It’s electric, but there have been some complaints about the battery, and the suspension isn’t great, so if your 13-year-old is a complete newbie, this might be a good choice to get them accustomed to riding.
- Quiet – It’s a quiet bike, so you don’t have to worry about your 13-year-old getting intimidated by it.
- Easy to Assemble – You don’t need any extreme technical know-how to get the Razor MX650 running, so you shouldn’t have to worry about getting a specialist.
- Speed – You can go to speeds of 17mph and beyond, but this is dependent on the rider. If your 13-year-old is more cautious, this is a great way to get used to riding.
- Batteries – There have been some complaints about the battery life of the Razor MX650, with many reviews complaining that the battery dies quickly or doesn’t charge properly. So it’s definitely something to keep an eye on.
- Suspension – This depends on where you ride it, but the Razor MC650 isn’t suitable for rough terrain and can handle light bumps, but you shouldn’t try to push it too much.
The Yamaha TTR-230 is a great trail bike with an electric start, but it doesn’t have an emergency kickstart. Thankfully, the battery’s easy to locate.
It is a heavier trail bike, but it doesn’t feel like it with the low center of gravity. The TTR-230 has a 223cc engine with 20 horsepower, so if you’re getting to grips with trails, you’ll have a consistently smooth ride.
If you’re using it on the trails, it’s better not to try any jumps as it’s not designed for high-speed racing, even if it does handle well.
- Electric Start – You don’t have to worry about kickstarts at all, and you can quickly locate the battery behind the side cover on the right side of the seat if there’s an emergency.
- Low Center Of Gravity – The TTR-230 is a small bike, and it makes it easier to control, and it gives beginner riders more confidence when it comes to balancing.
- Engine – The engine is 223cc with 20HP. It’s not a powerful engine, but it’s consistent and offers you a smooth ride on the trails.
- Weight – It’s a heavier ride, but you wouldn’t think it with the lower center of gravity. The only times you’ll feel it is when you push it along.
- Suspension – This isn’t designed for aggressive riders, so if you want to do any jumps or high-speed racing, the Yamaha TTR-230 won’t be for you.
If your 13-year-old wants to start racing, then the KTM 85 SX might be the best bet. KTM is known for their fantastic race bikes, and the 85 SX is no different.
With a 85cc engine and a six-speed transmission, this bike can go to speeds of up to 65mph. It has a lightweight and stable chassis which helps it reach higher speeds.
However, it’s not the most durable bike, so it’s better to be used for races. If you do look into the KTM 85 SX, it’s also important to note that maintenance is costly, as it’s designed for those who have professional aspirations.
- Lightweight – The KTM 85 SX is designed for racing, so it’s a lightweight bike with a stable chassis.
- Engine – It has a 85cc engine, which is light, and has a six-speed transmission.
- Speed – This is a bike that’s specifically designed to win and can go up to 65mph.
- Durability – This isn’t designed for trail riding, so I wouldn’t recommend using it on those journeys. You might do more damage to the light chassis by going into the wrong environment.
- Costly Maintenance – Designed for up-and-coming racers, you’ll want to make sure that you can afford the maintenance.
The X-Pro 125cc is a dirt bike where you’re sure to get some bang for your buck. Designed to be affordable yet fast, it can go up to speeds of 60mph, depending on the rider’s size.
It even has a semi-automatic clutch for your 13-year-old if they’re worried about transferring to a 125cc bike.
This definitely comes in handy because this has a mighty torque-based engine. However, even with these qualities, the bike isn’t the most durable, and there may be some issues further down the road.
It does require some effort when kick-starting, as it is pretty stiff, but overall, it’s a good bike for its price.
- Speed – It can go up to speeds of 60mph, depending on the rider’s size.
- Semi-Auto Clutch – If your kid’s uncomfortable with 125cc bikes, they’ve installed a semi-automatic clutch to make the transition easier.
- Engine – It’s powerful and torque-based, and customers have described how it packs quite a punch.
- Durability – There have been some complaints about the bike’s durability and its gas tank, so it might not last for as long as you’d like.
- Kick-Start – Even adult riders have commented that the kick-start is much stiffer than expected from a children’s bike.
When you’re buying your 13-year-old a starter bike, you need to keep a few things in mind. Every teenager learns at a different pace, and some 13-year-olds have been riding from a very young age.
It’s essential to consider both your kid’s size and personality. Some kids are more adventurous, and others are a lot more cautious.
Depending on this, you need to consider whether your child can handle the bike you give them. If they’re small for their age, it’s better to get them one that fits.
Don’t get them one that’s too big for them, or they may struggle to control it, and you don’t want them to hurt themselves.
If the bike is too small for them, they might find it too uncomfortable and could do some damage to their legs or their back.
It might seem like a good idea to get a larger bike to save money in case they grow out of it quickly, but it’s not worth it in the long run.
To know the size of dirt bike you need, you should have your child sit on the dirt bike. If their feet are flat on the ground while they’re sitting forward, then the bike will be too small.
However, if you stand up, and you’re struggling to keep your balance and are on your tip-toes, then the bike will be too big.
The best height is when you can put one third of your foot on the ground. You’ll also want to be sure that the weight doesn’t impact the suspension.
Then there’s the engine. Each engine goes for different speeds, and there’s no surefire way to know what your 13-year-old will prefer.
A 250cc engine is incredibly powerful, so you shouldn’t get one of those for your teenager unless they’re tall for their age.
Even then If your child weighs under 150 pounds, you shouldn’t go beyond a 250cc engine either, or they won’t be able to control it.
Overall, they should have an engine that’s either 125cc or anywhere in between that and 250cc. This way, you can keep an eye on their learning level.
You also might want to know where your kid will be planning on riding it. If they’re going to go on trails, they won’t want to get a racing bike, and vice versa.
Both types of dirt bikes have different specialties and are designed for very different things. If they want to ride on trails, they won’t need as powerful an engine or the same types of speed.
Then, if they’re going to race, they won’t want a heavier dirt bike, or they won’t be able to pick up speed. These are all factors that need to be taken into account.
When compiling this list, we took these into account as we looked at the most suited dirt bikes, even considering affordability.
Depending on the type of dirt bike and how passionate your child is about riding, you might also want to consider this.
If your child wants to try it, you might not want to pay too much, and you could even look into getting secondhand dirt bikes. Many secondhand dirt bikes are available, even for the types we have here, located on eBay.
If your child is a complete beginner, you’ll also want to ensure that they have the right gear. Protective gear is essential to making sure that your child will be able to learn in a safe environment.
Dirt bike gear is crucial to ensuring your 13-year-old is riding safely, so make sure you invest in a helmet, goggles, knee and elbow pads, MX boots, a chest protector, jersey, pants, and a neck brace.
It doesn’t matter where your kid is riding, they’ll ultimately need the right gear to make sure they don’t hurt themselves.
With all of these factors in mind, your child should become more comfortable and confident with whichever type of dirt bike they choose to ride.
It’s also important to note that not all dirt bikes are road legal, so it’s ultimately a good choice to do your research on the laws in your state regarding making a dirt bike road legal depending on the type of dirt bike your teenager will have.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Size Dirt Bike Should I Buy For My Child?
You should get a 110-125cc dirt bike for a child between 12 and 14 years old, and a 150-250cc bike for a teenager between 14 and 17 years old. However, this is dependent on your teenager’s size.
What Are Your Concerns?
When deciding on a new bike, your size really matters to your overall safety and comfort on a dirt bike.
What Factors Should I Look For In A Dirt Bike?
When it comes to picking the perfect dirt bike there are several factors to consider such as your riding experience, height, and weight.
What Is The Difference Between A Kid Size Dirt Bike And An Adult Sized One?
A kid size dirt bike will have a seat height that will range anywhere from 18″ to 34″ with engine displacement varying from 50cc to 150cc.
What Is The Best Bike For Beginner Riders?
If you choose a bike that has too much power or is too tall can be extremely dangerous, especially for those who are learning.
However, those who select a bike that is under powered or too cramped and uncomfortable for taller or more experienced riders.
What Is The Best Dirt Bike For First-Time Riders?
If you’re buying a bike for a new rider who is less than 5 feet tall, you’re going to want a dirt bike under the 110cc range.
What Are The Best Dirt Bikes For Smaller Riders?
For those who weigh 150 pounds or fewer, it might be smart to work with something under 250cc to get accustomed to the bike’s height and weight.
What Is The Best Dirt Bike For Beginners?
Smaller displacement dirt bikes have less power and are much easier for beginners to handle.
What Size Dirt Bike Should I Buy?
If you’re just starting out on a dirt bike then it’s always best to go with a smaller displacement motorcycle.
What Do I Need To Be Safe On A Dirt Bike?
Always wear the correct protective gear before you even throw your leg over any dirt bike.
Make sure you invest in quality gear, especially dirt bike boots, a helmet, pants, gloves, MX goggles, and jersey to ensure that you are always safe.
What Are The Benefits Of Wearing Safety Gear?
In the past decade, the technology in motocross safety gear has grown significantly, allowing racers to feel more comfortable and have more fun.
What Do I Need When Buying A Helmet?
The helmet must have a chin strap type retention system. It also needs to be properly fastened, a good fit, and be in good condition.
What Are The Benefits Of Body Armor?
Body armor can help protect your core from an impact injury by spreading the impact over a wider area.
What Are The Benefits Of Motocross Racing?
It teaches discipline, maturity, the importance of preparation, goal setting and the satisfaction that comes from reaching your goals as well as dealing with the disappointment of working hard but coming up short.
What Are The Safety Rules MX Racing?
There is a simple rule in motorsport racing: Dress for the crash, not for the ride.