Celebrating The Motorcycle Brands That Shaped the Industry

Imagine this: you’re surfing the web and you get lost down the Wikipedia rabbit hole (you know the one), and you come across a website with a database of nearly every motorcycle brand ever made. The records date back as far as the early 1900s. What do you do?

  • Do you buy a license to said database and then embark on a journey to update the information, dive deep into the history, and create a one-of-a-kind motorcycle history archive?
  • Do you dig into which brands from history made the biggest impact on the modern motorcycle?
  • Do you invest in having people spend quality time researching, investigating, and digging into the brands that helped make motorcycles grreat?
  • … all of the above?!

Well, if you’re wBW… “all of the above” is of course that’s what you do!

This ongoing project is our way of preserving and honoring where the Powersports industry came from, and the innovators and companies that are driving it forward. We know that it is isn’t complete, and it may never be – but we are committed to adding to it every month. If you think we’re missing something… let us know!

Updated August, 2020

Most Popular Motorcycle Brands

aprilia motorcycles


Aprilia was founded directly after WW2 as a manufacturer of bicycles, moving to scooters and motorcycles in 1968. Today, Aprilia enjoys success in the competitive sports and adventure bike segments, as well as competing in a variety of motorcycle racing championships.

bmw motorcycles


BMW Motorrad was created as a wholly-owned subsidiary of BMW in 1921, to handle building motorcycle and aircraft engines. The first BMW motorcycle was the boxer-engined R32 in 1923, and the company has enjoyed strong European and worldwide sales ever since with a variety of engines and motorcycles.

ducati motorcycles


Ducati Motorcycles was formed in 1953, when the Ducati company split into Ducati Elettronica and Ducati Meccanica SpA. They are well known for their powerful, large L-2 and L-4 engines known as Desmodromic engines. These engines have been used by Ducati for nearly 50 years.


harley davidson


Known as the “American Classic,” Harley-Davidson was founded in 1903 in Wisconsin, USA. One of the two major American brands to survive the harsh Great Depression, the company has built a reputation for its cruiser and bagger-touring style motorcycles featuring large-displacement V-twin engines.

honda motorcycles


Honda motorcycles have been a mainstay of the Honda Motor Company since 1955. The Honda Super Cub is its most popular and longest-running model, having been produced since 1958 with a total, to-date run of well over 100 million units, making it the most produced motor vehicle ever.

indian motorcycle

Indian Motorcycle

Founded in 1901, Indian Motorcycles has had a tumultuous history, being the only other American motorcycle manufacturer to survive the Great Depression next to Harley. Today, Indian is famous for their modern take on classic styles, with a variety of touring and cruising models.


kawasaki motorcycles


Kawasaki Heavy Industries was started in 1878, as a producer of maritime equipment and vessels. Kawasaki began motorcycle manufacturing in the late 1960’s and today, their bikes are famous for being nearly bulletproof, and many of their models being friendly for new riders.

ktm motorcycles


Through a very complicated series of events, the informal company started in Mattighofen, Austria in 1934 became KTM AG in 1992. KTM is now one of the largest European producers of motorcycles, and are world-famous for their nearly indestructible off-road and adventure bikes.

royal enfield motorcycles

Royal Enfield

Royal Enfield of India is the second company to bear the name, with a transfer of license from the original Royal Enfield of England in 1968. It is famous for having the longest in-production model in the world, with the Bullet first being produced in 1901


Suzuki Logo


Suzuki Motors was a transformation of the original Suzuki Loom Works company in 1954, after the textile industry in Japan collapsed. The motorcycle arm of the company rapidly developed powerful and small engines, and today is known for powerhouse motorcycles like the Hayabusa and the GSX-R1000R

Triumph motorcycles


Triumph Motorcycles is the largest UK-owned motorcycle manufacturer in the world, after purchasing all the rights and models from the defunct Triumph Engineering. They are famous for their standard motorcycle model lines that use triple-cylinder engines, known worldwide as “Triumph Triples.”

yamaha motorcycles


Yamaha Motor Company was formed in 1955 as an associate company of Yamaha Corporation, which still holds the majority voting stake in the company. Much of the development of their motorcycles is derived from motorsports, which shows with exceptional supersport models such as the YZF-R1.

Motorcycle Brands by Country of Origin

American Motorcycle Brands

american motorcycle brands

When most people think of American-made motorcycles, they think of heavy iron and chrome machines from Harley and the like, but American motorcycle brands – including Harley Davidson – have been constant innovators in the Powersports industry and have produced incredible sportbikes, touring bikes, and you betcha, cruisers.

Australian Motorcycle Brands

australian motorcycle brands

The Aussie’s love to hoon anything with an engine, and motorcycles are no exception! There have been numerous great motorcycles build down under, and some innovative brands with interesting ideas as well!

British Motorcycle Brands

british & english motorcycle brands

Brits love their powered machines, whether they’ve got two or four wheels, and their legacy in Powersports is both long-lasting and far-reaching.

Chinese Motorcycle Brands

chinese motorcycle brands

The Chinese automotive industry is rapidly modernizing and scaling, and the motorcycle industry is included in this momentum. With hundreds of millions of people to move, motorcycles are wildly popular in China and there are several excellent Chinese motorcycle brands serving the local market.

European Motorcycle Brands

european motorcycle brands

There are parts of Europe that have the ideal climate for motorcycling, and there are parts that are covered in snow for much of the year. Regardless, great motorcycle brands have sparked from all parts of Europe – probably because they’ve got fantastic roads to ride them on!

Indian Motorcycle Brands

indian motorcycle brands

As one of the world’s most populous countries, India is well-known for its love of the scooter and motorcycle. India has also created numerous innovative motorcycle brands, as well as is the country of claim for Royal Enfield – one of the most popular motorcycle brands in history!

Italian Motorcycle Brands

Italian Motorcycle Brands

Anything motorized and Italian is synonymous with speed, but Italian brands like Aprilia and Ducati really take that sentiment to the next level. Italy has produced some incredible motorcycle brands that themselves have created some amazing machines!

Japanese Motorcycle Brands

Japanese Motorcycle Brands

Japanese companies have created some of the most iconic, revered, sought after, and respected motorcycles ever made. Learn more about the Japanese motorcycle brands that have helped shape the industry!

Russian Motorcycle Brands

russian motorcycle brands

The world’s largest country has created some incredibly interesting motorcycles. See the complete list of Russian motorcycle brands, which yes, goes much deeper than Ural!

Spanish Motorcycle Brands

spanish motorcycle brands

With one of the best coastlines in the world, and with a climate that few would dare complain about, Spain is a country rife with motorcyclists. Given their relationship with the sun, is it no surprise that they have created numerous motorcycle brands?

Updated August 2020

Motorcycle Brands – Alphabetized





























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