Test Ride — Can-Am Spyder

Can-Am Spyder

Can-Am Spyder

I recently took the Can-Am Spyder for a spin and offer my impressions on this reverse trike.

The cool-factor of this three-wheeler is unmistakable.  You know you are going to have a fun ride, like climbing onto a snowmobile or WaveRunner.  The ride is nothing like being on a motorcycle, and is far more like riding a quad.  (In fact, in California and other states you don’t need a motorcycle license to drive the Spyder.)  You must turn the steering wheel, and leaning does nothing.  That made it a little awkward to ride at first because I kept trying to lean into the turns.

The Spyder’s 990cc Rotax V-twin engine is plenty fast, taking me from zero to 60 in what I assume was around the promised 4.5 seconds.  Like riding a go-cart, the perceived speed is higher than the actual speed because you ride so low.  At 60 I felt like I was going 80, and was wishing I had taken the time to learn the controls before “flooring” it, especially when I reached for the right hand break control that wasn’t there. 

The Spyder is a kick to ride, no doubt about it, but I would never swap my bike for the Spyder if I had to decide which I was going to ride on a steady diet.  It doesn’t ride like a motorcycle nor offer that same sense of freedom.  And you can’t lane split!  If I wanted to sit in a line of traffic with the plebes, I’d drive my cage.  Think of it more like riding a WaveRunner.  It’s nature demands pushing the envelope, not just sitting back and enjoying the ride.  At a price of over $15,000, the Can-Am Spyder is for people with too damn much money who need yet another toy to generate an adrenaline rush.

4 Responses to “Test Ride — Can-Am Spyder”

  1. $15,000 are you nuts? If I have lots of money laying around maybe I would consider. BTW, good conbination, beer, butts and bikes..

  2. Apt review, but you really shouldn’t compare it to a motorcycle. With traction control, ABS, stability control, etc, it is really more of a car than MC. I’m thinking of getting one, but for me the alternative is not a MC, but a little convertible like a Miata. Is this vehicle? I say its cheap compared to a car, and probably so much more fun!

    Sure there’s no lane splitting like with a MC, but there’s probably also a lot less chance that someone will look right at you and pull out in front of you anyway. I was once in a car with an avid motorcylcist and he did this to another MC (unintended of course, as he was distracted whilst we talked).

    In the end, this vehicle may not be your mug-o-beer, but its a damn good thing that everyone in the world doesn’t want the exact same things. Cheers!

  3. I have 09 steetglide, but due to ankle surgery I may not be able to ride. So I would like to know what you can do for me.

  4. All I can do is offer my heartfelt condolences. But it seems that the Can-Am Spyder or a trike might be good choices if you have a gimp leg, since you never need to support the weight of the bike. That’s what I plan to do if the stilts ever stop working. I once saw a guy walking very slowly out to his Goldwing trike using a walker. When he got there, he folded up the walker, slipped it into a special bracket on the side of the Goldwing, and roared off into the sunset. Ride to Live, baby! Get that Street Glide converted.

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