OK so the lead image might confuse you a bit but it was too good not to use. Yes, in Japan and in some European countries there are companies that use Honda Goldwings fitted with trailers to tow cars.
Anyway, back to reality.
There are times when you need to transport your bike, rather than ride it.
Whether you’ve just got the trackday bug or are into motocross, or whether you’re a serial bike buyer or restorer or indeed you’re going away and you’d rather clock up the miles on four wheels and save the bike for the fun roads. Whatever the scenario. – if you can’t ride it on the road, a trailer is a great solution.
If you’ve ever done a track day the chances are the paddock is full of ERDE motorcycle trailers. They’re one of the most popular makes; they’re built well, priced well and are easy to tow thanks to their low centre of gravity.
But there are other good makes out there too and in this showcase, we’ve done the research to review all of the motorcycle trailers for sale in the UK. If we’ve missed one off this list, give us a shout.
What’s the best bike trailer?
This depends on the bike you need to move and your budget. If it’s a big touring bike you’ll need to buy a heavy-duty motorcycle trailer which will be built with higher quality components to deal with the load.
You also need to think about how many bikes you’ll be towing. Most trailers have a minimum load of 200kg and some of the larger ones will carry around 600kg. Some of these higher-load-rated trailers can carry two and sometimes 3 bikes, meaning you could carry a few MX bikes, a couple of sportsbikes or one Harley.
For the DIY expert
If you fancy yourself a bit of a DIY expert and have the time on your hands, you can get plans to make a collapsible trailer for a tenner on eBay. You will need to buy all the kit and materials and make sure you know what you’re doing otherwise you could end up causing an accident or damaging your bike. Or both.
Made from high-quality galvanised steel and with a max weight of 750kg, you can transport a variety of bikes with this trailer. Equipped with EU standard front marker and fog lights, 1000kg max weight tyres and an additional bonus of a telescopic jockey wheel, walk up ramp and bike ramp. £985.
For £945, the MotoLug SE is assembled without using tools and ideal for those who need a trailer but don’t want a fixed one taking up valuable space. A uniquely designed hitch system allows you to run the bike up, attach the front wheel in an upright position to leave you handsfree to strap the bike down without additional help. Complete with UK or EU certified lighting, loading system, 8” wheels (with the option to upgrade to 10”), it has a max weight capacity of 350kg making it suitable for most bikes.
ERDE is a French trailer manufacturer and they make a wide range of trailers for leisure and agricultural use. They’re well made and popular. They sell three different motorcycle trailers in the UK and the PM310 is their cheapest option but perfect for anyone towing a single motorbike up to 240kg. It sits just 38cm from the ground, giving it a low centre of gravity. It has six securing loops to help you strap your bike down. You’ll need to buy the ramp separately at around £60.
Custom made trailers with plenty of options, including wheel size and type of trailer. The Deluxe Range Single Bike trailer is £419 with a max capacity of 300kg and 8” wheels. Made from heavy-duty British steel, featuring 190mm wide channels, removable lightboard, loading ramp, four tie-down points, security locking feature, and adjustable taper roller hubs. A good deal for a low price.
A compact pulling option this side loading trailer is practical and lightweight with back supporting legs to store it upright in a garage when not in use. Taking a max load of 225kg, it comes with ramps, handlebar, seat post ratchet straps and a hitch lock. Additional features may be added at a cost.
Motorcycle Trailer Buying Guide
They may all look the same, but trailers differ in design and build. So what do you need to look out for? Here are some top tips:
Road laws: UK road laws state that all trailers must have a number plate, lights and indicators. If your trailer did not come with lights, you could easily fit some yourself for minimal cost.
Manoeuvrability: Choose a trailer that is easily attached to the transporting vehicle and one that is light enough to move around for storage when not in use.
The trailer body: Trailers can be welded or bolted. Welded trailers should have quality finished welds which are not sharp or splattered. Bolts that are tack welded on are better quality.
Ramp: Make sure they aren’t too short, or you could scratch your bike. Ramps should fit securely to the trailer while you are loading your bike. Click here for our motorcycle ramp guide.
Wheel channel: The wheel channel should be wide enough to fit your bike’s tyres.
Finish: Whether you choose galvanised steel for its rust-resistant properties or a more straightforward painted finish, make sure there are no sharp edges or areas where rust can form underneath.
Securing your bike: A trailer should have durable ratchet strap eyes to keep your bike secure along with a sturdy front wheel hoop. Some trailers come with front-wheel holders for more reliable loading.
Another motorcycle trailer image that was too good not to share. This is possibly the only way you can make a Ducati 998 worse at touring.
If you've never towed with a trailer before, it's not that difficult. Watch a couple of Youtube videos but definitely go out and clock up some miles with an empty trailer before you load the bike up and head out for the first time.
Remember if you're towing a trailer, you can't go in the outside lane on the motorway.
Check your trailer's tyre pressures before you set off
Your braking distance will increase when you're towing your motorcycle
Motorcycle Trailer FAQs
Am I allowed to tow a trailer?
If you passed your car driving test on or after 1 January 1997 you can: Drive a car or van up to 3,500kg maximum authorised mass (MAM) towing a trailer of up to 750kg MAM. Or tow a trailer over 750kg MAM as long as the combined MAM of the trailer and towing vehicle is no more than 3,500kg.
If you passed your car test before 1 January 1997 you’re usually allowed to drive a vehicle and trailer combination up to 8,250kg MAM. View your driving licence information to check. You’re also allowed to drive a minibus with a trailer over 750kg MAM.
What’s the speed limit for towing a trailer?
60mph is the maximum speed on a motorway or dual carriageway. On A-roads with an NSL you should stick to a maximum speed of 50mph.
What lights do I need on a trailer?
You have a legal obligation to ensure that your trailer has the appropriate lighting. All trailers must be fitted with: Two red sidelights, two red stoplights, two red reflective triangles, amber indicators that will flash 60–120 times per minute
Does your trailer need a number plate?
Yes, by law, any trailer being towed on UK roads needs to have an illuminated number plate that corresponds to those on your car.
How do I connect a trailer to my towing vehicle?
You will need a professional to fit an EU Type Approved tow bar to the back of your car. A good place to start is somewhere like Halfords; they will make sure that the tow bar is right for your car and that it’s installed and wired correctly.