Sometimes it takes a while for the more important qualities of a motorcycle to really shine through

Side view of Ducati 999

Most of the time, as motorcyclists, we are drawn to the biggest, baddest, and most beautiful bikes money can buy. It’s about style, ride quality, 0-60 times and how other bikers see us. Some people like Panigale, H2, etc. But sometimes unexpected things happen that we are not used to. These bikes went on sale and made their day, but when the manufacturers decided they weren’t doing well, they would be taken out of the race.

But I also noticed that this bike has a certain uniqueness to it. It’s not uncommon to see cheap bikes on the market, but it usually takes a lifetime to really see their value. Until then, you can only get used ones. However, some products have passed this test and continue to perform well in the market. Bikes like Suzuki’s GSX series are still on the market, but the taboo here is another reason.

10 Kawasaki ZZR600

Stock studio image of a 2007 Kawasaki ZZR600 red sport bike facing right on a white background.

Apart from the stunning H2 and ZX series bikes, today’s Kawasaki models are known for their comfort and practicality. That also applies to the ZZR600. Despite this “shortcoming,” the ZZR600 was a fast bike. The 14,000 red line was nothing to scoff at, and twisting the throttle to get past 4,000 rpm was downright insane. I wonder why the ZZR600 is not selling so well, but the reason may be the slightly playful curvaceous design. However, thanks to that, it became possible to buy a used ZZR600 quite cheaply.

9 Honda VFR1200F

Honda VFR1200F front three quarter studio shot

The Honda VFR1200F turned out to be a victim of its own hype. Advertised as a revolutionary motorcycle, the VFR1200F failed shortly after its launch. Mind you, this is a great bike, but there are a lot of missing components for a bike of this caliber. Low purchase value due to lack of electronic driver assistance devices. Most of these devices are already standard equipment on most competitors, making VFR a bit outdated for its time. If these shortcomings could be overcome, the price would be considerably higher. But being a used bike, the VFR1200F is a bargain considering it comes from the trusty Honda stable.

8 Yamaha YZF-600R

Yamaha YZF-600R front three-quarter view

The YZF-600R is another classic example of a well-selling bike. Called the Thundercat in the European market, the bike never caught the attention of the public, probably due to the bike’s large and bulky construction. The 600R could now be used on the track, but was primarily used for sport touring, allowing him to carry more than two packs without feeling restricted. Overall, the 600R was a beautiful touring machine. Of course, we had to check some components, such as the brakes, which are prone to seizure in winter. However, the bike’s engine is designed as a workhorse and can easily cover a few miles without major issues.

7 Triumph Daytona 675

The Triumph Daytona 675 is no longer in production, but it’s still one of the best sportbikes

Somehow people forget that Triumph isn’t just known for retro Bonnevilles and Jungle Safari Tigers. This British manufacturer was very versatile in its product range with models such as the Scrambler and Streetfighter. But the best thing that ever came out, or at least the most beautiful in our eyes, was the Daytona series. It might actually be disrespectful to say the Daytona has been so underrated, but the fact that it’s no longer in production speaks volumes. Its latest and final form, the Daytona 675, was one of the few bikes that worked surprisingly well out of the box.

6 Honda CB1100R

Honda CB1100R in red and white, facing right

Built in 1981 as Honda’s first homologation special, the Honda CB1100R never really officially made it to the States. Unlike a lot of the others on this list, the Honda CB1100R did fairly well in terms of sales. What took away its fancy, however, was the oddball design. It’s a mix and match of curvy surfaces on square lines, something a lot of the motorcycles of the 80s displayed. The bike itself was a game changer for Honda, but it also marked the end of an era as its successor the RC30 came around in 1987.

5 Honda RVF750 RC45

Rear three-quarter shot of the Honda RVF750 RC45

For years since its launch, the Honda RVF750 RC45 was looked down upon by riders, and who could blame them considering the exorbitantly high price it launched at. And if that wasn’t all, the RC45 was also fairly unsuccessful at the track, except at the Isle of Man TT. It wasn’t a very fast motorcycle even by 1994 standards. But where it lacked grunt on the track, it scored points in reliability on the streets. The RC45, today, has reached collectors status and experts believe that even if regular service intervals haven’t been maintained, the V4 engine continues to remain bulletproof. Good luck getting your hands on one, though. It is believed that Honda has only ever made 578 units of the RC45, so prices in the used market have soared ridiculously high.

4 Suzuki GSX-R600

Press photo of the 2023 Suzuki GSXR 600

This should be an easy one. Unfortunately, all of Suzuki’s GSX series bikes take a bad rap thanks to the riders that they tend to attract. The bikes they ride, however, are wonderful machines built to spec with racing in mind, especially the GSX-R600. In its new 2023 iteration, the R600 comes loaded with a number of features and functions, not to mention improved performance and dynamite styling that perfectly resonates with the rest of the GSX lineup.

3 Suzuki 1200 Bandit

Tracking picture of the Suzuki 1200 Bandit

First of all, all of the Bandits tend to get lumped in together as essentially the same bike. The Bandits, like the GSX series, also attract hooligans. That is a surprise seeing as how different the two bikes are. The 1200 Bandit, by itself, is another one of Suzuki’s brilliant bikes. Now, of course, Suzuki’s intervals for updating their motorcycles are fairly lengthy, and the Bandit has remained pretty much the same since its launch save for some emissions-based updates and a few other tweaks here and there. Eventually, the bike generated a cult following and while not especially expensive, the Bandit is fairly difficult to find used now.

2 Aprilia RST1000 Futura

A right side profile of the Aprilia RST1000 Futura

Another sports tourer worth mentioning on this list is the Aprilia RST100 Futura. Launched in 2001, the Futura featured Aprilia’s then-new V-twin family, including the Mille Sportser. The Futura was of course fairly radical for its time thanks to its slick design complete with angular fold lines in the metal work that ran throughout the body. But this was also where opinions diverged. People complained that the 60-degree V-twin engine didn’t match the Futura’s design which already wasn’t Italian enough. The bike, however, did boast exquisite performance and quality components. Unfortunately, low sales led to the sports tourer being discontinued just two years later in 2003.

1 Ducati 999

Ducati 999 in red, front three quarter shot

One of the most questionably underrated motorcycles of its time was the Ducati 999. With the Ducati 916 ruling the roost in Ducati’s lineup for almost a decade, the Ducati 999 had some big shoes to fill. Despite the 999 being a far superior machine in any of its guises, styling is what made a lot of people cringe, at least at the time. Take a look at the big, burly mirrors for example which stuck out like sore thumbs, and the stacked headlamp design which was new for Ducati. Off the street and on the track, however, is where the 999 shined thanks to its beautifully performing components.