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Sidecars turn far differently than traditional motorcycles

Are you thinking of getting a motorcycle with a sidecar? Perhaps you like the stability of the vehicle, which has a wider stance and does not tip over as easily as a motorcycle. You see it as a safer alternative, while still giving you the sense of open freedom that you're after.

If you do get one, experts warn that sidecars and motorcycles react very differently on the road. Make sure you have plenty of experience before driving around other traffic. Do not assume, as many people do, that the sidecar is automatically safer and easier to use.

For instance, if you accelerate with a sidecar, it drags on the bike. This makes the bike turn toward the sidecar itself. If you do this too aggressively, the whole vehicle can flip in that direction. This is especially likely if there is no one riding in the sidecar.

When you hit the brakes, the opposite is true. The bike wants to naturally twist toward the side without the car attached. This can cause the bike to spin and slide, even if it does not flip. It is far harder to flip in this direction because of the weight of the sidecar, but this also means you need to use more steering force than you would on a traditional motorcycle.

Riding with a sidecar can be safe; you just need to practice and understand some of the unique challenges. You also face the risks all motorcyclists face from other drivers. If someone hits you and injures you, make sure you understand what options you have to seek financial compensation.

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