Why our used motorbikes really shine

We’re delighted when people come into our showroom and struggle to tell the difference between new and used motorbikes.
Buying a used bike is just as special as taking delivery of a new one and we put a great deal of effort into making sure our stock is top notch when it comes to quality, looks and maintenance.
Used motorbikes account for around a third of our total sales. Lots of satisfied customers keep coming back for more.
We know the full history of many of our used motorbikes having sold them new and serviced and maintained them ever since. Those we take as trade-ins, or buy, from elsewhere have to be top quality, low mileage and well maintained.
So how do we make sure our used motorbikes live up to, and often exceed, customer expectations?

  • All are sprayed with a degreaser to remove road grime and oily marks. Then they are cleaned with detergent in a hot pressure washer.
  • They are dried with compressed air to get rid of any water.
  • The comprehensive cleaning process shows up any issues such as parts that need to be replaced or paint chips that need to be touched up.
  • Expert valeter Stewart Wakeling will then spend several hours making sure the motorbikes look their best. Paintwork and plastics really shine after being treated with quality products we sell in the shop.
  • Once clean, the service history is brought up to date if the motorbike needs any maintenance. Tyres, brakes, chains and sprockets are replaced if necessary. The motorbike is also given an MOT if less than six months remain.
  • A PDI (pre-delivery inspection) once the motorbike has been sold includes a road test and putting a decent amount of fuel in large-tanked models and filling up smaller ones.
  • Customers are given a comprehensive handover, and have the controls explained to them, whether they collect the motorbike from the showroom or have it delivered to their home.

Director Rob Walters, who travels around the UK delivering used motorbikes to excited customers, said: “A lot of our used motorbikes are trade-ins and we may well have sold them new in the first place, and maintained them, so we know their history.
“We regularly see the same bikes coming back in as some people like to change them each year.”
With showrooms closed to customers, and a shortage of new bikes, because of Covid three years ago, we experienced nationwide, rather than regional, demand for our used stock.
Some people travel to the showroom to collect their used bike – it helps that the train station is a short walk away.
We deliver up to 80% of the used stock sold outside the region at very reasonable prices. We also deliver motorbikes locally, especially early in the year when people want them to remain clean until the riding season begins.
We now do a couple of long-distance deliveries, often multiple motorbikes, a week and bring back part-exchange models.
Older, high-mileage motorbikes and specialist machinery are traded out but we keep and prep suitable stock for our showroom. Sometimes we already have customers interested in certain trade-ins.
“All used bikes are unique which is why we sell them around the country,” Rob explained. “Someone wants a particular model, colour, price range and mileage.”
Because a lot of used models are bought from afar – we’ve even sent motorbikes abroad – we put a dozen pictures online and can do a video so the customer can see and hear the engine being started and running.
We’ve not had any customers disappointed when we deliver their used bike and many say it looks even better in the metal than in the pictures.
Check out our used motorbike stock, which is regularly updated, at orwell.co.uk/used-bikes-ipswich