British people introduced the motorcycles in Sri Lanka when they were ruling Sri Lanka.
"The first motorcycle arrived in the island on January 20, 1903. Mr. C. Hahn of Messrs Bohirnger & Co. was the first person to introduce the motor cycle to Ceylon. These early motorcycles were belt-driven from the engine to the rear wheel and had only one speed and pedals were used to start it.
The first motorcycle ride to Kandy and back was undertaken by Mr. Fred Nell, the founder of Colonial Motors on a 'Noble' machine. His trip to Kandy and back in a day was a great achievement."
Later English motorcycles were imported by Sri Lanka riders in the early years.. Most of them were English makes namely Norton, BSA, Royal Enfield and Triumph and they were very popular here till 1960's. These English motorcycles had gear lever located in the right side of the engine. They had choke and half compression facility for easy kick start. Some models had gear levers that were operated by hand.
Then in the Japanese Honda motorcycles were introduced in the 1970s. In the beginning the small motorcycle with less sound and gear changing levers on the left side didn't attract much attention against the British models. But then the Government allowed importing used motorcycles from Japan, and the Honda's 90CC motorcycles became a hit. Then the people were looking for less priced motorbikes from Japan with different engine capacities. After this Yamaha, Kawasaki, Suzuki and other companies started to open their marketing expansion here in Sri Lanka.
Anyhow Honda took the lead and all the other companies including the British too lost their market. to Honda. Then the Indian makes with the Japanese names like Hero Honda, Kawasaki Bajaj, and TVS-Suzuki started to enter the Sri Lanka market. Sudden changes in the used motorcycle import and the rising new Japanese motorcycle prices turned the Sri Lanka youngsters towards the less priced Indian made motorcycles.
Still Sri Lanka riders consider that the Honda Hornet, CD 200, CD 185 and CD 125 are best motorcycles. Still lot of them is running here with little modification and immaculate condition and their original exhaust sounds.
Currently India made motorcycle such as Bajaj Pulsar, Suzuki Gixxer, Yamaha Fazer, TVS Appache and Royal Enfield are very popular here in Sri Lanka.
In the year 2015 Sri Lanka is having nearly 2.9 million registered motorcycles in usage. Sri Lanka allows up to 250CC motorcycles only for the general public. For racing event the Government allowed the import 650 CC and 1,000 cc engines with the condition that will not be allowed to run on the public roads.
Sri Lanka police have 650 CC motorbikes that can be used to chase law violating drivers in the country's express ways.
In Sri Lanka you can witness Annual Motorcycle Shows, motor cross racing and hill climbing races.
You can read about the motorcycles that are called as popular, super, top 10 and dream motorcycles in the riders' world. It can be a cross country machine, cruise, speed star, highway rider or GP model. Read More
Here you can find the local and International motorcycle show and motorcycle related events information. These shows make links between Motorcycle enthusiasts, manufactures, dealers and media people. Read More
Top Selling Motorcycles in Asia region are here. This list didn't count on the Indian made machines although India got many special bikes. We will look at them in another sector.