Mopeds, Scooters and Motorcycles: 50CC V.s. 125CC – Which one?

Last updated 12. November 2018


Is it time to decide between a 50cc and 125cc motor?

Many people reach this stage and become confused. It’s not easy to make a positive decision and feel good about it without prior knowledge of what’s best. Here’s a look into some of the core qualities of a motor and what each variation has to offer in terms of benefits.

Core Qualities and Variations of Motors

1) Power Output

Let’s begin with the power output as that’s important in most situations.

If power is the only thing you’re looking for (i.e. ability to pump fuel into the engine) then it has to be the 125cc option. This is going to provide a lot more power and you’ll be able to access it in milliseconds.

The 50cc variation is a tad slower when it comes to pushing out power and that can be disconcerting for enthusiasts.

2) Affordability

Each person is going to have a unique perspective about what’s affordable and what’s not. Of course, you want a “bang for your buck” deal as do most people. Therefore, affordability is going to come into the equation and it’s important to know which one does well in this particular comparison. With the 50cc motor, you are going to get less and that’s going to make it far more affordable as a buyer. However, you are also sacrificing in other areas, which is something to note down.

Are you willing to take the hit for an affordable purchase?

Many people don’t mind taking a little off the top while saving money in the short and long-term. If that’s not important to you then the 125cc is a good option. It is far more expensive but you also get the additional qualities that are important to your riding experience.

speeding scooter on a silent street

3) Speed

Want to ride without having to feel restricted?

Speed-related issues are common with mopeds, scooters, and motorcycles because people want something straightforward. They want something that is easy to get going and will be able to push through when it’s time to race.

If you love to race around from point A to point B then the 125cc version is an ideal fit. It’s going to be able to crank out more power and as a result, it’ll be faster as well. The 50cc motor can still move but it’s going to feel restrained in comparison to the 125cc option.

4) Fuel Efficiency

Saving on gas is important when it comes to an investment such as this.

The 50cc motor is going to take less fuel to run and that is where money can be saved. In fact, a lot of people can vouch for how much money can be saved with the smaller motor. However, you are also going to get a restricted motor that doesn’t provide the thrills you may be hoping for.

It’s all about knowing what you want or don’t want from the motor. Once you figure this out, the decision becomes that much easier.

5) Ability To Carry Multiple Passengers Without Reduction In Quality

This is one of the more ignored qualities when it comes to choosing a motor.

If you’re going to be carrying two people every single day, it makes sense to get more power out of the motor. Otherwise, you will feel like you’re riding on thick mud without getting anywhere. It can become a frustrating experience at the best of times!

However, if you are riding on your own most of the time, why not go with the 50cc motor and save a bit of money?

6) Beginner-Friendly

Beginners are going to want something that’s easy to manage and will allow them to get from place to place. If that’s the case then a 50cc motor will do fine. It is ideal for beginners and isn’t going to waste fuel.

While the 125cc can pack a punch, which is overwhelming for those who don’t want that much power in the first place.

driver's gauges on speed and acceleration

7) Acceleration

Just like the speed of your moped, scooter, or motorcycle, it’s just as important to look into the acceleration numbers. A 125cc motor is able to rush down a straight line much quicker than a smaller 50cc version.

Picking up speed is important and the 125cc blows away a 50cc counterpart.

8) State Regulations

The 50cc motor does a lot better when it comes to state regulations and this is an important point to note down. In some states, the 125cc setup is going to have detractors and that’s a difficult hurdle to deal with. In some cases, it is best to go with the 50cc motor because it’s going to pass the state law and isn’t going to lead to issues with CARB. Most scooters and mopeds are going to be approved by CARB, which is the gold standard when it comes to legitimizing a particular make or model. Looking into these details can bode well for your ability to buy the product and use it on the open roads without worrying about different regulations.


Final Thoughts

These are the details to look into when it comes to a moped or scooter.

However, the final decision is up to you because each person has their own needs. Some live in a restrictive state while others simply want something that provides endless power. These wants and needs are what define your choices.

Take your time to figure out what’s best and then move ahead with the purchase!

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