“Mythbusters” set out to answer the question, “Are motorcycles greener than cars?” and the answers they came up with might shock some people. According to Adam Savage, host of “Mythbusters,” “People are trading in their cars and driving motorcycles instead because they believe that’s the most environmentally friendly choice.”
Savage and his co-host Jamie Hyneman decided to put the theory that motorcycles are a greener option to the test by selecting three motorcycles and three cars that were popular over the past thirty years. One motorcycle and car was selected from each decade of the ’80s, ’90s and 2000s, however the makes and models of the vehicles were not disclosed.
Each car and motorcycle was then put through a test to determine emissions and fuel-efficiency. Each vehicle ran through a 30-minute, 20-mile course while equipped with a portable emissions-measuring system.
The results of the environmentally friendly test were not in favor of motorcycles. In fact, Savage said, “At best, it’s a wash. Motorcycles are just as bad for the environment as cars. At worst, they’re far worse.” The reason behind motorcycles not being a greener option is because the emission controls for motorcycles is lagging behind that of cars.
The cost to place more emissions controls on motorcycles could possibly double the price of the bike. John Swanton, an air pollution specialist with the Air Resources Board, said of the emissions policies regarding motorcycles, “Our strategy with motorcycles has always been to control them to what’s cost effective and technically feasible, and that’s always lagged behind cars.”
“Mythbusters” determined that motorcycles were not a greener option, however they did come to the conclusion that motorcycles were more fuel-efficient than cars and emitted less carbon dioxide. But they noted that the motorcycle tested from the 2000s did emit far more hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide into the air than the car tested from the same decade. Even though it is better on gas, motorcycles are not the most environmentally friendly option out there.
via LA Times