Cruiser is the term for motorcycles that mimic the design style of American machines from the 1930s to the early 1960s, including those made by Harley-Davidson, Indian, Excelsior and Henderson. The market for models evocative of the early cruisers has grown to embrace 60 percent of the U.S. market, such that a number of motorcycle manufacturers including BMW, Honda, Moto Guzzi, Yamaha, Suzuki, Triumph and Victory have currently or have had important models evocative of the American cruiser.
The riding position on a cruiser usually, but not always, places the feet forward and the hands up, with the spine erect or leaning back slightly. Many "power cruisers" and Japanese cruisers of the 1980s have featured more neutral riding positions. Cruisers outfitted with luggage for touring are sometimes called baggers.
Many cruising motorcycles have limited performance and turning ability due to a low-slung design. Riders who enjoy cornering at higher speeds may need to customize to enhance lean angle, or start with a performance "power cruiser".
A motorcycle (also called a motorbike, bike, moto or cycle) is a two or three wheeled motor vehicle. Motorcycles vary considerably depending on the task they are designed for, such as long distance travel, navigating congested urban traffic, cruising, sport and racing, or off-road conditions.
Motorcycles are one of the most affordable forms of motorised transport in many parts of the world and, for most of the world's population, they are also the most common type of motor vehicle. There are around 200 million motorcycles (including mopeds, motor scooters, motorised bicycles, and other powered two and three-wheelers) in use worldwide, or about 33 motorcycles per 1000 people. This compares to around 590 million cars, or about 91 per 1000 people.
Most of the motorcycles, 58%, are in the developing countries of Asia – Southern and Eastern Asia, and the Asia Pacific countries, excluding Japan – while 33% of the cars (195 million) are concentrated in the United States and Japan. In 2006, China had 54 million motorcycles in use and an annual production of 22 million units. As of 2002[update], India, with an estimated 37 million motorcycles/mopeds, was home to the largest number of motorised two wheelers in the world. China came a close second with 34 million motorcycles/mopeds.