Twisted Road Is Sort Of Like Uber For Motorcyclists

This new peer-to-peer service gives you wheels around the world

Ari Henning
Ari renting a bike from Twisted Road.Seth Richards

Twisted Road, a new online peer-to-peer service, enables users to list their own motorcycle for rent or borrow someone else's bike—in their own neighborhood or across the country. If the service catches on, it could make riding a motorcycle more financially feasible for a younger generation that tends to shy away from ownership.

A decade or two ago, the notion of, say, honeymooning at a complete stranger’s condo would be kind of creepy, but the popularity of Airbnb, Uber, and other peer-to-peer services has normalized the culture and created an industry that commoditizes private ownership. It was only a matter of time before a motorcycle service would (ahem) gain traction.

twistedroad.com
A screenshot of twistedroad.com, a new peer-to-peer motorcycle rental service.Twisted Road

A 2013 article in The Economist says, "It is surely no coincidence that many peer-to-peer rental firms were founded between 2008 and 2010, in the aftermath of the global financial crisis. Some see sharing, with its mantra that 'access trumps ownership,' as a post-crisis antidote to materialism and overconsumption."

I don’t know about it as an antidote to materialism, but for motorcyclists, Twisted Road gives licensed riders the chance to get on the road without the associated costs of owning that machine. For those looking to rent, it’s as easy as choosing a bike (searchable by brand, location, or price), meeting the owner to grab the keys, and then, at the end of the day, returning the bike with a full tank of gas. Visiting Southern California on business? Want to grab a bike to ride the canyons for a day? Twisted Road makes it easy.

Twisted Road
Twisted Road users can discover bikes by location.Seth Richards

Owners listing their bike will receive 70 percent of the rental price and Twisted Road covers damage up to $15,000. Listers can review potential renters’ rider history before tossing them the keys. Renter information is verified using state motor vehicle reports. The only catch is, in addition to a license, users must also have a motorcycle insurance policy, implying that they own their own bike. The rider’s policy would cover any damage to a rented motorcycle. Twisted Road’s coverage acts as extra insurance for the rental owner if the rider’s claim is denied.

Twisted Road Rental
Twisted Road rentalTwisted Road

While it’s an exciting prospect to give younger riders who can’t afford their own motorcycles the chance to hit the road and catch the biking bug, the fact that renters are required to have a motorcycle insurance policy, negates that possibility. For younger riders used to couch surfing and Uber-ing, renting someone else’s motorcycle for a Saturday morning ride with friends is tantamount to renting shoes at the bowling alley, but without the need to bring a tube of Lotrimin. Twisted Road is on to something. If only “The Man” would step aside.

Got a garage full of bikes you aren’t riding? Would you consider listing them on Twisted Road? Let us know in the comments section below.