How Long Do Honda Magnas Last? 6 Examples

The Honda Magna is a legendary cruiser manufactured by Honda between 1982 and 1988, and once again from 1994 to 2003.

It’s powered by Honda’s V4 engine, derived from Honda’s racing V4 machines. And even though it’s only a 750cc displacement, the bike’s engine packs the punch of a 1400 or 1500 of the same class.

But it’s an older bike, and it’s been taken off the market twice, enough to leave you wondering, how long does the Honda Magna last?

Here’s the Short Answer to How Long a Honda Magna Lasts:

The Honda Magna can run flawlessly well past 100,000 miles, and since most cruisers are ridden for an average of 3,000 miles a year, a well-maintained Magna could last well past 30 years. The Magna was released three decades ago, and there are well-kept 1982 models still running strong.

How Many Miles Do You Get on a Honda Magna?

As with any bike, a Honda Magna’s longevity depends on its previous owner’s attention to maintenance, but a well-maintained one can last for more than 100,000 miles without issues.

One rider I encountered in my research bought a 1994 Magna with 49,000 miles on it with a shade windshield, crash bars, and new tires on her for just $2,400. The bike ran so well he clocked another few thousand miles on it.

Another owner bought a Magna with 69,000 miles on it and claimed he roasted another 18,000 miles of pavement with it and that it still runs flawlessly.

On a Honda motorcycle, mileage is less relevant than regular service maintenance, so make sure you pry into the bike’s history if you’re in the market for a new Magna.

What Is Considered High Mileage for These Models?

People may bat an eye at a Honda Magna with over 100,000 miles on it, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the bike isn’t solid. Again, the important thing is how well the previous owner or owners maintained the bike.

Here’s an example; a rider in Illinois bought a third-generation Honda Magna because a friend of his had a Magna with 98,000 miles on it that was still crushing concrete daily.

The friend clocked a few tens of thousands of more miles on it before he finally sold it.

The bike was in such an excellent condition that he sold it without any problem with 114000 miles on the odometer. And the rider who has it presently reports that they have 142,000 miles on the bike and have still had zero issues.

How Many Years Does a Honda Magna Typically Last?

The Honda Magna is a cruiser motorcycle, and a cruiser is typically ridden for around 3,000 miles a year.

Based on that figure, one can logically conclude that a bike that stays reliable for 100,000+ miles can last for 30+ years if it is well maintained.Why does the Honda Magna last so long?

The Magna gains its power through RPM. It runs and accelerates smoothly at as low as 1500 RPM, which means the machine parts within its motor aren’t super stressed.

It isn’t as strong as one of the V-Twins in its displacement class, but it doesn’t have the flywheel mass that comes with the V-Twins generating force inside its transmission either.

As soon as the revs accumulate, the Magna leaps ahead of those other middleweight cruisers, allowing it to get ahead and then dial back done to a low-stress RPM to keep cruising.

It is geared a bit lower than other mid-weight cruisers, giving it high power capacity on the highway and providing quick passes without downshifting, putting less strain on its transmission. Its shaft drive also provides smoother shifting and less wear and tear.

Please also read our article about how long the Honda Fury lasts.

Is the Honda Magna Reliable?

Magna riders celebrate, even boast about their Magna’s reliability.

The owner of a 99 Magna claims he’s never had an issue, even though it’s quick off the line, and states that it pushes all the way redlining and holds there for aggressive riding even after all these years.

He also celebrates the aesthetic of his motorcycle, believing that even though it’s a 99, its design has endured the years and still looks better than most other bikes on the road. And in my opinion, it looks better than most new bikes.

His bike is two decades old now, and he said that it could still pass for new, both with looks and performance, to the point that he truly believes he’ll never have to buy another bike.

Another owner of a 1998 Honda Manga put 6,000 miles on it, and that’s after the previous owner put 18,000 miles on it. He gives little doubt to how reliable the bike is with claims that regular maintenance is the only secret needed to clock miles on his Magna for another decade.

Does a Honda Magna Last Longer than Other Motorcycles?

Most cruisers are intended to last between 60,000 and 75,000 miles

And since the Magna is known to keep its performance peaking well past 100,000 miles, it’s safe to say that it does last longer than other motorcycles.

What are some of its longevity secrets?

The 1982 model revved onto the moto-market with robust characteristics.

It could attain velocities of 80 miles per hour, a big deal for a 750 back then, and the 1983 edition hit 150 miles per hour without trying; both owe their effortless, metal-stress-free power to their liquid-cooled V4 engines and their six-speed transmissions.

The first generation Magnas utilized shaft drive technology that not only creates a clean and quiet cruise, but a shaft drive lasts much longer compared to the chain and belt drives on other motorcycles and endures a significantly slower rate of wear-and-tear with less maintenance.

With its sturdy and stunning redesign, the 1987 Magna shocked the market yet again.

The tires and wheelbases were all larger, meaning they’re not working as hard, contributing to its longevity.

Another advantage is the Magna’s clutch—it’s equipped to tolerate extended slipping as soon as you hit the throttle.

That said, unlike early Magnas, the more recent version had a chain final drive, which transfers power efficiently, but requires more clean-up and adjustment and makes a bit more noise. This means that the transmission of the newer version is more like other motorcycles, even if the longevity of the V4 motor is still more than that of a V-Twin.

Make sure to also read our article about how long Honda Rebels last.

What Typically Breaks First on a Honda Magna?

According to the owner of a 1983 Honda Magna, his Magna’s dry rotting fuel lines were the first problem he ever had with it, and that wasn’t an issue until the bike was 37 years old. Dry rotting rubber is normal and comes with age, and 37 years is an impressive number.

Once the fuel lines rotted, he couldn’t get it to run, with limited fuel flowing to the carbs, even though the fuel pump was pumping fuel precisely, even at wide open throttle.

However, when idling, he claimed it would die when he hit the throttle unless he pulled the choke out. The rider admitted that he let the bike sit for a few years with stale gas, and stale gas can evaporate to cause gunk to clog the fuel lines and throttle.

After replacing the gas and rebuilding the carbs, the Magna owner discovered he had dry rotted fuel lines and that a piece of rubber from the inside of the fuel line broke off and lodged itself inside the carburetor, negatively affecting its idling.

Also read our article about how long Honda Gold Wings last.

12 Great Tips to Make Sure Your Honda Magna Will Last Long

Here are tips to remember to improve the longevity of your Honda Magna:

  1. Inspect the tire health frequently. It’s best to replace the tires when you mark a shift in the bike handles or once the tread wears down to marked bars. Under-inflated tires will blister and may fail. Over-inflated tires will struggle to grip the road as steadfast as normal.
  2. Inspect and top or replace engine oil. Keep your transmission and engine lubricated and avoid engine damage of all sorts by changing the engine oil according to the frequency outlined in the owner’s manual.
  3. Always keep the air filter clean. Dusty roads during windy weather can clog the Magna’s air filter quicker than you think.
  4. Adjust the clutch accurately, as needed. The clutch cable of your Magna should have the precise amount of free play.
  5. Service your engine routinely. Hit your Magna with a tune-up, not only to ensure the engine continues to run like the day you bought it but to lessen your Magna’s fuel consumption.
  6. If you have a recent generation Magna, maintain the transmission system’s chain. If you fail to keep your Magna’s chain lubricated, excess heat will wear and tear it to the point of irreversible damage. Increasing wear on all the separate links loosens the chain, increasing the likelihood that it will fall off the sprockets but also causing damage to the gears.
  7. Clean the bike regularly. Keeping it clear of debris and salt makes it look nice, which increases your drive to ride the bike, and a sitting bike is an unhealthy bike. Cleaning your motorcycle helps maintenance and makes noticing loose nuts and bolts before they cause trouble much easier.
  8. Maintain your bike’s battery. Intermittent maintenance guarantees a longer battery life.
  9. Maintain your brakes. This will extend the life of your rotors, and tightening or loosening brakes are dangerous for you and your Magna both.
  10. Check the fork and fork oil. Change your bike’s fork oil once every 15,000 miles.
  11. Check the sprockets. Replace them as soon as you start to notice wear.
  12. Ride your Magna. Again, a sitting bike is an unhealthy bike. Regular use keeps buildups from occurring, ensures the battery is charged, and lets you notice any nominal issues before they cause more expensive and time-consuming trouble.
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