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Motorcycles can give you a level of freedom that you cannot find with any other type of vehicle. On a bike you get to experience the open roads and fresh air. It’s wonderful until you realize that you do not have space for all your belongings and have to drive back to get your backpack.
A motorcycle tank bag is an important investment as it allows you to keep all your essential items with you at all times and gives you a surprising amount of space for your wallet, keys, smartphone and groceries. As with all vehicle accessories, the price and quality can vary quite dramatically, so choosing the best product can be pretty tricky.
In this guide we have researched a variety of motorcycle tank bags that suit all budgets and tastes, taking many important factors into consideration, such as quality, size and price. We have also highlighted what you should look for when buying this type of bag and also looked into alternative motorcycle bags that are made differently.
Keep reading to find out more.
The Best Motorcycle Tank Bag
This motorcycle bag is a really good value for the money and has been designed with a clever magnetic feature. That means that the bag fixes onto your motorcycle fuel tank using extra strong magnets. The bag is best used for motorcyclists who do not ride too fast as it does not contain any straps. However, what this magnetic motorcycle tank bag does contain is a non-slip bottom that is scratch resistant and keeps it firmly in place without causing any damage to your tank. The magnetic tank bag has been manufactured from 1680D polyester and has an expandable cargo with a zipper and clear map pocket so you are able to look at your map without having to remove it from the compartment.
9 x 8 x 5.1 Inches
Clear Map Pocket
- Weight0.16 ounces
Good Value For Money
2 x Year Warranty
One of the features that we like the most about this tank bag is that it is expandable and can hold between 39 liters and 52 liters when fully expanded. It’s perfect for those times where extra room is needed. The motorcycle tank bag features quick release straps, which means that it is simple to mount and unmount. The special design makes it ideal for adventure sports where you need to refuel fast and with ease! Manufactured from top-quality polyester, the material offers the ultimate in UV protection and also boasts handy side pockets for smaller items. Reflective piping creates extra safety when riding, and the lined interior and reverse coil zippers help to keep out dust and dirt. The bottom of the tank bag has a non-slip design, and there is a clear map pocket that is also touch-screen friendly, so you can use your maps through the bag without having to remove them.
Rain Cover Included
Quick Release Straps For Easy Refueling
- Brand Nelson Rigg
- Model RG-1045
- Weight 1.7 pounds
Top Quality Polyester
Clear Pocket Works With Smartphone
Higher Price Range
If you’re looking for something solid and sturdy then this motorcycle tank bag will not let you down. This bag has been thermoformed in EVA laminated polyester 1000D, which means that this fabric means business when it comes to UV protection and weather resistance. The structure is semi-rigid, which gives the tank bag a solid and sturdy feel as well as decent loading capacity and an aerodynamic design. Not only does this tank bag look sporty and cool but it’s also lightweight and durable. Another great feature of this bag is the ability to lock/unlock it fast for safety and ease of use. The bag also comes with some fantastic accessories, including waterproof zips, a waterproof bag, and an internal pocket for your smartphone. Unlike many of the other motorcycle tank bags on the market, this one comes with a shoulder strap, which means that you can remove the bag and carry it around easily – a nice convenient touch.
Clear Pocket For Smartphone
Waterproof Bag & Shoulder Strap Included
- Weight 1.1 pounds
Strong & Sturdy Design
Requires BF Series Mounting Flange Adapter (Not Included)
Only Works With Quick Release Kit
We recommend this magnetic tank bag that is super lightweight and easy to use. The bag provides some pretty useful storage space and boasts a fully expandable cargo compartment, which is perfect for your personal belongings. The underside of the bag is not only non-slip but scratch resistant too, which means that it will stay safe and secure on your tank whie never causing any damage to the paintwork. The bag fixes onto your motorcycle with magnets and side release buckles, which gives it a super secure fit. You won’t have to worry about the weather while using this bag either, as it has been made from heavy-duty fabric with a water-resistant backing. Your belongings will stay safe inside as it has foam panels that not only provide structure but also added protection.
Magnetic Fitting With Side Buckles
High Visibility Protective Cover Included
Foam Panelled Interior
- Model 65-032-010401-PL
- Weight 2.26 pounds
Clear Plastic Pocket For Smartphone & iPad
Not Many Compartments
One of the problems many people have when it comes to choosing the best motorcycle tank bag is finding a bag that contains the right amount of compartments. You can find the perfect tank bag but if there’s only one compartment then this can really let the product down as your belongings mix together and it can be difficult trying to find everything. This magnetic tank bag contains lots of separate compartments, so you can segregate your stuff easily. The magnets that are featured on this bag are super strong, which means that they hold the bag in place and promise to not move if used with speeds under 120kmph. It’s easy to fix the bag in place and the product will fit most motorcycles, dirt bikes and sports bikes.
Strong Magnetic Tank Bag
Clear Map Pocket
Contains x 5 Pockets
- Model 5864217848
- Weight 2.75 pounds
Strong Magnets Hold Bag In Place
Touch Screen Function
Different Sized Compartments
Clear Pocket Can’t Hold Large Smartphones
Magnets Compromised When Bag Is Heavy
There are so many features that makes this Cortech tank bag superior that it’s difficult to know where to begin! Certainly not the cheapest tank bag on the market, this product still deserves a place on this list because of its reputation. This 18 liter capacity bag contains a top flap internal organizer with soft lining to keep your belongings in place. The tank bag also has hideaway backpack straps, which means that you can remove the bag from your fuel tank easily and use it as a backpack when out and about. Other features include a removable (and replaceable) snapped map pocket, which is super handy when using the map both on and off the bike, two built-in headphone/sip tube ports for earphone use and water bladder use (water bladder holder included), and a stowaway rain cover with a clear cover for rainy days. We also like that this product has reflective piping to give you extra visibility while riding at night. The bag is also available in magnetic or mounting strap versions, so you can choose the bag to suit your specific needs.
Magnetic Tank Bag or Mounting Strap Tank Bag Available
Hideaway Backpack Straps
Rain Cover Included
Removable Map Pocket
- Model 8230-0505-18
- Weight 3.15 pounds
Magnetic/Strapped Versions Available
Water Bladder Holder Included
Rain Cover Included
Not Super Lightweight
High Price Range
This motorcycle tank bag contains four pockets where you can store your personal belongings safely. There is a clear pocket on the front of the bag where you can read your GPS; however, it isn’t touch screen so you won’t be able to use your phone unless you actually remove it from the pocket. What we really like about this particular product is that the magnets are 5mm – a much stronger magnet than you normally find on a motorcycle tank bag. The bag has been manufactured from 1680 Oxford fabric which is water resistant for light rain and not easy to tear.
Magnetic Tank Bag
4 x Pockets
Strong Upgraded Magnets
- Model c-98
- Weight 1 pounds
Additional Straps May Be Needed
Not Touch Screen
You know you can expect good quality when you purchase Cortech motorcycle tank bags as these products have been built to last. Not only are they super durable, but they will keep your items nice and safe too as the bag features several pockets, an interior zip, and interior slip. There is a clear plastic window on the outside of the tank bag where you can store your smartphone or iPad – super handy for following your GPS while travelling. What we like about the Cortech models is that they come available in strapped or magnetic versions, so you can choose the best tank bag to suit your individual requirements.
Magnetic or Strapped Tank Bag
Clear Map Pocket
- Model 8230-0505-12
- Weight 2.3 pounds
Super Durable Tank Bag
Good Quality Brand
High Price Range
This Nelson-Rigg motorcycle bag stands out from the others as the style is slightly different with a tapered design that fits most cruiser tanks. The leather-looking panels give the tank bag a stylish look and feel while ensuring that it’s weather-proof and resistant to rain. If you’re storing valuable belongings then one of the features that you will appreciate is additional safety. This particular bag has a lockable hi-density rubber zip that you can operate easily while wearing your motorcycle gloves. The tank bag has a fully lined interior and reflective piping to add extra visibility while riding. There’s also an integrated rain cover in the storage pouch for wet weather conditions and a clear touch screen device-friendly top pocket for paper maps or smartphones.
Integrated Rain Cover
Clear Map Pocket
- BrandNelson Rigg
- Model NR-150
- Weight 1.6 pounds
Easy To Use With Motorcycle Gloves
Additional Straps May Be Needed
If you’re looking for a motorcycle tank bag that has been specifically designed to fit a KTM then this is the product for you. This super compact tank rucksack boasts enough capacity for longer trips. The bag features a new fastener that provides a nice fit without restricting your movement on the bike. There are two outer pockets that can take smaller items such as mobile phones and wallets, while the integrated map pocket is perfect for navigational use. The bag has a handle and waterproof inner bag and has been finished with robust zip fasteners. This bag will not let you down.
KTM Tank Bag
Waterproof Inner Bag
- Model 5864219356
- Weight 2.49 pounds
Perfect For Use With KTM Bike
Strong & Sturdy
Only For Use With KTM Bikes
Best Motorcycle Tank Bag Buying Guide
When researching the best motorcycle luggage to buy for your specific needs it can be a little overwhelming to say the least. Although it may seem like a simple product to buy, you’ll find that the quality and price can vary quite significantly. Below we have outlined what we believe are the best features to look out for when buying a new bag.
What to Look for in a Motorcycle Tank Bag
- Straps or Magnets?
There are several types of motorcycle tank bags that are available to buy. Some that attach to your motorcycle using straps and others that attach using strong magnets. Generally speaking, the tank bags that are designed with straps are thought to be more secure as they are less easy to steal and less likely to fall off whilst you are on the road. The problem with this type of bag is that they can scratch easily if you get dust or dirt between the strap and your fuel tank. These types of bags can also be more time-consuming as it will take longer to remove them and re-attach them when you’re ready. Magnetic tank bags use strong magnets that attach to your fuel tank and are absolutely perfect for riders who are running lots of errands and need to remove their bag often and fast. There are several problems with magnetic bags however - firstly, they’re pretty easy to steal as thieves can literally just grab and go, these fittings can also scratch the surface of your bike and also they can slide off at high speed and fall into your lap which is super dangerous. Consider your riding speeds and needs before you make a decision on which type of bag to purchase. You might even want to consider a bike which has magnets and a strap for extra security and flexibility.
- Compartments & Size
What do you need the tank bag for and how much stuff are you likely to put inside? Will you be storing your helmet inside? If that’s the case then you also will need to look out for something which is lockable. Make sure that the motorcycle tank bag is the right size for your bike and also for your belongings. Take a look at the compartments - does it have many? Are they padded? Is there a separate zipped interior for wallets and phones etc?
- Extra Features
Make sure that you look out for extra features such as a non-slip coating on the bottom of the bag as this will stop it from sliding. You’ll also want to look out for non-scratch surfaces so you don’t damage your paintwork. What type of straps do you need? Will you be carrying it often? Some tank bags feature handles whilst others have useful hideaway backpack straps.
- Map Pockets
Pretty essential for a tank bag. Map pockets should be large, clear and waterproof so you can store paper maps and smartphones inside. This enables you to use GPS whilst riding. It’s super helpful to find a touchscreen pocket too so you can scroll the map without having to remove it from the bag.
Look out for good quality material which is weatherproof. The bag needs to be able to handle light rain at the least and ideally contain a rain cover for super wet weather conditions. Strong, durable polyester is a good material for tank bags.
Tank bags can vary dramatically when it comes to price. Our advice - buy the best you can afford.
Other Types of Motorcycle Luggage
- Back Seat Bags
A back seat bag or tail pack is different from a tank bag in that it attaches to the rear of your motorcycle on the pavillion seat. You can use this type of bag with a passenger too if you have a luggage rack. Some back seat bags come with bungee ropes to attach them to the bike whereas others have special straps that hold them securely in place.
These types of bags are a low cost alternative to aluminium cases and are super easy to mount. The most popular type of saddlebag is just simply thrown over your rear fender and then your good to go. They provide plenty of storage and are considered to be very safe.
- Locking Luggage
Locking luggage allows you to store your personal belongings and helmet on your motorcycle and safely lock it away - this saves you from carrying the luggage away from the bike.
- Sissy Bar Bags
This type of bag is for riders who like to go long distance as the bag can hold sleeping bags and other camping materials. These are suitable for riders who have motorcycles with sissy bars or back rests.
Our Top Pick
Our favourite motorcycle tank bag was the Coleman Magnetic Motorcycle Tank Bag as we feel it offers amazing value for money at under $35. Using extra strong magnets, this bag is suitable for most riders and you can feel confident that it won’t scratch your paintwork too as it has a scratch-resistant non-slip bottom. With a clear map pocket and expandable cargo compartment we feel that this bag offers riders lots of features for little money.
- DIY Cheap Motorcycle Tank Bag - Instructables