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Alloy Wheels vs Spoke Wheels

  • Author :
  • TATA AIG Team
  • Published on :
  • 26/05/2022

Until the 1970s, two-wheeler manufacturers used spoked wheels. However, after alloy wheels entered the market, bikers and manufacturers could choose between the two. Alloy wheels are made using cast aluminium. Since they were easy to manufacture, cheaper, and let bikes run without tubes, they brought a revolution in the motorcycling industry.

Most two-wheelers in the market today use alloy wheels. However, despite the age-old technology, a couple of motorcycles still use spoke wheels. It is because spoked wheels have their set of advantages. But, of course, the wheel suited to your bike depends on where and what you’re riding.

What is a Spoke Wheel?

Spoke wheels are traditional tyre models. They were in excessive use before the 1970s. They consist of spokes and steel rims and use steel and other similar metals for construction. They are connected to the bike’s hub, which consists of the brake drum.

Due to the presence of steel, they are flexible. Furthermore, compared to single-piece cast wheels, spoke wheels are more durable. Therefore, their use is prominent in dirt bikes, off-road bikes, ATVs, enduros, and scramblers. Now that you have the answer to what is a spoke wheel let us understand alloy wheels.

What is an Alloy Wheel?

Alloy wheels use lightweight metals for construction. They are much lighter than their competitors. They are more rigid than spoked wheels. With a tubeless design, they provide enhanced performance and more safety. Bikers in India incline towards alloy wheels, which are common in mag wheels bikes.

The process of making alloy wheels involves pouring hot molten alloy on a wheel cast. After the alloy cools, the wheel is ready for extraction. It is referred to as the casting process. The bike alloy wheels cost more than traditional tyre models. They are also high maintenance. However, the advantages associated with the wheels outweigh their cost.

Alloy Wheels vs Spoke Wheels - A Comparison

Before comparing and understanding which wheel composition is right for your bike, it is vital to study the features of both types of wheels. Here is a comparative analysis highlighting the difference between alloy wheels and normal wheels.

  • Construction

The process of manufacturing wheels determines what their use should be. For example, is it good for professional riders or sports bikers to use a spoke wheel bike? For producing allows, the forging or casting process is used. It imparts them with greater strength. Moreover, the metals used in their construction include aluminium, magnesium, or both. Since these metals are lightweight, alloy wheels are lightweight. Initially, the use of alloy wheels was popular on performance-oriented bikes. However, you can now find them on budget-friendly commuter motorcycles as well.

  • Sturdiness

Bike alloy wheels are not as sturdy as spoke wheels. Thus, the latter is used more in off-road and adventure motorbikes. On the other hand, the wheels are more flexible. Consequently, they offer enough room to easily jump from building heights while holding on to the grip. They also have a hold over the bike and the rider.

  • Flexibility

Spoke wheels of the bike have better flexibility as well. It is because their ability to absorb shock on a hard landing is better. During shock absorption, the first hit comes to the tyres, passing onto the wheels, and then to the suspension. If the wheels aren’t strong enough and cannot deal with the bump, they will bend or break down.

  • Quality

Spoke wheels cannot accommodate tubeless tyres. This feature is one of the biggest advantages of bike alloy wheels.

  • Usage

Alloy wheels are used for constructing sports bikes and mag wheels bikes since they must be lighter to be fast. Bike alloy wheels also provide greater stability, making it easier for the rider to zoom at a faster pace. Spoked wheels do not have this feature and are, therefore, more popularly used in dirt bikes.

  • Maintenance

If you reside in a city with bad road conditions, spoke wheels are right for you. Spokes are cheaper for off-road rides. Getting them repaired and realigned also does not cost much. You can schedule their servicing with a local mechanic. However, lower maintenance costs do not indicate that you do not require insurance for 2 wheeler with spoke wheels. Always opt for comprehensive two-wheeler insurance that provides add-ons for tyre repairs and replacements.

  • Fuel Efficiency

India does not have smooth roads. So when road conditions are bad, the two-wheeler requires wheels capable of bearing the brunt and giving the commuter a smooth ride. Bike manufacturers prefer to use alloy wheels since they are lightweight. Alloys are better than spokes because they reduce the overall weight of the bike. As a result, they deliver better efficiency at low fuel consumption. This is a known difference between alloy wheels and normal wheels.

  • Price

Spokes wheels cost less than alloys. However, if you decide to buy an alloy wheel, your budget will increase by 50 per cent more than the price of a traditional steel wheel. This is because their extensive production procedure leads to their increased costs.

  • Design

Spoke wheels of the bike are available in a single colour. But alloy wheels come in various attractive designs and colours. This is a major difference between alloy wheels and normal wheels.

Alloy Wheels vs Spoke Wheels - Which is Better?

From the comparative analysis above, you can conclude that there is no perfect design for bike wheels. For a professional biker, alloy wheels are much better. But those with preferences for an ATV or dirt bike should opt for spoke wheels.

Repairing an alloy wheel is not easy. So, if it breaks or bends, you require wheel replacement. Therefore, to protect your tyre against several damages, make sure you include a tyre protection add-on cover with your bike insurance policy. This add-on will cover the cost of repairing or replacing the tyres.

You can compare two wheeler insurance plans on the Tata AIG website and choose one that not only has a lower premium but a higher coverage as well.


After learning about the different features of alloy wheels and spoke wheels, you can decide which type suits your needs better. Regardless of the type of wheel you choose, make sure you protect your two-wheeler with a comprehensive two-wheeler insurance policy by Tata AIG. With us, you get a strong network of 3300+ garages where you can file cashless bike insurance claims. Also, the process of filing claims is simple and hassle-free.

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