LAST UPDATED: March 30, 2020
Best Motorcycle Batwing Fairing: Strength, Comfort, and Craftsmanship
Cut down turbulence and ride in style with these motorcycle batwing fairings
The Review Team
How We Decided
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PUBLISHED ON March 30, 2020
A batwing fairing is an accessory that can be added to the front of almost any motorcycle. It consists of a fitting in the center, and two pieces on the sides, making it look kind of like a bat with its wings spread.
Adding an aftermarket batwing fairing to your motorcycle can protect your hands, stabilize your ride, improve your fuel efficiency, and get you plenty of other benefits. In this review, we’ve run down some of the best, as well as some tips for buying and using your new motorcycle batwing fairing.
Batwing fairing with a black lucite outer shell and black ABS inner structure. Fits Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, Kawasaki, and Victory bikes.
Quick lock mechanism makes it easy to install and remove. Eliminates windshield rattling. Adds up to 3 mpg fuel efficiency.
Initial installation can take a while, and it doesn’t come with a kit. The interior doesn’t offer much comfort.
Vivid black ABS plastic, with a tinted windshield, included. Universal fit for medium-sized bikes. Ships with l-brackets.
Excellent price, which includes a fairing windshield and mounting brackets. Fit is nearly universal. Blocks wind well.
Some fits require extra work to reach. Ships without installation instructions and adjustments are difficult.
A combination of batwing fairing and stereo speaker system for Harley-Davidson Road King models. Made of molded fiberglass. Ships fully assembled.
Matches Road King aesthetic well. Easy to install, with simple wiring. Speakers have good sound quality.
Very expensive. It only fits Harleys. Doesn’t always ship with installation instructions. No quick release—requires tools to install and remove.
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Benefits of a Motorcycle Batwing Fairing
- Protects against windchill. Batwing fairings keep the wind off your hands while riding. If you install a windshield as well (or if the fairing comes with one), it’ll also keep the chill from your face. With a good batwing fairing, you might be able to hit 50 mph without needing to wear goggles or gloves.
- Stabilizes your ride. By making your bike less susceptible to gusts of wind, a batwing fairing reduces turbulence and helmet buffering. It’s a great solution if you’ve felt your helmet or seat shaking too much mid-ride.
- Makes your bike more aerodynamic. A lot like a ship’s prow or an airplane’s nose cone, a batwing fairing presents a sleeker shape to the wind than the front of your bike. When you’re no longer fighting the wind, your ride isn’t just smoother—you’ll also save more fuel.
- Looks cool. A batwing fairing is the kind of accessory that can fit seamlessly into your bike’s aesthetic. Not only does it look awesome, but it can also hold other cool features like decals and speaker systems.
Memphis Shades is an iconic manufacturer of motorcycle fairings and windshields, all of which it proudly touts as American-made. Its products include batwing fairings like the MEM7031, tinted windshields, and others.
Another proudly American-based company, Reckless Motorcycles grew out of its founders’ 60 years combined experience building motorcycle parts and fiberglass products. It builds batwing fairings for a wide range of bikes, including Harleys, Hondas, and other American and Japanese brands.
Vector Batwing Fairings is a newer brand that’s looking to capitalize on a mixture of quality and affordability. They too build batwing fairings for multiple bike models, especially Harley-Davidson, Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, and Kawasaki. Some of its top products include the F4-4 for Road Kings and the F5-2 for Hondas.
Motorcycle Batwing Fairing Pricing
- Under $100: This range is for some batwing fairing accessories, like tinted windshields, front outers, mounting brackets, and decals.
- $100 to $500: This range includes batwing fairings both with and without included windshields. You’ll also find some stereo systems for this much.
- Over $500: Batwing fairings with built-in speakers usually sell for more than $500.
The outer fairing is the part of the motorcycle batwing fairing that’s visible on the outside of the bike. It usually consists of a smooth shell of hard plastic, often varnished to shine, and some holes for adding windshields and mounting brackets. The outer fairing creates the wind diversion that reduces turbulence and increases fuel efficiency while protecting the rider’s hands.
The inner fairing is a framework that connects the outer fairing to the bike. It includes holes that fit over the bike’s gauges so they can still be read and others that are used for attaching it to the bike’s frame. Inner fairings are generally made of similar materials to their matched outer fairings, often plastic.
Some batwing fairings come with windshields, while others have companion windshields that are sold separately. Made of see-through fiberglass, windshields broaden the batwing fairing’s ability to divert wind, protecting the rider’s face from gusts. They can be tinted or smoked to block some light. Decorating them with decals is popular.
- Bike Brand. Most batwing fairings on the market are made to fit a specific kind of bike. Some might only fit Harley Softails, and some might fit all Japanese models, but very few of them are universal fits. The ones that are universal tend to require a bit of tinkering to get them to work, so they’re most recommended for bikers who are handy with tools (or liked playing with erector sets as kids!).
- Other Types of Fairings. Batwing fairings aren’t the only option for reducing drag on motorcycles. Larger covers, like full fairings and half fairings, provide more protection from turbulence, but can also make your bike less maneuverable when turning. We know that if bikers wanted total protection, they’d be driving cars, but it is worth considering how much of a trade-off you want to make.
Best Motorcycle Batwing Fairing Reviews & Recommendations 2019
Whether or not they mean to, Memphis Shades is the model many bikers think of when they hear the words “batwing fairing”—and with good reason. The MEM7031 doesn’t come with a ton of frills or cushions, but it does keep the wind off your hands and face, cuts windshield rattle down to almost nothing, and includes plenty of opportunities for customization.
One feature that puts this at the top for us is the newly added quick-lock mechanism, which makes it incredibly easy to install or remove as needed. We also like the sleek look, the wide-ranging fit, and the fact that it can add up to three miles per gallon.
The biggest drawback to the Memphis Shades batwing fairing (which most others share) is the difficulty of first time installation: To remove your old windshield, you’ll have to get comfortable with loosening bolts.
The conventional wisdom about “universal fits” is that they don’t fit anything, but Mutazu’s medium universal batwing fairing happily proves that common knowledge wrong. If it doesn’t fit your bike right away, you’ll almost certainly be able to make it fit by adjusting your handlebars and tinkering with the brackets.
This is a highly affordable, high-quality batwing fairing that comes with a tinted windshield. It does its job well, cutting down on wind chill while giving your bike a unique aesthetic.
The main downside is that it doesn’t come with an instruction manual, so you’ll have to rely on the internet and your own experience to get it on the bike. Because of this, installation is the hardest part of using this fairing.
If you’re searching for the perfect front piece for a Harley-Davidson Road King, look no further. Reckless Motorcycles makes a sturdy fiberglass batwing fairing for Road Kings that includes a windshield, speaker system, and mounting hardware.
The included stereo system drives up the price, but the sound quality is good, and you’ll save money over buying them each individually. The whole thing, including the sound system wiring, is easy to hook up, and the black gelcoat fits great with the Road King look.
Unfortunately, it only fits Harley-Davidson Road Kings. Other bikes—even other Harleys like Softails—are out of luck. While installation isn’t complicated, it can be time-consuming, and the product doesn’t always ship with the instructions.
- If you buy a fairing that doesn’t come with a windshield, try to buy the one that’s matched with the fairing you bought. It will be much easier to attach.
- To clean a fiberglass windshield, go over it with your bare hands to dislodge bugs. Then dip a towel in a bucket of soapy water, and let it soak on your windshield overnight.
- Before buying a batwing fairing, measure how high an angle it will need to have to keep wind off your face. You can determine this with a yardstick or stiff tape measure.
Q: What is a batwing fairing?
A: It is a frame that fits over your motorcycle’s dashboard and channels air away from you while you ride, resulting in a less turbulent, more comfortable trip.
Q: How do you install a batwing fairing?
A: First, you’ll need to remove the OEM fairing, along with its brackets. This can be done by loosening its bolts with a small wrench. After that, secure the new fairing’s brackets, then add the inner and outer fairings in that order.
Q: Can batwing fairings increase fuel efficiency?
A: Sometimes! We’ve received reports of newly installed fairings adding at least three miles per gallon to a bike’s usual efficiency.