Until Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are common on motorcycles, those who love Waze, Google Maps, Apple Maps, and Glympse will have to continue mounting smartphones on motorcycles. The Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount is an easy and secure way to mount your phone on your motorcycle, provided you have a handlebar with a bit of spare room. Yes, we know that Apple discourages doing this—we’ll get into that later.
We have lots of motorcycles running through the Ultimate Motorcycling garage. When we got the Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount, we had to search around for a couple of compatible models. Although the Peak Design unit will attach to round or tapered handlebars, you need room for the Motorcycle Bar Mount, and the mounting must be at an angle that works for viewing the phone. If your bike has clip-ons, you’ll want to investigate the Peak Design Motorcycle Stem Mount.
After some poking around, the new Honda Monkey (round bar) and Triumph Scrambler 900 (tapered bar) got the nod.
The Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount is a sophisticated and robust design, yet it attaches easily to an open inch of bar space—all that matters is the angle. Three included pairs of vibration-absorbing EPDM rubber collar inserts allow fitment to bars 7/8-inch to 1.25 inches in diameter—a wide enough range for most motorcycles with a handlebar.
Mounting the system is intuitive, though it takes some time and consideration. If you have a wide-open handlebar or a split handlebar clamp, it’s easy. However, that is often not the case.
Start by figuring out where you can mount the anodized machined-aluminum handlebar clamp on the handlebar. Then, loosely attach the mounting arm (also aluminum) and see if you can arrange it so you can directly view your phone’s screen. This may take a bit of experimentation, as it did with both the Monkey and Scrambler.
As it turns out, we attached the Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount in entirely different places on the two motorcycles’ handlebars, though the mounting is basically the same.
For the Monkey, we settled on attaching the mounting head next to where the handlebar’s left mirror mount. That gave us enough room to use our iPhone 12 Mini as a portrait display.
After assuring ourselves that it would all line up, the Large Collar was inserted in the handlebar clamp so it could properly grasp the Monkey’s standard 7/8-inch handlebar.
After trying a few options on the Scrambler, we decided to mount the Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount just to the left of the motorcycle’s handlebar clamp. In this position, we mounted the smartphone as a landscape display so it didn’t block viewing the speedometer. The Scrambler’s tapered handlebar used the mid-sized collar, allowing secure attachment.
It’s easier to assemble the handlebar clamp, mounting arm, and mount head off the motorcycle. Keep it all loose for fine-tuning—hand-tighten the two arm mounting bolts first, then cinch them down a bit more using the included 3mm hex key. You’ll leave the clamp-mount bolt out until it’s time to attach it to the handlebar, as it must be out for the clamp’s jaws to open around the handlebar.
With it on the handlebar, you can use the hex key to tighten it down for riding. If it’s not exactly as you like, you have three adjustment points—at the handlebar and each end of the mounting arm. The adjustments on the mounting arm are detented, so you may not get it exactly where you want it. However, we nailed it in both instances, thanks to planning ahead and final adjustments at the handlebar.
With all that attached and tightened, it’s time to add the smartphone. In addition to the $100 Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount, you must buy a phone-specific Peak Design Everyday Case for $40, though universal cases are available. Your phone slips right in, and you’re ready to go. Oh, and the Peak Design case is compatible with Apple MagSafe chargers and cooperates fully with the iPhone’s various buttons, switches, and ports.
Place the case-ensconced smartphone near the Peak Design SlimLink mounting system plate, and it almost takes the phone out of your hand as a magnet draws the case into the mechanical mount—it’s impressive.
Removing the phone from the mount is a one-button job, and effortlessly accomplished when wearing riding gloves. The slim Everyday Case slides right into your pants pocket, as the frame for the SlimLink mounting plate is not obtrusive.
It’s worth noting that the case is compatible with many other Peak Design products, including car and bicycle mounting systems, charging systems, and tripods.
When the phone is attached to the Mount Head, it moves around quite a bit. That’s the vibration isolator. Because it was so easy for me to move the phone around in the mount, I was definitely concerned that the phone would be unreadable due to vibration-induced movement once underway. As it turns out, my concern was unwarranted.
Riding around on the Monkey and Scrambler, the phone was rock solid. The screen was always readable at speeds from zero to 80+ mph—no hint of movement.
I took the Monkey on some poor-condition sorta-paved roads, and we bounced along merrily. The Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount wasn’t the least bit fazed. The phone is always composed, and even the smallest fonts are legible—impressive.
The unit, sans the Everyday Case and phone, which vary in weight, tips the scale at 5.5 ounces—not bad for such a robust design. We could not detect any impact on steering.
The Scrambler tests included freeway speeds, whipping through canyons, and riding down dirt roads that you wouldn’t take a standard street bike on—rough, pockmarked, and talcy. Again, the Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount didn’t seem to notice. It didn’t just hold the phone remarkably still. The vibration reduction apparatus works so well, it’s almost distracting!
That brings us to the issue of vibration and your smartphone. According to Peak Design, after extensive testing, the company is confident enough to assure buyers that the Motorcycle Bar Mount is safe for smartphone cameras. But, there is a “but”, and it’s a big “but.” Peak Design’s lifetime warranty does not include damage to your smartphone.
However, if you believe your phone was damaged due to vibration while using a Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount, Peak Design will ask a few questions, and a spokesman tells us its message to customers is, “We want the chance to make things right for you… we’ll do our best to take care of you.” We had no issues with our test iPhone 12 Mini, but it’s your call.
With smartphones bumping the $1.5k price point, it doesn’t seem wise to trust mounting your phone to your motorcycle on a no-name brand you found on Amazon. Peak Design has a deep reservoir of products and a solid reputation. The Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount and Everyday Case work together to give us the confidence we need to mount a smartphone to a motorcycle.
Peak Design Motorcycle Bar Mount Review and Everyday Case Review