3 Factors to Consider When Purchasing a Go Kart

May 27,2022

At first, buying a go-kart may seem like a daunting task, as you’re not too familiar with go-karting terminology or simply lack the overall experience. However, don’t worry! That’s exactly what I have created this guide for! I was once in your shoes and I can confidently say that if you stick to a checklist of items and if you’re able to do a thorough inspection, you have nothing to fear about!


3 factors to consider when purchasing a go kart


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There are different types of go-kart manufacturers and each of them have different manufacturing standards. Go-karts of a particular brand may also retain their value more than others, especially if the manufacturer is reputable.


When buying a used go-kart, ensure that you check the price of the same model and year to get a good idea of what they are worth. Even if you can find go-karts that are slightly older or newer, they can give you a good price reference.


Go-karts from reputable brands are commonly more expensive, as they tend to retain their value. Ensure to check the authenticity through the homologation plate on the chassis, which is usually behind the seat.


✔️Frame/Chassis Condition


Since karts do not have suspension systems, the frame is an integral part of the structure and performance characteristics of the kart. The metal frame is designed to handle the cornering forces and impacts that can occur out on the race track. In fact, the metal frame tubing is designed to flex and bend within a precision set of tolerances as the kart moves through a corner.


While this type of frame stress is normal, karts can also suffer impact damage from other karts or from barriers that cause the metal frame to crack or bend beyond tolerance points. This can lead to serious safety and performance issues and you’ll need to carefully inspect the frame for this type of damage.


Most karts ride only a few inches off the ground and as a result, they can suffer from scraping on the underside of the frame while racing. Take special care to look for this type of damage, especially if the owner of the kart is not running rubber frame guards.


Although metal can be repaired, it’s challenging to return the tubing to its original integrity.


✔️Engine Condition


First things first; don’t be afraid of a little dirt. Most kart engines are notoriously dirty and we would be more cautious if the motor was sparkling clean vs. dirty. A well-maintained engine is less about appearances and more about the substance.


When checking out a second-hand go-kart, these are some of the things you’ll want to keep a solid eye out for:


  • After starting, do you see any smoke? If so, what’s the color? Let it run for a bit and keep an eye out for any smoke after it’s warmed up.
  • Is the chain free of rust and well lubricated?
  • What kind of condition are the spark plugs in? Are they rotted or heavily corroded?
  • Do you see any oil leaks? How about fuel leaks?


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