Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Tunbridge Wells, Kent, UK
For lots of reasons I have yet to replace my K1200GT (Classic) that I sold a couple of months ago. At that time, having tested a Kawasaki 1400 GTR (Concours) I was totally convinced that this was / is my next bike. For a number of reasons I didn’t get on with the K1200 GT (vibey engine; poor brakes; hard seat; “typical BMW gear box”). Around that time the UK’s Bike magazine trashed the big Kawasaki as a tourer; however they loved the performance. Since then Bike magazine have just tested 12 bikes for their ultimate speed on Germany’s autobahns; the Kawasaki GTR was there; as was the K1200S BMW. What I was not expecting was that the Kawasaki was not rated at very high speeds; but the K1200S was rated much more highly. This got me thinking. I did test the K1200S around a year ago, and it was BRILLIANT. However, it broke down 100 miles from home with a problem between the key and the “computer”. That really put me off. However, I did LOVE the bike but the riding position of the GT is better for me ( I get pain in the hips if my knees are too cramped).
So, what was great about the GTR. Well, I loved the handling (compared to my (Classic) K1200GT; I loved the super powerful and smooth engine. I was less impressed with the seat and the screen; both of which are easily replaced.
BUT, (and many on this forum are unlikely to be aware), the Kawasaki 1400 GTR / Concours has been purposely strangled by the use of double flies which prevent decent airflow and thus restricting the low end performance. Remove these secondary flies and the low end performance is transformed. However these mods require the addition of a PC III and, if you’re in UK, it’s not even available. Back to the BMWs; no shortage of low end grunt ……
So, I have a real dilemma; any thoughts from those who have had similar problems ?
John I. Stephen - Tunbridge Wells, Kent, UK
K1300 GT (quite superb ! )
Triumph Tiger 1050 (2008)
K1200 GT (2003)
Suzuki GS 750 (late 1970s)