Just wanted to check in with a board which has been very helpful to me in my role as un-registered "lurker".
My wife and I have been in the market for a new "sport tourer" for a while. We have gone to demo rides and shows, rented bikes on various trips, read about bikes, etc. Our current "touring" bike is a 1990 Honda CBR1000F with Krauser bags. It is a wonderful bike, but getting a little long in the tooth, and we want something with a little more "tour" in the sport tour so we can take a few longer motorcycle vacations.
We originally rode a K1200S when they first came out (2005?) during a dealer demo ride and were very impressed. We loved the character and comfort, but it was similar enough to our existing bike in the touring department (and expensive!) so I just put it down as yet another bike I loved but probably wouldn't own.
Since then, we've rented a ST1300 (Which was a bit disappointing for a Honda fan/owner I preferred an older ST1100 I test rode a while back). We recently ruled out the Kawasaki Concours without a ride, as just sitting on it proved the passenger accommodations were a poor fit.
So, that left the FJR1300 Yamaha and the (expensive!) K1200GT, which seemed to retain most of the character of the S that we liked and added more "tour".
We recently had an extended rental of a K1200GT on a California trip, and we loved it. The price (and our commitment to ride it enough to justify the price) was holding us back.
Also, the complexity. My existing bikes have never seen the inside of a motorcycle dealership since they were sold. The idea of not being able to do most of the work on the bike myself was a bit disconcerting.
Well, I recently stopped by my "local" (45 minutes away) dealer's website, and they had quite a stable of lightly used bikes (the poor economy?), including a Yamaha FJR1300, which was the one bike we were interested in that we hadn't been able to try out.
We spent half a day at the dealership this past weekend, and rode the FJR and their 2008 Demo GT back to back. There were some things I liked about the Yamaha (relative simplicity, low speed maneuverability), but the GT again proved the better bike.
Since the 2009's were coming in, the edge had been taken off of the expensive part a bit. Also, with an extended warranty, the fear of the complexity was reduced a bit.
I'm definitely thinking of going for it. It's the only bike from a riding standpoint that we couldn't find fault with. Even after a good solid week of hard riding two up through 40F-105F temperatures.
A little worried about some of the "getting stranded" failure stories on here, but I went through the same thing with an earlier truck purchase (boards made it sound like a lemon, but it's been wonderful for me), so I'm looking at some of that as a sheer luck issue.
Anyhow, it's down to the purchase decision. I appreciate all the help the board has given me (silently) up until now, and welcome any comments or suggestions ("run away!"
I'll let you know if I end up buying one!