Test rode the K1300GT, 07 K1200GT and R1200RT - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 2009, 2:47 pm Thread Starter
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Test rode the K1300GT, 07 K1200GT and R1200RT

After reading a lot of information about the K bikes over the past couple of months I finally got to test ride a couple of them yesterday at North County BMW in Escondido (San Diego) yesterday. What a blast!

My current ride, a 2005 Yamaha FJR1300A is an excellent sport touring (more sport then touring) machine with the following short comings. No cruise control, too much heat to the crouch area, right hand goes numb after 15 minutes, which the cruise control would solve and no gear indicator.

I took the K1300GT out first and I felt that it was easy to ride, turn, and was definitely more comfortable over the bumps then my FJR. The seat felt great and the handle bar position did not cause any left shoulder pain that my FJR seems to give me. The gear box seemed nice but still made clunking noises similar to my FJR going from Neutral to 1st gear. The FJR makes a better engine sound them but overall I really like the K bike for it's comfort and my favorite option the Cruise Control.

Then I took out a new (1k miles) 2007 K1200GT and although the gear box was clunkier, I still really liked the bike a lot and I am not sure I can justify the extra money for the 2009 K1300, however I did much prefer the K1300 new turn signal mechanism .....similar to the FJR.

The salesman convince me to take out a 2008 R1200RT and I was surprised to find out that I liked it more then I expected. It is clearly the more comfortable long haul bike with better gas mileage and a large gas tank. This one had the built-in radio which was a plus and the shorter wheel base made for excellent nimbleness in the parking lot. However, I did not care for the vibey, low horsepower boxer engine.

My next step is to test ride the Honda ST1300A and then decide what my next move will be, but I have to say that I am leaning toward a 2007 or 2008 K1200GT.

Last edited by mtmnet; Apr 5th, 2009 at 2:56 pm.
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 2009, 4:00 pm
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Don't waste your time on the ST1300A. It is plain vanilla and rides just so so comapred to the GT.

Larry
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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 2009, 4:42 pm
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I've tried most of those "target" bikes, and ended up (just recently) getting a "left over" 2008 K1200GT. I mostly ride with my wife (two-up), so that is an important consideration for us before buying a touring bike.

ST1100 (older model) - Extended demo ride at a Honda club event (on good mountain roads). Liked it, but not really ready to buy.
ST1300 - Extended rental overseas. The bike had grown more toward the touring end of the spectrum. Passenger accommodations were surprisingly only "ok" for a bike that big. It felt extremely large and "Gold-wingy".
K1200S - Demo ride when they first came out. Really liked it, but a little too pricey at the time. Also, factory luggage was sub-par, but could probably do aftermarket.
K1200GT - Extended rental in California. Rode from 40 degree weather to 105 degree weather. Flawless and well liked. Essentially a "touring" S model. Price again was the biggest factor.
Kawasaki Concours - Never made it past the "sitting on it" stage. Passenger accommodations were not acceptable. Looked like a nice bike for one person, though.
Yamaha FJR1300 - Used demo ride at dealership. Nice. Passenger accommodations were only "ok", but I think they have improved this on the newer models (improvements around the rear rack area).

Essentially the price of the left-over 2008 K1200GT was lowered enough to bridge the price gap to a degree that we decided to go with something we both couldn't find a fault with. It has a few quirks, but by far provided the best riding experience two-up.

Extended warranty helped alleviate one of my few concerns, that being the many complex systems on board (shaft, abs, electronic suspension, etc.).

New FJR's (non-automatic models) were hard to come by, particularly left-overs.

Nice to have all that stuff to choose from, though!
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 2009, 5:04 pm
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My wife and I test rode an RRT and the KGT and both like the KGT best in 07, and bought the KGT.
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 2009, 7:44 pm
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About the RT with the radio, my old one had it. Thye called it an R1100RT-L back then. Speakers were garbage (two small for any sound) and couldn't be heard above the sound of a garage and it was very weak in the wattage department for any sound on the highway.

I went the Kenwood radio way and got a better radio along with the cassette player (very old tech now), but now the speakers distorted very bad with higher wattage radio. Had to get new Polk speakers and a car sound place installed them. Still, the sound above 30-40mph was awful.

BMW made an optional stereo jack module and I got one before they stopped selling them. It had plugs that spliced inline with the stock BMW connections. It helped a lot with in-ear phones.

Ymmv.


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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2009, 8:58 am
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtmnet

My current ride, a 2005 Yamaha FJR1300A is an excellent sport touring (more sport then touring) machine with the following short comings. No cruise control, too much heat to the crouch area, right hand goes numb after 15 minutes, which the cruise control would solve and no gear indicator.
In all fairness, Yamaha addressed most all of your FJR issues in 2006 and has refined the bike even further each year. Everyone likes riding different bikes so another FJR might not be on your short list, however, you should test ride the 2006-2009 FJR.

With the significant number of changes/refinements/updates/improvements with the K1300S and the K1300GT, I personally would be pretty hard pressed to buy an earlier model - regards of the cost differences.
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2009, 4:43 pm
 
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ride the FJR?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmonroe
In all fairness, Yamaha addressed most all of your FJR issues in 2006 and has refined the bike even further each year. Everyone likes riding different bikes so another FJR might not be on your short list, however, you should test ride the 2006-2009 FJR. .
I never found an FJR to test ride. When I was considering, they were only pre-ordering the animal and I never rode one. I was considering all of the above and bought an '07 K1200GT and love it. You'll love whatever you get.
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2009, 10:29 pm Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmonroe
In all fairness, Yamaha addressed most all of your FJR issues in 2006 and has refined the bike even further each year. Everyone likes riding different bikes so another FJR might not be on your short list, however, you should test ride the 2006-2009 FJR.

With the significant number of changes/refinements/updates/improvements with the K1300S and the K1300GT, I personally would be pretty hard pressed to buy an earlier model - regards of the cost differences.
Good point. I plan to test out a 2007 FJR in the near future. It is a great bike and the price is good as well.

The think I love about the BMW bikes is that they come with EVERYTHING! Gear selector, heated seats, heated grips, cruise control, comfortable ride.

San Diego, CA - Current Ride - 2008 BMW K1200GT
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old Apr 7th, 2009, 3:17 pm
 
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except this.....

Quote:
Originally Posted by mtmnet
Good point. I plan to test out a 2007 FJR in the near future. It is a great bike and the price is good as well.

The think I love about the BMW bikes is that they come with EVERYTHING! Gear selector, heated seats, heated grips, cruise control, comfortable ride.
except for this (needed)
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old Apr 7th, 2009, 3:22 pm
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Ah hell, they can't catch a GT anyways.........
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