I'm so sorry that you didn't get a test ride, but the advise that you received about needing to arrive by 6:45 is good. I was there before 7:00 A.M. Monday, and there were already several ahead of me. Lucky for me, only one couple ahead of me wanted to ride the GT, and they agreed to swap the bike at the half way (ABS braking demo) point, and took the second to last ride of the day. I took the last ride of the day, but asked to be put on a list as an alternate for the 12:30 ride if the bike was back from service by then. It was, so some lucky person got my 4:00 PM ride. I noticed the crowd waiting in line at 7:45 was nearly as long as all the other demo ride areas put together. Us BMW fans really must have the infection bad!
I was there Saturday morning when they were unloading the bikes, and the key was in the silver (Crystal Grey Metallic) GT, but either the battery was missing or not connected, as I turned it on, and tried to adjust the windscreen too. It was still pretty informal at that point, so I started the demo bike, to hear it, run the windscreen up and down, play with the ESA, and check out the outstanding headlights (high beam won't come on without the engine running, both low beam lights stay on when high beam is on)
I'm five inches taller than you, and my knees didn't come anywhere near hitting the fairing, but the windscreen was about chin high at the highest setting. I'd need the taller windscreen, but with the two windscreen sizes, adjustable bars, and adjustable seats, the GT should fit a very large range of rider sizes.
I've ridden several LT's, including a few hours on a 2005, and I found the "ride" at least as comfortable as any LT. Wind protection on the legs seemed to be as good as an LT also, but due to the low screen, the GT didn't provide me as much wind protection as an LT. Based upon my experience with many other bikes, I'm dead sure that the GT will never offer the upper body wind and weather protection that the LT offers, especially for the passenger.
There is now a pretty sharp division of missions for the K-bikes. "S" for luxury SPORT-touring, "GT" for luxury sport-TOURING, LT for luxury TOURING, and the "R" to let loose the hooligan is us
The GT feels MUCH different than the S (way more different that the prior RS/GT), even though they have the same basic running gear and engine.
My conclusion is that there's enough difference between the GT and the LT that they'd feel like totally different bikes, although each could do much of the other is designed for. If you really like your LT, there's really no reason to trade, after all, other than the lighter weight of the GT, most of what it can do that the LT can't could risk your drivers license.
Judging by what I saw at the speeds I was allowed to ride, I'd guess the GT is going to be RPM limited to about 170 MPH, maybe a bit less if it can't pull redline in top gear. I'm dead sure it'll do at least 160 MPH, again unless they have a speed restrictor on it. Very few places in the US that you can use that kind of speed, the only legal place that occurs to me is the track, and both the "S" and the "R" would probably be a better choice there anyway. Did I just talk myself into keeping my '04 GT? :wtf
Thanks for sharing your report. I can sure understand your disappointment about riding a hundred miles or so, and be denied a ride. Gonna try it early tomorrow?
BTW, I sure wasn't too impressed with whoever serviced the demo bike, the left grip was loose, which left me wondering the whole time whether something was going to fall off during my ride. I'm still left wondering if they aren't doing more harm than good, allowing rides of a prototype machine, which often lack refinements that the production machines have. After all, to the best of my knowledge, those machines were never even intended to be ridden by the general public.