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Discussion Starter #1
Hey folks. I've been reading the threads and searching the archives for a month or so while I continue to bike shop.

I'll try to keep this brief. I'm 40, and after about a ten year gap, have been riding about two years. I tend to like high performance but reasonably practical cars and bikes. I do most of my riding in ~200 mile bits with the rare over-nighter. I am planning on riding the Three Flags Classic (~4k miles round trip) with my father (he has ridden it a few times) around Labor Day '07.

The RT was at the top of my wish list -- until I rode the GT. Suddenly, I'm not interested in the RT... But it did bring the FJR back into the picture. Essentially, I want the performance of the GT/FJR but don't want to go to the next level of ST bikes (ST3, ST, VFR). I prefer new or lightly used. Both seem to fit me fine. As a general perspective, I prefer German cars (have one newer and one older) and certainly have previously chosen to pay the price premium to own German sport sedans.

So, I prefer the GT but am having trouble justifying the large price difference. I realize that there is much more to the decision than money but the practical side of me is having reservations. Is there a pill I can take for this?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
How about if I take another shot.

What were the features or reasons that you bought the GT vs. one of it's competitors?
 

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Bryan, this is from a post I made about a month ago. I hope it helps.

This is the best motorcycle I've ever owned period. I'll try to break down each section.

ESA. It works. For extended straight line slab riding the comfort setting is great. Moving to the high speed sweepers, the normal setting is better. Then getting into the twisties, the sport setting is great. All three setting work as advertised.

Cruise Control. Great feature. I've never used any type of throttle assist system before. Ever. I quickly adapted to the cruise control on the KGT. It was nice to be able to set the cruise for the long stretches and relax. I could enjoy the scenery, even take some pictures. No worries. And riding a bike with this much power and speed it's nice to let the cruise control do the throttle work. It can keep you out of trouble. At least me anyway.

Power and Speed. What can I say. The engine sounds like a formula 1 car when you twist the grip. But the power comes on differently than any other bike I've ridden. It's so smooth that you accelerate much quicker than you realize. The upper end of the rpm range is rarely touched under normal riding conditions. Max speed? Still don't know but I have confirmed 142 MPH with bags at an unknown location at an unknown time by an unknown vehicle operator.

Low speed throttle issues. There's considerable discussion on this website about the 7.0 software upgrade. My bike still has the original fuel injection and ignition mapping and so far I'm completely satisfied and do not want to upgrade. I can pull from a dead stop with just the release of the clutch and do slow speed maneuvers with ease. No abrupt throttle response or surging. I like it!

Gears and spacing. Perfect. What can I say. It pulls like a mule in 6th from 3000 and beyond so down shifts are at your option and I never catch my self going for another "top" gear like I would on my other Beemers. The gear shift clunk is most prevalent in the first 3 gears then disappears in the last 3. Speed shifting, oh yes, oh yes. No problem. Down shift snags. Just during the first 600 miles and I blame myself for not downshifting in step with my speed reduction. But now no worries. Shifts great and I'm either just getting used to the clunk or it's actually going away as I don't notice it as much.

Clutch Groan and Chatter. Occasionally. Just at initial engagement but nothing to complain about yet.

Windscreen. Again perfect. I have the factory tall windscreen and I left it in the full up position during most of the highway miles. I'm 5' 11' and in the full up position I can still see over the top of the windscreen but the wind noise is greatly reduced. At the end of a 600 mile day I didn't have any ringing or buzzing in my ears and I wasn't wearing earplugs. If I want or need more air, just lower the windscreen. Very nice.

Handling. Simply incredible. I was able to pass in the curves on two lane asphalt under full acceleration with complete confidence. The bike was well planted and went where I wanted to. I've never ridden a bike that has handled as easily as this one. The only complaint that I have is that it doesn't like 18 wheeler or side wind gust air turbulence. I attribute this to the aero dynamics. The same characteristics that give it its missile like abilities are a negative when you get hit with side winds. I had a couple serious wind gusts riding across the Montana open plains that scared the hell out of me. It could also be the tires. I’m going to switch the Michelin Pilot Sport tires when it’s time.

Electric Servo Assist Brakes. I know this has been discontinued but it's worth mentioning. The brake system may not have gotten a fair shake. It works. It's different but it works. Being able to haul a bike down from the 1 ton mark with ease and confidence is a plus. And in spite of those that have said otherwise, it still has brakes with the ignition off.

On Board Computer. Nice feature. I was able to monitor my miles to empty. The ambient temperature and my oil level with the push of button. There were several times that the freeze warning indicator came in handy.

Average Fuel Economy. I don't know how the engineers did it but I averaged 48 mpg for my whole trip. Many times I could get approximately 300 miles between fuel stops. And this was at 80 plus mph for miles.

Saddle Bag Capacity. I purchased the factory bag liners and I did not have any issues packing clothing, extra gloves, liners and my computer. The only negative with the bags is the plastic lip on the inner half of each saddle bag. This lip contacts the rubber seal on the outer half for a water proof seal. It's too easy to catch something between the bag halves during closing and damage the lip. I actually broke a small section of the lip right after I purchased the bike when the inner bag retaining strap dropped in between during closing. I fixed with some JB Weld. I've since completely removed the retaining straps. Stuff happens.

Handle Bar and Grip Position. I usually get a pinch between my shoulders during long rides. Never happened. Could be because my ass was hurting so bad but I doubt it. I never experience shoulder or back pain. The adjustable handle bar system must be working.



So that’s my summary of the new KGT for now. My bike is in Hollister, CA at Corbin getting fitted for new seats and a smuggler option. Corbin is using my bike for their production versions so I’ll get everything free. Attached are a couple of photos of the seat base pan being made. I’ll fly down to San Francisco on Nov. 18th to pick it up.

John
06 CGM KGT
 

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I have to be careful here Bryan as to not incite the people that have FJR's, ST's, etc. I could reiterate all of the ESA's, cruise, fit, finish, BMW logo, etc. but without speaking for the masses, all of those things are super important and to me make up the price disparity. But, just as there's the Harley Davidson mystique, I personally think there's a BMW mystique.
 

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Both bikes are fine bikes, Bmer is better but I'm biased. If cost is a huge factor including service, FJR maybe a better choice. For me cost was not the biggest thing it was all the stuff written above plus the fact I spent a few weeks in southern germany and just fell in love with all the european bikes in the Alps. Bmers/DUcatis.....

But if cost is the biggest issue, and the FJR is what you decide, may want to wait for the new Kawi Concourse.....
 

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jpalamaro said:
But, just as there's the Harley Davidson mystique, I personally think there's a BMW mystique.
Agree with the BMer mystique... I think the Harley mystique is dying. Last weekend on my 300 mile ride including Napa and SOnoma counties, 4 out of 5 bikes were Harleys. Kind of becoming the Toyota Camry of bikes..... Everyone has one or is getting one.....
 

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Quote:I think the Harley mystique is dying.

I think the mystique is, why are so many people buying HD's. We have grumblers on these BMW sites that 20,000+ for a cycle is ridiculous . . . go to an HD dealership and look at a CVO Screaming Eagle chrome behemoth at $35,000+ and put your name on a list to get one? That's mystique!
 

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You're too polite John. :rotf:
 

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GT v. FJR, etc

I 've ridden both with a lot more time on FJR. Both great bikes which do the job well. Really depends upon price and budget. BMW fit, finish, community and exclusivity (due to high price) win out if price is no object. Otherwise , get the FJR, which I also guess will be more reliable and less to maintain.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the replies. The information is helpful.

The GT is just what i am looking for but the FJR is a very close second and a much better value which makes the choice difficult. (I was able to finally test ride an FJR yesterday - thanks to Greg on the FJR Forum - and although my test riding of both bikes has been relatively short distances, found it to be very similar to the GT in terms of performance, ergos, and that lovely desire to lean into a corner.)

I agree that there is 'something' about owing a premium product and all that goes with it. It does increase the ownership experience for most of us.
 

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Bryan-4_3 said:
I agree that there is 'something' about owing a premium product and all that goes with it. It does increase the ownership experience for most of us.
I keep reading this elitism stuff and I must confess, I don't understand it. Within the context of the FJR vs. GT I really believe your talking about two completely different animals. Two wheels, an inline four, and similar capabilities sure but peel back the labels and I believe you'd find completely different engineering, approach and intent. The cost difference between the two bikes is just, IMO.

We make choices in life and buying a certain motorcycle (of all things) to enjoy some delusion of feeling better about yourself is probably the dumbest thing I've ever heard of. A car, maybe, but a bike :v: ? Most people barely notice the car you're driving and I assure you many fewer people will notice the bike. The ownsership experience? When you're buying the Lexus, sure, they kiss you ass but when you show back up for service you're just another Dick in an overpriced Toyota. Buying a Landy or a Jag - you get a nice loaner but that's about it. So far, owning a Beemer bike??? Sheesh, you feel more special at a Hardly dealer at least you can get a free soda and a hot dog on Saturdays.

Buy the bike you want because you like it best and not the bike you think "they" might think you're cool on. Trust me, "they" aren't watching and could care less. Dallas Willard said it best when he asked "Why do we buy things we don't want to impress people we don't know?"

Motorcycle elitism - bah humbug - what a load of crap! And if you see someone walking around feeling better about himself for the plastic emblem on his bike just go ahead and kick him in the nuts.
 

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backpain said:
I keep reading this elitism stuff and I must confess, I don't understand it. Within the context of the FJR vs. GT I really believe your talking about two completely different animals. Two wheels, an inline four, and similar capabilities sure but peel back the labels and I believe you'd find completely different engineering, approach and intent. The cost difference between the two bikes is just, IMO.

We make choices in life and buying a certain motorcycle (of all things) to enjoy some delusion of feeling better about yourself is probably the dumbest thing I've ever heard of. A car, maybe, but a bike :v: ? Most people barely notice the car you're driving and I assure you many fewer people will notice the bike. The ownsership experience? When you're buying the Lexus, sure, they kiss you ass but when you show back up for service you're just another Dick in an overpriced Toyota. Buying a Landy or a Jag - you get a nice loaner but that's about it. So far, owning a Beemer bike??? Sheesh, you feel more special at a Hardly dealer at least you can get a free soda and a hot dog on Saturdays.

Buy the bike you want because you like it best and not the bike you think "they" might think you're cool on. Trust me, "they" aren't watching and could care less. Dallas Willard said it best when he asked "Why do we buy things we don't want to impress people we don't know?"

Motorcycle elitism - bah humbug - what a load of crap! And if you see someone walking around feeling better about himself for the plastic emblem on his bike just go ahead and kick him in the nuts.
You weren't, by perchance, trying to say the word "poseur", were you?:D
 

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Discussion Starter #14
backpain said:
I keep reading this elitism stuff and I must confess, I don't understand it. Within the context of the FJR vs. GT I really believe your talking about two completely different animals. Two wheels, an inline four, and similar capabilities sure but peel back the labels and I believe you'd find completely different engineering, approach and intent. The cost difference between the two bikes is just, IMO.

We make choices in life and buying a certain motorcycle (of all things) to enjoy some delusion of feeling better about yourself is probably the dumbest thing I've ever heard of. A car, maybe, but a bike :v: ? Most people barely notice the car you're driving and I assure you many fewer people will notice the bike. The ownsership experience? When you're buying the Lexus, sure, they kiss you ass but when you show back up for service you're just another Dick in an overpriced Toyota. Buying a Landy or a Jag - you get a nice loaner but that's about it. So far, owning a Beemer bike??? Sheesh, you feel more special at a Hardly dealer at least you can get a free soda and a hot dog on Saturdays.

Buy the bike you want because you like it best and not the bike you think "they" might think you're cool on. Trust me, "they" aren't watching and could care less. Dallas Willard said it best when he asked "Why do we buy things we don't want to impress people we don't know?"

Motorcycle elitism - bah humbug - what a load of crap! And if you see someone walking around feeling better about himself for the plastic emblem on his bike just go ahead and kick him in the nuts.
Regarding the bikes, yes there is a very different approach but the results are very similar. I will pay for superior engineering and design and content IF it yields superior results - but it doesn't in this case. Also, BMW is positioned in this country as a premium product and their prices reflect that. Look at the UK prices of the two bikes. Why is there not the same spread?

Elitism. Humm. There is no doubt that there is some elitism within the BMW community. BUT I stated that a premium product increases the ownership experience for most of us. What we buy speaks to our personality and motivation. It doesn't mean that we are seeking positive feedback from others - I would say that's a minor concern within the BMW bike community (observations from my friends whom own BMWs). Speaking for myself only, I really don't care what others think about what I drive or ride (if I did, I would have bought a HD instead of a Victory for the same $$) but I do get satisfaction and enjoyment from ownership which includes driving/riding, formal clubs, informal groups like this, associations with other similar activities (I support BMW in F1 and Audi in sport cars), etc. Others may value the dealership experience, resale, or other factors.
 

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German vs Japanese

Let me make an observation, if I may, regarding this price comparison between the various Japanese sport tourers and our bike. Putting aside the added technology of the BMW bike, there is the price advantage the Japanese bikes enjoy.
In 1988, the exchange rate of the Japanese Yen (y) to the USD $, was 120 to 1. Today it is 117 to 1, negligable. Whereas when the Euro was incepted, a few years back, the exchange rate was 1 to 1. Today it is 1.27 to 1. That represents an approximate 27% devaluation of the USD to the Euro. Don't you think that fact impinges upon the price advantage the Japanese bikes have vs the European?? Product for product.

20K x.78 = 15.6k I think that is pretty equivalent price were the appreciation of the Euro not withstanding. Net net, the price disparity between our bikes and the Japanese GT's is in the monetary exchange rates, not the manufacturers return.

Now in European countries, VAT taxes in many cases replace out losses due to the softness of the USD against the euro.

Just my $.02

Rusty 06 GT
 

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German to Japanese

That is .78 Euros = 1 USD or 1.27 dollars buys 1 euro worth of goods.

sorry if I wasn't clear. You math majors will clear it up..eh?

Rusty 06 GT
 

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Discussion Starter #17
KLAPTRAPPER said:
Let me make an observation, if I may, regarding this price comparison between the various Japanese sport tourers and our bike. Putting aside the added technology of the BMW bike, there is the price advantage the Japanese bikes enjoy.
In 1988, the exchange rate of the Japanese Yen (y) to the USD $, was 120 to 1. Today it is 117 to 1, negligable. Whereas when the Euro was incepted, a few years back, the exchange rate was 1 to 1. Today it is 1.27 to 1. That represents an approximate 27% devaluation of the USD to the Euro. Don't you think that fact impinges upon the price advantage the Japanese bikes have vs the European?? Product for product.

20K x.78 = 15.6k I think that is pretty equivalent price were the appreciation of the Euro not withstanding. Net net, the price disparity between our bikes and the Japanese GT's is in the monetary exchange rates, not the manufacturers return.

Now in European countries, VAT taxes in many cases replace out losses due to the softness of the USD against the euro.

Just my $.02

Rusty 06 GT
Excellent point. That would certainly explain part of the price differences. For BMW cars, the 2007 335 (base price) is about 10% more than the 2007 IS350 and 33% more than the 2006 G35. I wonder if BMW car sales would feel the impact if they were priced 40% (GT base of 19k vs. FJR base of 13.5k - street price is lower) above their Japanese competition.
 

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You should always buy what you like. You are the one riding it...

I bought GT because I like it's unique F117 looks, the 152HP engine... sound... upright riding position... Electronic suspension... plenty of cornering clearance... Most important... This is how I look like :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

Buy the one that put a :) on your face.
 

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Something Called Pride of Ownership

Well since the IMO's were kind of rare and there was a lot of commenting, you may have missed a little. People buy for various reason, pride of ownership of a quality product is a strong point for me, whether cycles, guns, (but not necessarily cars, but that's another story), cameras, to name a few. A Stauer's or Weatherby's groupings not that much different than a Savage Arms or Mossberg rifle, and while I have nothing against Savage or Mossberg, I put them in the same category as a Yamaha. They all do the job, some but some products provide a very unique pride of ownership. But then again, we are of course all very different.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
jpalamaro said:
Well since the IMO's were kind of rare and there was a lot of commenting, you may have missed a little. People buy for various reason, pride of ownership of a quality product is a strong point for me, whether cycles, guns, (but not necessarily cars, but that's another story), cameras, to name a few. A Stauer's or Weatherby's groupings not that much different than a Savage Arms or Mossberg rifle, and while I have nothing against Savage or Mossberg, I put them in the same category as a Yamaha. They all do the job, some but some products provide a very unique pride of ownership. But then again, we are of course all very different.
Well stated.
 
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