Spec me a beast - from a sportsbike rider
I'm looking for ideas on bike more suited to touring and bad roads.
I currently ride an SL1000 which is great for what it does, but it's abysmal on fuel, and probably not suited to dodgy potholed roads, ruts, gravel, and stones.
My previous bikes have been a ZX9R, ZXR750, and a GPZ500, so i'm not really familiar with 'beasts'.
All three of these have been around Europe, mostly on asphalt, sometimes through stony forests roads (avoiding areas market with landmine warning signs), other times through gravel.
I've never truly been off road (like deep mud, or sand), but I'm looking to get a bit more off the beaten the track in my future trips.
I've got a budget of about £2.5k - £3k and looking for something about 800cc or more, that weighs less than my current bike 222kg wet weight, and will do quite a bit more than 40mpg. It must also be suitable for pillion use.
The other problem is that I like the styling of sportsbikes and find the riding position comfortable enough, for the types of tours I do anyway - 5,000 miles.
Obviously I'll need to be flexible, but does anyone have any opinions on some models I should be looking at?