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Old 12-02-2011, 09:28 AM   #766
PirateJohn
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Originally Posted by creggur View Post
I got back into riding two years ago last month. I did a ton of research and thought the VFR 800 was the bike I wanted. SPORT Tourer. I love the power, handling, and reliability of the bike, but after two years of comfort mods and adjustments I've come to realize that the bastardized 'Somewhere Between Full Tuck and Upright' ergonomics aren't going to work. Also, my desire to drag a knee stayed with my Riding Self from my 20's - 40 now and a Sport TOURER is more what I want. The current crop of those bikes, (Connies, FJRs, etc) do little to stir my soul, and I'd like to pop down the occasional dirt road that catches my eye.

The power, versatility, and style of the Explorer has me intrigued. And from what I understand Triumphs are a bit more reliable than their European contemporaries. I sat on the S10 and liked the feel - and while I don't need third-gear power wheelies - I do want enough juice in the can to get the adrenaline flowing from time-to-time. 135 ponies and 89 lbft of torque should do the trick nicely.

You got back into riding just about the time that I left Jacksonville.

I have put a ton of miles on an R1100GS and an R1150GS for the last 15 years or so. They are great all-round bikes and with big bags on them I can carry a ton of stuff.

I also have a K1100RS that was modified for long distance rallies and it was, for its time, the ultimate road bike.

Long story short the idea of the big Explorer, with electronic cruise control (something that I have had on two bikes and it makes the world tons easier for rolling up the miles) holds great appeal to me.

I am in South Texas now and the riding is considerably different in many way from Florida, but I can see using the big bike to zip to Monterrey, Saltillo, down to Tuxpan and Tampico (all rides on decent roads but in Mexico you still want your ground clearance and a skid plate) as well as rides back to Florida and New Orleans every so often.

The Tiger 800 would get used on our local Texas dirt roads and around the Mexican border dirt roads if the locals will ever stop shooting at each other.

Back to the chase on the 1200 Tiger, the GS's are actually excellent road bikes and the addition of a cruise control, potentially better reliability, and so forth holds great appeal.

I might add that I always said that I preferred the K-bike engines to the boxers, and I always thought that a GS built around the K-75 three cylinder would have been awesome. In a sense that's what we have with the Triumph - their water-cooled triple which should be well balanced.
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Old 12-02-2011, 04:11 PM   #767
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As I said on the first page of this thread ... I believe Triumph may be a bit over extended at this time. As an owner and a fan ... I wish them the best but I'm a bit worried about their future.

Really? Hmmmm... I wonder about that.

http://www.thisisleicestershire.co.u...ail/story.html
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Old 12-02-2011, 04:38 PM   #768
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Really? Hmmmm... I wonder about that.

http://www.thisisleicestershire.co.u...ail/story.html
Rockin' good news! Good for Triumph - put out a good product at a competitive price and good things happen. Funny how that works...

I've read people lambasting them for copying BMW in the adventure touring segment. Oh well, if they can do it better, they deserve the rewards. Hyundai have done the same over the past few years in the car market, and really taken market share from Honda and Toyota in the U.S. market.

Wife drives a Genesis and it's nicer than the Audi A6 she had before - here's hoping I can say the same about the Explorer over my VFR 800 a year from now.
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Old 12-02-2011, 04:51 PM   #769
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I've read people lambasting them for copying BMW in the adventure touring segment.
I think the only people lambasting them for copying BMW are people (in "Twat Suits"??? ~ See replies further back up this thread... ) who over-paid for GSAs and think they're part of some exclusive club. IMO, BMW is not the end all and be all of the motorcycling world... as much as they and their fans would like to think so.

The same thing was said of Triumph (by guys in "pirate gear" ~ Again, see replies further back ) when they launched the Thunderbird 1600. But I can tell you from direct experience... my stock 'Bird will blow any stock Harley off the road in any circumstance... off the line, on the highway, and in the mountain twisties.

IMO... it's all a bunch of very sour grapes.

"Ride and let ride!"

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Old 12-02-2011, 04:53 PM   #770
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Long story short the idea of the big Explorer, with electronic cruise control (something that I have had on two bikes and it makes the world tons easier for rolling up the miles) holds great appeal to me.
Yeah, the cruise is very appealing. And one of those techy things that won't strand you like a keyless ignition mysteriously refusing to fire.

Quote:
I am in South Texas now and the riding is considerably different in many way from Florida, but I can see using the big bike to zip to Monterrey, Saltillo, down to Tuxpan and Tampico (all rides on decent roads but in Mexico you still want your ground clearance and a skid plate) as well as rides back to Florida and New Orleans every so often.
My perfect weekend is a ride up to some interesting roads (haven't found any in Florida yet, I'm sure you remember) - enjoy a day in the twisties and sweepers, and cruise back home the next. I've done it a number of times on the VFR, but I hurt for a week afterwards. And it's not like I'm in horrible shape - pretty active 6' 180 lb 40 year-old. The bike's ergos simply do not agree with me.

Quote:
The Tiger 800 would get used on our local Texas dirt roads and around the Mexican border dirt roads if the locals will ever stop shooting at each other.
I would like to get back in the woods someday, and it'll probably be on a good used KLR. There's a pretty active Dual Sport group in town that does weekends in Osceola a few times a year. It looks like a blast, but I haven't been on a dirt bike in, oh...'bout 22 years. Wouldn't even dream of taking something the size of the Explorer into the forest - it will be my Sport TOURER...

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In a sense that's what we have with the Triumph - their water-cooled triple which should be well balanced.
That's what I'm hoping for.
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Old 12-02-2011, 04:58 PM   #771
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I think the only people lambasting them for copying BMW are people (in "Twat Suits"??? See replies further back up this thread... ) who over-paid for GSAs and think they're part of some exclusive club. IMO, BMW is not the end all and be all of the motorcycling world... as much as they and their fans would like to think so.
They essentially created the segment, but if you rest on your laurels someone will come along - do it better - and knock you over.
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Old 12-02-2011, 04:59 PM   #772
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The article states that Triumph is selling 1/3 more large bikes than Honda in the UK. That is a strong statistic.
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Old 12-02-2011, 05:09 PM   #773
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They essentially created the segment, but if you rest on your laurels someone will come along - do it better - and knock you over.
A lot of KTM riders would disagree with the statement that BMW created the segment. But, BMW didn't miss the opportunity to capitalize on it. I've said it before on this site, but I bet KTM is still kicking themselves for turning down Charlie Boorman and Ewan McGregor for the "Long Way 'Round" series!

And to be fair, I don't think BMW is resting on its laurels, per se. But, hey, there's NOTHING wrong with healthy competition... it's the very essence of the economy they all do business in.
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Old 12-02-2011, 05:14 PM   #774
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That's one of the best parts of any of their movies, when Charlie tears down the KTM poster. Gave them some determination.
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Old 12-02-2011, 05:20 PM   #775
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A lot of KTM riders would disagree with the statement that BMW created the segment. But, BMW didn't miss the opportunity to capitalize on it.
And there's some of my ignorance of the segment on display. New to it, but that's why I'm here - to learn...
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Old 12-02-2011, 05:21 PM   #776
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That's one of the best parts of any of their movies, when Charlie tears down the KTM poster. Gave them some determination.

Charlie was seriously bummed when KTM passed.... BMW was always the second choice. They would have been better off on those tiny Russian bikes the camera guy (always forget his name) rode when his GS broken down (for the second time). What a total PITA it was trying to get those big, heavy bikes across that part of Russia.

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Old 12-02-2011, 05:46 PM   #777
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Originally Posted by Narsisco Lopez View Post
Really? Hmmmm... I wonder about that.

http://www.thisisleicestershire.co.u...ail/story.html
More good news!
I'm well aware of the Triumph's current roaring success ... and more power to them.
If only a US car/motorcycle company could copy Triumph's example! Harley were 67% down last year. Not sure this year, probably come up some from that disaster ... but still, pretty grim.

My concern is Triumph may soon be juggling too many models at once ... (I think they now produce 22 models? ) and may end up with some models they can't move. This gets expensive.

Actually, even in their short history Triumph have already been through this ... back in the '98 to 2004 period. Things just slowed to a crawl for a while. The 675 and Bonneville brought things back. They also discontinued the big Daytona and Touring bikes, neither of which were selling well. Good move.

I hope they can keep batting 1000, but like the article said ... they are bucking the world wide slump through out motorcycling. How long can they keep it up?

Will market saturation catch up? Will the cost of producing very expensive bikes that don't sell backfire? I wonder about the wisdom of producing bikes like the Rocket lll and Thunderbird. Triumph dealer friends have told me BOTH those bikes are like Mill Stones around their necks.

I hope Triumph are stashing their pennies carefully ... and not investing profits on Wall Street!
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Old 12-02-2011, 05:52 PM   #778
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The Rocket 3 and Thunderbird are truly ugly bikes IMO. Right now they are intelligent enough to see the ADV segment is taking off. Wonder why Honda doesn't snap to it? Guess they sell enough scooters in Asia.
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Old 12-02-2011, 06:03 PM   #779
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The Rocket 3 and Thunderbird are truly ugly bikes IMO.
Well, to each his own... if we all liked exactly the same motorcycle, it would be a truly boring world.

But, I'll tell ya... I came to own a Thunderbird entirely by chance. I was a dedicated sport/sport touring rider, but kept a very open mind when I went to test-ride bikes when I wanted a bike a bit more suited to long days/multi-days. I rode EVERYTHING I could climb on... HDs, all the metric cruisers, Victory, all the big bore sport touring bikes, etc. I didn't think much of the R3, but went to my local Triumph dealer just to give it a try, as I'd heard a lot of good things about it. While such a HEAVY bike, it didn't feel very heavy while moving and puttering in parking lots. And MAN... twist that throttle and you completely forget about what it looks like.

I came back into the showroom after the R3 ride and the Thunderbird's ass just caught my eye (I've always been an ass-man )... I just HAD to ride it. I was sold after hitting second gear. I've rambled on about this bike on other threads, but... it's just one of those bikes you've gotta ride and feel for yourself. WAY FUN!
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Old 12-02-2011, 06:04 PM   #780
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A lot of KTM riders would disagree with the statement that BMW created the segment. But, BMW didn't miss the opportunity to capitalize on it. I've said it before on this site, but I bet KTM is still kicking themselves for turning down Charlie Boorman and Ewan McGregor for the "Long Way 'Round" series!

And to be fair, I don't think BMW is resting on its laurels, per se. But, hey, there's NOTHING wrong with healthy competition... it's the very essence of the economy they all do business in.
Probably a few Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Cagiva riders would disagree too! And you're right about KTM. Big mistake! And a shame for the boys. They would have been so much happier aboard a 950 ... or even a nice 640. Shame. The Cameraman on the Russian bike's comments were classic: "look, it's so easy in the mud!'.

BMW's R80GS was their Dakar "look-A-Like" sold to the public. But Honda, Suzuki and Yamaha ... and Cagiva ... all had "adventure" bikes for sale early on as well. Sadly, only the Cagiva ever came to the USA.

Honda never brought us it's Africa Twin, Yamaha never brought us the 750 Tenere', and Suzuki never brought us the DR Big (800cc single ... and first bike to have a "Beak"!) We did get the Cagiva Elephant, in two sizes! ... and no one was interested in this Dakar winner. Never sold many.

The thing BMW did better than anyone was hiring a world class add agency to sell their products. They have always had The Best ad campaigns, by far.
The Japanese stupidly never put money into good adds, not since the 60's when they had Honda 50 adds on TV! They sold millions.

So as far as most Americans know .... BMW did "invent" Adventure bikes as the GS is the first and only bike they've seen.
But history and the truth refute this.

BTW ... KTM were just a dream in those early years. So many BAD KTM's for SO many years. Took them 20 years to produce a decent and reliable four stroke race bike ... even longer for a street bike.
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