Consumer Reports: BMW & Harley-Davidson Motorcycles Are Less Reliable than Japanese o

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by ta-rider, Sep 28, 2013.

  1. popscycle

    popscycle Fahren Away

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    I wonder how doing that compares to changing the air filter on a Honda Goldwing?
  2. scootrboi

    scootrboi Long timer

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    BMW's penchant for one sided rear suspensions with easily detached wheels is a fine example of man's humanity to man.
  3. HanShotFirst

    HanShotFirst Been here awhile

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    That makes it a better tourer... And I'll agree it's overall a much nicer bike. I have a bad back so my 600 mile days in the saddle are sadly gone. 150-250 is about my limit. My ZZR is just perfect for that. The ZZR is much more sport than it is touring, but with bar risers it's surprisingly comfy for my shorter rides.
  4. atomicalex

    atomicalex silly aluminum boxes

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    Should we instead just be happy that there are so many different kinds of motorcycles to choose from?

    In the auto industry, we like to say that there is an ass for every seat. In this place, that is so much more true......
  5. genka

    genka SUV hater

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    Couldn't agree more. Despite of what I said earlier, all routine maintenance on BMW boxer is easy. I had a V-Rod, and wouldn't even attempt to check valves. My 1200GS just needed first replacement parts at 55k miles. Before that- nothing but oil, brakes and tires. No expensive chains and sprockets. I also replaced fuel fittings as a preventive repair, but who knows, they could last for a long time. The problem with BMWs is not in day to day reliability, but in the cost of spare parts.

    The validity of CR ratings is another story. I stopped reading them 20 years ago. At that time I worked in a TV repair shop. Back then you could buy several brands of TVs with only cosmetic differences. GE was making GE, RCA and ProScan, Phillips was also sold as Magnavox, Philco, Crosley and so on. The CR ratings for them were all over the place. Their surveys are as unscientific as they get.
  6. Berto

    Berto Inherently Floridian

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    until the Manufactures release warranty claim data (not ever going to happen) its all just speculation as to who has the most reliable motorcycles
  7. popscycle

    popscycle Fahren Away

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    I agree. CR ratings are only slightly better than useless - a minor clue at best. Telephone polls are not terribly scientific and lab tests of a few units does not constitute statistical validity. As Berto said above, only warranty claims give you any real data. Also, there are people and companies who are paid to influence polls and internet forum posts. You can sometimes tell who the paid shills are as they will try to hammer/wear down those who disagree.
  8. ohgood

    ohgood Just givver tha berries !!!

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    when is this happening?
  9. HanShotFirst

    HanShotFirst Been here awhile

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    Have to be in the spring, I have a broken faring. But I live near Lake Tahoe, so we can make one hell of a fun ride out of it...you know, after the racing nonsense is out of the way. I think one he sees the ZZR accelerate, he'll be content to just go for a nice ride and let me buy him a cold beer at a pub at the end of the day.
  10. HanShotFirst

    HanShotFirst Been here awhile

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    And no, I didn't crash it. The guy I bought it from dropped it and put a decent crack in it. Then when I trailered it 2000 miles when we moved, it opened that crack all the way down..,it's ugly. Speaking of ugly, I picked up a used faring that someone painted with orange flames...those will go away very early in the project. So I have my wintertime work cut out for me.
  11. kumakahn

    kumakahn Adventurer

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    I'm pretty darn emotionally moved by and attached to my 2012 Concours. In fact, I traded my 2008 Connie in for it, and I emotionally miss the 2008. We had been through a lot together, and she never failed to thrill me or get me home. I am learning to love my new black beauty as she does the same for me, time after time. I agree that the Japanese have never figured out how to capture our hearts as well as our wallets. Look at the ST1300. But, the Connie does a pretty good job. It's sort of like a girlfreind when you are in your 50s. You value character, brains, and low-maintenance a lot more than a great body. A good woman gets more sexy every time she opens her mouth, and my Connie gets more sexy every time she gets me through a long, rough weather ride without a problem. The low miles issue is easy to understand for me - it is easier to get a new model when you are not upside down in your present bike and when you didn't have to sell your house to buy it, and I love getting a new bike.
  12. MiteyF

    MiteyF Long timer

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    Maybe THAT'S why Jap bike owners tend to hop from bike to bike... we can afford it, 'cause we didn't lose our ass the first time around :evil
  13. Red9

    Red9 Been here awhile

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    lmao:rofl
    I've lost more money (and not just % wise) selling my Japanese bikes over the last 35 years than I have ever lost with any of my Harley's.

    I think the biggest reason why Japanese bike owners tend to hop from bike to bike is because they tend to be younger (my personal experience from years gone by...) and more eager to move to the next big thing (faster, new features, style etc).

    The cruiser crowd (my personal experience now that I'm older) tend to pick the bike that fits their current need or choice and hold onto it for a little longer.

    Or (my personal experience again) some of us also end up with 3 or 4 bikes and ride the one that fits the day. :D
  14. windmill

    windmill Long timer

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    I never found HD's or European bikes to hold their value better because I tend to be rough on bikes, riding them year round in all conditions, it seems their ability to retain value is closely related to their cosmetic condition.
  15. scootrboi

    scootrboi Long timer

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    Japanese motorcycles seem to be made for smaller people. One reason I persist in riding my German machine is that it is made for a big person. I am not particularly large, but on a Japanese machine my legs are folded up too much and the handlebars are generally too close. I haven't ridden them all, not even close, but European and American bikes seem more roomy. That is as good a reason as any to make a choice.

    https://scontent-b-lga.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn1/230356_222391427772192_4445889_n.jpg

    https://scontent-b-lga.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash3/945703_604329499578381_79180744_n.jpg

    https://scontent-a-lga.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-frc1/254799_1904278880880_4635578_n.jpg
  16. mrphotoman

    mrphotoman Long timer

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    I have noticed that morbidly obese people do prefer harleys. :lol3

    Yeah those tiny japanese bikes, some with 38" seat heights are made for midgets and those huge harleys with 25" seat heights are made for giants (well maybe 5' tall and 5' wide people) :rofl
  17. MiteyF

    MiteyF Long timer

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    :rofl
  18. Souljer

    Souljer Recycling Electrons

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    Hi,

    That is funny.

    Now that we're on size and not "reliability", I can also add that the guy I bought my 1993 R100R from is a tall and slim guy. Probably about 6'2". We met and did a multi-sale with me buying his bike and him meeting another guy at the same time and buying that guys bike. One reason he said he was selling the BMW was because he hurt his shoulder and it seemed that the bike might be a bit small for him and the positioning was hurting his shoulder.

    The other guys bike -that my seller bought- was a Jiant Japanese bike but I forget which. A massive 6 cylinder thing I think. All the nomenclature and badges had been stripped off for a custom orange flame paint job. When my seller rode away, I admit he looked good and the bike was not too big, but substantially bigger than the R100R he left behind.

    As for me, I did a lot of research and found that the BMW was overall what I wanted and the best fit for me. The best at everything or cheapest? For about $2300, of course not. However I don't plan to buy a bike every year and I do plan on doing some of my own maintenance. So I guess I'm too poor to buy cheap.

    At least that's how things are at this time in my life. YMMV. :norton
  19. Red9

    Red9 Been here awhile

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    I live well north of you.
    I ride year round.
    I wash my bike regularly (we use salt on our roads in the winter) and maintain it myself.

    I've never rode my Japanese bikes year round. The Ultra's fairing and lowers provide much better protection from the elements.
    They have all been in the same condition when I sold or traded them.
    The resale value on the Japanese bikes sucked.
  20. hugemoth

    hugemoth Long timer

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    I'm glad the resale value on Japanese bikes sucks because I only buy used, and I've yet to loose money on any bike I've eventually resold. What I look for in a bike is cheap to buy, cheap to run, easy to maintain, and reliable. Japanese always wins.

    Being 6'2" with a 34" inseam I'm well aware of the distance between the seat and pegs on motorcycles, so I usually end up raising the seat and moving it back. No big deal for an old mechanic.