Help me decide on a sports tourer (or rather close to it)

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by nemuro, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. nemuro

    nemuro Adventurer

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    I know there are thousands of topics like this, but everyone thinks he has special needs and wants a topic of their own. I am no exception :).

    My riding experience over my 5 years:
    (+strong points in my oppinion, -weak points in my oppinion)

    1. Suzuki GS500:
    +not that much electronics ( no sensors, no injection, etc )
    +easy and cheap maintenance
    + nice to get around in traffic
    + insane fuel economy
    +air cooled, no fuss
    + first love

    - felt too small, looked like a toy
    - windy at highway speeds
    - looks

    2. Kawasaki ZR-7 - 2001
    +fun in the twisties, ran circles around squids on 600 speeders
    +not that much electronics ( sensors, injection, etc )
    +pulls nice in low revs, nice to get around in traffic
    +huge tank and very good fuel economy
    +easy and almost cheap maintenance
    +huge underseat space for "stuff"
    +air and oil cooled, still no fuss
    +kawasaki grew on me
    +huge tank range
    +fuel level indicator
    +I could stay in saddle all day

    - too rare, hard to find parts and when you do they cost an arm and a leg
    - bad on highway speeds (windy)
    - front fork a bit soft
    - looks


    3. Honda VFR800 FI 2000 - gen5

    +wind protection and even rain protection sometimes :)
    +lovely for doing fast cruising (140km/h-160km/h)
    +faster than I what I was used with
    +no choke lever
    +clock
    +looks
    +impressive fuel economy

    - got (honda) technophobia from this bike. R/R gave up and left me standing, somethimes the bike ignition cut off as I was riding
    - runs extremely jerky in first gear when going at idle rpm speed between cars. it's almost scary
    - dissapointed from a V to find that the power sits a bit in the high revs
    - a bit too linear power delivery, it kinda sneaks up on you
    - a bit of a wrestle to tip down in twisties
    - runs hot, burns my legs in traffic
    - a bit fat for going around traffic
    - lacking personality imho


    Glad you made it so far, I tried and still try to be as brief as possible.

    Now here's what I am looking for in the next bike:


    Here we go:
    Runner-ups
    1. Hayabusa (ridden one, love it but a bit large and hard to tip in corners. bet it becomes better as I learn more to ride it)
    2. Kawasaki ZX-9 (it's a kaw, it's low tech, it's fast and nimble, hope a find a decent 2002+)

    Considering:
    CBR 1100 XX
    Yamaha R1 (hate the position but love the looks and speed. considering major mods for ergonomics. handlebars, pegs, etc )
    Kawasaki Z1000
    Suzuki SV 1000 S
    Bandit 1200
    Yamaha FZ1s
    Yamaha TDM 900
    Hornet 900


    What can you recommend based on what I seek? Helpful reviews of the bikes mentioned here is also very welcome.:deal
    Thank you!
    #1
  2. espacef1fan

    espacef1fan Been here awhile

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    I thinkt he Hayabusa is a great choice as far as your performance and parts requirement go. It handles well(once you set it up. with the right tires)

    I think FZ1 might be the winner, though.
    #2
  3. Superzoom

    Superzoom Been here awhile

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    Just curious... What do you need the 250+ kph for?
    #3
  4. omeoxlv

    omeoxlv Been here awhile

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    As an ex TDM rider I can well recommend them. As a current MT01 rider I can recommend that even more.
    Graeme









    #4
  5. dddd

    dddd Been here awhile

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    wouldnt a vstrom 1000 do it? if the no younger than2005 is about money, the vstrom prices are better so might allow younger. I think fuel injection is a must, and so is abs. But thats just me and the rest of the world.
    #5
  6. kraven

    kraven Hegelian Scum

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    [​IMG]
    Suzuki Katana 750 made through '06ish
    Carbs, fuel gauge, 1 piece seat, non-chiropractic semi-sporting position, made for years (and cheap to fix), cheap to buy used, models made til '05 or so.
    L4 power, the way you like it, without techno gadetry.
    Tires are cheapity cheap cheap standardish sporty size (120/70/17 and 150/70/17)
    Lots of low mileage models out there.

    Downsides: Bodywork is 90's chic, old tech oil/air cooled motor, carbs tend to be substandard for modern riders, a tad gas thirsty
    Not the coolest bike in the world with the bug eyes fairing.

    http://www.bikez.com/motorcycles/suzuki_katana_750_2005.php
    #6
  7. Vertical C

    Vertical C Long timer

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    I doubt if the strom would do 250+ the sv barely does it. The gsxf 750 either.

    I have owned the SV and the R1, and ridden the zx9 over 1000kms. The zx9 is comfy and slowest, the r1 is fast and barely comfortable the sv is in the middle.

    Out of the three i would get the sv again. The twin is awesome. Especiall if you get one with the suspension done, which is average stock.

    Btw if you rode and didnt like the busa take that as a sign. I doubt if you will grow into it.
    #7
  8. Grainbelt

    Grainbelt marginal adventurer Super Moderator

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    Triumph Daytona 955 :D
    #8
  9. kraven

    kraven Hegelian Scum

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    Yeah, the GSXF top speed is reported at 220, and a real world sea level speed (last time I rode one in the 90's) was about that (140mph-ish down alligator alley in FL)
    #9
  10. elementalg20

    elementalg20 Been here awhile

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    Have to agree, requiring a 250km/h top speed is a little silly. Personally, I'd say it's far more important to be able to get so 100 MPH or so fairly quickly and most everything after that is bragging rights. Most of us have gone way to fast, and it's alot of fun but the risks on the road really aren't worth it. I've found I'm better off not having the ability so I can't exploit it vs hoping to always maintain self control.


    I'm going to toss in the Triumph Sprint ST 955i into the mix, similiar to the VFR but with a bit of flare and a sweet triple instead of the cool V-Four. Brakes aren't know to be the best but a set of calipers make a huge difference so I'm told, busa calipers bolt on.
    #10
  11. rotten

    rotten LOST AGAIN

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    If you think the VFR800 was a bit fat for traffic I think most of these bikes would leave you with the same feeling. Personally I don't put most of these bikes in the sport touring class like the: FJR1300, ST1300, 1400 Concours but I guess its all a matter of use. Seems to me that if you want a "full and protective fairing" the above mentioned bikes would be closer to your needs.
    #11
  12. Gryphon12

    Gryphon12 Long timer

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    Triumph Daytona 955 :D

    +1 If you are considering a ZX-9, this is the true gentleman's SS / ST. Large tank (21 l or 5.5 gal), good suspension, great motor. Long reach to the bars, so needs risers. Forget 2 up though!

    So, I'd find a clean Blackbird and raise the bars. 'Busa and ZX-14 are too much IMHO.

    Nothing meets all of your criteria.
    #12
  13. kraven

    kraven Hegelian Scum

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    technophobia negates the modern ST bike choices. Carb+fairing+fuel gauge alone narrows things considerably.
    #13
  14. Gryphon12

    Gryphon12 Long timer

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    We've had this discussion before. VFR-800, Sprint ST/GT, Ducati ST3/4/s are on the SPORT end, the FJR & C14 are on the TOUR end, and the Blackbird, 'Busa, and ZX-14 are on the Hyper end of the spectrum.

    Strom's are standard street / touring bikes while GSX-R, ZX-9R, and Daytona 955i are Super-sports - older ones are slightly easier on the ergo's, but it really is model specific.

    GSX-650F, EX-650R, SV-650, and FZ-6R are all mid-sized with slightly "less" in each category (sport, tour, speed, two-up) in terms of capabilities. All are cheaper to insure and have better fuel economy, but not necessarily better range (depending on tank size).

    If you want to keep it simple, the best mid-sized, slightly older options are the Yamaha YZF-600R Thundercat (great SPORT-tourer but has carbs) and the Honda CBR600 F4i (fuel injected). Both will carry a passenger (some years of F4i had the "banana seat" which I prefer, others had the SS solo seat).

    The SPORT end of the ST spectrum that will still manage two-up is dominated by the VFR, Ducati STs, and the Triumph Sprints (RS/ST/GT)(955 or 1050). They are all compromises, are all "big" in slow or city traffic, but hit the sport end better than bigger, heavier machines. If these are too big or cumbersome, you want a Supersport 600/750/900/1000. Unless you go to the hyper-sports, which are even more cumbersome in town and get even poorer fuel economy and less range, you won't be happy with a passenger.

    Which leads you back to the VFR, Sprint and Ducati.
    #14
  15. BrookTrout

    BrookTrout Adventurer

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    Whatever you do, don't get a Hayabusa.

    I bought a 2007 in March of this year. I've only been able to put about 7000 miles on it so far, on trips to barely 9 of the 11 western states. The storage under the hump/seat is minimal. All I can fit in there is a multimeter, tire plug kit, electric compressor, jumper cables, electrical tape, fuses, factory took kit, craftsman ball-end allen set, vice grips, spare wire, screwdrivers, rags, a flashlight, extra gloves, and spare straps. In order to make it tolerable, I had to install heli-bars, a used Corbin seat, and a ZGST shield. This set me back almost $300. The fuel range is ridiculous. I can barely get to 200 miles before the low fuel light comes on, at which point I only have another 1.5 gallons. Mileage is pure suckage. If I travel at 90 mph, I barely get 46 mpg. If I'm on mountain roads where I average more like 60 mph, then I barely get into the mid-50's, with an all time high of 58 mpg. This is unacceptable for a bike that supposedly puts out 175 hp to the crank. Speaking of power, this thing is overrated. If I'm lazy, in 6th gear, going 60, it takes over 2 seconds to pass a car. I wish I had to down-shift more. They say it'll do 186, but I whacked it open once in the desert and barely got to 160 before I chickened out. It's not confidence inspiring at all. The worst thing is, in all my travels so far, I only met two other guys (in Buena Vista Colorado) on these torture machines. I could tell that their grins were totally painted on. I'd rather ride a bike that I see often, at every gas stop if possible... you know, like a Gold King! Speaking of torture, 600 miles is my daily record so far, but it wasn't bad, so I'm going to have to try harder to be more uncomfortable next year. One shouldn't be able to ride all day without discomfort. It's not right.

    Whatever you do, don't get a Hayabusa.

    [​IMG]
    #15
  16. Gryphon12

    Gryphon12 Long timer

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    Way cool! Sportrider's test of the 'Busa got a low of 29 and a high of 34 mpg (US). Looks like they retuned it? I'm impressed!
    #16
  17. kraven

    kraven Hegelian Scum

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    Oh, the sarcasm. The beautiful beautiful sarcasm. :evil
    #17
  18. doggrell3000

    doggrell3000 Been here awhile

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    dear forum

    the bmw black 2013 k1300s is the most incredible sport touring bike ever manufactured in the history of two wheeled vehicles . unfortunately they are twenty grand usd . but bmw has topped everything in the sport tourer class with the k1300s . jay leno could afford one . i am going to sell my stamp collection to get mine .

    [​IMG]

    doggrell3000
    #18
  19. motocopter

    motocopter new place explorer

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    This has only one outcome! :evil

    [​IMG]

    http://kawasaki.com/Products/Product-Specifications.aspx?scid=25&id=721

    #19
  20. Hank.SD

    Hank.SD Jet Measurer

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    That bike makes my eyes want to vomit. I'm sure its fine and reliable, and I know beauty is in the eye of the beerholder... but holy fack, Katanas are the king of ugly.
    #20