Strongly Considering an '08 990 Adventure (need advice)

Discussion in 'Crazy-Awesome almost Dakar racers (950/990cc)' started by Rockwell, Jul 5, 2009.

  1. Rockwell

    Rockwell Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    670
    Location:
    Ontario
    I am looking to pick up their remaining '08 990 Adventure from a dealer in Ohio. I live in Canada and, if I make the purchase, I will be importing. I need a lot of advice!

    Concerning the dealer:
    -------------------------
    There are a few things that are sort of throw up red flags as I have been corresponding with the dealer, so far, via email.

    First is the price. They have a new '08 990 Adventure selling for US$9,999 (new). The price is what drew me to the advertisement, but it does seem unusually low, does it not?

    Second, I told the dealer that I could come down to Ohio and take the bike for a test ride and, if I liked it, I would likely purchase it and take it back to Canada. They responded by saying that the unit cannot be test-ridden because, if they allowed test rides, they could not sell the bike as "new". Is this usual?

    Concerning the 990, in general:
    -----------------------------------
    I am torn between the BMW F800 GS and the 990 Adventure. I've read quite a bit of the threads on this debate and gotten some good anecdotal information and heard a lot of back-and-forth over this issue.

    My main concern about the KTM is that, I hear, it's maintenance-intensive. This would not be a big issue if I had experience servicing motorbikes. I do not. I have an electrical engineering background, so I don't think this stuff would be difficult to learn; but as of now, I don't have this type of knowledge and experience.

    I am also a beginner rider, and not sure if the KTM is for me (which is why I want to test ride one). A lot of people say that neither of these bikes are suitable for a first bike, but I sort of disagree. I think, as long as I respect the bikes power, capabilities and limitations and get the feel of it slowly, I can eventually handle it just as well as anyone.

    By the way, I plan on doing mostly long-distance on-raod, but I want a bike capable of going off-road. I know both of these bikes are well suited for both, but I am stuck when it comes to choosing one.
    #1
  2. Gravel Traveler

    Gravel Traveler Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    224
    Location:
    Burlington, Canada
    Let me give you some friendly advice,

    An attitude like this will get you killed. On a 990 you will get in so far over your head so fast you won't even know what happened. It is much safer and more fun to learn to ride a bike to it's limit not yours. Once you have mastered that bike then move on.

    The first time you get knocked back on the seat and accidentally crank the throttle WFO you don't want it to be on a bike that makes 90 hp. Don't get me wrong, the 990 is a Fantastic bike and I love it, I crashed my way up to it, learning along the way, it's not a place to start. Adam.
    #2
  3. Rockwell

    Rockwell Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    670
    Location:
    Ontario
    I take your point, but I disagree.

    I have actually ridden a two-wheeled motorized vehicle (150CC scooter :p) for many years, and have taken a rider's training course recently using a 225CC dirt bike. I passed the riding exam without error.

    I also don't think I will accidentally crank the throttle back. I have never done that in any of my riding. I'm not a complete newb, but I am just not use to bigger bikes and gear changing. After taking and passing the training course, I am very comfortable with gear shifting. It just took a little bit to get use to and it became automatic.

    This bike would be a big jump from what I have experience on, but I don't intend on buying several bikes that lead up to this one in performance and power. I believe I will be able to handle it.
    #3
  4. Rockwell

    Rockwell Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    670
    Location:
    Ontario
    Ha...you're from Burlington. I took my training course there at the CCIW under the Skyway.
    #4
  5. Jklotz

    Jklotz Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2004
    Oddometer:
    528
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    I'd have to agree with Adam. the 990 is not a beginners bike. Throttle is too "immediate". It also trades some stability for performance. IMHO, the smart thing to do (still reading? I doubt it ; ) would be to get a used V-Strom 650, keep it for a year and learn how to ride. Then you can sell it for not too much less than you paid for it, and buy a 990 next year. Your chances of having a good experience and not hurting yourself would be greatly increased. I know that's probably not what you want to hear, but I can tell you after many years of riding, I have found it to be the truth.

    Hope that helps,

    James
    #5
  6. Jklotz

    Jklotz Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2004
    Oddometer:
    528
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    Oh, and $10K for a 0 mile 990 sounds a little too good to be true. Be sure you are asking for the "out the door price". Dealerships can be sneaky and hit you for doc fees, un-crating fees, destination charges, set up fees - all kind of crap to make it look like a good deal just to get you in the door. I'm just saying....
    #6
  7. IRONIVAR

    IRONIVAR Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2007
    Oddometer:
    587
    Location:
    L.I.N.Y.
    please p.m me after you crash and i will buy whatever is left .
    this is not for a first time dirt/street rider .
    consider a 690 or a bmw 650 first
    ironivar
    #7
  8. Rockwell

    Rockwell Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    670
    Location:
    Ontario
    It is US$9,999 plus about US$500 dealer prep/etc.

    It does seem a little too good to be true. We'll see.
    #8
  9. Rockwell

    Rockwell Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    670
    Location:
    Ontario
    I read everything.
    #9
  10. 1911fan

    1911fan Master of the Obvious

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    3,285
    Location:
    North Central Washington
    What he said. I've been riding off and on since I was 12, used to roadrace/dragrace and motocross, and the 990 is a handful for me. It's maybe too much bike for me at times, and I've got years in on superbikes. It's different, it's powerful, and very definitely NOT the next bike after a scooter.

    Dead man walking, clear the way.


    NCW Mike
    #10
  11. Rockwell

    Rockwell Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    670
    Location:
    Ontario
    How about the F800?

    I know riding scooter doesn't mean much to "real" motorcyclists, but I found, when taking my riders training course, a lot of the skills were transferable.

    Jklotz: when you say the throttle is too "immediate," can't you mitigate that with clutch control (or do I completely not know what I am talking about)?
    #11
  12. Deuce

    Deuce Crazy Canuck

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2001
    Oddometer:
    2,861
    Location:
    Vancouver Island, Bitchin' Columbia, Canada
    #12
  13. 1911fan

    1911fan Master of the Obvious

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2007
    Oddometer:
    3,285
    Location:
    North Central Washington
    Do a search in Orange Crush for 990 throttle, 990 jerkiness, 990 fueling... plenty of posts about the 990's EFI snatchiness.

    NCW Mike

    PS: As pointed out above, the 990 is a GREAT bike. Best be on your game to ride it, though. We're concerned for your safety and well-being.
    #13
  14. Cumminsman76

    Cumminsman76 befuddled

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    8,625
    Location:
    Where the bikes parked. STL
    I have seen several dealers "blowing out" the 990's. The price doesnt seem unheard of. I am waiting on a condo to sell or I would already have one.

    I ride a DRZ-400S now. I rode a friends 990 for a few miles and it was alot more powerful but didn't seem like something that would get a guy hurt. Now I wasn't being stupid with it and was on a smooth road.
    #14
  15. big adv

    big adv I need supervision

    Joined:
    May 26, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,072
    Location:
    Kelowna, BC. CND
    #15
  16. Jklotz

    Jklotz Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2004
    Oddometer:
    528
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    I test rode an F800GS, and thought it was really nice. It's good to see BMW acknowledging the benefits of chain drive and a normal fork for performance riding. Problem is I haven't seen any deals for them. BMW is awful proud of their product....

    The throttle on the 990 is immediate. It responds to every input, big or small. There is absolutely no forgiveness, and takes total concentration to be smooth on it. Some say it is better with a G2 cam, but IMHO, it's a lot to handle. I've got 24 years experience, and have owned about the same amount of bikes, and other than my 990 Superduke, this one is the feistiest. I treat the throttle with the utmost respect.

    There are some bikes that are just not meant for beginners (Ducati 1198, any liter sport bike, Superduke, etc...) and trust me when I say this is one of them.
    #16
  17. Rockwell

    Rockwell Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    670
    Location:
    Ontario
    Thanks guys. I did check the RIV site last week, but didn't notice the year. I saw Adventure and Adventure S and the bottom, but didn't notice only 2007 and prior.
    #17
  18. Deuce

    Deuce Crazy Canuck

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2001
    Oddometer:
    2,861
    Location:
    Vancouver Island, Bitchin' Columbia, Canada
    There are lots of nice, used 950's and '07 990's for sale here on ADVrider and on Craigslist in the States. Most of them have all the accesories and farkles and low mileage. I picked up my '05 950 in Seattle last fall for $8g's and it was loaded with goodies. Of course the Canuckian Loonie was at 0.95 U.S.$ then.
    #18
  19. Rockwell

    Rockwell Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    670
    Location:
    Ontario
    A little optomism...! :D

    I understand that you guys are concerned for the safety of riders. No one is more concerned for my safety than myself, which is why I would not do anything stupid with the bike. Maybe I am completely ignorant, but I just cannot see this bike as being so uncontrollable and still be a great bike. I think the worst I would do is tip the thing over and have to pick it up a number of times.

    ...but, I really am heeding the warnings from all the experienced guys here. If I do decide to get this bike, I am going to exhibit extreme caution because of what has been said here. You guys have me a bit scared.
    #19
  20. Rockwell

    Rockwell Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    670
    Location:
    Ontario
    I did get an email from the guys at Parker Bros. in Toronto (who probably read this site, and maybe have even posted a warning in this thread not knowing that they may have killed a sale) saying that they can get a 2008 for me.

    Also, I bought about $8000 in USD last month when our dollar peaked at $0.92. If I decide to get something in the US, I still have a good rate.
    #20