Not trying to act like some big expert (that Im not) but, since I started this review thread a while back, I thought I'd include this cross-post from another forum is response to a gent who is selling his Stelvio in favor of a BMW. _________________ I have a few things to say about the topic of Stelvio v GS. Sorry for the length. First of all, I am about as strong a proponent of the Guzzi brand in general and the Stelvio model in particular as anyone. I helped a long-time friend buy one of the first Stelvio models when they were first imported into the US and I purchased an NTX when they first arrived last year. I posted a review that's still around someplace. I have 3 Moto Guzzi bikes. On top of that, I am also, I guess you'd say, a BMW man. I have 4 of them now and one is a 1200GS. Ive owned 4 GS models and I do a lot of off-road running. I am saying these things not to brag about the bikes I have but to give some idea of my direct experience with both brands. As far as the originator of this thread saying he is selling his NTX in favor of a BMW GS, I can understand it. I'm not saying I agree with it for me but I can accept that someone would do that. I think I said in my Stelvo review that the BMW GS is a more-refined machine than the Guzzi. It is significantly smoother running, has better controls and switchgear, and a host of added features not offered by Guzzi. I prefer the NTX, however. It is dramatically much better in off-road conditions than any of the GS models I've owned, most particularly the huge and top-heavy Adventure that I had. On-road the Guzzi is a tad faster than the GS and sportier handling. The Stelvio feels lighter than the GS. I also like the visceral appeal of the Guzzi. I like a little engine feel in my machinery. ( I'm also a long-time Harley rider and continue to enjoy a Shovelhead I bought 35 years ago.) I am also not fond of sissy-bikes with electronic controls for suspension and all those gadgets. Sorry for the "sissy" reference. Devil made me say that. It felt good too. The Stelvio is louder, it shakes, it has too much heat from the left cylinder, it's a little more crude than the BMW but that's what I like. I can easily see why someone with a different perspective would prefer the BMW and I would never ridicule them or try to convince them to like what I like. Good lord. I even have friends with Gold Wings. I just … well, nevermind. Devil coming around again. Now, problems. I've had two problems with my Stelvio. I was stung by the much-publicized aux light short-out and popping the main fuse that caused me to be stranded. I knew about the problem and had worked on it but there was a misunderstanding of where the damn fuse was located. I know all that now. I also had one of my sparkplug caps go bad and cause a cylinder to misfire. These are not major issues and I hope my problems are worked-out from now on. Now, the BMW. Those pictures posted earlier are inappropriate and do not reflect the problems associated with BMW’s. Shown there are unusual incidents. I’m sure such catastrophic, isolated occurrences could be shown with any brand. We do not have to resort to that sort of stuff to make a point about BMW issues which are legion. Most of the BMW problems that I can think of affect models from about year model 2000 and up. First and foremost is the final drive failure issue. But there is much, much more. ABS pump failures, electronic security system failures that leave your bike stranded, fuel pump controller issues, brake reservoir issues, switchgear failures, ECU problems, CANBUS wiring complications and many, many more come to mind. I hate to say it but BMW is the absolute, absolute most problem-prone motorcycle brand on the market. I hate to say it. If anyone thinks these issues are minimal and isolated and simply blown out of proportion on the internet, they should regularly attend the national and regional BMW rallies as I do. Mix and mingle with The Faithful and you will see that all the issues I enumerated are much too widespread to be acceptable happenstance. Not long ago, at a national BMW rally, BMW sent a PR man, Mr. Larry Kuykendall, to give a rare appearance. He held a seminar at 8 am one morning and it was packed. He went through the expected promo talk about how good BMW was and how they wanted to enforce a premium image etc. When he opened up for some questions, I was first up and brought up the final drive failure issue and he responded that they knew nothing about such an issue. I took the mic back and asked everyone of the 300-400 people there to raise their hands if they’d ever had a final drive failure. Seriously, about half the room raised their hands ! You could hear a loud rustle of all those Aerostich cordura sleeves rising in unison. Lol. No other questions were accepted and the session was quickly ended. Anyway, these problems are real. I’ve had several of them plague me. I’ve been stranded more than once on a new BMW model. It may happen again too. Let me try to clear up the final drive issue. There are two problems. First and foremost is the main crown or hub bearing failure. As it fails, the metal bearing cage disintegrates and cuts the final drive oil seal to pieces causing the final drive oil to quickly blow out. As bad as this sounds, in many cases, a new bearing and seal will fix the problem if caught soon enough. If you are in the middle of nowhere, however, this can ruin a nice trip. I always carry a pack of spare parts on my BMWs. It includes the final drive bearing and seal. I carry the tools and I know how to fix it. By the way, Guzzi uses the same bearing in the CARC drive unless they’ve recently changed it. I remember when they introduced the CARC and I discovered this. I was very concerned but, aside from a few initial problems, Guzzi has not been experiencing final drive issues that I know about. The second BMW final drive issue that gets confused with the bearing failure issue relates to the oil seal alone. BMW does not a have a vent on the final drive unit. As it heats up, significant pressure builds up inside. In some cases, this pressure causes oil to blow by the oil seal onto the ground. BMW has addressed this problem by reducing the amount of oil recommended to fill the final drive. This increases the air cavity in the final drive and reduces the overall heat pressure inside that causes the blow-by leak. These final drive issues became serious about year model 2000 with the 1100-1150 series. Then, the final drive was completely re-designed in 05 with introduction of the 1200 series and the “see-through” axle. Originally, these final drives did not include a drain plug and were said to be permanently oil filled. Although BMW never acknowledged any final drive failure issue, they hinted that anything that went wrong would surely be the fault of improper service by the owners. Well, the final drive issues became worse with the 1200 series than with the prior series. I’m not sure if they’ve worked the issues out now or not. Apparently, from all my contacts, the problems seem to possibly have been an assembly or engineering error that allowed improper shimming of the bearing. Enough. There are many, many other things. I think the thing with the germans is that they like to cram all sorts of gadgets and technological designs onto their products. They like to answer a lot of questions that nobody is asking. They like to fix a lot of things that aren’t broken. The more complicated things you add to a piece of machinery, the more things you have that can go wrong. That’s what scares me about the latest new water-cooled BMW bikes that feature many new designs and features. Does all this mean that all BMW’s have problems ? No. I know people with over 100,000 miles on their bikes with no final drive or other problems. However, the likelihood of encountering some issue with a BMW is, I think, greater than with any other brand. There’s just more things there to give you problems. I like the bikes. They have a wonderful suspension and the bikes perform very well. My R1200S is the finest sport bike I’ve ever ridden. My advice on having a BMW is this. Be sure to keep it in some sort of warranty coverage and then enjoy the bike. So, back to the original post. I wish the original poster well. I understand his preference for the BMW. It is a very refined and polished machine. I hope he is in the group of many BMW riders who have no problems. I do advise keeping it in warranty and carrying a few critical spare parts on long trips just in case. If BMW gets their quality control better, I may have another new one in the future.