VFR vs. BMW RT1100----seeking pros/cons of each!

Discussion in 'Road Warriors' started by blsexton, May 28, 2006.

  1. blsexton

    blsexton Been here awhile

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    OK, so I am an experienced rider and have about 6k$ to spend on my next bike; Looking for something with long distance capability but when I get there, it's gotta corner and handle admirably. Can't be a slow poke either, and I prefer light-weight to heavy.... Girl will ride a bit, but mostly single up touring.
    Looking for input from maybe some riders of especiallly the VFR.... my buddies claim it has 'no soul'-- translation to me is they are jealous of the low Honda maintenance. What are the cons of a VFR? Never ridden one, but have ridden a RT1100--
    #1
  2. Monkey_Boy

    Monkey_Boy Los bichos atacan

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    There are no cons to the VFR, its blandness actually will grow on you.

    The pros are numerous. much lower cost to own, near zero maintenance, much better handling, and plenty of fast. It's a much better sport touring machine than anything BMW has ever come up with.
    #2
  3. kadesean

    kadesean eyesuck Supporter

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    chain
    #3
  4. Monkey_Boy

    Monkey_Boy Los bichos atacan

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    final drive failure :wink:
    #4
  5. Whiskers

    Whiskers Adventurer

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    The VFR 800 has a lack of torque that's why I sold it,not very pleasant for touring or aroud the city.I bought an ST Honda. I was very disapointed otherwise the overall was fantastic, but it was the last model before the V-TEC...
    #5
  6. Grainbelt

    Grainbelt marginal adventurer Super Moderator

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    They seem quite opposite to me?

    For a sporty tourer I'd think about a duc ST2/3/4 or triumph sprint. VFR vtec seems weird, $6k beemer will be pretty old, no?
    #6
  7. Nd2Roam

    Nd2Roam Charleston, WV

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    I had a 98 VFR and I felt it had gobs of soul. The gear driven cam whine combined with the booming exhaust are now permanently hardwired to my brain. I was always an Indy Car fan .. err, Cart or Champ or whatver they are now and the Viffer always reminds me of them. It was down on torque but having to shift down a gear or two more often only made it more engaging to ride. Occasionally I would hear people refer to it being "only 100 hores power" ... how did I ever get by? I also liked it's presence among other bikes; bigger and uncluttered with graphics.

    On the downside, it is slower than than a 600 i4 and it's heavy. A lot of VFR riders seemed to have switched to the FZ1 which would be lighter, faster, more comfortable and is within your budget ... just my .02
    #7
  8. ridenrain

    ridenrain Look out, there are llama

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    My biggest issue is the dealers.

    Problems with the bike:
    BMW = You're problem, they all do that, it's a charactoristic.
    Honda = Honda problem. Should have a maytag sticker instead.
    #8
  9. Mully

    Mully Kineticist

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    The ergonomics were the limiting factor for me on the VFR: my body doesn't like the riding position, even with "improvements" (seat/bars/screen). Valve maintenance is a bitch. Chain was a non-issue with ScottOiler: mine had 25K on the original chain/sprockets. Does it have "soul"? No, not in the sense of a Ducati or KTM950, but it does what it does so well that it frees you up to enjoy the other sensory parts of the ride. I miss mine, kinda.

    mully
    #9
  10. RobH

    RobH Don't tase me bro

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    Fixed it for you.

    #10
  11. ShaftEd

    ShaftEd Long timer

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    You pretty much described one of these....YZF600. Pick up a brand new leftover model on the showroom floor for about your budget.:deal
    [​IMG]
    #11
  12. gfspencer

    gfspencer Been here awhile

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    At one time I owned a Ducati Monster, a Honda VFR and a BMW R1100RT. (all three at the same time) The BMW – with its bags – was my touring/ride-to-work-bike and the VFR was for more "sporty" rides. (Now you can get hard bags for the VFR so you could easily use it for sport-touring.) The VFR was a fine motorcycle but I decided that I didn’t want to keep three bikes so I sold the VFR. It was rock solid and nice to ride but it wasn't very exciting.

    I don’t agree with ridenrain’s statement -

    My biggest issue is the dealers.

    Problems with the bike:
    BMW = You're problem, they all do that, it's a charactoristic.
    Honda = Honda problem. Should have a maytag sticker instead.


    My local BMW dealer gives me much better service than the local Honda dealer.
    #12
  13. RiverRat280

    RiverRat280 Been here awhile

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    The Honda is more reliable and the only cons I can think is those valve adjustments are a real PITA but you don't need to do them that often and I thought they were a bit bland. The BMW is more maintenance like the valve adjust every 6k but its way easy so learn to do them yourself and its no big deal. I can do my valves in 20min but I wouldn't want to mess with the VFR's V4 valve job. If your looking at a sportier ride the R1100S is closer to the VFR but the R1100RT is a great bike. I found the RT much more comfortable then the VFR but it depends how much sport and how much tour you want. The RT handles very well especially for how big it is.
    #13
  14. ridenrain

    ridenrain Look out, there are llama

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    Remind me of this when you're spline's are all buggered. :rofl
    #14
  15. VFR_firefly

    VFR_firefly Buh Bye!

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    I don't own a beemer and have never ridden one but I've had a VFR of one type or another since 1992.

    They are bone-reliable except for the Regulator/Rectfier. Honda does a shitty job grounding, wiring and locating the R/R units. Not all VFR's have the R/R problem but many do. Do yourself a favor and do the maintenance on the R/R system (keep anti-ox grease in the connectors and on the chassis ground -keep the battery terminals clean) and the VFR will do 100K no problems -even more.

    If you don't like the chain -wah! It's a consumable , just like a tire. Big deal that you have to replace it every 20K. Whoop-de-do! It's lighter, cheaper, less of a bongo-stick rear-end than a shaft. If you want performance then don't get a shaft.

    For those that think the VFR is not comfortable even with the raised bars. Well, you don't care about perfromance either. Little thing called weight bias. Learn to sit on a bike correctly and use your legs/lower body to support your weight. Don't put that much weight on the bars, it's not good for handling to hold on that tight.

    As for the VTEC. I'm not that impressed by "advanced technology" that goes backwards as far as rideability or engine longevity are concerned. The gear-driven cams are important to me because they give the engine its long life. Going back o chain-drive is a mistake. I won't be buying a chain-drive VFR. Plenty of the older ones out there. The pre-Vtech's are less overweight too.

    If you want a sofa -buy a gold wing for christ's sake. Get off the interstate and RIDE that damn 2-wheeler!

    -Jim
    #15
  16. kbasa

    kbasa Super D-bagalicious Super Moderator

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    What he said, except I still have mine. :thumb
    #16
  17. twinrider

    twinrider Pass the catnip

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    Change the stock can and the VFR has plenty of soul imho. Some people tour everywhere on them. If you've got good knees and don't mind a sporty riding position, it makes a great sports tourer. The RT is a sofa in comparison. More legroom, upright position, far better wind protection. It has more bottom end torque and better brakes (ABS) but the VFR will leave it far behind in the straights or twisties.
    #17
  18. Cat0020

    Cat0020 El cheapo

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    I had a 2002 R1150RS before my 2000 VFR800.
    I rode 28,9XX miles on the R1150RS within 20 months of ownership, until the clutch spline went kaput on me, even though clutch/transmission replaced under warranty, I would never feel comfortable using the full torque that's available from the boxer engine.
    I bought a salvaged 2000 VFR800 for little under $2000, put in about $800 for parts and did most of the work myself to got it registered. I've ridden my VFR for little over 6,000 miles in the last 9 months. I feel the VFR is much lighter than my R1150RS and much better acceleration when pushed beyond 5000 rpm. Below 70 mph, the R1150RS would have better acceleration, but between 95-120 mph, or top speed the VFR would out accelerate the R1150RS. I love the sound, the engine, and the ride. As you can see from the picture, my VFR packs up enough to live on the road.
    Ergonomics were never much of an issue when I ride a motorcycle.
    My girlfriend prefers the VFR800 over the R1150RS or K75 when riding 2-up.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    My sold R1150RS
    [​IMG]

    I also used to have a K1200RS, with Marvic lightweight wheels, Ohlins shocks, etc.. still too much of a big for my liking, but great for 2-up highway riding at triple digit speeds:

    [​IMG]

    As a replacement for BMW, I picked up a 1987 K75.. ridden it 5,000 miles in the last 5 months.. never missed a beat... great for 2-up touring, not as entertaining as the VFR though. I doubt I'll ever go back to a boxer, except to have a vintage airhead.
    #18
  19. RedRocket

    RedRocket Yeah! I want Cheesy Poofs

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    I think that for $ 6000 you'll get far more VFR, than you will BMW.
    I tried an R1150RT once. I even had my VFR's pink slip in my coat. It stayed there.
    32,000 + miles in 3+ years. Totally painless, and trouble free.
    I replaced the chain ( but not the sprockets ) at 28,000.
    I'm going to go and get those pesky Vtec valves checked next month. For the first time.
    I've ridden dozens of other bikes, and have yet to find one I want to trade it for.
    #19
  20. Racegun

    Racegun Single Track Mind!

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    Save your money and/or make a loan and do it right...take no prisoners with the Mighty K12R!!!:wink:
    #20