What Influenced the purchase of your Motorcycle?

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by TheProphet, Aug 16, 2018.


What Influenced the Purchase of your Motorcycle?

Poll closed Sep 11, 2018.
  1. Magazine Advertisement

  2. Television Commercial

    0 vote(s)
  3. Internet Advertisement

  4. Personal Choice, no outside influence

  5. Friends Pressure; It is what everyone I know rides

  6. Comparison of Technical Specifications

  7. Top MotoGP or other Racing Brand

    0 vote(s)
  8. I liked the way it looked

  9. Cost, Price, Money

  10. Brand Name Allegiance

Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. TheProphet

    TheProphet Retired; Living the Dream

    Mar 7, 2014
    NW Illinois, Driftless Zone
    What led you to buy the motorcycle(s) you currently own? What was the biggest decision maker, the biggest reason you made decision to buy?
  2. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Smoove, Smoove like velvet.

    Aug 6, 2009
    Needed space for the now wife and luggage, no more strapping a bag to the back seat and rolling.
    TheProphet likes this.
  3. Twin headlight Ernie

    Twin headlight Ernie Custom fabricated dual sport accessories

    Aug 2, 2005
    Dakota Minnesota
    I own 10 bikes that range from dirt bike to full dress. All were purchased because I was in the right price at the right time. They all serve a purpose depending on what kind of riding I have planned.
    Allucaneat and TheProphet like this.
  4. PlainClothesHippy

    PlainClothesHippy Only dimly aware of a certain unease in the air.

    Jan 19, 2014
    Lancaster County, PA
    I was looking for a midsize commuter with a low seat height, EFI, comfort, and decent economy. It needed to be capable of being loaded up with camping gear, and be good on some longer trips. Two up only very occasionally and only local rides.

    Physical considerations and limitations led to an under-appreciated Honda CTX700 manual. EVERY time I ride it I know it was a good choice.

    Not a popular bike, kind of goofy looking, but I really like it.
  5. canoeguy

    canoeguy Long timer

    Jun 14, 2011
    SW Virginia
    Its tough to answer with a garage full of bikes. So let me pick the one that I ride the most from day to day, my GSA.

    I was definitely influenced by Long Way Round as dorky as it sounds. Not that I said "Oh I have to have one" but because it opened my eyes to possibilities. In fact I think many overlook the fact that the bikes in both down and round performed pretty poorly with many failures including cracked frames. But they definitely clued me into the GS.

    I think one big factor was the talk on here really. I wouldn't have bought the older versions but the water cooled had been out for several years and no problems were prevalent (i.e. final drives). Then I test rode it back to back against a Tiger XCA I was also considering and well, I liked the Beemer better.

    I had been on KLR's for year and I was looking for a bit more luxury and obviously this bike is a bit more luxury.

    Funny enough I am actually starving a bit for simplicity and am in the market for a DR. I bought a DRZ400 yesterday but I doubt I will keep it. I want to be somewhere in between. But I guess if I have to pick one thing as the biggest factor it really came to technical features as I am open minded about bikes. The GSA ticked the boxes for what I wanted right then.
  6. TheProphet

    TheProphet Retired; Living the Dream

    Mar 7, 2014
    NW Illinois, Driftless Zone
    I started riding back in the mid 1960's. All that was available back then were Harleys, Triumphs, BSA's and the occasional Norton. Bikes like BMW's were sort of exotic and rare back then, Japanese bikes were just starting to trickle in.

    Harley's were too expensive to a 16 year old, but there were a lot of second hand Brit bikes to be had, hence the connection. Spent an entire teen-hood wrenching and riding Brit bikes, and had a blast doing it. That said, I've been a Brit-Bike fan ever since, and still own a fantastic 2007 Bonneville. The only reason I chose THAT bike was because I happened to drive by a Triumph Dealership up near Janesville, Wisconsin, and I stopped in just to look around. I bought the bike that day, and still have it. Great little bike, absolutely love it.

    Years later (2011) I was looking for a cushy, comfortable, reliable cross country big tourer, as my wife and I had taken a ton of long trips on the various Triumphs, Nortons and Sportsters we had bought in the past, but were getting older (60ish) and "softer", so we needed something bigger and more relaxed for 1 to 2 week trips. I'm 5'9", the wife is 5'3"so the BMWs seemed too tall, and the wife didn't like the tall pillion. We went to the Progressive Motorcycle Expo in Chicago, and looked around, sitting on and checking out all the larger Touring bikes from various Brands. Sitting on the Road King caused a "Bing" in our heads, and we knew it was it. Never regretted that decision, most reliable bike we've ever owned, and fantastic on the highway for day long trips.

    We use the Road King for long trips, and I use the Bonneville for short runs around the local countryside. Best of both worlds.

    Right now, I'd love to buy a new Norton, but it seems that they can't get their whole act together. Very few dealerships here in the USA, and not enough information (positive) to warrant a purchase. No biggie... I can wait.:-)
  7. Schmokel

    Schmokel Key to Happiness: Low Expectations

    Jun 29, 2015
    Up. And to the right.

    As for the FZ, my cousin was selling it. Price was right. I was more interested in an FJ, but I figured I'd give the FZ a shot. It'll be up for sale next year. Thing is stupid fast. I want something a bit more tailored to touring. I'm sold on a V-Strom.
    Night_Wolf and TheProphet like this.
  8. Reduxalicious

    Reduxalicious Or is it?!

    Jan 25, 2013
    Houston, Texas
    Wanted something more comfortable preferably in the bagger category, Don't care for the way Harley's look (but damn if that road glide isn't a comfortable rig) and damn sure don't like the way Indians look, so that narrowed it down to two brands I have had prior dealings with and current dealings with (BMW & Guzzi)

    BMW had the technology and the potential fun factor in the engine (looks not so much) Guzzi had the looks and potential character (less tech than the BMW)

    Test rode both and decided on Engine Character and Looks over just Technology (BMW's engine was as exciting as a Camry even if it was way faster)
    thechief86 and TheProphet like this.
  9. C/1/509

    C/1/509 Now with more sarcasm

    Jul 21, 2006
    Something that fits my definition of fun. Didn't want a sport bike, but did want good (enough) handling, brakes and decent power.
  10. JaySwear

    JaySwear Been here awhile

    Oct 30, 2014
    Gaithersburg, MD
    2016 Ducati Scrambler: I should probably check multiple boxes here. But it really came down to it being what I wanted. I had a Streetfighter 848 before and it just didn't handle the gravel-trap back roads I really enjoy. I was always afraid of sliding on something since I was on race-style tires (in hindsight knobbies on a Streetfighter would have been the coolest thing ever) and it wasn't the most comfortable bike for longer rides. The Scrambler doesn't do everything well, but it does everything I want and I'm not afraid to flog it like I was my SF.

    Plus it doesn't draw nearly as much Squidly attention, so I don't worry about it sitting in a parking lot nearly as much. The Streetfighter was a magnet for "can you wheelie, how fast does it go, why are you wearing so much gear, I had a friend that died once..."
    SmittyBlackstone likes this.
  11. neanderthal

    neanderthal globeriding wannabe

    Nov 26, 2006
    Here, but lost. Am I lost if i know i'm here?
    Growing up in southern Africa I used to see bikers riding through my town, on their way to far off lands, having already traversed most of Africa to get to my home town.

    It was when I was a teenager that I started paying attention. Yamaha Tenere's and Super Teneres. Ducati Elefant. BMW R100GS. Kawasaki Tengai. Suzuki DR 750. And my favorite and seemingly theirs; Honda Africa Twin. These men were carefree men; the last of the explorers, tall, bearded, undeodorised, going around the world to see it, because it was there. They spoke French, and Dutch, and German, English, Spanish, Portugese, a smattering of words in languages from all the corners of the world. They didn't want to eat in the fancy restuarants, they ate with us, with our hands. They sat on the floor as was our custom. And regaled us with tales of their travels. You could see a thousand sunsets etched in their faces, so much that even the lines on their faces were smiling.
    The men I knew, the fathers and uncles and neighbors in my life, all worked a job they loathed and went home to get the big piece of chicken at dinner. Their joy came on Sunday afternoon when they went to watch the football. Or on weekends if their friends were having a braai (bbq) and they could have a royal pissup. Their lives seemed empty and monotonous by comparison. I didn't want to be like them.*

    I nearly got the BMW R1200GS in 2007/ 2008. Nearly. Something didn't seem right about the timing though, life kept getting in the way, so I put it off. But that itch continued to grow and fester and bother me. It gnawed on my conscience. It nibbled at my subconscious. It whispered to my soul and called my inner child to placate the unfulfilled longing of the manchild I now was. The urge grew. Magazines started being bought, rather than glossed over. Motorcycle shows being attended. Youtube videos. The GS had latched into my psyche. Catalogues and sales brochures were procured. Dealerships were now being visited and their workshops and personnel vetted.

    The rumours of the coming Africa Twin prevented me from buying a GS again in 2014. I coudl wait for the one I always wanted. And Honda wouldn't mess it up. 2015 was a long ass year. The Adventure Sport concept confirmed Honda was going to get this right. The European release signalled the rising of a new day. Booked a basic rider course. and started devouring the interwebs for our release date. I called around and tried to get myself on the wait list, but each time I was told i would be the 3rd/ 4th/ 8th person on the list. Either this bike was popular or dealers were trying t make it seem so.

    I placed a deposit where I was 3rd. For the first red DCT. Then, the earthquake in Japan. The devastation, the announcement from Honda that they would only send each Honda dealer one Africa Twin. This set up a desperate scramble, i'd already waited long enough. Deposits were placed at several other dealers. Red DCT.

    A trip to Spain was already on the calendar. The first AT arrived at Huntington Beach Honda the day before I was leaving. I went there to see it. Sit on it. Picture it in my life. It fit like a tall glove and I was hooked. I went to Spain and sought out a Honda dealer. The Red White and Blue was even more striking.

    Coming home, I was inundated with messages from various dealers telling me to come in and look at their Honda African Twin. Problem was, even though I wanted a red DCT, they all had either a silver DCT, a silver manual, or a red manual. I was fixated on the DCT. I called them all up. Starting in the bus on the way from the airport. I got home and called my dealer. They had one, but I was third in the line, and this one was spoken for. He was coming that afternoon to pick it up. I started calling all the local honda dealers. They had one. It was already sold. They didn't have theirs yet. They had a manual. They had a silver DCT. They had one, it was sold, but they knew of another dealer who had one. I widened the net. I called every. single. dealer. in Southern California and most of them in Central California. desperate, I called Las Vegas. Pheonix. I was starting to find bikes that were not already pre sold or not on a waiting list, but none were red DCTs. And I was looking out of state. Were they 50 state emissions?

    I called Honda. The very helpful gentleman wanted to know why I needed to know that. "Well sir, I want one, I want one now, but I can;t find a red DCT here in California. I have called every single dealer going as far up North as the Bay area."

    "Oh, I think I can help you with that." He taps away on his computer. "Have you tried X, Y, Z dealer out in A, B, C? (somewhere in Central Cal)"

    Me. Yeah, they had just received it and immediately sold it when I called. They said I was twenty minutes late.

    <more tapping on the computer>

    "OK sir, if you want to give me your email address, I can send you a list of about ten dealers who all have a red DCT and have not sold it. Unfortunately they are mostly in the midwest but theirs aren't sold. Three or four of them may not have it yet, but we have sent it to them they should get it in the next day or two."

    Mind. fucking. blown.

    I couldn't thank him enough. It was Saturday, and already afternoon in So Cal. I called them all immediately, but had to wait until Tuesday to hear back from many of them. Most bike shops are closed on Sunday and Monday. The first one I called on Tuesday was in Louisiana. They had it. It was unsold. It was unspoken for. I offered to buy it. Send a check. Wire the money. Whatever. They flaked.

    The second one, in Indiana got a check for $17000.26. That included an extended warranty and shipping it to Los Angeles.
    52000 happy miles since then.

    * I ended up being exactly like them, except I have a fantastic bike.
    swimmer, Amphib, 2aRover and 5 others like this.
  12. rosmoe

    rosmoe Been here awhile

    Aug 6, 2004
    Summer, California Winter, Thailand
    Rented the CB 500 X in Thailand back in 2013. Bike felt right (been riding a 2003 BMW 1150 GS for 10 years), got great gas mileage, price was right & it looked good. When it was available in the US, 2014, went down & bought it.
    TheProphet likes this.
  13. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Long timer

    Sep 6, 2011
    I rode one.
    William Wolfen likes this.
  14. WindBlast

    WindBlast Sonorous and Effulgent

    Apr 1, 2007
    Philly is ova dere
    A test ride.
  15. OrangeYZ

    OrangeYZ Long timer

    Feb 11, 2008
    Southern Oregon
    The previous motorcycle was really good and it is the newer version of that one.
    SmittyBlackstone and TheProphet like this.
  16. Billy52

    Billy52 Adventurer

    Jun 27, 2017
    Rode a Burgman 400 (CVT) for two years (15,000 miles) commuting though the Santa Monica range canyons. Was ready to start shifting. Planned to get a CB500F or X. Sat on everything at the dealer. Moto Guzzi V9 Bobber felt best and I liked its looks. 6,000 miles later, no regrets. I’ll move on to a better pillion bike some day (I am blessed with a willing and wonderful pillion), but I love the V9 now.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    TheProphet likes this.
  17. tennistime99

    tennistime99 Been here awhile

    Jan 18, 2018
    2005 DRZ400S - me likey
    2007 Harley Davidson Heritage Classic - me likey
    2016 Kawasaki Versys LT - yep, me likey

    But seriously, the DRZ was after a short time of no bike at all and I really missed riding the logging roads. I wanted something big enough to ride to the areas near me and capable enough to take on rough terrain. 13 years later and the bike is far more capable than me but I still love it on logging roads. Attempted the 70mph ride to work a few times and trails farther away and found it to be somewhat terrifying in high-speed traffic. Not very relaxing fighting the wind to stay in my lane and getting bopped around like a pinata. Also it's like straddling a 2x4 7 inches taller than my inseam and gets very uncomfortable for longer rides.

    Enter the Harley... Big, heavy and low to the ground. Barely registers passing semis on the freeway, putts along at 70mph at barely above idle in 6th gear and has a fat seat for hours of meaningless joyrides. Also comes in handy for 2 up riding with the wife.

    Kawasaki Versys came along as the wife decided rides with her were going to be few and far between. I wanted a commuter bike that was between what I already had in size and a little more sporty. Just wandering through the dealership and was attracted to the color (burnt orange), then saw it was a leftover from the previous year. $1000 cheaper than the current model, but still a gen3, and still only had 4 miles on the odometer. Added some farkles at the dealer and skated out for under $10k. Seemed reasonable to me.

    Sent from my XT1575 using Tapatalk
    TheProphet likes this.
  18. PeterTrocewicz

    PeterTrocewicz Been here awhile

    Nov 18, 2009
    Kincardine Ontario
    For me I was focused on a Triumph, but I did look at some of the other offerings.
    My wife wanted a touring cruiser (Thunderbird LT). That would have been nice, we were talking about some trips. But my daily commute involved potholed clay/gravel roads which were real nasty when wet, so that was out.
    I wanted an Adventure Bike (Tiger 800), but my wife did not like the passenger accommodations, so that was out.
    We settled in the T120 Bonnie as the best compromise.
    We haven't looked back.
  19. William Wolfen

    William Wolfen DR Guy

    Dec 5, 2015
    Cypress, TX
    I grew up on 2 wheels, only I was stuck with a measly one manpower! Rode bicycles everywhere. I got one ride on the back of a moto when I was very young, barely remember it.

    Fast forward to my early 20s and a friend and coworker has an '08 FZ1. I was fascinated by it. I drove a stick shift at the time and he was trusting enough to let me try riding it. It was a blast, but way too much bike for a new guy. I almost got an '84 FJ1100 off him, but we didn't have thre funding or knowledge at the time to get it running again. I still regret not taking it anyway.

    Fast forward to my mid 20s and another friend and coworker had a DR650. He was crazy enough to let me take it for a spin and I was hooked. Off pavement was way more fun than on. I started looking into dual sport bikes. Went through researching all sorts of stuff from old school 250s to KTMs. Borrowed a '79 Z50 from a friend to get some seat time on something. Eventually I narrowed it down to a Japanese 650 due to cost, my size/weight, and the good experience on my buddy's DR.

    So I started going to dealers to sit on bikes. The XR650L was too tall. Couldn't even get both tip toes down. The KLR had a better seat height, but felt really top heavy and that was with an empty tank! Finally looked into a Suzuki dealer, since there isn't one real close to me. It was November 2015, just after Thanksgiving, and they had a '15 DR650 discounted and Suzuki was offering 0% financing. Rode it home 2 days later.

    It's since seen a ton of mods and upgrades, 2 bigger street biased stablemates that came and went, and has turned out to be the perfect bike for me. It ticked over 15k miles this month. I doubt I'll ever sell it. It might get some engine upgrades when rebuild time sets in, but that won't be for many years to come.

    It's been a great first bike, great commuter, great back roads tourer, and a great dual sport. It's a little heavy on single track, but is never left me down. It'll even run down the interstate for as long as I can stand it.
  20. Catatafish

    Catatafish Adventurer

    Oct 30, 2017
    Memphis, TN
    I wanted NOT an inline 4, and it had to make a noise that gave me goosebumps every time I started it. It had to due multiple things (wheelie, canyon carve, commute, tour). So I guess I chose Personal Choice due to lack of a better choice. I still need my Ducati V-twin itch scratched and as soon as I find a MTS nearby used I'll probably scoop one up.