Hard time deciding which adventure bike?

Discussion in 'Land of the Rising Sun: ADV Bikes from Japan' started by ballisticexchris, Sep 30, 2017.

  1. ballisticexchris

    ballisticexchris Long timer

    Apr 27, 2007
    Fullerton CA
    I'm on the hunt for a adventure bike next season or two to free up being beat up on the Beta. Don't get me wrong. The Beta is truly a do all machine. But even I have to admit that after 300 miles it wears me down. I really miss the 400-500+ mile day rides I enjoyed on my Ninja. I'm looking for a bike I can ride comfortably from daybreak until sunset in relative comfort.

    Rode a BMW GS adventure and hated it!! Shaft hop and motor pulling you over when accelerating. The most strangest handling bike I have ever rode in my life. I scratch my head why these are so popular at almost 30,000.00.

    KTM Super Enduro: Oversized dirtbike, fast, fun, but no better than my Beta for long days in the saddle.

    KTM 1290: Very fast, horrible ABS, scorched my legs, fueling sucked at walking pace speeds.

    Yamaha Tenere: I got a few hours on that one up in Bishop CA. Hands down the most comfortable smooth ride I have ever swung a leg over.

    Ducati 1200 Enduro: Great bike, huge 8 gallon tank, 150HP, ABS, fueling and traction control were flawless. Electronic everything including suspension. My legs were a little cramped. In all honesty I cannot imagine taking it on anything other than a fireroad. Very Very fast! 45-93 in third gear at a blink of the eye!!

    Honda Africa twin: ?? Swung a leg over it. Big bike and wonder how good it would be for long days in the saddle.

    Aprilia Caponord Rally? I really want to swing a leg over one of those. They look nice.

    I have actually been thinking of getting a low mile KTM Adventure 950 carbed. I see them from time to time with under 10K miles for around 5000 bucks. Not sure how well they would be for huge mile days. And the reliability has me nervous.

    I wasn't sure where to post this. This is a Japanese beast forum but I figure a lot of you have ridden a bunch of brands.

    What are you guys rolling on and why?
    Jeff aka BOLT likes this.
  2. philratton

    philratton Been here awhile

    Aug 29, 2010
    I think you question is already answered by the Ténéré, right?
    GunNut37086, migilito and Motor7 like this.
  3. ballisticexchris

    ballisticexchris Long timer

    Apr 27, 2007
    Fullerton CA
    So far I liked it the best. I'm still wanting to try the Aprilia and Honda.....
  4. larryboy

    larryboy Chopper Rider

    Jan 9, 2005
    Über Alles,California
    Triumph Tiger Explorer XC (find a 2015 IMHO)

    More power than the Tenere and smoother.
  5. MariusD

    MariusD Long timer

    Dec 19, 2012
    Metairie, near New Orleans
    I think your homework is not over until you also ride these 3:

    Vstrom 1000
    Versys 1000
    Tiger 800

    All great bikes with their own unique character, but all very competent especially for what u want to do.

    I tested the caponord 1200 rally. Wasn't a bad bike at all, but compared to the competition, fueling wasn't as smooth and it feels like a porker, not very agile. Comfort and airflow managenemt was pretty impressive though.
    diabolik37 and ballisticexchris like this.
  6. ballisticexchris

    ballisticexchris Long timer

    Apr 27, 2007
    Fullerton CA
    Yes the Versys. Does not look worthy for off road though. Tiger 800 looks like a fun bike but I'm concerned with the reliability. Not sure about the Vstrom. Might be worth a try.
  7. Motociclo

    Motociclo Been here awhile

    May 18, 2017
    149.6M km from Sun.
    Have used my Af Twin singletrail to interstate haul.
    Last biggish trip I had to do in a hurry, just shy of 3000km in 2 days. Comfortable enough. I use an airhawk, makes it a bit nicer.
    Fully loaded with luggage could get 300 km to fuel light @ 120kph. About 15litres.

    Great off road, set aside anodising issue, stock suspension needs some attention.
    The only 2 weaknesses are small fuel tank and tubed tyres. Not a deal breaker for me, can live with both.
    I installed cruise control for highway work.
    Love my Af Twin, but I will be S10 next time.
    bikerbob and neanderthal like this.
  8. neanderthal

    neanderthal globeriding wannabe

    Nov 26, 2006
    Here, but lost. Am I lost if i know i'm here?
    I've done 30k miles on Africa Twins this year and last. My current one already has 7700 miles and i've had it barely a month. Fantastic do all machine.
  9. Cruz

    Cruz Lost but laughing.

    Nov 3, 2008
    Northside Brisbane, Qld Australia
    Try the Multistrada 950 and maybe even the Desert Sled. See how comfortable they are for you and if they meet your requirements.
  10. danptobin

    danptobin Been here awhile

    Jul 28, 2013
    orange county,NY
    ive got a 15 tiger 800xcx and just got a 16 at with dct. tiger is trully awsome on the road that triple smokes the at in one long quick puff. they are both rated about the same for power triple likes to rev and is at its best above 4000rpm at has better low end and more engine braking. both are hard to beat as do all bikes. i like the gs 1200 but it cost $10,00 more then my tiger and really isnt that much better. its onle advantage i felt was low end torque and we re not talking a big difference. i recomend riding a tiger 800 xc, xcx, xca and africa twin. tenere is nice to
  11. Rockaway

    Rockaway Gregtiger800

    May 6, 2012
    These are all good bikes for sure.. I've been down the trail you starting. Bought the tiger 800 xc and found it not what I was looking for off road. Terrific road bikes with some off road heritage. The Yamaha sounds nice for a larger bike. But again how much off road are you going to do. I'm currently building what I'd call a BDR bike. Very happy with the results thus far. A 2016 Husqvarna 701 with madstad screen, 80l mosko moto bags, seat concepts seat, and acerbis hand guards. Next up new Rottweiler intake and wings pipe. I've heard the 2017 bike is even smoother. Match the bike with the style of riding. Best of luck!!!

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  12. Plane Dr

    Plane Dr Long timer

    Sep 29, 2005
    North TX Metromess
    I went VFR1200x but my lean was to roadwork. Not much off road opportunity here
  13. The_Precious_Juice

    The_Precious_Juice 2015 Subaru Forester

    Jun 2, 2013
    Helena, MT
    From what little you provided, any of those bikes would be fine.

    They can all do that kind of milage.

    If cheap gas is an issue, the AT is the way to go.

    If you do not mind premium gas, a used 2014 S10, or used 2014 V2 would be fine for your needs.

    Good luck
  14. Motor7

    Motor7 Long timer

    Sep 16, 2013
    East Tennessee
    Post up your true budget, then we can narrow the field....................
  15. windblown101

    windblown101 Long timer

    May 17, 2010
    Star Tannery, VA
    You've got the right idea from where I stand. If you want to run much more than 300 miles a day and you're not planning on riding anything difficult enough to warrant a small bike then a big bike is the way to go. No one has built a transformer bike yet. ;)

    As for which one? All personal preference and intended use. I run a 800XC with a few upgrades for when long distances need to be covered in a hurry. I run an "Adventurized" KTM 690 for when the route or destination calls for something lighter than the Tiger and I just put up with the lower mile days I can run on it.
  16. arrcrussell

    arrcrussell Gimme Dirt

    Sep 8, 2005
    NE OH, USA
    All good bikes and you got your work cut out for you. One man's "magic carpet ride" is another's POS! YOU need to ride each and make YOUR choice ! Good luck!
    Rockaway likes this.
  17. devildogg

    devildogg Long timer

    Jun 1, 2006
    MC nirvana Kootenay's BC
    I have actually been thinking of getting a low mile KTM Adventure 950 carbed. I see them from time to time with under 10K miles for around 5000 bucks. Not sure how well they would be for huge mile days. And the reliability has me nervous.
    I have owned a 950S 990 and 1190, I never had any reliability issues with the 950S, loved that bike the most of the 3. I sold my 1190 and bought an Africa Twin it's as close to the 950 I could come with a new bike. I rode the 950 from Santa Cruz to BC in just over 3 days no problem, stock seat, 10,000km in 11 days in Yukon and Alaska. I find the AT more comfortable for long rides and love it off road, although for anything REALLY off road I have a 501S Husky. Don't think you would be sad with the AT on long trips. Although the first thing I changed was the seat t a seat concepts
  18. WJBertrand

    WJBertrand Ventura Highway

    Aug 5, 2013
    Ventura, CA
    The Super Tenere will give up some power to some of the other choices except maybe the AT. None of the other choices will hold a candle to the Super T's reliability, except again maybe the AT, but it's still pretty new, so maybe a small question there. It is a Honda though, so it would be surprising if it had any major issues. Besides the reliability the buy-in price would be more modest for the Yamaha than most the others. You already know you liked the bike. Seems like the Euro bikes all offer more technology, higher power and lighter weight but the purchase price is higher and so is the on-going maintenance and repair costs.

    Disclosure: I picked the Super Tenere after a similar analysis myself.
  19. Madhouse

    Madhouse Semi-Goodlookin!

    Nov 9, 2004
    Cantonment, Florida
    Your on the right track!!

    Just got off a VStrom 650 after 9 years and over 50,000 trouble free miles and bought a AT in July.
    Loved the Vstrom and Loving the AT!


    Good luck on your search!
  20. rodskies

    rodskies Adventurer

    Jan 25, 2016
    I had the budget for either an AT or an S10. Ended up getting a used 2013 S10 for less than half of the OTD price of either new bikes. Put the rest of the money in savings! You get A LOT of bike if you shop for a used S10. Traction control, ABS, digital display with active and average MPG calculator, fuel gauge, shaft drive, handguards, tubeless tires, spoked rims, mind numbing reliability. the 2014+ has cruise control, but I just use my plastic tuning fork throttle lock and it works just fine. I got 44.5mpg on a 2-up 500 mile trip last weekend.

    Oil changes are easy, valve check interval is like 24k+ miles. Most report nearly 100hp to the wheel after an ECU flash and exhaust.

    The traction control is way cooler than I thought, and the ABS is way better than the system I had on my 990, you just cant switch it off, only real drawback. Doesn't bug me much though.

    Oh yeah, Unified braking! Also cool and helpful feature.

    I do have a strange idle issue that came up once but it wasn't debilitating... yet. I still feel like the S10 spoils me with features for how much it costed.

    Do itttt.
    The_Precious_Juice likes this.