Team-BHP > Motorbikes > Superbikes & Imports


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 2nd July 2019, 23:01   #16
Senior - BHPian
 
jaysmokesleaves's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Mostly Mumbai
Posts: 1,697
Thanked: 1,392 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by roy_libran View Post
From what I read (between the lines) from the OP, I think he has touring in mind with a bit of trail riding thrown in to reach that last mile, or last 100 miles.... If this is indeed the case, why not consider the extreme value for money Versys 1000? I wonder why that didn't crop up yet here....
Your analysis is correct in the first part. Another part is that I will use this bike a lot, as in almost riding everyday and long journeys will exceed 2000kms as a minimum. I have driven in every corner of the country and one thing that is consistent is that the roads and the obstacles are very unpredictable and consistently inconsistent.
I will use Bombay as an example, there are 9 different types of layers that make a road - tar, concrete, tarcrete, paver blocks, speedbreakers, humps (large speed breakers), potholes, potholes filled with mud and moon fillings and golddust and large craters.
The rest of the country is also inspired with Bombays fantastic roads and seems to replicate it in various places.
That's pretty close to hardcore offroading in a sense.
For me as a biker, I want the bike suspension to handle all this without breaking mine or my pillions back. Therefore suspension travel/performance is a big criteria too.

I did think of the Versys 1000, but for its size, it looks very top heavy and has a lot of useless fancy plastic. But I guess, riding it will clarify my perspective.
I like the light and nimble nature of the versys 650. Its frugal too, but might not be abuse friendly, has low gc and im not sure about suspension travel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by neil.jericho View Post
When I went around test riding motorcycles, I found that sometimes the dealership experience may be a deal breaker. So that might swing your decision as well.
Yes. So a test ride of all the bikes is on the cards. Dealership, while it is an initial concern with regards to sales, I'm not too concerned about as I can get the bike fixed outside as well from very competent folks.
Besides, if I find a good preowned example of what I finally decide to get, then I dont need the dealership at all.

Last edited by jaysmokesleaves : 2nd July 2019 at 23:03.
jaysmokesleaves is offline   (1) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 03:28   #17
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Ghaziabad
Posts: 1,324
Thanked: 2,058 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jaysmokesleaves View Post
.... Another part is that I will use this bike a lot, as in almost riding everyday and long journeys.....
I did think of the Versys 1000, but for its size, it looks very top heavy and has a lot of useless fancy plastic. But I guess, riding it will clarify my perspective.
.....
I ride my V650 almost everyday too, but in Delhi NCR and around, which I concede, has better roads than Mumbai.

I've ridden the V1000 and it is anything but top heavy. The biggest draw about the Versys, both 650 and 1k is how well they mask their bulk in actual riding.
And I don't think either V's suspension is exactly weak. It is the one motorcycle which has been used extensively for long distance touring with superb ease and reliability.
But as you rightly said - give all of these a shot and then decide your poison.
roy_libran is offline   (4) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 08:59   #18
Team-BHP Support
 
Sheel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Purnea (Bihar)
Posts: 6,768
Thanked: 8,667 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Jay, I will suggest to try out all bikes you are considering. Borrow from friends/contacts/dealerships/if available, rent it out.

Do ride the way you like and then try to conclude, should help. I will stick with a Jap or a German.
Sheel is offline   (1) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 11:10   #19
Senior - BHPian
 
Axe77's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 1,833
Thanked: 2,023 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

My breakdown of these vehicles is as follows:

The V Strom and Versys offer great value at their respective price points. Between the two I would hands down pick the V Strom. To me the Versys is a strict road touring machine. The V strom is just a touch more capable on bad roads (its definitely no Africa Twin / Tiger). Its weight will also be much more palatable than a Tiger / AT.

The Africa Twin and Tiger are altogether different animals in terms of their versatility, particularly off road. Even the Road biased XRX will be far more capable doing proper trails than the two 650s.

Ride them all and take a call on what seems to suit you best.

You can't go very wrong with any of these. My suggestion priority would be:

1. Tiger or A/T (either) if you are comfortable with that budget. Please remember you need to spend money on top of purchase for even basic protective accessories that can easily cost 30-50k. These will give you the maximum versatility of ownership and tomorrow if you find hitting trails is something you enjoy they will give this. They also come with a good set of electronic aids at your disposal so you can ride them in all conditions including rain with better confidence

2. V Strom

If you want to stay in the sub 10 budget I would hands down recommend the V strom over the Versys. No two ways about it.

3. Versys

End Note:
see if you can rent these (Rebel Rides in Bbay or similar elsewhere) for at least a day each so you really understand what it is like to live with these machines over an extended long ride. Some dealers may offer you long ride TDs as well (definitely not Anzen Kawasaki, but Triumph and Suzuki maybe). A 3 hr ride in and out of city on each bike will help you make a much more informed decision than a 10 min ride around the showroom. No two ways about that.

Last edited by Axe77 : 3rd July 2019 at 11:13.
Axe77 is offline   (1) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 11:29   #20
BHPian
 
drive_angry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: CH04-HR26-MH12
Posts: 199
Thanked: 188 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Pardon me for asking this but why are you not considering G310GS. Its relatively cheap, nimble and gets you places where these heavy weight adventure tourers cannot. Few other advantages from my POV are:

1. It can be doubled up as a daily commuter.
2. Its very cheap (relatively) and easy to maintain
3. You will be more inclined to take more risks while offroading and not worrying about the damages
4. In case an of unfortunate fall, you wont have to spend so much on its repairs

Thanks!
drive_angry is offline   (2) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 11:55   #21
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Bombay
Posts: 1,142
Thanked: 1,300 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Jay I believe you must first set your priority of owning a touring motorcycle based on your usage pattern. There is no one perfect do it all motorcycle in this world. First decide on the power and comfort requirement then cost and upkeep and so on. Ask yourself if your touring involves more than 40% off road trails and 60% tarmac if yes, then ADV's can be considered.

As fellow Teambhpian's have suggested it is advisable to take test ride of all the motorcycles you've shortlisted or better try renting the motorcycles you've shortlisted, there are a lot of renting options in a city like Bombay.

In my opinion two options that comes to my mind when it comes to 650cc (which is adequate for a country like India) are Kawasaki Versys 650 and Suzuki Vstrom 650 XT. The latter is a better choice among the two as it has some features that will trump the Versys. I believe it comes with spoked wheels which are ideal for hardcore off-roading while using tubeless tyres.

When it comes to litre class motorcycles I can think of two options the Suzuki Vstrom 1000 and Honda Africa Twin. Unfortunately the Vstrom 1000 doesn't get much attention and love but it is a brilliant motorcycle with a sweet L twin engine and Japanese reliability. It does come with tubeless tyres on alloy rims. You have already shortlisted the Honda Africa Twin so I believe you must have done adequate research on it.

The Honda Africa Twin is a legendary motorcycle based on Honda's Dakar Rally pedigree. It is a very capable motorcycle in the right hands and easily trumps other litre class motorcycles in terms of pure offroad performance. There was a comparison video of how Africa Twin goes where GS1200, Multistrada 1200, Triumph Tiger 1200, etc. are able to go, but that was purely on offroad trails. Africa Twin has that marvellous DCT with a magnificent refined parallel twin motor. At the end of the day "Honda is Honda" when it comes to typical Japanese reliability and durability.

KTM is complacent while still sleeping over on offering their middleweight and big ADV's in India so that option is ruled out.

Happy choosing.

Last edited by navin_v8 : 3rd July 2019 at 11:57.
navin_v8 is offline   (2) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 12:55   #22
Senior - BHPian
 
ethanhunt123's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 1,377
Thanked: 945 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jaysmokesleaves View Post
I did think of the Versys 1000, but for its size, it looks very top heavy and has a lot of useless fancy plastic. But I guess, riding it will clarify my perspective.
I like the light and nimble nature of the versys 650. Its frugal too, but might not be abuse friendly, has low gc and im not sure about suspension travel.
Versys 1000 is very heavy for what it offers and the model offered in India is without any goodies. Besides there are already cases of V1000 having engine issues due to fuel quality. I would stay away - especially when you are looking at Tiger & AT which are far more capable motorcycles.

Quote:
Originally Posted by drive_angry View Post
Pardon me for asking this but why are you not considering G310GS. Its relatively cheap, nimble and gets you places where these heavy weight adventure tourers cannot. Few other advantages from my POV are:

1. It can be doubled up as a daily commuter.
2. Its very cheap (relatively) and easy to maintain
3. You will be more inclined to take more risks while offroading and not worrying about the damages
4. In case an of unfortunate fall, you wont have to spend so much on its repairs

Thanks!
Because 310GS is overpriced and underpowered for highway riding - especially with pillion & luggage. And keep in mind that the owner is coming from a Z650. Besides if you are going this path - then i believe some claim that the best tourer motorcycle in the country is the CT100B. Why not consider that as well ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by navin_v8 View Post
When it comes to litre class motorcycles I can think of two options the Suzuki Vstrom 1000 and Honda Africa Twin.
VStrom 1000 is no longer sold in India by Suzuki. Besides it extremely basic compared to competition in terms of the kit it offers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by navin_v8 View Post
There was a comparison video of how Africa Twin goes where GS1200, Multistrada 1200, Triumph Tiger 1200, etc. are able to go, but that was purely on offroad trails.
You should also see the second part of the video where they showed how the other bikes are far superior to AT on the highway. As i said initially - if the plan is to do a lot of offroading and trail riding - Africa Twin cant be beaten. However if the plan is to mostly ride on tarmac and just handle the broken roads which come by in our country - its the other big ADV bikes who have the advantage.

Last edited by Aditya : 8th July 2019 at 06:51. Reason: Let's keep the sarcasm out
ethanhunt123 is online now   (3) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 13:35   #23
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Bombay
Posts: 1,142
Thanked: 1,300 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanhunt123 View Post
VStrom 1000 is no longer sold in India by Suzuki. Besides it extremely basic compared to competition in terms of the kit it offers.
Mate I was suggesting on the basis of the requirements listed by OP w.r.t the motorcycle not being full of electronics besides ABS and TRC which the Suzuki Vstrom 1000 has. I didn't knew the Vstrom 1000 is no longer offered by Suzuki in India, too bad. I saw an article sometime back which mentioned Suzuki offering both Vstrom 650 and 1000 in India. Link: https://www.news18.com/news/auto/suz...r-2070431.html
Quote:
You should also see the second part of the video where they showed how the other bikes are far superior to AT on the highway.
Mate read my post carefully where I clearly mention, "It is a very capable motorcycle in the right hands and easily trumps other litre class motorcycles in terms of pure offroad performance. There was a comparison video of how Africa Twin goes where GS1200, Multistrada 1200, Triumph Tiger 1200, etc. are able to go, but that was purely on offroad trails." I did see the entire video hence clearly stated about the offroad pedigree vis a vis tarmac compared to others listed.

Quote:
However if the plan is to mostly ride on tarmac and just handle the broken roads which come by in our country - its the other big ADV bikes who have the advantage.
Alright could you list some of the advantages of other big ADV's compared to Africa Twin.

Last edited by navin_v8 : 3rd July 2019 at 13:39.
navin_v8 is offline   (2) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 14:18   #24
BHPian
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: mumbai
Posts: 69
Thanked: 23 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jaysmokesleaves View Post
I'm out to buy a touring bike and am grappling with the usual dilemma every biker goes through. Which one?..
If tube type tyre is the only reason you're not keen on Africa Twin, then you can just install a Outex tubeless kit on the Africa Twin spoked wheels and convert them to tubeless and you're good to go. I have them on my AT for 8000 kms no problem so far.

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 3rd July 2019 at 15:13. Reason: Quote content trimmed
sachinwadhwani is offline   (4) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 16:03   #25
Senior - BHPian
 
ethanhunt123's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 1,377
Thanked: 945 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by navin_v8 View Post
Alright could you list some of the advantages of other big ADV's compared to Africa Twin.
- 21" inch means poor handling on tarmac compared to 19" and 17" rivals
- Bikes such as Multi 1260 / S1000XR have explosive engines with super-bike like performance - even R1250GS has amazing torque which pulls it like a locomotive. AT on the other hand is mostly linear power delivery without the thrills when compared to competition
- Weight - AT is also much heavier even though it looks quite slim. Additional weight adds to slower handling and performance
ethanhunt123 is online now   (1) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 17:24   #26
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Bombay
Posts: 1,142
Thanked: 1,300 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanhunt123 View Post
- 21" inch means poor handling on tarmac compared to 19" and 17" rivals
Yeah physics can't be beaten but I have seen and read numerous reviews where the riders were surprised and acknowledged the handling of Africa Twin on trails as well as tarmac. Link here: https://www.advpulse.com/adv-bikes/h...a-twin-test/2/ Read Point.6

But I agree about the handling in corners of a front 21 incher vs 19 incher and same goes for a 19 incher vs 17 incher. But a smaller front wheel struggles vis a vis bigger front wheel on trails and broken roads. Win some Lose some.

Quote:
- Bikes such as Multi 1260 / S1000XR have explosive engines with super-bike like performance
How much of it is going to be put to use in the real world while touring in India is anybody's guess. But yeah the thought of more power is always feels good.
Quote:
even R1250GS has amazing torque which pulls it like a locomotive. AT on the other hand is mostly linear power delivery without the thrills when compared to competition.
The bore x stroke ratio of Honda Africa Twin says that it is a long stroke motor and has FTC which is very useful while riding on trails surface that constantly keeps changing.
Quote:
- Weight - AT is also much heavier even though it looks quite slim. Additional weight adds to slower handling and performance
It is quite similar in weight class if not the same as big class of ADV's to which it belongs to. Honda AT DCT 232 kgs, Ducati MS 1260 235 kgs, BMW R 1200 GS 244 kgs.

One more important factor is the price and cost of upkeep which has to be considered before buying.
navin_v8 is offline   (2) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 17:45   #27
Senior - BHPian
 
Axe77's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 1,833
Thanked: 2,023 Times
Default

I think we should also revisit what budget the OP is working with. He started considering the 650 ADVs and fro: there opened up his consideration to the 15-16 lakh options like Africa twin and tiger. Perhaps that is stretchable to bmw 750/850 I am not sure. But conversations bringing in the litre class ADVs of Ducati and BMW are probably less relevant to the OPs question.

Agree broadly with the points Ethanhunt made. Really depends on what excites you. The multistradas are explosive on road and the poorest off it. The Africa Twin is literally a mountain goat on trails and O.K. on the roads. I would say on the road a Multistrada 950 probably better than tiger XRX while the XCX and Africa may be comparable.

What I like about the 800 cc segment is they offer the best of all worlds - great on and off road performance, middle order weight to 650 and litre class and maximum versatility.

Which characteristics you would like the most of might point you to which works best for you in that segment.

Personally, I much prefer the handling of a 19" wheels over 21" so I will always be circumspect about buying a bike with 21" wheels but that is very personal of course.
Axe77 is offline   (1) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 18:26   #28
BHPian
 
nitrogary's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Pune
Posts: 178
Thanked: 414 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

I would strongly look at a pre-owned R1200GS and given your preference, you could consider a standard GS - one without the electronic suspension and additional ride modes, LED lights, etc.
That bike is not ridiculously expensive to maintain if you know a few things about it.

Other bikes I would suggest are the Africa Twin DCT ahead of the Tiger purely for its sweet gearbox and ease of operation. Or the F750GS. Its a surprise package and BMW will give some discounts for sure on it.

In general, I really feel a pre-owned ADV is a wonderful option and you can spend the additional money saved on essential accessories as well as gear.

I have learnt that it is your gear which allows you to go places and not entirely the machine.
nitrogary is offline   (4) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 21:30   #29
Senior - BHPian
 
bigron's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: NSEW
Posts: 1,144
Thanked: 1,550 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

Anybody who says that a small 250/300 cc putter can do any serious off roading is utterly mistaken. ( I once took a Himalyan to Leh and it was a pain in the rear)
Just because it weights less and is small and nimble, does not mean it would be at home en route to Leh /Ladhak or other similar routes where the oxygen is scarce and you are loaded with equipment. The small nimble argument works upto a very limited degree and on not so beaten tracks. When the roads actually vanish, you need all the displacement you can get to get you out of the grind. A reason why all the best adventure tourers have massive displacement and torque ratings coupled with all that shiftcam tech, electronic adjustable suspension, steering dampers etc etc. A 250/300 cc commuter will just stall the minute the altitude increases and the sand sinks the rear wheel in with all that load you are carrying.
Standing on the foot pegs of a full bodied adventurer tourer while the rear wheel wafts on the sand while you are twisting the throttle is one of the truest forms of motorcycle joy.

The middle weight 650 - 850 cc category is the bare minimum that you need that will get you far while also keeping the ride enjoyable while you explore the un beaten track.

Last edited by bigron : 3rd July 2019 at 21:42.
bigron is offline   (5) Thanks
Old 3rd July 2019, 21:46   #30
BHPian
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 38
Thanked: 24 Times
Default Re: Which big touring motorcycle should I buy?

I was in a similar situation 2 months back and now I own a pre-owned AT. Let me tell you how things shaped up with me:

The 650 Class:

I was riding a duke and I do decent amount of touring and don't shy away going off the road given a chance. The duke could take me any where I wanted but not in the way I wanted. So, the hunt for a better bike started keeping the 650 segment in mind considering the practicality of it. I have a friend who rides Versys and we have done a couple of trips together. It is a wonderful piece of machine no doubt about it. You will only be limited to your abilities and not the bike per say; so is the vStorm. The reason I did not proceed with the 650 segment is, knowing me, even if I had purchased either of them, the itch to upgrade would have crept in no sooner or later. Plus, OTR of bike along with basic accessories like engine/tank protection, hand guards, auxiliary lights, and center stand was crossing well over 10 lakhs which somehow I could not digest. Please for some reason, I felt both to be too plasticy. With that kind of money suddenly I felt a bigger bike is more reachable for me. With all of this in mind, I skipped the segment and mover up to 800 class.

The 800/Liter class:

This is the segment which is ruled by Tiger and the best part is they have variants for all different kind of needs a rider has. I had almost made up my mind and even took a test ride just for the heck of it. The sweet note from that triple is to die for and with an arrow exhaust; pure harmony. Also, this is the bike which is in this segment for a long time (2014 is I think when it was launched first; the XC variant). I literally had no other contenders in my mind. It was just a matter of time when I had to put down my money (Triumph come up with different offers at different times. When I was in the market, there were none and the previous one where they were offering panniers and top box or arrow exhaust had just expired).

New or used dilemma:

Unlike you, I had an open mind for pre-owned category as well. As GTO said in one of the threads, once you go the pre-owned route, it is very difficult to convince yourself to go for a new one given the value preposition the pre-owned vehicles offer you. The car which I drive is also a pre-loved one acquired from a BHPian and is serving me well even after 8 years of ownership. Only thing is you need to have your criteria clear and have patience for something interesting to come by.
So, the idea was, if I am going the per-owned way, below were my must-meet criteria:
• It had to be a XRX or XCX variant
• Not older than 2016
• Should have run 15K Kms or less. The lesser the better
• Should have all the service history intact and no accident at all
• Zero dep insurance in place and these bikes tend to rip your pocket apart if not properly covered
• Extend warranty in place
• Prefer it to be from a known source but open for ones available in market as well if it met all the criteria above
• Vehicle should be in same state to avoid registration complications.

Sounds un-realistic right; read on....

Started scouting different websites/contacts for a good used tiger. I got a couple of used examples but nothing to write home about. The well-maintained ones were not in my budget and the ones in my budget were either poorly maintained or if they were well maintained, they were from other states (Karnataka has the highest road tax and getting an other state vehicle comes with its own hassles of getting it re-registered here). While all these were going on, I was keeping a close watch on the offer for new tiger as well. I was in constant touch with the showroom guys as well but nothing was coming by. I found one tiger XRX variant which met most of my criteria but at the end moment, the seller backed off and the deal did not go through.

Enter the Twin:
All these no offer on new ones/not getting the right pre-owned ones were getting on to my nerves and I decided enough is enough, let me put down my money on the new Tiger. During all this phase, my friend was helping me in sending the details of used ones, clarifying my doubts et al. He owns a tiger XC and is a veteran when it comes to adventure sport bikes. He casually informed about an AT for sale. His friend who got it 6 months back was willing to let it go since he realized it’s a wrong bike for him. Till this point I had no clue about AT and was not keen to check it as my mind was set on Tiger. Decided to check it out anyways since I have some time on my hand before I plonk in my money on new Tiger. At the same time, I came across an immaculately maintained XRX (2018 model with new TFT et al). Got in touch with the seller and scheduled test rides on both bikes back to back on same day. First I rode the AT. The moment I was astride AT, I felt at home. At no point, it felt like a big bike and surprisingly the DCT didn’t throw any tantrums at me. I was amazed at the way I could ride this bike. Coming from duke I did not expect this. Mind you by this time I have test rode many Tigers. This test ride changed my whole thinking and I was more inclined towards getting one. I had a long test ride and the more I rode it, more I liked it. I followed it with another test ride with the Tiger and I was 90% convinced the AT it is for me. Since I was not familiar about AT, took a couple of days to research on it and at the end, decided to buy it. The seller had maintained it well and it ticked all the boxes except the extended warranty. Checked with Honda and got to know that I can get one at a mere 4K for 5 years. Two days after I took the test ride, I finalized the deal and got her home.

It’s been 2 months now and I am enjoying every minute on her. Couple of lakhs that I saved in buying it will help me covering my running cost at least for a couple of years.

Didn’t realize this would turn out to be such a big post but if it helps you in making an informed decision, I will be glad.

Cheers!

P.S: Did I tell you that the bike came with most of the accessories. So, some money and a lot of time saved there as well 

Last edited by Srinidhi : 3rd July 2019 at 21:47.
Srinidhi is offline   (12) Thanks
Reply

Most Viewed
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Copyright 2000 - 2020, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks