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Everybody's copying the Tracer!

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On 11/9/2019 at 10:39 PM, betoney said:

Very True.  I was just on the BMW website looking at the 1250RS, adding a few options through the "build your own" section quickly brought the price from $15,700 to $19K ($3150 select package) and that didn't include hard bags or navigation.  The side bags and top box with inner bags are an additional $2500, the navigation system that is integrated into the handlebar controls with a smart mount is another $1000.

Then you start with the personalized cosmetic farkle options...

My jaw hit the floor the other day when I was spec’ing out a R 1250 RT. $1,430USD for a top case. What?!

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That's why when I can, I'll buy used.  I picked up my current bike from a retired cardiologist who outfitted my bike with only the best mods to make it suitable for touring.  There was about $3000 of accessories on it...and the bike was priced below Kelley Blue Book.

Chris

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There is a loaded pristine ‘18 RT with 620 miles on it at our shop selling for $15,999. With deals like that why would you buy new?  And it goes oshow BMWs deprecate just as fast as everything else. 

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14 hours ago, donk said:

There is a loaded pristine ‘18 RT with 620 miles on it at our shop selling for $15,999. With deals like that why would you buy new?  And it goes oshow BMWs deprecate just as fast as everything else. 

Around now one may wish to own the 1250, which I'm told has quite a few improvements over the 1200. But if you're willing to take the outgoing model, deals can be had for sure. 

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There's a little mental exercise I go through when considering buying a new bike.  What improvements does it have over what I have now?  Or in the case of the post by nevada72, what's the improvements the 1250 has over the 1200?  

Next, how much extra will that cost?  So far, that has kept me from jumping from one bike to another and wasting a lot of money.

The FJ-09/Tracer is a great bike.  It's the standard by which every other bike in this category will be judged by; that's pretty cool. 

But...the marketing folks earn their living by convincing you that you just gotta have that new fancy update.

Chris

 

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7 hours ago, daboo said:

There's a little mental exercise I go through when considering buying a new bike.  What improvements does it have over what I have now?  Or in the case of the post by nevada72, what's the improvements the 1250 has over the 1200?  

Next, how much extra will that cost?  So far, that has kept me from jumping from one bike to another and wasting a lot of money.

The FJ-09/Tracer is a great bike.  It's the standard by which every other bike in this category will be judged by; that's pretty cool. 

But...the marketing folks earn their living by convincing you that you just gotta have that new fancy update.

Chris

 

I agree. When I bought the FJ09 I was also considering the S1000XR and the KTM Super Duke GT. Clearly those are more advanced machines with higher levels of sophistication. But, they would have also cost roughly 3x what I paid for the FJ. I had to weigh the extra cost against, not only the difference in performance, but factoring the amount of time spent in the saddle. I have 4 other bikes I ride and I just couldn't resolve spending 3x the price for bikes that maybe, just maybe, would increase my performance levels by 10% when I'm doing that kind of ride. The decision to buy the FJ was validated with a few spirited rides with friends who have the BMW and KTM. Sure - they were fast. But I was able to hang in there. When it came down to acceleration, the FJ did surprisingly well. Zero to 60 there just aren't many bikes that can embarrass the FJ. Same with the curves. The only area I lost ground was when the bike maxed out at 115 and the others passed me like I was standing still. :D But honestly, I'm okay with 115. 

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Guy rode into the shop a couple months ago on a nicely set up ‘15 FJ-09. He wanted to trade it in on a ‘16 S1000XR because his friends could outrun him top end.  He took the S1000XR for a test ride came back and said, “honestly I like the FJ-09 better. Sorry to waste your time.”  Boy that made me smile. Great compliment to the FJ-09 and having ridden them both, with the exception of the up/down quick shifter on the XR I completely agree with him.  

Edited by donk
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2 hours ago, nevada72 said:

I agree. When I bought the FJ09 I was also considering the S1000XR and the KTM Super Duke GT. Clearly those are more advanced machines with higher levels of sophistication. But, they would have also cost roughly 3x what I paid for the FJ. I had to weigh the extra cost against, not only the difference in performance, but factoring the amount of time spent in the saddle. I have 4 other bikes I ride and I just couldn't resolve spending 3x the price for bikes that maybe, just maybe, would increase my performance levels by 10% when I'm doing that kind of ride. The decision to buy the FJ was validated with a few spirited rides with friends who have the BMW and KTM. Sure - they were fast. But I was able to hang in there. When it came down to acceleration, the FJ did surprisingly well. Zero to 60 there just aren't many bikes that can embarrass the FJ. Same with the curves. The only area I lost ground was when the bike maxed out at 115 and the others passed me like I was standing still. :D But honestly, I'm okay with 115. 

I'm always a little reticent to post here.  I don't own an FJ-09 or Tracer.  I test rode the FJ initially and ended up with the BMW F800GT; it just fits me better.  I keep in touch here because I love motorcycling...and the Tracer GT would be on my short list if I needed to replace my F800GT.  The Yamaha is really a superb motorcycle.

But the comments you made are spot on with what I experienced last summer.  Previous to this one ride, I'd ridden fast with some pretty experienced riders.  They were hard core riders who don't think anything of riding from places like Alberta or Nevada to go to a small rally in Eastern Washington.  Not only can they put on the miles like that, but they ride fast in the turns.

Then I joined up with a group of riders from British Columbia.  Each year they head south to experience the isolated roads in Northern California and Oregon.  They were like a class above the other group.  They had modified their ECUs to get about 150+ hp at the rear wheel.  You'd think I'd be left behind with only 90 hp in my F800GT.  I was initially.  Then I decided to skip looking at the scenery, which wasn't special, and just focus on the road...and explore the upper reaches of my bike's rpm range.  I kept up just fine.  I rode with two Microsoft guys on Ducatti Multistrada 1260s at the end of the summer down in Oregon.  Again, I kept up just fine.

You mentioned the curves.  I got a chuckle out of the BC riders.  They were on Kawasaki Concours C14s.  Wonderful bikes.  They are on the "sport" side of sport-touring, I suppose.  Those guys could fling their bikes through corners at speeds that amazed me.  But by lunch, it was no problem to reel them in.  Even if a heavy bike can take curves fast, it still takes a lot of effort.  At the end of the day, I was still ready for more riding.  And I think it has to do with the low weight of our bikes.

To me, the spec sheet is one thing.  It'll tell me the top end horsepower and maybe the top speed.  But there's a limit of how fast any partially sane rider will take a corner they've never seen before, and once you top 90-100 mph...what is it worth to go faster and lose your license?  My GT clocked 139 mph per the Michigan State Police testing.  A R1200RS is supposed to be able to reach about 145 mph.  Do I care about 6 mph?  When will I ever ride that fast?

I'm far more interested in how the bike gives me a grin in day to day riding in the daily commute and some fun rides.  Does it bring a grin to my face?  Do I love the looks of the bike from whatever direction I come up on it?  Do I look back to see what it looks like one last time as I walk away?  I'm sure you have that feeling on your FJ-09s and Tracers.  

And I'd much rather have the reliability of a Yamaha than the new BMW or KTM.

And if you love what you have...why spend thousand$$$$ to find out the new bike isn't as good as the one you had?

Chris

 

Edited by daboo
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Agree, The 900 triple is plenty of motor for the open road and an 80 mph corner is an 80 mph corner whatever bike you're on. 0 to 100 is very adequate. Big hp bikes will keep pulling hard well after that if that's what you want. 

 Here in the UK, the open road doesn't compliment 140+ speeds. The track is the best place, if the straight bits are long enough. 

IMO,  the Tracer 900 is a great choice for anyone after fun and excitement on a very practical multipurpose bike.   👍

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On 11/21/2019 at 9:08 PM, donk said:

Yamaha’s idea on styling leaves me wondering. The whole “dark side” thing is a turn off.  Great products but they’ve  lost the plot on style and paint.  Certainly they could do a better job of colors for the Tracer/GT. It would be pretty easy to make the bike a whole lot classier looking. 

I like the MT line styling, but the colors in particular just make me shake my head.  I got the Nimbus Grey/White model common in the UK as it was heavily discounted specifically because it wouldn't sell in that color.  Since day one, I've been contemplating what color I want to paint/wrap it in.  Plastic grey with red accents and white lower fairings?  Erg.  Who thought THAT was a great color scheme?!   The whole push to have the off-color lower fairings on lots of different models confuses me, to be honest.   Likewise, the dark grey MT's with the wierd "flou" yellow-green wheels, or even the new 2019 MT's with the weirdly orange-red wheels against the white.  The white's nice, for sure - pearly and sparkly, it's quite pretty, but then they offset it with that weird orange-red.  

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14 hours ago, nevada72 said:

But I was able to hang in there. When it came down to acceleration, the FJ did surprisingly well. Zero to 60 there just aren't many bikes that can embarrass the FJ. Same with the curves. The only area I lost ground was when the bike maxed out at 115 and the others passed me like I was standing still. :D But honestly, I'm okay with 115. 

This was largely the rationale for me buying my old MT07, and this GT.  99% of my riding is ultimately sub-100mph, and basically all the most fun riding is.  Either it's launching from stoplights, or carving up twisty mountain roads, either way pushing far beyond 100mph isn't really very important to me.  I certainly like to Go Fast, but in practice it's pretty rare I'm in a situation where I'm going to be looking to hold 120mph+ for any length of time.  There's just not a lot of places you can do that safely and not risk really, really unpleasant encounters with the boys in blue.  

If I'm doing long highway rides (meh; find alternate routes that have curves and scenery!) I'm just slapping on cruise control at whatever speed people are driving anyways, and if I'm commuting to work, or out in winding roads, acceleration and grunty power is far more valuable to me.  

  

12 hours ago, daboo said:

To me, the spec sheet is one thing.  It'll tell me the top end horsepower and maybe the top speed.  But there's a limit of how fast any partially sane rider will take a corner they've never seen before, and once you top 90-100 mph...what is it worth to go faster and lose your license?  My GT clocked 139 mph per the Michigan State Police testing.  A R1200RS is supposed to be able to reach about 145 mph.  Do I care about 6 mph?  When will I ever ride that fast?

Exactly.  Even on my MT07, I was never left behind on group rides except for when people wanted to show off on long straight stretches (and even then, only when they wanted to "make a point").  As soon as we got to any kind of corners or more limited visibility, I was right with the liter bikes.  Not because I'm some super great rider, but just because there's only so much speed you can actually use.  

It happens every decade or two - manufacturers get into this horsepower/max speed race - but it's really just spec sheet penis measuring IMHO.  I'm a strong proponent of 600-class sportbikes, and up to liter bikes in touring spec (where you're looking to carry a lot more weight) with everything beyond that being "Hey, this is awesome and all, but not actually useful."  We're definitely in another one of these cycles now, with new models always being just a bit faster than the prior ones at the top end.  Shelling out more money for worse fuel economy, more expensive insurance, just to have a bigger number on your bike than the next guy.

Edited by Wintersdark
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1 hour ago, Wintersdark said:

99% of my riding is ultimately sub-100mph, and basically all the most fun riding is.  Either it's launching from stoplights, or carving up twisty mountain roads, either way pushing far beyond 100mph isn't really very important to me.  I certainly like to Go Fast, but in practice it's pretty rare I'm in a situation where I'm going to be looking to hold 120mph+ for any length of time.

I agree with this.  I certainly like to ride aggressively in the mountains and canyons but 110hp and 100mph is PLENTY.  I "stepped down" from a liter bike and thought I would miss the adrenaline rush but the CP3 is extremely capable.  I find that I actually now prefer riding a smaller bike closer to its potential than riding a bigger bike at 50-60%.

There have been a few instances where I have wished for a bit more power, mostly steep uphill mountain passes but for most of my riding this bike is more than adequate to get me up to 100mph.

A lot of new models like to use HP or top speed as a selling point but other than bragging rights with their buddies, where will a rider use 200HP or ride 210mph?

Edited by betoney
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***2015 Candy Red FJ-09***

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16 minutes ago, betoney said:

I agree with this.  I certainly like to ride aggressively in the mountains and canyons but 110hp and 100mph is PLENTY.  I "stepped down" from a liter bike and thought I would miss the adrenaline rush but the CP3 is extremely capable.  I find that I actually now prefer riding a smaller bike closer to its potential than riding a bigger bike at 50-60%.

There have been a few instances where I have wished for a bit more power, mostly steep uphill mountain passes but for most of my riding this bike is more than adequate to get me up to 100mph.

A lot of new models like to use HP or top speed as a selling point but other than bragging rights with their buddies, where will a rider use 200HP or ride 210mph?

Yup.  I still maintain - as much as I love my Tracer - my MT07 was more fun to ride.  The Tracer will be better come road trip time (load the MT07 down with more weight and it's limitations really show), and it's waaaaaaay more comfortable.  But even with it's much lower top speed and acceleration(relatively speaking), the 07 was a blast to wring every ounce of performance out of and I spent a great deal of time at WOT, engine screaming.  On the Tracer, I very rarely have it WOT, simply because there's nowhere I can really use that much power.  Not that I'm afraid to, or don't want to, but simply because you're already going way too fast for most street riding in seconds.  It's where the real differentiation with performance cars comes in, IMHO, because you just don't have anywhere near the same acceleration in most cars, so there's a lot more "usable power" room.  Gotta have a really crazy car to get to where you simply can't use the power.  Kinda sad, because the CP3 sounds so damn good when you open it up.

So, what happens is people buy ever bigger bikes, and just turn their wrist less.   You can get that same effect with a smaller bike and changing out the throttle tube 😃  Well, I guess you can't brag about having the most power, but... eh.  

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49 minutes ago, Wintersdark said:

….. Not that I'm afraid to, or don't want to, but simply because you're already going way too fast for most street riding in seconds. 

It's not surprising that we, as FJ/MT owners, agree on what constitutes a good ride. The bikes just do a lot of things well. If you're looking to win the armchair wars with stats, sure.....go buy the H2 and be done with it. But if you simply love sport riding, and like to be comfortable doing it, the FJ is a fantastic choice. And as mentioned, regardless of the other bikes on the ride, you'll never be more than 2 seconds behind. That may be a lifetime in racing, but on the road, it's just 2 seconds.

 

And here in Wisconsin you never know what's lurking around the next curve or over the next hill. We had a kid recently ride faster than his line of sight allowed. Came over a rise and took out some guy on a riding mower turning around in the road for his next pass. Killed them both. 

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7 hours ago, nevada72 said:

It's not surprising that we, as FJ/MT owners, agree on what constitutes a good ride. The bikes just do a lot of things well. If you're looking to win the armchair wars with stats, sure.....go buy the H2 and be done with it. But if you simply love sport riding, and like to be comfortable doing it, the FJ is a fantastic choice. And as mentioned, regardless of the other bikes on the ride, you'll never be more than 2 seconds behind. That may be a lifetime in racing, but on the road, it's just 2 seconds.

 

And here in Wisconsin you never know what's lurking around the next curve or over the next hill. We had a kid recently ride faster than his line of sight allowed. Came over a rise and took out some guy on a riding mower turning around in the road for his next pass. Killed them both. 

Tragic and true. Some of the guys I ride with will ride too fast for the line of sight and I was horrified the day we all blew by a little girl standing on the edge of her driveway.  As they say no harm no foul but to this day it leaves me thinking of the what if’s?  

Im lucky enough to own a couple of bikes and my FJ-09 and Multistrada are the keepers.  Yes the Multi can out pull the FJ-09 but both bikes are great and put a smile on my face and that’s what I ride for.  By no means is the FJ-09 a slow bike and it has a good power to weight ratio.  It’s designed and built as a road bike and that’s a big plus, as is the Multistrada.  While the R1 and Panigale are great try driving them on public roads and they just are not in their element. 

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