The Kawasaki Concours will hit its 20th year of production in 2005. Other than color changes, the motorcycle was functionally updated just once - in 1994 (different dash and floating disk brakes). That 1000cc sport tourer was way ahead of its time when it came out in 1986. Since Kawasaki paid for the design and tooling costs long ago, they keep the cost constant at just under $8,000. It is still a very capable sport tourer today, and a hell of a bargain at the price. Kawasaki's dual sport KLR650 is a similar case. Not quite state of the art these days, but a heck of a deal at just under $5,000 brand new. Both bikes have a loyal following, and Kawasaki sells enough of them to warrant keeping them in production.
Now, I'm not saying that the Burgmans will end up that way. But until the scooter market heats up significantly, and until the competition threatens Burgman sales with better machines, the number crunchers at Suzuki are probably not going to divert funds into significant upgrades for the scooters. The contest between the Suzuki Hayabusa and the Kawasaki ZX10 is much more crucial to them, because it effects sales of the entire sport bike line - and the Hayabusa is currently loosing. Same can be said for the battle between the 600cc crotch rockets - it is a heated contest every year. Then there are the cruiser bikes. As dull as many of us find them, their sales numbers are huge - and Suzuki is trailing many of the others in popularity.
World wide, the market differs somewhat from the USA. Scooters are more popular in many countries, cruiser bikes are less popular. But the overall sales numbers will determine where the development funds go, and the key "image" bikes will always receive attention. It's business, and it is corporate survival.
All considered, I won't find it too surprising if a color change is all we see for 2005. I'll be happy, if we see a significant upgrade year before I am ready to trade my 650 (2007 would be good :wink: ).