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The cons that user mentioned, especially the brake not tied to the side stand (not the norm here nor for the vast majority of scooters I've known about) or the computer not screaming at the rider when the key fell out of his pocket, are just being very very picky and also very very sloppy. Who rides with important stuff in pockets that are not designed to hold such things in? Really!? I ALWAYS ride with armored riding pants with zippers on deep pockets and have NEVER lost anything even when I forget to zip them closed. I would expect something as important as that key fob would be more carefully carried and held onto. I do know personally of one rider I caught up to and followed for some time on the road who had just lost his cell phone from his pocket somewhere in the last several miles he was riding. But then he was wearing really loose SHORTS with shallow pockets while riding, and I don't remember if he was wearing sandals or sneakers, which is totally NOT the proper clothing to wear while riding anything with 2 wheels and a motor! What did he expect! If anyone doesn't wear the gear for the activity then they should expect certain things to not go well. Don't let EXPECTATIONS get out of proportion to reality.

PRO service needed just to change the oil filter??? REALLY??? I highly doubt it. Well, he did say "almost" but still just another nit to pick. There is ONE bottom tray to remove to get the oil filter off, but the service manual (which I downloaded from a Greek dealer website) clearly shows how to remove that. The procedure per the SM is not that difficult. The oil filter still can easily be seen under the engine without removing anything (see in photos of reviewers leaning hard into curves) but not likely able to remove it without taking off that one bottom panel. The rest of the oil change is simply one oil screen to clean (no replace needed unless damaged) and one drain plug. Both of those easy to get to without any panels removed. Not really any more difficult than changing oil on my Burgman 650. Well, actually there are a few panels to remove on my Burgman to do a proper oil change for both engine and transmission gear set and final drive which is more than sounds like on the AK 550. That guy sounds like he really doesn't know how to do much of his own maintenance very well. Even my old Gold Wing was more involved than this... but still very able to do myself so no big deal.

Edit: oh, forgot to mention. I've heard from a current USA owner that the service interval is actually more like the Burgman 650 intervals than the overseas manual show. This other owner even showed the maintenance schedule from his owner manual. Looks like if I owned one of these now I'd be doing oil and filter changes same as I do on my Burgman... which would make it around 6000 miles interval.

Mirrors only good for passing??? Not if you adjust them right. I've heard the same comments about several other bikes. Some of which I've owned and never had issues adjusting the mirrors to see what was needed.

Lack of wind protection for lower legs? While I agree that MOST scooters do very well at providing great wind protection for legs, almost every motorcycle provides LESS wind protection than it looks like the AK would.

Fuel gauge useless? Show me a motorcycle with an accurate fuel gauge and I'll show you the exception to the rule. It does sound, from certain reports of those who nit pick about it, that this fuel gauge is slightly less accurate than the norm. So this con has a little merit. But I've seen worse. The best motorcycle, or even car, fuel gauges usually show half tank or a bit less when only 1/3 tank at most has been used. Sometimes it's worse, and sometimes better. Never have I even heard of a gauge that showed accurately. I've only read a total of 2 out of dozens of reviews that mention the fuel gauge showing "red line" at roughly 1/3 tank used. I go by miles per tank anyway much more than what the gauge shows, more accurate.

Edit2: Just read that poster's other post where he stated how much was left in the tank when the fuel gauge started indicating low fuel... "5 liters in the 15 liter tank". This is totally NORMAL for almost all motorcycles I've ever owned OR known about in person. 2/3 tank left= half tank at the gauge, 1/3 tank left= almost empty at the gauge. My last 6 motorcycle did exactly this. NORMAL.

Noodoe gimmicky? Sure, and you expected something other than what is actually advertised? Sounds like this guys' expectations were beyond what he likely read on official sources about this feature. Most of the feature set I've read about would be useless to me other than the GPS navigation and analog speedo. Showing incoming phone calls or text messages might be interesting but that's it. Showing photos from my phone... totally a gimmick and nothing more.

The major point is to go in knowing what it is you're getting to begin with. Do a little research to properly set your expectations. This guy seems like he didn't do that and is now disappointed since his expectations were not entirely met. I read posts like his with a grain of salt but also simply take note of anything said compared with comments and facts offered from other more reliable sources and my own personal experience where applies.
 

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Sometimes I do think of the possibility of a second career in a motorcycle shop... but I would be happier doing the maintenance.
 
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Just read (and watched the video) of the AK 550 from Sept 2017. The announcement was given by the Chairman of Kymco, Allen Ko. Per his words it seems the model name "AK" comes from the term "Anniversario Kymco" which they were honoring with this new (at that time) model.

KYMCO Launches AK 550 in Japan Test Ride
 
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If any Seattle types want a look at one IRL Seattle Cycle has one on the floor as of this writing.
I hope to give it a harder look at some point soonish, but pending that popular shot first, so a few weeks if they have it.
 
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Did you see? Kymco has now made the European version of the AK 550 Euro 5 compliant.
The bad: fuel tank is now only 12.5 L instead of 15 to make room for a few extra parts to make it compliant and the HP was dropped to 51 bhp from 53.5... still more HP than the T-Max 560!
The good: Torque is still the same as are all other features and specs and the price is unchanged (I think).
No news on if the USA is getting these changes. But I wouldn't be surprised if the next model year for the USA does. Doesn't really matter to me that the HP dropped just a little but I don't care for the smaller tank size. It really wouldn't affect my riding however since I've never ever come close to not having enough range even for that tank size given where I've gone riding.

On another note... I commented on a video that compared the Burgman 650 and the Kymco AK 550 and the BMW C650gt. The video was WAY off on some of the specs for the Burgman 650 so I just had to comment to provide corrections. Such as top speed being UNDER 100 mph and they had no clue what the final drive is/was on the Burgman and that it has been out since 1998. I think they said it was a chain drive but I'll have to watch it again to remember. The also implied the engine on the Burgman was swing arm mounted and that it smoked some implying that it was a 2 stroke! Someone replied to my comment about the Burgman 650 no longer being in production saying that there is indeed a 2021 Burgman 650 and mentioned that there are YouTube videos about it. I looked, but could only find fan-made videos with very poor quality video showing a 2018 but talking it up as a 2021. All indications from reliable AUTHORIZED sources are missing any mention of it, including Suzuki Global. The video was also saying that all these are still available for purchase new in the USA today. NOT! Of these 3 only the AK 550 is available as a 2021 model in the USA. BMW doesn't show the C650 anywhere on their web site other in archived pages. But I did find a 2022 BMW C400gt indicated. But that still leaves only the AK 550 as the ONLY super scooter available in the 2021 model year in the USA. If you live in other countries there are more choices available. Overall that video was somewhat disturbing in that they didn't even show all 3 scooters side by side and only included some stock video of them individually on the road with only the AK 550 being present with the commentator.
 
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as rare as these bikes seem to be, if i was a dealer and had one on the floor, i'd rope it off advertise, and charge admission, auction off to highest bidder in about a year or 6
 

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I started to watch that video and turned it off when I realized that this was not a true comparison video, but a thinly, and I mean very thinly veiled AK 550 commercial from that dealer. He probably never even sat on a Burgman.
 

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I got the same impression.
 

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Did you see? Kymco has now made the European version of the AK 550 Euro 5 compliant.
The bad: fuel tank is now only 12.5 L instead of 15 to make room for a few extra parts to make it compliant and the HP was dropped to 51 bhp from 53.5... still more HP than the T-Max 560!
The good: Torque is still the same as are all other features and specs and the price is unchanged (I think).
No news on if the USA is getting these changes. But I wouldn't be surprised if the next model year for the USA does. Doesn't really matter to me that the HP dropped just a little but I don't care for the smaller tank size. It really wouldn't affect my riding however since I've never ever come close to not having enough range even for that tank size given where I've gone riding.

On another note... I commented on a video that compared the Burgman 650 and the Kymco AK 550 and the BMW C650gt. The video was WAY off on some of the specs for the Burgman 650 so I just had to comment to provide corrections. Such as top speed being UNDER 100 mph and they had no clue what the final drive is/was on the Burgman and that it has been out since 1998. I think they said it was a chain drive but I'll have to watch it again to remember. The also implied the engine on the Burgman was swing arm mounted and that it smoked some implying that it was a 2 stroke! Someone replied to my comment about the Burgman 650 no longer being in production saying that there is indeed a 2021 Burgman 650 and mentioned that there are YouTube videos about it. I looked, but could only find fan-made videos with very poor quality video showing a 2018 but talking it up as a 2021. All indications from reliable AUTHORIZED sources are missing any mention of it, including Suzuki Global. The video was also saying that all these are still available for purchase new in the USA today. NOT! Of these 3 only the AK 550 is available as a 2021 model in the USA. BMW doesn't show the C650 anywhere on their web site other in archived pages. But I did find a 2022 BMW C400gt indicated. But that still leaves only the AK 550 as the ONLY super scooter available in the 2021 model year in the USA. If you live in other countries there are more choices available. Overall that video was somewhat disturbing in that they didn't even show all 3 scooters side by side and only included some stock video of them individually on the road with only the AK 550 being present with the commentator.
If you're talking about www.youtube.com/watch?v=_oC6ol3j12k, I just watched it for the first time, and I didn't think it was all that bad.

He's introducing the 550, so he's concentrating on that, introducing us to the scoot, in this video. I think he does a reasonable job of that introduction, by mostly comparing it to scoots his intended audience is familiar with.

Regarding the implication that the Burgman has an engine on the swingarm, I think he phrased a couple of sentences poorly. What you're referring to occurs at 7:57; when he says then, "Now, the Burgman doesn't do that," I believe that he was trying to say that the Burgman doesn't use a belt final drive, is all, unlike the other two scoots. He had just been talking about belt final drive. So give it a listen, and see if you can interpret his remarks in that vein, i.e., not about engine location but instead about final drive mechanism. This guy's been around the block -- I've watched a lot of his videos -- and my money's on his knowing where the Big Burger's engine is mounted.

Regarding 99 MPH, yep, I find that wrong, too, but not by all that much. When Motorcycle Consumer News tested the scoot in 2004 or 2005, they clocked it at 102 with a radar gun. I clocked my 2007 Exec at 101 with a Garmin. I know Dave_J had a LEO clock him at 120, and, as I posted before, I find that speed really to be an outlier. The bottom line is that I'm not making a big deal about 3 MPH.

Regarding your point on availability, I missed any mention of anyone's actually being able to buy any of these except the Kymco, which he's trying to push, as he sells them. I'll have to listen again, to try to catch exactly what he says about being able to buy these right now.

Last, I certainly agree with you on tank size, i.e., going smaller is the wrong direction. Many of us have said for years, way before the 550 was born, that we'd like larger tanks on the Big Burgers. I think that pretty much goes for most bikes, especially those that can't do 200 miles without being on fumes. I don't do 200 miles in one sitting, but it'd be nice not to have to stop for gas before my RT-riding buddy does (who gets about twice that on a tank).

Me, if they put factory cruise on the Kymco, I think I find my nearest dealer tomorrow. I've said that about the TMax Tech Max -- I've said it here, and I've said it by postal mail and by phone to Yamaha -- because, for one thing, that scoot has factory cruise. But they haven't humored me, yet, by bringing it to North America.
 
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Yep, that's the vid.
The blurb about availability is in the notes for the publisher below the video "We compare the features and benefits of the 3 fastest Motorscooters you can buy in the USA right now." which is only 1/3 true for new model year 2021. I actually didn't think the video was bad, just that it seemed obvious to me to be not so much of a comparison as an introduction to the AK and relating it as an available option to the others. Except that the others, as has been said over and over, are not available currently except as used or held over stock.
 
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Yep, that's the vid.
The blurb about availability is in the notes for the publisher below the video "We compare the features and benefits of the 3 fastest Motorscooters you can buy in the USA right now." which is only 1/3 true for new model year 2021. I actually didn't think the video was bad, just that it seemed obvious to me to be not so much of a comparison as an introduction to the AK and relating it as an available option to the others. Except that the others, as has been said over and over, are not available currently except as used or held over stock.
Understood. Thanks for helping me out.
 

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Price wise that is true. The Burgman 400 is the price competitor.

Feature wise and capability wise the Burgman 650 is the competitor. Or at least was. I'm not interested in the 400 being a smaller engine and having that engine mounted on the swing arm. I guess I'm spoiled with the benefits of having more power and the engine frame mounted.

So for me the choices would be a used Burgman 650 or new Kymco AK 550. Those prices for a used Burgman 650, especially finding a low miles 2018 model, are comparable to the AK 550 new. But then the fact of new vs used for close to the same price I would lean toward the new. Features wise I would have to think about it a bit more. Keyless ignition vs key. Smaller under seat storage vs larger. Smaller engine but just as much or maybe more punch vs larger engine but maybe no more punch/power at the wheel (not referring to HP or torque but the practical actual performance result). Lighter weight vs heavier. LED lighting end to end vs legacy lighting. Mechanically controlled CVT that is designed with improved maintenance ability vs eCVT that is more difficult to repair. Manually adjusted 2 position windscreen vs electrically adjusting windscreen. Fancier phone connected modern digital dash/instruments with GPS capability vs more traditional dash/instruments. Heated grips vs heated grips AND seat (2016-2018 model 650). 15 inch wheels front and rear vs 15 inch front with 14 inch rear. And a few other things.

As @Dave_J says: a sucker is born every minute.
I may be a sucker but I do have my limits in sucker-dom.
I like saving money as much as the next person and letting someone else take the hit on initial depreciation is always a good thing... to a point. I also put a bit of value on not inheriting certain "issues" that can result from the potential abuses of initial owners so there is a lot of care taken when looking over anything I buy. I've already proven to myself that I am not opposed to paying the "new" price for a motorcycle but I'll wheel and deal with any seller in the attempt to get the best price I can (did that with my CTX1300 which was bought new with 1 mile on the odometer due to the dealer taking it to fill the gas tank while I was on my way there to buy it... worked the dealer down to matching the best price found nationwide-21% off msrp- as well as getting a 22% off on any accessories bought). If the price I agree to matches my personal assessment of value TO ME then I'm good with that. Any vehicle is nothing more than an expense to me. If I feel the price is worth the value of owning something then I'm good with that.

I don't consider resale values. EVER. That's just part of a sales pitch by dealers of merchandise to get you to pay for extras that they convince you someone else might want. I don't buy things based on what someone else MIGHT want. Who really knows that anyway. That's like putting in new carpet in your house just to sell it when your existing carpet is still in great shape... and the moment you sell the house the new owner rips out all the carpet to put in a wood floor! What a waste of my money.

I don't intend to run out and buy the AK 550... right away. I am thinking that I might sometime. It is on my short list, right next to my next used Burgman 650. I guess that does make it a really short list. But them's the choices in the USA today. I'm still having too much fun on my current ride. So it may be a while before I can report on any new purchases.

Just throwing out some random thoughts here. And somewhat hiding from the Mrs. ;)
 

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Bob, those are excellent thoughts. And hardly random.

I have some thoughts on your thoughts:

- "Mechanically controlled CVT that is designed with improved maintenance ability vs eCVT that is more difficult to repair."

I think that's a significant issue, or potentially one, anyway, especially when dealing with purchasing a used bike. And especially if you plan on keeping a bike for awhile, as most of us do.

Not all of us are mechanically adept as, say, @Dave_J, or @Buffalo, and similar folks. I'm grateful that they choose to participate in the forum, because I've learned a lot, solved some problems, because of what they post. But if and when my 13-year-old Exec has a CVT issue, come and get it, folks. It'll either be turned into a mailbox holder, or 1-800-Got-Junk will cart it away, or something like that.

- "Manually adjusted 2 position windscreen vs electrically adjusting windscreen."

The more I think about this, the less I think it matters. This might be an age and retirement aspect, but I hardly ever ride in lousy weather, e.g., cold or rainy, and I still get about 5,000 miles a year in. So I don't fiddle with the windshield (Clearview "Medium"), but just leave it in the low position.

- "Heated grips vs heated grips AND seat (2016-2018 model 650)."

I had heated grips and seats (separate front and back) for five years on my Victory. Only used the seat heat a time or two. Part of that is the nice-weather riding noted above. But another part is that when going on multi-day trips -- say, riding to TX for a MotoGP race -- I wear FirstGear HT Overpants. And carry their liner with me. If it's really cold, I have enough layers on my butt that I can't really feel, or need, the heat.

- Suspension?

I think you omitted mention and discussion of what seems to me to be the more sophisticated suspension of the 550: Inverted forks, and single shock. Many of us consider the stock components of the Big Burger, um, built to a price point. And while a few folks have gone aftermarket in this regard, it's a pretty expensive proposition. You read or seen anything about how well, or not, the 550's suspension works?

As it turns out, I went to a multi-line (Suzuki and Kymco, et al.!) dealership, https://www.griffinmotorsports.com/, on my way back from a lunch out today.

Griffin is a whopping three miles from my house, and I sometimes get odds and ends there, but it's tiny; much more of the place is devoted to outside storage of a goodly assortment of trailers for sale.. They carry Kymco, but only the smaller scoots, i.e., the Like models, are on display. I asked the owner about the 550, and he said, nope, never going to have one on display. But he told me that he'd be glad to order one for me (at list price -- he looked it up, never having ordered one), and it would be here in no time; he said they're warehoused in Carlisle, PA.

Yesterday, BTW, I rode the Exec to a Suzook dealership, Watercraft Sales & ATV Sales in Albany, NY | Seymour's Motorized Sports . That's about 15 miles away, and I set up an appointment in about three weeks for new tires and an annual NY inspection. The service department is booming there, which is good for them and us -- have to keep them in business -- but the floorspace is mostly taken up by Sea-Doos and suchlike, as I guess that's where the real money is (in both sales and financing).

BTW, I'm with you: I never give a rat'sass about trade-in value. Buy what you want, and deal with what comes later, um, later. That's like in the WAY old days, when my grandma's generation put clear vinyl wraps on the sofas; made the fabric last, but awfully dumb to sit on.
 

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Your points are not lost on me.
I feel the very same about the adjusting windscreen and also heated anything. I keep forgetting to adjust my shield or that I even can so it stays where ever I left it before. I do put it up in cooler weather and down in warm weather but I just don't need the complicated system to adjust it on the fly. I use Gerbing heated gloves when it gets cold and also add lots of layers so the need for heat thing is more than handled.

I also like the idea of easier maintenance items. I am mechanically inclined but I'll let the more complicated stuff for the dealer shop to do. The easier that maintenance is to do the more I will do on my own. That's a good thing for me. So that is definitely significant.

And the suspension thing is one comparison point I simply forgot to mention. Many, not all, reviews I watch or read about the Burgman 650 do make mention of the harsh suspension. ALL reviews I've watched or read about the Kymco AK 550 mention how great the suspension is. I had upside down front forks on my CTX1300 but that bike also did not have the best ride on those so I didn't get to experience the benefits. The technology behind the design of the Ak 550 mechanics is superior to the Burgman in many ways from what is said about it. Not saying the Burgman is bad. It is not. The Burgman is very good. But get the impression from what is published that the AK 550 is better.

Now, the question remains... Will Kymco continue to provide and support the AK 550 in the USA for more than a few years. I know they have kept that model around since 2017 in some places around the globe.
 

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I also like the idea of easier maintenance items. I am mechanically inclined but I'll let the more complicated stuff for the dealer shop to do. The easier that maintenance is to do the more I will do on my own. That's a good thing for me. So that is definitely significant.
...
One of the big selling points of the Victory bagger I had from 2012 - 2017, one of the many but significant reasons I bought it, was the ease of maintenance.

Get this:
  • Belt final drive. No gear oil, no chain oil, no lubrication of any sort, I completely ignored it for those six years (never changed sprockets or the belt, never adjusted anything).
  • No radiator. Nothing to flush and drain every few years.
  • Self-adjusting valves. No shims, and not even a screw-and-locknut setup (which I had on a Valkyrie). Nothing to do there.
  • Absolutely nothing to remove to get to the oil filter and drain plug (or dipstick/fill-hole). Zilch, nada, no tupperware or anything else in the way.
  • Absolutely nothing to remove to get to the spark plugs (well, you had to pop the plug wires off, to change them).
The only thing I didn't do -- well, there really wasn't much of anything TO DO -- myself was change the tires.

On the downside, that bike was heavy (although having a lower seat than the Burger meant I could flat-foot it better than the scooter). Oh, yeah, and it was fookin hot -- remember that "no radiator" statement (although it did have an oil cooler) -- in hot weather, almost unbearable in stop-n-go traffic in hot weather.

(And, okay, the air filter was no four-screws-and-you're-there operation; the Burger wins that contest.)

But, man, talk about easy maintenance. Doesn't get much easier than that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #259 ·
I was on Cycletrader this morning and saw these Hall's motorcycle dealerships in Alabama have the 2021 Kymco AK550 reduced to $6999.00. $2000.00 off MSRP. Not sure if they make up the difference in setup, freight, etc. charges but it is a very tempting entry price.

 

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Discussion Starter · #260 ·
Here is a comparison between the Yamaha 560 TMax TechMax, the Kymco AK550 and the Sym MaxSym 500 TL. Too bad they didn't add the Burgman 650. You can translate the article into English.

"The case of the Kymco AK 550, whose twin is wedged at 270 °, is even distinguished from the other two: stick a released exhaust to it and you would think you could hear a Ducati coming."

 
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