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Discussion Starter #1
I have recently traded in my 2003 Burgman 650 for a 2002 BMW R1150RT. I still am not sure why I did it, probably just jumped at the opportunity to trade a Suzuki for a BMW almost without paying any money or maybe a curiosity how I will feel going the same routes on BMW that I did on Burgman. Well, here are some thoughts/comparison.
1. BMW is a much smoother ride. I felt my lower back a lot after several hours of riding my Burgman, nothing like that on a BMW due to its bigger wheels and more advanced suspension.
2. Automatic transmision on Burgman is muuuch better than standard on a BMW.
3. BMW feels much heavier, almost twice heavier although in fact it's only less than a hundred pounds more than Burgman.
4. Stability at low speed is much better on Burgman than on BMW, although at high speed BMW feels more stable than Burgman.
5. Two-up is more comfortable (at least for a rider) on Burgman.
6. Electrical windshield on BMW is a big plus.
7. Storage on Burgman, especially three compartments in the dashboard is much better.
8. Power is adequate on both bikes, although BMW has twice bigger engine.
9. ABS on BMW gives you a lot of confidence and actually works.
10. Engine water cooling on Burgman is much better than just air cooling on BMW.
So, based on all the above, I figured that if Burgman had bigger wheels and smoother ride, I would never trade it for anything. I'm going ride my BMW (which is a very good bike) and wait for the next generation Burgman with bigger wheels, ABS and maybe bigger engine.
 

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Thanks for the feedback.
I would love to see the burger with larger wheels (by 2" at least), hopfully improving the ride. I would be willing to pay more, (call it the "Interstate Touring Package" or "ITP") Then they would have all their bases covered.
 

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Thanks for the appraisal, Maxim.

I test rode a used '02 R1150RT before finally deciding on the Big Burger. I've owned a few BMWs in the past and enjoyed the whole BMW ownership thing, but the RT I rode disappointed me in three inescapable ways, namely:

1. The (adjustable) windshield was USELESS, no matter how it was adjusted. Even wearing earplugs, it made the loudest wind noise and greatest turbulence I've ever experienced on any bike and there's no way I would contemplate a long ride under those conditions. To make matters worse, the price of an extended replacement screen blade is extortionate compared with the £75 I paid for my Givi screen. (NB. I am pretty tall, though.)

2. The BMW's transmission is agricultural in comparison with the silky smooth auto change offered by the Burger (and also my previous X9s and Silverwing, for that matter). I've become a big auto fan.

3. In Real World riding conditions, the Burger can deliver all-round performance virtually on a par with the RT, albeit minus the BMW 'cachet'.

On the plus side, the BMW's resale values tend to be stronger.

I really wanted another BMW but I'm so grateful to the Suzuki customer who rode up and allowed me to 'sample' his Burger before I bought the RT. It was a close thing.

That said, I hope you get maximum enjoyment from your RT, Maxim.

:)
 

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That BMW twin is a nice bike. Ride is the one important area where the Burgman 650 cannot compete with a motorcycle. Pirelli tires improve the ride, as do aftermarket shocks. I'd call the ride on mine "tolerable" after making those mods. But any touring or sport touring motorcycle rides better due to the larger wheels, and the BMW also benefits from an excellent suspension. Raw power is the other area where the Burgman lags behind. It is deceptively fast for what it is, it certainly has adequate power for any type of riding, but it can't compete with the good sport-touring bikes particularly at higher speeds.

My wife would argue the passenger comfort issue. She does not like the AN650. The fat rear bodywork and small passenger floorboards are very awkward with her short legs. That isn't easy to fix. A couple of members have made modifications, but I do not feel competent to attempt what they have done. We need a simple bolt-on solution, or better yet a redesign of those rear floorboards. She'd love the BMW. My Kawi Concours was her favorite for 2-up riding.

The Burgman cannot be beat for easy to use storage. The top loading trunk beats clamshell side bags. Easier to pack. Nothing falls out when you open it. The dash compartments are handy. Add a top box for additional room.

Although I am an old hand at shifting motorcycles, I find that the twist and go automatic adds a lot to my riding pleasure. It is just one less thing to deal with, and the freedom from shifting allows me to focus on other aspects of the ride.

Nit picking, for sure. But the heads on your Beemer are oil cooled as well as air cooled. Still not as good as water cooling though...

I also give the nod to Suzuki for reliability. I don't want to write an essay on that issue, but I've owned a BMW and I've had riding buddies that own them. For mechanical reliability, Suzuki easily beats BMW.

Overall I agree with your assessment. I don't think you made a bad swap, and I think you will enjoy the R1150RT. I think I'm going to keep my AN650 for another 2 years or so, and then we'll see. :wink:
 

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some of us would like to see larger wheels on the burgman 650, I am one....besides reliability issues, there are plenty of BMW dealerships for support..
I have looked at the BMW's over and over, they make a great bike, though expensive...good choice on used..........
The burgman lacks motorcycle ride, and its not a scooter.....
For me shifting is a drag...
It use to be fun.........
The most fun shifting was my alpha romeo spider , miata( fun), and my first Honda bike.......
The worst time shifting was my late model 86 vette...
Have a great ride on your new BMW............
let us know how it works for you..
 

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If I were to trade my 650 in for another bike, it would probably be for a Goldwing. Speaking of which, has anyone went from a Burgman to a Goldwing?
 

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I just bought a 2004 Skywave 650 LX (Executive), my other bike is a '96 R1100RT, which I'm getting ready to sell.

Like Paul says, the BMW gives a much less jarring ride over bumpy roads than the AN. And for me at 5'7'', the stock BMW's electric screen gave excellent wind protection, and with a bigger Aeroflow screen in winter I could ride year round in comfort. I also loved the BMW's onboard stereo setup (swapped stock radio for a Sony AM-FM-MD player).

But while the Beemer only excells at touring, the AN is a bike that I can tour on as well as easily ride through heavy city traffic thanks to its low center of gravity and narrow proportions (with the electric mirrors folded in). Its liquid-cooled motor is also one less worry on those occasions where I'm stuck in slow moving traffic. And while BMWs last forever, Japanese bikes are less prone to breakdown. I like the AN's gas n' go aspect. Finally, the huge underseat storage is more convenient than the Beemer's side panniers. Maybe if I lived in a more rural setting I'd like the RT better -- even fully loaded to the gills it handles beautifully -- and it can wheelie :wink: But being a city boy for now, the AN is a better choice if I'm going to have just one bike.

About weight, the Beemer is 280kg wet. The AN650A is 244 dry, so I don't think there's that big of a weight difference between the two, although the AN is definitely much easier to handle due to its low center of gravity.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I don't know what Suzuki is going to offer us in 2006, nobody knows anything about '06 Burgman yet. I also heard some rumors about Honda's next generation scooter that's supposed to be bigger than Burgman. Or the last thing is a BMW R850 scooter that was even discussed at this forum a couple of months ago. Anyway, with all due respect to motorcycles, as soon as a bigger scooter (wheels and engine) is on the market, I'm jumping back to scooters.
 

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I have owned a 2000 R1100RT for the past 2 years and have to say it is a great touring bike, handling and suspension very good, BUTT the standard seat leaves a lot to be desired as far as long ride comfort goes and the standard headlight is not the brightest. With the AN650 I miss the electric screen of the Beemer. Still I think the Burger is a great alternative, although it handles well the ride is a bit harsh on uneven roads. I have equal luggage carrying capacity with the top box fitted and the front compartments are ideal for those bits and pieces. Wonder how much luggage space would be lost if the Burger were to be fitted with bigger wheels. Garry
 

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chuck807 said:
If I were to trade my 650 in for another bike, it would probably be for a Goldwing. Speaking of which, has anyone went from a Burgman to a Goldwing?
I haven't yet but I am VERY seriously considering it. My main problem is the Burgman suspension. My secondary problem is windshield protection. (I have upgraded to a GIVI shield.)

John
 

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Subject line should be Apples to Oranges.

John, If going to a newer Gold Wing, I'd go for a late 04 or a 05 manufactured GL-1800. There has been too many problems with the 01s to early 04s. Not seeing as many problems mentioned with the late 04s and 05s.

Reports are that my Ex has gone from a Shadow Tourer to a 04 GL-1800. Of course when I had bought her a 96 GL-1500, she dropped it 3 times, and after, the Shadow once (fractured her leg on that one - trying to catch it).
 

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A lot of the comparisons are moot points when you have an executive model.
(Such as the electric windshield and the ABS brakes etc.)

I love my burg. sometimes the ride is a little harsh, depending on the road surface, but in every other way, it's perfect for me. :D
 

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chalk and cheese

I just had to chip in on this one.

I have a 2004 650N and a new BMW 1200RT. I actually think it is a bit pointless in comparing these machines. Indeed Apples and Oranges springs readily to mind.

I use the Burger for a fairly lenghty daily commute. It is fantastic in london traffic and is as happy nipping in and out of tight gaps as it is on the motorways. The BMW (although lighter than the 1100 and 1150) is no fun to manouvre at slow speed. Twist and go is soooo much nicer in traffic jams. I do wish that I had electric mirrors though.

One or two up the Burger is bloody comfortable and great for shopping. Can be a bit light on the front when it is wet. BMW also very comfy.

Service and parts costs on the BMW are stupidly overpriced but we are stuck with it.

I find that the Bergur up/down manual gear change is pointless. The power button can be used to surprise the hell out of almost any other biker but mine almost always is in normal mode. And oil change and service warning lights and silly stuff like that are not really needed. ABS is a winner though.

I love my Burger and often lay naked on it in the garage but, it is no 1200RT! This is an entirely different experience and excells in many different areas. In Kent's twisty country single carriageway lanes you really need a bike that will go around corners. The Burger does not. The BMW is a dream and happy both with the knee down and the luggage up.

No comparison, but you are really foolish to try.

here is my final scoring:

Burger 10/10
BMW RT 10/10

Steve
 

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Good that someone brought up this discussion because I just got back from a BMW rally on the 650 Burgman. Lots of R1100RT's and lots of people approached me with open minds. There was the odd snootty englishmen but overall I found people to be quite receptive.

I camped next to a R1100RT (97 model) and when I look over this thing it looks like a big scooter anyway. I would hate to drop the thing. Lots of expensive German plastic and it costs about twice as much. Frankly, I don't see the value in any of the larger displacement M/C's ... over 800 cc's. I scooted down to the rally at about 75-85 mph with great comfort and even did some dicing in traffic with a guy on a R1100RT. Later on we eventually met at the rally and he was puzzled. He couldn't exactly make out what vehicle was infront of him and when he did he commented on how well and briskly the 650 passed lines of traffic. That day was the first of many that the Burgman hit the "ton"!!
 

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lilleyen said:
A lot of the comparisons are moot points when you have an executive model.
(Such as the electric windshield and the ABS brakes etc.)
Do you find the 3.5" travel of the Executive's windscreen makes much of a difference in comfort? Given the strong back pressure created at the lowest height (which is the same as the non-Exec model), I would expect a lot more pressure with the screen raised higher given the absence of a NACA-style vent.
 

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Re: chalk and cheese

stevec said:
In Kent's twisty country single carriageway lanes you really need a bike that will go around corners. The Burger does not.
Steve
If only you could see your fellow countryman Lycheed ride his Burgman in the twisties -- then you might have to re-evaluate how much responsibility for the lack of cornering ability lies with the Burger and how much with the nut that holds that handlebars :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I originated this discussion a couple of months ago and now I have to confess that I'm selling my BMW R1150RT to get back to Burgman. Not that BMW is a bad bike, no, it's an excellent machine. Just for what I am looking to get from motorcycling Burgman fits better. I will try to sell my BMW or I might trade it in for '05 Burgman 650 on some condititions.
 
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