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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I am in the market for a new (2014 model) Suzuki 400 Burgmann OR a GW250. Intended use is 100% commuting. My nearest Suzuki dealer is 80 miles from home, so that when buying I will have to use (as brand new) either of those bikes on the highway.

The burgmann surpasses the GW250 (mostly called Inazuma in other countries) in MPG, distance autonomy and of course, being automatic. but dependability is an important factor for me.

When browsing through this forum I noticed some recurring issues with the scooter that doesn't seem to (yet) appear on the GW250 on its own specialized forums, mainly the CVT and the 4500rpm event.

Some questions:

- Would you recommend a brand new 400 burgmann to a complete newbie? (I have not ridden neither a bike or a scooter in my life)
- Are the aforementioned issues with the 400 still present in the newest models?
- Is the burgy a maintenance nightmare?
 

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- the burg 400 is the largest bike I'd recommend for a first bike. Personally I like to see six months on something smaller. But I also recommend getting the biggest bike you think you can handle. Your physical size is a part of this. Man-handling a 475 lbs bike is easier for a six foot, 200 lbs person, than a five foot 125 person. The latter can do it, just takes a little getting used to.

And a New bike? Absolutely NOT. You will drop the bike in the first six months. Almost guaranteed. New bikes are for experienced riders. Plus you get much better deals used.

- the cvt issue is not limited to the burg 400. Many, many scoots are. It's called "Glazing". It happens when the clutch pads get excessive heat and the material "glazes". Same thing happens to overused brake pads in cars and trucks. It's not a big deal. The glaze can be sanded off and the excess material blown out. My local shop charges $40.

The 4500 rpm thing just minimizes the heat on the clutch pads and extends the time between deglazings. The interval is largely determined by your riding style and load. A heavy person with lots of city starts and stops, could be as often as every 5k miles. A light person on freeways all the time could go 20-25k before needing it done.

- the 400 is no more a maintenance nightmare than any other bike, and less so in many cases. Small scoots chew through their small tires and cvt belts every few K. The 400 gets a very respectable 10k miles and 20k out of them them, respectively.

The 400 was designed specifcally as a commuter bike. If that is your goal, you can't bet it in that role.
 

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I purchased a used '08 400 this spring after learning how to ride on a used Honda Reflex. The Reflex was a great bike to start out on as it was a little smaller (250 cc) and lighter. The 400 is great and I am glad I upgraded. Has noticeably more power when needed and a little heavier which makes it more stable when the winds kick up. Another reason I decided to get a Burgman was because of this site and the wealth of information people such as Liamjs shares. Their knowledge is so helpful and I have learned so much.
 

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I was also looking at the GW250 before a friend sold me his Burgman 400. I started out on a 50cc scoot which is very small and somewhat limiting. However it did allow me to learn without getting into trouble. But I don't think the Burg 400 is too big to start off on, although I do agree with Liam that anything bigger might be a problem.

All bikes will have some issues and I can tell you that the GW250 has had it's problems. It was available in China for 2 years before they started exporting it and in the first two production runs there were multiple recalls. I have also read of a few issues that European and American GW250 owners are having, although nothing specific. The Burg will be harder to work on and will cost a little more than the GW250.
 

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I tell you, the Burgman 400 is the best scooter in the world, currently. It's storage is unmatched by any other scooter, it's ease and user friendliness make it a joy worth riding, and although the maintenance can be long (ESPECIALLY the VALVE ADJUSTMENTS), it is so worth getting.

Personally, though, I do not like the newer 07+ models as the storage is slightly less in the little left and right side pop-up dash storage spaces. The 2003-2006 models had enough room where you could put your glasses/sunglasses in them, whereas the newer models you can't. Also, the older models (2003-2006) have passenger backrests included with them, whereas the newer models you have to purchase them separately and then install them.

Buying a Burgman 400? Go for it!
 

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neyuru, welcome to the site. The Burgman 400 is one of the easiest bikes to service in the world. It's a home diy'ers dream if you can spanner a little. In addition, with few exceptions, it's one of the best sorted bikes on the market and has been so for years and years. They will cover huge mileages without problems. Yes some moan about the clutch but the newer ones from late 2009 with the 5 shoe clutch are fine if maintained correctly. I agree with Liam, the 400 is just about ok for a first timer on the road. Over here in the UK it's compulsory to take bike training before you take any bike on the road and we are limited in engine size to 125cc for a time period, but I understand you don't have to take training in most parts of the States and there are no engine limits, so be very careful when you start out. It's more powerful than you think, and many have gotten into trouble with no training. The GW250 will likely be underpowered for highway work I would guess as it will run flat out all the time. The Burgman will have some reserve power which makes it better for that type of riding. But you need to get some training and ride some bikes before making the decision. That's my advice. Bikes bite hard if you don't use them right! Let us all know how you are getting on with your choice. Good luck and ask as many questions as you like. There are some good folk on here who know lots and who helped me to get to know my Burgman 400 quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for all the rapid replies, having such a large community is an important factor when dealing with the unknown. This forum will definitely make an important role when making the final decision.

Could someone post a link to a video/documentation/pictures to the "glazing" problem Liamjs refered to? because the glazing problem is so common, shouldn't the sanding process be a part of the maintance porgram? if not, what am I mising?

Any links to usefull documentation maintenance-quircks and the like will be greatly appreciatted.
 

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If your intended use is 100% commuting, then the wind & rain protection of a scooter is the way to go. In addition, on a scooter, you can wear a suit & not crease/mark up your dress shoes vs a manual trans bike. The trunk space beneath the seat will allow you to store a rain suit, extra gloves, cold weather gear, and tools + tire plugs + air compressor at all times. It's nice to always have these necessities on board.
 

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People think the 400 is a toy. As in, "Hey Mike, can I take it for a spin?" Remember, it weighs almost 500 lb. gassed up. That's more than many sport bikes.

As for maintenance: Learn to do it yourself. Save time and money. At your convenience. Make a variator holding tool. Get a 1/2 inch torque wrench (Watch for Harbor Freight special offers). Not hard to do. You will have to clean out the variator every few thousand miles (from belt dust, which makes the rollers rattle). A piece of cake once you learn how. I even install my own tires, bleed my brakes, etc. etc. Mostly from reading this forum. There are about a dozen torque values that you need.

Change the oil sooner than proscribed. It holds only 2 qts. after all. Keep the air filter clean (you can wash it many many times before replacement is due).

As for rain riding, yes it offers better-than-average protection. BUT the dashboard directs water down your legs and into your shoes. Some kind of catch gutter would help :) But you sure don't get road splash!

It seems like the 400 would be less-than-adequate but it certainly holds its own on the highway. And will out-accelerate most cars. AND gives me 62 MPG (winter) to 83 MPG (cruising, in the summer).
 

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Oh, and make your first mod the installation of Dr Pulley 19g or 20g sliders. Runs better off the line, and slows down the engine on the highway. And puts a bigger grin on your face :p
 

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regular maintenence required. parts will wear out. if you can work on it yourself you will save a lot of money on labor. the dealership here wants 175.00 for labor plus parts to change the oil.
i havent found it difficult to work on and this site has been a big help on many occassions.
the 400 is a good bike for a beginner. thats what i started riding in dec. of 08' and still riding it today.
 

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I've ridden a GW250 at a local dealer bike night and it doesn't compare to the Burgman 400 I have at all, with the exception of the annoying problem of having to shift constantly and I do mean constantly. In 6th gear there is no acceleration without downshifting a gear even at highway speeds. I was very dissappointed in the bike, it didn't come close to a Ninja 250 or the cbr250r (I've ridden both). Also the GW250 was struggling to hold 68 true mph on the state highway they let me ride it on so there is no way I'd ride on Atlanta's freeways on it. All the way up to 80 (87 on my speedo) the Burgman has good power and hill climbing power. As sad as this is to say my 99 Helix 250 can maintain 72 to 74 on the freeway with hills so I'd feel safer on it than a new GW250. Maybe the one I rode needed broken in more or something but the cbr250r is a much nicer bike for the same money.

The Helix 250 makes a great learning scooter to, cheap cheap cheap to maintain and never dies, can max out at 78mph, but sustain 70 to 74mph. Can find them very cheap used to.
 

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burghman where do you live? $175 for labor plus parts for an oil change is robbery. That's probably close to $350 an hour for labor. And I thought Florida was bad.
 

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Florida IS bad, but that doesn't mean there aren't places which are worse... And judging from the 30102 in his forum name, I'd say he lives in Acworth, GA - just up I-75 from Atlanta and Marietta.
 

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ChipDoc, I see you made the same mistake I did before I edited my post . burghman and burgman30102 are different people I believe. ;)
 

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Sigh... another case of OldTimers' Disease!
 

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Hey after all it was close to midnight. :p
 

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i live just outside of shreveport, la.
when i found out the labor charges for working on my bike, thats when i began working on my bike myself. the minimum charge for doing anything is 175.00.
i learn as i go. these guys on this site have been a big help. this site is very imfomative/helpful. thanks to all the guys who have come before me.
steve
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Hey guys, I wanted to let you know that this site sold me to a burgman ;). I live in Mexico and right now there is a pretty sweet deal at the dealerships: financing for 48 months and 0 interest for a 2013 model (other option is a 750 USD -aproximate- discount and a full year of limited insurance) personally, I find the financing option the best.

What would you guys recommend for a 2013 year model? do I change the gas/oil before using it? I don't think it is necesary as there must be a policy to start an engine every now and then for an unused bike, but this is just an assumption. Remember, I have a 70 mile long highway ride between my home and the dealership.
 
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