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Do you really want a bastard child for a bike? You'll have trouble getting parts, service, accessories, etc. if you go with a bike imported from overseas. I'd recommend sticking with official imports.
 

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Check Canada first. If you find the bike there and go through customs yourself you're bound to save money.

 

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My suggestion... save your money and buy a DL650 V-Strom. It might not have a Honda badge on the tank but it is a distinctly better motorcycle especially for sealed back road adventure riding and they are as cheap as chips to buy.
 

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BE CAREFUL! Grey market vehicles can be a real beatch to insure and almost impossible to find (resonably priced) parts for unless most of the bike was sold in the US market. There are also some strange rules with the grey market. Make sure that it is not a one and only type of thing (in case you want a Deauville, Fireblade, Pan European {or whatever the honda st is called over there} or something else cool and not sold here). Don't forget is still has to be "federalized" and that can be a real PITA! And if you live in a state that actually cares about that sort of thing (like Cali), you might own something you aren't allowed to ride! Personally, I wouldn't do it. Back when there were no real dual sports (except the Beemers), I could see it, but now, there are several choices...why bother? I know, I am trying to make a bike acquisition a logical thing, I know better...
 

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Don't do it! Expecially if you live in California. Cal makes it essentially impossible, and the Feds are getting to be like Cal. If it is older than early 1970's you might have a chance of passing all the rules. Otherwise you will never get it licensed or insured.
 

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I had trouble just shipping a bicycle frame to Canada. I would not do it - unless you have money and time to waste. I am a Honda person - love them. But I am very happy with my Suzuki DL-1000 V-strom. If you have time, I suggest writing to Honda to get them to start importing them. If enough people express interest, I am sure they will. The cruiser bike craze can't last forever, can it? (I have nothing against cruisers - just like more choices.)
 

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I own a Transalp, and it's a good, fun, capable bike...but it's not *so great* that you want to go through all of the hassle and pain of importing. Buy the Suzuki...or if you're really horny for an Transalp, buy a used one.
 

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Before going through the hassle, have you ever ridden a Transalp?



If not, you might balk.



Case in point:



I've always admired the Suzuki Vstroms, and through a bit of fortuitous overisght on the part of my dealer's tire jockey, I got a chance to ride the 1000 for a day while my bike's rear Pilot Sport was oriented the proper way. Second time's the charm....



I took the VStrom through my favorite sample of backroads, and was smitten with the riding position, throttle response (particularly on the low end) and marvelled at how seemingly perfect a bike it was.



Then I got out on the freeway.



The buffeting from the windscreen was simply intolerable. Had I bought this bike I would immediately seek out an improved windscreen, or maybe remove it altogether - and maybe I'd never be satisfied.



I'm not trying to discredit the VStrom, or bikes like it such as the Transalp. But I'd sure hate to go through the hassle and expense of importing a bike to find out it wasn't for me. Try before you buy!



 

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Too much trouble and cost to import non approved bikes. No resale.

Tried a couple of shields on DL 650.

Little to no improvement.

Tiger same way. Ended up with a self created sport screen.

Much better!
 
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