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A dual-purpose bike is going to be my next ride, and I've been kind of waiting for KTM to release their twin. Yeah, it's a little strange looking, but it may be just what I need. I'll do some comparison shopping between it and the new Aprilia CapoNord and BMW R1150GS before I decide, though. Hmm. A Buell giant-trailie... Why not?
 

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Uh, just as an aside, *********** is no longer the name of that suspension firm, they are now only known by the initials WP. I can't imagine the reason for the change, and sometimes mind extends the name while I am reading anyway.

O well.
 

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Um...am I missing something here? Who would want to go 140 off-road? I'm no "highway only" guy, but it seems off-road demands much slower speeds because of the increased debris and skittish animals.

Yes I know they do it in the Paris-Dakar rally, but it seems that even finishing that in one piece is a testament to being an expert.
 

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the bike will be used in rallyes. In rallyes they will go 140. Offroad. In sand. That is why it will go 140. The honda xr650 is a dedicated offroad bike and does over 100....
 

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While beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I kinda like it. It's interesting, and fresh. Untill I see one close up, I can't tell for sure. Regardless of looks, it promises to handily outperform the BMW's that are like it. I rode a friend's GS-1000 on some back roads, and didn't like it. I can't even imagine riding that thing around in the dirt. On the other hand, I looked at this new KTM and immediately thought about a long trip out west, using the Interstates only to get to the remote, wilderness areas. Maybe I'll get one to keep my new GSXR-1000 company....
 

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I think you're missing the point. If it'll go 140mph at redline, it'll cruise at 70mph easily on the highway to get to the dirt areas that you wouldn't think of taking your GSXRZXCBRYZF on. This is a bike you could ride around the world, through almost any conditions. No it's not a dirtbike I'd be doing triple-jumps on, but it should do pretty well, and be excellent on the street. Besides, I'll bet it does good wheelies and stoppies!
 

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japanese imports

honda makes a couple large displacement twin "euro" dual sports. (the transalp [650] and the varadero [1000]) but they think we americans don't want them, and don't bring them over the pond for fear of cutting into their cruiser (shadow, magna, ace, valkyrie) market. Suzuki also makes a dual sport styled much the same.. the "freewind".. of course, the same applies.

They think all americans are harley riders (or wanna bes) and leave the whole on-off road segment to buy Beemers or dirt styled (read ugly) trailies.. I would love a honda (for the reliability) but will probably wind up with a triumph tiger.. HEY MO.. HAVE ONE TO TEST YET? (im drooling)
 

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LC8 vs. GS-1150

As the owner of a year 2000 BMW GS 1150, I'll admit that the new KTM LC-8 had me kicking myself for buying too early. At first. But now I wonder. One of the attractions of such scoots is the idea that you can go in the dirt, if you have to. The KTM, as the article pointed out, looks like a full on dirt bike, or at least a dual sport heavily tilted to dirt use (like the LC 4). Other manufacturers have tried to do this and failed, because they don't realize what BMW does: Most of these bikes are used primarily on the street, and if the LC 8 isn't street friendly enough, it will be a failure. It will be interesting to see what BMW's response will be.
 

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Re: japanese imports

Problem is, Honda and the rest of the Big Four *have* imported such bikes before (along with other styles that aren't sold here now) based on customer "requests" and gotten burned, badly. Anyone else remember the NX250 TransAlp? The GB500TT? The MB5? And those are just a few. They were imported to meet "demand" and then spent years on showroom floors waiting for those people who demanded it to come buy one. Often, they never did.

The reason we don't get such bikes is because when we had the opportunity before, all we bought was sportbikes and cruisers. Period.

Reap what you sow, I suppose.
 

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Problem is, Honda and the rest of the Big Four *have* imported such bikes before (along with other styles that aren't sold here now) based on customer "requests" and gotten burned, badly. Anyone else remember the NX250 TransAlp? The GB500TT? The MB5? And those are just a few. They were imported to meet "demand" and then spent years on showroom floors waiting for those people who demanded it to come buy one. Often, they never did.



The reason we don't get such bikes is because when we had the opportunity before, all we bought was sportbikes and cruisers. Period.



Reap what you sow, I suppose.
 

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So what do you mean Marcos with the phrase " finish its tour of duty" ?

I hope your Beemer still has many miles to go.

Regards from a current owner of a CBR600F4 moving towards a BMW 1100GS. Henry from Lima, Peru
 

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the capo loks as good as the cagiva nav.but you won't catch me riding a $12,ooo. trailie on anything more than a graval road,niceadventure touring bike tho.it won't have the offroad cap. of the ktm
 

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starvingstudent,apparrently you haven't heard of adventure touring (road touring,dirt roads,maybesome 4by4 trails to) i've toured the rockies riding a 400#transalp=camping gear.it's the only way to see the west!!!!!
 

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An interesting bike - especially because it is one of the few twin cylinder bikes offered by a major manufacturer where the engine is not based on some street bike engine.



Highland V-Twin? How many of them have you seen? How many have been run in major rallies like the PD? More importantly, how many dealers have you seen?



My interest in a twin cylinder dirt bike is for the sport that is called Adventure Touring - which often entails a significant portion of off-road riding mixed with long distances. As such most Adventure Tourers usually ride some type of Dual Purpose machine. I have three DP bikes; a Honda TLR (a street legal Trials bike), a Suzuki DR350, and a BMW R100GS.



IMO, the Airhead GS is the only one of those three that I would take on a long ride (although I have ridden the DR on 1.5k+ mile rides - it just wears you out on the long rides). The problem with the GS is that it is basically a street bike modified slightly for some off-pavement/off-road use - and you never forget that it is a 450-500 pound bike (the Oilhead GS is yet another 50-100 pounds heavier depending on how it is outfitted).



Would I purchase the KTM LC8 to replace the DR350 or another capable dirt bike? Highly unlikely; I am not a PD racer and have little use for going much over 70 MPH off-road, and the weight penalty of the larger engine will make the bike less capable off-road.



I want that displacement/HP for comfortable cruising on the road at 85-100 MPH on the road when riding on longer tours, and I want the off-road suspension for those dirt roads and trails that call to me wherever I go. In short I want a do-it-all bike; one that I can comfortably tour on, and ride on most off-road trails I come across (always remembering the weight compared to a smaller bike). As such I want power, carrying capacity (for fuel and camping gear) and comfort (500 miles a day on a dirt bike seat wears out this old man who is approaching the half-century mark).



The KTM LC8 interests me because it has what my GS does not; a sophisticated dirt capable suspension, suspension travel, ground clearance and about 40 more HP if KTMs claims are to be believed. All of that I *could* have if I were to send my GS off to HPN along with a check for about $40K US - which is probably somewhere between 3-4 times what I would pay for the KTM (how about a price projection somebody in the know?).



Other mainstream large displacement DP bikes (over 750cc)? Tiger, Cagiva, Ducati, Honda, etc.? None (that I know of) compare suspension wise to the KTM, and only a few would come close to the weight/displacement/HP ratio. And most (if not all) are still based on street bikes for the most part.



Still, I am tempted to stay with my Airhead GS.



Why? For one thing the COG is very low compared to just about any other bike (including the Oilhead GS (1100/1150)). For another, if I did a dry sump conversion (spendy, but possible), I could probably gain another 5 inches of ground clearance for a total of 12 inches. Then a good suspension and some engine mods would result in decent (but very expensive) Adventure Touring bike. Finally, an Airhead GS has one of the simplest and most accesible drivetrains to work on - especially if you are an ex-VW/Porsche mech.



One bad thing about the KTM LC8 is that its COG has to relatively high - that second cylinder isn't filled with helium after all. Off-road weight is the great Satan, and the higher up the weight is, the worse it is.



Another is the complexity of the engine - a DOHC V-Twin? Oh joy! That should be easy to work on - NOT!



Until I can look at an LC8 up close (and preferably ride one), I will reserve judgement on the suitablity of the bike for what most people are going to use it for (Adventure Touring) - especially since there was no mention of a kick start (ever try to bump start a stalled bike in the bottom of an arroyo? Take heed, KTM - no kick start capability, no bucks from me).



For now (until my stock options are worth something or possibly when the LC8 hits the market) - I will stick with my stock Airhead GS.



FWIW,

LCB
 
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