They are kind of pricey, but there are many choices in the BMW world that are kinda sporty, but passenger friendly. R1200ST, R1200RT, the new K1200GT (152hp) I think all can be had with a top box with a backrest to make them even more comfortable. Also Yamaha FJR1300, Honda ST1300, and of course the ultimate comfort the 1800 Goldwing. All would be much more performance oriented than a cruiser, especially considering where you are coming from. First Post?
How about the new FZ1? That passenger seat looks comfy and is along the same lines as your other bikes. The FJR1300 is also a good choice and that thing hauls. It is a little heavy but I was shocked at how well it handles for its size and that engine is phenomenal. When I am 20 years older I will buy something like that.
My friend just got the BMW GS1200 and his wife loves riding on the back of that, as did mine. Feels like your riding a tractor compared to the FJR though. I have not ridden the R1200RT but everyone seems to love it and it reportedly handles like a dream. Then there is the gold wing, which is huge but also handles very well and is the king of comfort for passengers, if you can stand to be seen on one. The engine is super cool in the wing too, but I would almost rather drive a cage if I have to ride something that big.
How about taking her with you and have her pick out what she thinks feels the best from a pillion standpoint? My wife likes to have input into what I get. Interestingly she really prefers the feel of the inline four to the twin after some time on the pillion, and I prefer the feel of the twin on long trips.
I don't own one, but my wife and I took a Triumph Bonneville America for a spin around the block. She thought it was VERY comfortable. Lots of room and fairly zippy for a cruiser. She also finds my V-Strom 650 really comfy as well.
Like one of the other posters said, take her with and test sit lots of bikes. Many of the current cruisers and sport tourers have cramped pillion accomadations. I went thru this a few years ago and ended up with a v-strom 1000, which also has longer travel plusher suspension travel that takes a lot of the sting out of the ride for the pillion. That said if and when I can afford to have a second bike for two up It'll be a gl1800, this coming after a 50 mile test ride.If your like me and have publicly stated that you would never own a goldwing, do yourself a favor and never ride one.
If you're looking for a cruiser that is a little bit different, I recommend you check out the Triumph line. From the America, to the Speedmaster and the ultimate Rocket III, I think you'll like what you see! The Rocket III is great for passenger comfort.
I like your suggestion of the new Moto Guzzi Griso 1100 and Breva 1100, especially for their uniqueness. He better hurry though 'cause they seem to be rolling off the showroom floors and onto the streets in short order.
you might look to triumph for a sprint st, same great engine as your s3 but with a real seat and hard bags. the underseat exhaust could be good or bad for your pillon depending on how warm it is where you live.
The Guzzi is a great bike and avoids the Harley clone syndrome. They certainly handle better than the vast majority of machines in their semi-cruiser class. My wife loved the back seat on my VFR, but she also likes the seat on my Buell XB12Ss, so she may be the highly tolerant type. You may want to take a look at the Ducati ST3. It's a very polished sport tourer and the handling . . . well, it's a Duck.
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