New Member Initiation - BMW K1600 Forum : BMW K1600 GT and GTL Forums
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post #1 of 15 Old 01-05-2017, 02:07 PM Thread Starter
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Salut! James here, 51, midwesterner, husband, father, grew up on Honda CB125S, CR125 Elsinore, and in 1983, at 17, bought a CB1100F...and loved it. Actually bought a second one when I was about 25. They don't currently run. I went a decade or more without riding. I bought a 4-wheeler for fun and hunting...and it re-ignited or re-awakened my passion for riding. But nothing gave me the warm and fuzzies like I experienced when I first saw a flyer or magazine with my ol' CB1100F featured. Until.....I fell in love with the K16GT online soon after its release. I read this forum, a lot. I eventually test rode one at Engle Motors in KC...good guys..., and actually like the more upright sitting position of the GTL. But I just couldn't justify the expense at that time. I ended up on a '14 FJR for about half the cost. It is a very sweet ride. Put on a top box for my wife, and she really likes riding with me. I brought the bars back closer to me so my carpal tunnel doesn't flare much. It is a very nice ride. But, I can't get past how much I long for those 6 cylinders. I have the saving grace that none of the Exclusive colors has tickled my fancy. My FJR is Candy Red and I love it. And now I see the Mars Red....and I may have to make a trip back down to Engle to see it in person. What I think is probably best though, is the GTL-E.

Does anyone know in what color the '17 GTL-E will be offered??

Hoping to be more than a forum member of the club in the not so distant future,
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post #2 of 15 Old 01-05-2017, 08:37 PM
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Welcome to the group. Ride both the GT and the GTL . Basically same bike, but different bars, pegs, seats. See which fits you better.
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post #3 of 15 Old 01-05-2017, 09:18 PM
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Welcome to the forum! I don't know the color of the 17 GTLE, I have even heard rumors that there will not be an E. Regardless, I hope you get the opportunity to ride one so you can make the best decision for you and your wife.
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post #4 of 15 Old 01-06-2017, 08:38 AM Thread Starter
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I always considered myself on the sport side of sport tourer. Having cut my teeth on what would be considered a naked bike, and with the wind protection on bikes today, the lack of air pressure on my chest pushing me up and back means I don't particularly enjoy the forward lean body position like I used to. Maybe a loss of core strength plays a roll. So I gravitate toward the GTL for its more upright seating position. And I surrender nothing, since the sport is built in to the engine and feel the suspension gives it. The GT just LOOKS like the bike I want to ride...especially in that Mars Red. I would love to hear feedback from riders who have gone from FJR to GT/GTL.
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post #5 of 15 Old 01-06-2017, 09:11 AM
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Originally Posted by J-Luv View Post
The GT just LOOKS like the bike I want to ride...especially in that Mars Red. I would love to hear feedback from riders who have gone from FJR to GT/GTL.
I came from a CBR, VFR, Multistrada, Tiger, ST1300, K1200GT type of lineage to get to my first K1600 which was a GTL. On all bikes prior to the GTL I never ran out of performance when riding, I ran out of comfort so when the 1600's came out I went for the more relaxed riding position of the GTL.

There is no doubt the GTL is very comfortable but still not perfect for me. After buying the GTL I spent some time on the R1200RT which had ergonomics between the GTL I was currently riding ST1300 and K1200GT I rode prior to the GTL and found the seating position I was looking for. It was more relaxed than my previous sport touring bikes (like the FJR) but not so reclined as the GTL. When I could contrast the GTL and RT I found the GTL had a similar effect on me that a cruiser type of bike does which is put too much load on my back side and has my feet forward enough it is not as easy to take some load off my core by shifting some weight to the pegs.. When I first had the GTL I was okay with that because it was better than the load other sport touring bikes put on my wrist with bars too far forward or my knees with the pegs being too far back. The RT did not put too much pressure anywhere and the riding position was ideal for me. I just was left cold by the motor of the RT.

When I compared the ergonomics of the 1600GT to the RT I found they were very similar and more relaxed than my ST1300 was or the FJR. I grabbed the GT and found the bike for me. It ended up being more comfortable than the GTL and I enjoyed the feel of the bike in that slightly different riding position when compared to the GTL. The riding position had me more involved in the riding without giving up comfort. It was the first time getting less relaxed ergonomics was more comfortable for me other than cruiser bikes that are just not comfortable for me because of the weight they put on my tail.

I went into the K1600 family thinking more relaxed ergonomics were what I was after because all other sport touring bikes I had ridden put a little or much more load on my wrist than I liked and the pegs were too far back and I did not want to make that mistake again. What I found was the GTL was too relaxed and put too much load on the back side. Give the GT a good look and use this tool to get an idea of riding position differences between bikes: Motorcycle Ergonomics.

The FJR is an outstanding bike. From a pure dollar standpoint I'm not sure one could justify what the K1600 offers that an FJR does not. The FJR is that good. However, if you can and choose to afford the K1600 you may find what your heart longs for. I have really come to appreciate the sound and feel of the motor, the stability of the bike, the wonderful integration & adjustability of the many electronics and the whole package of the bike. I had many bikes before the K1600's and a few since including the current RT and the big K is the only bike I'd truly miss if I did not own it.

Shop well. Many good used bikes out there are very fair prices. Still good inventory of 2016's as well. Keeping the FJR is not a bad thing either. Lots of good choices.
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post #6 of 15 Old 01-06-2017, 10:41 AM Thread Starter
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Ralphie...awesome perspective, valuable insight, and clearly communicated. Thanks for taking the time. I do appreciate it! I enjoy the FJR, very much. I completed an Iron Butt on it. But, the wrist, plus the knee angle are issues on long rides. Knees of my wife an issue too; not so much shorter morning or evening rides, but all day rides to a destination. Your feedback has renewed my hope that the GT deserves a second, longer look. I need to take one for an extended test ride (he says when the ground and streets are snow covered...doh!). I'm going to check out the ergonomics link right now!!
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post #7 of 15 Old 01-06-2017, 11:28 AM
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I have had a GTL for three years and tried an FJR last year, (Traded it for my V-Rod). As far as comfort, power, technology and all around smooth ride GTL is far better. A 400 mile day is an easy ride on the GTL, FJR is a short ride at best. Age and physical condition makes a difference of course. I'm pushing 70 yrs. but still ride hard and fast, (did 140 mph last weekend). For comfort GTL is it, but it is a matter of taste, try renting one for a full day then decide. My wife rides my old GTL and liked the FJR because of the weight but she too prefers the GTL.
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post #8 of 15 Old 01-06-2017, 10:33 PM
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Not trying to hijack this thread but, as far as the "forward lean" (asking those of you who know) is the GT comparable to the fjr and the GTL comparable to the Triumph trophy se?

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post #9 of 15 Old 01-06-2017, 11:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Agrsiv View Post
Not trying to hijack this thread but, as far as the "forward lean" (asking those of you who know) is the GT comparable to the fjr and the GTL comparable to the Triumph trophy se?

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I'm not leaning forward on my GT. It would be nice if they were a bit forward.

2012 K1600GT (smashed)
2015 K1600GT
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post #10 of 15 Old 01-07-2017, 02:26 AM
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I would say that on the GT you sit straight, and on the GTL you lean slightly backwards.
For my back I prefer to sit slightly forward.
Try them before!
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