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Author Topic: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)  (Read 7679 times)

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Offline Archangel

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A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED

An honest KTM 950 Adv rider's opinion of the R1200RT

Due to a number of changing circumstance, I have recently found myself without transport for a few days. Luckily my Dad is a lover of motorcycles and therefore, has no shortage of transportation on his side. I made a quick call to find out if I can use his R1100GS that was recently rebuilt, but it turned out that this bike has been allocated to another family member for the duration of the holidays. He was quick to offer one of his new rides, a R1200RT that he is using to commute daily from Cape Town to Bellville. He absolutely loves this bike and it's getting more road time than any other bike in his stable.



I have now been riding this bike from our place in Kloof Street, through town to our offices near Mouille Point and I've also taken her round Rooiels, Betties to Hermanus and back over Sir Lowry's pass.

Here is what I have found...

[I'll be writing this bit by bit, so please be patient, I'm on holiday...]
« Last Edit: December 21, 2015, 11:28:40 am by Archangel »
 

Offline Archangel

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2015, 11:36:05 am »
Before I give my opinions and experiences, I have to add some light as to my experience and expectations.

1. I've never owned a road bike before and have very little experience of how to get the best out of these machines.
2. Contrary to popular belief, I'm not against BMWs in general. I had a 650 and was in fact looking for an F800GS, but they were too expensive, so I bought my KTM 950.
3. I'm considering selling my 950, because I'm looking for a smaller, lighter bike.

All in all, I was expecting this fat lady to be heavy and bulky, hard to handle and not very useful in traffic.

But first... last x-mas shopping. More later.   ;)

Offline Heimer

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2015, 12:10:08 pm »
Ons weet wat jy gaan se.. Dis 'n awesome bike  :biggrin:

Maar wil dit graag in jou eie woorde hoor.  :thumleft:

Matriek getuigskrif 1979: ........... is 'n vriendelike seun met volop selfvertroue. Hy tree soms vreemd op. Die skool se beste wense vergesel hom.
 

Offline redtiger

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #3 on: December 21, 2015, 01:17:47 pm »
 :biggrin: I own one as well so interested to hear your comments?
 

Offline zebra - Flying Brick

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #4 on: December 21, 2015, 01:39:17 pm »
 :sip: BMW...
 :sip: KTM....
 ;)
Subscribe!
 

Offline Ride Alot

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #5 on: December 21, 2015, 02:39:31 pm »
Why is so difficult for a KTM rider to acknowledge that the BMW is a great ride - he started out and then he go and do shopping? :peepwall: :pot: :pot:

Just pulling your leg I saw you riding the 650 ....

Looking forward to your comments :thumleft:
 

Offline m0lt3n

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #6 on: December 21, 2015, 02:53:29 pm »
subscribed.
I would actually like a review of these vs 1200GS. I have some friends that does not do gravel on their GS's so I am always thinking or wondering why they wont just get an RT
Dooie visse gaan saam met die stroom...
 

Offline MiniDan

Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #7 on: December 21, 2015, 04:08:25 pm »
So what you going to compare it with? a ADV bike? Well that's pointless...
 

Offline zebra - Flying Brick

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2015, 10:55:21 am »
So what you going to compare it with? a ADV bike? Well that's pointless...
lets see what he has to say, BEFORE we condemn it as pointless...  :thumleft:
Cheers
Chris
 

Offline MiniDan

Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2015, 11:06:52 am »
So what you going to compare it with? a ADV bike? Well that's pointless...
lets see what he has to say, BEFORE we condemn it as pointless...  :thumleft:
Cheers
Chris

Reading my post again, it does come across as quite harsh. Not intended to insult, just poor choice in wording.

What I wanted to say is that if he does compare it with a ADV bike, it would not really be very useful. As the BMW R1200RT has no off road capability, and comparing it to say a GS 1200 or KTM 950 just goes to show that, that particular rider was actually just a poser and never wanted to ride off road...
 

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #10 on: December 22, 2015, 11:18:21 am »
So what you going to compare it with? a ADV bike? Well that's pointless...
lets see what he has to say, BEFORE we condemn it as pointless...  :thumleft:
Cheers
Chris

Reading my post again, it does come across as quite harsh. Not intended to insult, just poor choice in wording.

What I wanted to say is that if he does compare it with a ADV bike, it would not really be very useful. As the BMW R1200RT has no off road capability, and comparing it to say a GS 1200 or KTM 950 just goes to show that, that particular rider was actually just a poser and never wanted to ride off road...
:thumleft:
 

Offline Red Adventure

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #11 on: December 22, 2015, 11:21:59 am »
So what you going to compare it with? a ADV bike? Well that's pointless...
lets see what he has to say, BEFORE we condemn it as pointless...  :thumleft:
Cheers
Chris

Reading my post again, it does come across as quite harsh. Not intended to insult, just poor choice in wording.

What I wanted to say is that if he does compare it with a ADV bike, it would not really be very useful. As the BMW R1200RT has no off road capability, and comparing it to say a GS 1200 or KTM 950 just goes to show that, that particular rider was actually just a poser and never wanted to ride off road...

When in a hole, your best option is to stop digging... ;)
Cheers
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Offline Archangel

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #12 on: December 22, 2015, 02:18:59 pm »
I haven't even said anything and already there's some turmoil...  ;D

The idea is not to compare the RT to an adventure bike, but rather to provide some perspective to adventure bikers who've never ridden one of these before. I for one, always looked at these bikes and thought that the owners are either old or in some sort of stuck up professional business, riding to work in their suits and ties. Yes, I was partially biased.  ::)

So without further ado, here's what I found:

When I first go onto the bike a number of differences stood out for me.
1. The bike is significantly lower than my 950 (and most adv bikes for that matter). It made me comfortable, because I could easily put my feet on the ground and control the big, weighty machine without worrying about falling over. This helps when it's not your bike.  :ricky:
2. Yes, this is a big machine.
3. The gearbox felt very klunky (more on this later).
4. ABS? What's that?

So off we went on the 3km route through Cape Town CBD.

At first I struggled with finding the right rev range and position where the clutch would grip, but that can be expected. After getting the hang of this, I quickly got into a groove. The response from the shaft (on both opening and closing the throttle) was ever so slightly quicker than the chain drive. The ABS has a different feel and the braking on any BMW is significantly different to that of the KTM. The good thing is that this bike would never "nose dive" like more offroad orientated bikes do, giving you much better control during the braking process. This helps when taxis decide that your lane might be moving 0.1 kmph faster than the lane that they're in.



Obviously this bike doesn't fit between the cars as well as my adv, but it did better than I expected. In standing traffic, the 950's bars are generally higher than the car mirrors, allowing a bit of extra clearance. This lady didn't have that.

Now the thing that impressed me the most was the handling of corners. As soon as you started moving, this bike felt light. Incredibly light and agile. The front wheel felt light and very responsive. I often found myself over-steering (if that's the correct term?) into the corners, as the bike would respond more to the same amount of bar pressure, making me realize how I had to manhandle that 21" front of the KTM into corners. I'm not sure if the difference is in the 17" vs 21" front or if it's in the angle of the front forks? Anyways, this felt good. Apart from not being able to climb sidewalks at the drop of a hat, this bike is a dream to ride in town.

And that was the bad side of the review...  :deal:

Offline Archangel

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #13 on: December 22, 2015, 02:25:27 pm »
Up Next:

When someone in my technical team struggles to get the job done, I always ask them whether they have the right tool for the job?

If this road was the job, this bike was the right tool...



But first, I need to clean the beach sand that I dragged into the house.

Offline Hinksding

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #14 on: December 22, 2015, 06:05:01 pm »
It aint over till the FAT LADY sings  ;) ;D
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Offline 1ougat

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #15 on: December 22, 2015, 06:36:13 pm »
 :sip:

Make mine a Boxer with a shaft!!!!
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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #16 on: December 22, 2015, 09:08:01 pm »
This is a good looking motorcycle  :drif:
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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #17 on: December 23, 2015, 07:57:21 am »
Nice........ 
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Offline Voetpomp

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #18 on: December 24, 2015, 02:39:45 pm »
Like the look of this bike and the color doesn't hurt also.
If I ever give up my GS and all that goes with it, I think this will be a strong contender for its replacement.

So Thanks for sharing your opinion from a Adv-Rider perspective, don't mind the others they just jealous to not having a Dad like yours...... ;D
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Offline arno

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Re: A Dance with the Fat Lady in RED - (BMW R1200RT reviewed by KTM 950 rider)
« Reply #19 on: December 26, 2015, 05:03:06 pm »
Nou waar is die res ?
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