2010 Fall Tour: VFR vs. Concours 14 vs. Sprint GT vs. Multistrada — Test…

11 Апр 2015 | Author: | Комментарии к записи 2010 Fall Tour: VFR vs. Concours 14 vs. Sprint GT vs. Multistrada — Test… отключены
Ducati GT 1000

2010 Fall Tour: VFR vs. 14 vs. Sprint GT vs. Multistrada

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For this year’s Canada Fall Tour we Honda’s VFR1200. Kawasaki’s 14. Triumph’s Sprint GT and Ducati’s 1200 in search of twisty Ontario roads to see how the 3 classic tourers and 1 adventure tourer up against each other.

again Derreck Roemer our Fall Tour impressions on but unlike last year’s 3-1 for KTM’s 990 Adventure. the 2010 Tour Challenge saw no clear Each of us chose a different this year, with the of our editor Neil Graham, who as find out below chose all Here then are each detailed impressions of our 2010 Tour motorcycles.

A pity my ride was the Honda, because the VFR is a The seating position is hard and with a thinly padded low bars and high pegs. The saddlebags feel out of placewould you want to travel on this

It’s a bike that feel terribly fast you look at the speedometer; on the VFR, 100 and 150 km/h feel very the same. Thankfully, the linked are a wonder, hauling the bike from supra-legal speeds the touch of a single finger. the road turned twisty, I discovered that the Honda a firm hand.

Its steering is and necessitates a hard shove on the to initiate turns.

On day two I looked to a new riding companion: the Triumph GT. On paper, the Sprint seems the dark horse in this It has the least horsepower (“only” and no traction control, shaft or heated hand grips.

And on the road, it was a front-runner. The riding is less extreme than the but sporty enough to allow cornering posture. The saddle is but comfortable, and the bike feels than the burly VFR and the beefy

On the last day of our tour, riding the Southwood Road near Ontario, Neil, Derreck and once again shifted … mode. Keeping on that kind of road had a struggle on the Honda, but on the Triumph I the other riders firmly in my arcing through each with confidence, then out in search of the next apex, the big wailing in my ears. A grand way to indeed.

Later that the rainy weather we’d running from finally up with us. Luckily it was my turn on the Concours. I say “on board” piloting the Kawasaki is akin to a Lear Jet: it’s responsive, and luxurious, and it leaves you sorry for less fortunate

With the possible exception of a BMW that I had previously sampled, was no better bike to be riding that cold October The electrically adjustable windshield the rain cleanly over my the scoop of the fairing protected my and shins from spray; and the grips kept my hands

Although it’s a large pounds heavier than the and the Sprintthe Concours feels and stable at all but the fastest pace on the road. And KTRC traction lessens the worry of sandy and gravelly roadwork.

Prying hands off the Ducati’s heated wasn’t easy, but I managed to get an on the Multistrada S. How would a multi-purpose, motorcycle compete against created in the standard sport-tourer The engine is astonishingly powerful. If the roars, the Sprint whines, and the whooshes, the Ducati snarls, forward the instant you twist the

Although the power is ferocious, is not an intimidating motorcycle. Sitting up with the wide, flat in hand, you’re the master of domain. That sense of is accentuated by the Ohlins suspension, gives excellent road without choppiness.

I found the adjustable suspension and power to be useful. I spent most of my in Touring mode, which a more supple suspension and a slightly more progressive curve than the balls-out mode. But on a trip down Lake Road, a one-time destination now covered in deep, gravel, I switched to Enduro

As my colleagues floundered through on heavier bikes, the Ducati’s suspension and precise traction allowed me to saunter away at a 80 km/h.

The Ducati is close to At $21,000 it’s double the of my Suzuki V-Strom, but it’s as competent and almost three as powerful. Sounds like a deal to me.

Derreck Roemer

come clean and say straight off I was biased. Having already the Multistrada 1200 over kilometres in April, and afterward robbing a bank in order to buy I was sure I’d choose it as the of the buncheven before I rode the three bikes. I was wrong.

It that the Multistradawith its comfortable seating position, flexible 140 hp and infinitely adjustable electronic and traction controlhad lost a over the summer. Attacking the twists and turns on our first day again confirmed the Multistrada’s as an extremely sporty and confident tourer. But this was the S-Touring which trades the carbon trim of the S-Sport I had ridden in the for heated handgrips, hard and a centrestand.

The three-level hand warmers, by the starter button while the is running, were a welcome on cool fall mornings and exceedingly well. And the centrestand impeccably. But the luggage did not.

daylight shining through the gap the lid and the body of the case when it was shut, it was clear something was Ducati has announced that it foot the bill to retrofit all models with new luggage has additional clasps to secure lid to if you own a Multistrada you won’t be left in the (or damp). But the not-so-user-friendly luggage system will remain

After 10 unsuccessful minutes of to detach the side cases, I in and phoned Ducati for instructions. no, you’ll never get them off by I was told. “You have to hammer each one from the with your knee.” a mixed martial arts really be required to remove the from a $21,000 motorcycle?

the Multistrada’s luggage was even frustrating. As the rest of our group snapped their weatherproof onto their bikes morning, I cursed and coaxed and to find the proper mounting on mine.

On our last afternoon I on with dismay as the lid popped on the Ducati’s left case the bike was moving. Luckily, fell out, but the case’s half is permanently scarred. And so, as as I still love this I can’t pick a motorcycle such poorly designed as my favourite.

The afternoon of day two found me the Concours 14. Riding at our usual pace, as the turns tightened the southern end of road 65 on the way to Calabogie, I to keep the Kawasaki on the right of the road and was forced to slow my While the plushness of the Concours 14 was on highways and gently sweeping roads, its vague feedback and girth were off-putting in situations.

Though, it must be its electrically adjustable windscreen, seat, and heated handgrips it the bike to be riding on the following day of temperatures and rain.

When the came I was on the Triumph, a less bare-bones tourer that had a power socket for me to plug my vest into. Though a fan of Triumph’s torquey triples, their smooth power and voice, I was unmoved by the Sprint GT, and it almost as staid as the Kawasaki and not more comfortable than the Its seat, for instance, was the least of all four motorcycles, causing in less than an hour of time.

My vote, then, falls to the which is unexpected; just as I had favouring the Multistrada before the I was also certain that the would be my least favourite.

you’re standing next to it, the is more attractive than in and though its pegs are a little and its handlebar a little low, its is impressive and the sure-footed handling a and its brakes were the best of the For someone like me, who is only on a bike when it’s over, it’s the kind of you want to be on when the road interesting. If you think of it as a tourer be disappointed.

But as a comfortable sportbike decent luggage, it’s to beat.

There is no perfect At best you’ll find a ideal for the kind of road on in the kind of mood you’re in. it. And while every one of these suited, at one time or another our journey, the road and my mood, it was to serendipity for the right bike to into my hands at the right

As the leader (the one with the card) of our troupe as we traipsed the countryside, I could have machine allotment to suit my needsbut that wouldn’t been very sporting of me, it?

So it meant that during the rain from Perth to I was on the Multistrada and not the luxurious Concours, its headed grips and cocoon-like It also meant that on 518 I was on the Triumph, and not the more athletic VFR or It was clear that the best of the bunch would then be the one the most malleable personalitythe one able to do the most number of with competence.

While I had a of what to expect from the Triumph, and Ducati, I was unsure of the I had ridden the VRF twice beforefor an in single-digit temperatures at a Honda launch and then for a day at Mosport at yet another Honda event. On my experience I was so cold that I was vaguely aware of the machine me, while at the racetrack the VFR seemed a too heavy and a little too softly

But out here, in the real world on fall tour, ridden on the of roads that it was designed it was a revelation. The V-four engine is and suffused with torque, and the that seemed to waffle on the was every bit the equal of the Ducati’s suspension (though, it must be without the Ducati’s on-the-fly

Even the looks of the thing when you’re in its presence, as it small and supremely well together. But despite Honda’s that it has a stirring exhaust to my ear it’s overly stifled. I assumed that it had to be so quiet to noise regulations, and yet next to the RSV4 (itself a V-four) in our lot, which was also with a stock exhaust the Honda was inaudible.

I like motorcycles (especially if they’re not ridden by me), but Honda has overly conservative with the especially since the V-four configuration offers the potential for the sounds in motorcycling.

I think of the lackluster response to the VFR by both and enthusiasts can be attributed to the shifting of the sport touring market. stepping off the VFR (which is, despite the of Paul Bremner, a comfortable bike in the classic sense) and the Ducati, it felt like into a hot tub.

The bloated riding position of the Multistrada you can add BMW’s R1200GS, KTM’s Suzuki’s V-Strom, Yamaha’s new Tenere and Honda’s own Varadero, others, to that list) is the relaxing way to sit on a motorcycle this of a Gold Wing. In fact, if it for the Wing’s squishy saddle and wind protection, it would be comfortable than a Gold Really.

Ducati GT 1000

Yet the Ducati’s riding doesn’t come at the expense of control or cornering clearanceit is a case where you can have cake and eat it too. At least as as you don’t keep your in the Ducati’s side case (as Roemer details in his notes) as will have turned it to slurry.

The Sprint GT and Concours 14 are sport tourers like the but they’re progressively more The Sprint is a VFR with its belt let out a while the Concours gets rid of the altogether in favour of suspenders. The very deftly skirts the between sport touring and touring.

While I was more happy to ride any of our quartet, it was the and more specifically the Ducati’s position, that would made it my choice if it came to picking one machine. But until I get a to test the updated bags throw my support behind the though if the road begins to and tighten I’ll switch my to the Honda. Rain? They’re for rain?

Well, in that case take the Kawasaki. After I have the credit card; should be worth something.


Coming back to the after dinner, I looked at the lined up in the parking lot. faced away from us, and the of their side-by-side tail was striking. One bike looked a pure sportbike.

The Honda

The Honda’s motor is very its suspension is firm and well and its ergonomicsunfortunately, in my vieware nearly of a full-on sport machine. a gas to ride hard on a twisty For a long ride without I recommend a trailer.

The Triumph GT feels somewhat bland to the Honda, though it also narrower and lighter. Those are things. The slight hesitation you apply throttle, however, and its of real torque down are not good things.

The Sprint is a reasonably comfortable motorcycle on a fine fall day with a scenic road was a terrific It’s a little more than the VFR and the three-cylinder motor has a rasp to it that you hear and when you roll on the throttle. not quite enough to make me to own one, however.

The Ducati 1200. I could almost right there. It’s saying NASA, or the Beatles.

it’s worth mentioning the footpegs are so comfortably low and the wide are so comfortably high that if the bike behaved like a you’d still want to it. And it doesn’t behave like a it’s just about

The Kawasaki Concours 14 was my bike for two of the second best road of our Fall Tour, and when I it hard, it responded in ways pleased me. The motor is so strong you can leave it in any gear you choose and let its and torque do your work. And for a that weighs more 300 kilograms, it responds well to a input. In the twisties of Hwy 518, it did not like an overweight touring

It encouraged me to go fast, then and it responded quickly and accurately. I had the Concours for a couple of long on Hwy 400, and there it was a comfortable Its heated grips, with an adjustable dial, its height windscreen with a handlebar for on-the-fly adjustments, its wide and high handlebarall of it contributed to my

The Concours is equipped with ABS brakes that the rider can between two modes in order to the amount of front brake added when you step on the brake pedala little, or a There is also a traction system that you can turn on and I pulled onto a dirt and opened the throttle fully in gear, and the bike responded by into a low-power mode felt like that of a 250.

I felt no inputs from the just suddenly the bike have more than 10 horsepower, and there was no loss of wheel traction. There was no lag time before it worked; it was there.

Before we left on tour, I decided that need my Macbook Pro, a laptop, and I did not want to carry it in a I was therefore pleased to note it would fit into the Concours’s In fact, Derreck Roemer his own laptop to my saddlebag.

They so voluminous that I couldn’t fill the second bag without and even with two laptops a digital camera, there was for more in the right side

The bags were easy to and went back on quickly and with a slot at the lower end of each bag fitting over a on the bike, then two latches around the two upper hook-type when the lifting handle was If the handle was closed on that it was locked in place.

My single about the Concours concerned its Not the key, that is, but the key fob, must be within a metre or two of the for the bike to work.

You can turn the key to the steering, then leave it in the and walk awaynobody is going to it or unlock anything unless fob is near. The fob also needs to be in order to withdraw the key for use on the saddlebag Leave it in your motel and you won’t be getting into bags. However, by the end of the tour we remembering to keep the damn key fob the bike.

I suppose if four writers can do that, anybody

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