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Old 04-30-2004, 02:19 AM   #91
SRMark
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Default Re: Aprilia - Say it aint so!

I tend to avoid those things built by the low bidder, Mil-Spec or no.
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Old 04-30-2004, 02:49 AM   #92
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Default Re: Aprilia - Say it aint so!

W. Edwards Deming is the correct spelling/name... I've been reading through this thread and I keep thinking about Deming and Total Quality Management (which is based on his "14 points").



The Japanese are beating us at our own game because they were smart enough to listen to Dr. Deming. Until niche market (be they American or Italian) manufacturers take his message to heart, they're going to struggle. The Japanese juggernauts succeed due to the diversification (as has already been mentioned) and commitment to producing a top quality yet affordable product. For some reason many American companies just don't get that. It's a shame. I'd love to buy an American sport bike but I can't find one that has the quality of a Japanese product.



The Italians rely heavily on their design/style cachet. Ducati (with American backing) very intelligently came up with the Monster line as a compromise to their normal direction and it has done very well. Aprilia makes a more reliable motorcycle than Ducati (in my opinion naturally!) and the build quality on the samples that I've seen, thrown a leg over is very, very good. Unfortunately they're still priced a bit too high for Joe/Joanne Average American. If they could get their price point down I think they'd do very well.



The other problem they seem to have in the American market is underexposure. If you watch Two-Wheeled Tuesday on SpeedTV you see countless Honda, Suzuki, Kawi, Yamaha ads and NO Aprilia (or even Ducati) ads. Maybe in Europe and the UK TV is not an important marketing tool like it is here in the U.S. but here a company has to have exposure beyond the hardcore enthusiasts like us.



Even the Aprilia website makes little concession to an English speaking market (some of the press release translations from Italian to English are just hysterical!). Ducati has very sensibly enlisted native English/American speakers to translate press releases and edit their english language pages on their website (Go Zina!).



I personally love Aprilia's bikes and my wife does to. We are both "saving" for our dream Aprilias - mine is the new RSV-R Factory and hers is a Falco with the "Streetfighter" kit that they released a couple of years ago. I sincerely hope they stick around and become successful. I feel sorry for Ivan Beggio as the guy really is a passionate motorcyclist who has stuck to his dreams.



We like Ducatis too but in my opinion you get a more "streetable" motorcycle for the same (or slightly less) money than you get with a Ducati.



Cheers!



Chris
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Old 04-30-2004, 03:57 AM   #93
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Default Busa Clone?

"BMW if they ever want to do a REAL sportbike rather than a heavy busa-clone) "



Right, way back in 1984 BMW anticipated the Busa and decided right then and there to release the heavy K100, a true Busa clone. Then BMW go really mad having to wait all those years fot Suzuki to get off it's lazy arse and make the darn thing.
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Old 04-30-2004, 04:21 AM   #94
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Default I mean the K1200S, not the RS/GT

The K1200S (upcoming) is a BusaClone: 150-170 hp transverse I4, >460lb dry bike with shaft drive.



BMW claims it is their first pure I4 sportbike, but you can't be a modern sportbike with +100 lbs and no HP advantage over the japanese competition.

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Old 04-30-2004, 04:34 AM   #95
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Default Re: I mean the K1200S, not the RS/GT

OK, but that bike will also be a Blackbird, ZX12, and FJR clone too. Maybe FJR being the most obvious. What really is going on here, if BMW makes that bike with a transverse four, is sort of an engeneering admission that the inline transverse four is a more sound layout than BMW's brick design. Even with shaft drive and the extra 90 degree driveline directional change (over chain drive) the inline transverse four makes more sense. Then the question becomes can BMW make a sport bike with competitive hp that is still understressed enough to last as long as the BMW faithful expect from the Brand?
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Old 04-30-2004, 05:33 AM   #96
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Default Re: Aprilia - Say it aint so!

M16's unreliable? You just aren't cleaning it enough!
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Old 04-30-2004, 08:09 AM   #97
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Default Re: again the HD faithfull refuse to admit that change is possible

Hyundai has now (apparently) joined the ranks of Honda & Toyota as a quality car maker...
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Old 04-30-2004, 08:46 AM   #99
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Default Re: I mean the K1200S, not the RS/GT

A bike doesn't have to be at the total cutting edge racer replica to be a sportbike. A GS500F is a sportbike.
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Old 04-30-2004, 08:47 AM   #100
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Default You're right!

Oh, Mr. Cong. My rifle's dirty. Time out while I clean it.
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