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Old 04-27-2002, 09:17 AM   #11
Gabe
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Default God Bless JPB!!!

That's some fine writing, and I am glad he is writing here. His range of experience and reactions to the test bikes speak to me far more than most motojournalists, who often focus on technical details and jargon, instead of how well the bike interacts with the rider, which is what we all REALLY want to know. Who cares what kind of suspension or motor a bike has if it wears you out after an hour or won't run properly?



So keep it up, and keep us amused. Don't let anybody edit a word, even when you use a double "and". Also, I think that was the first use of the word "wattle" in a motorcycle article, and should earn you a Pulitzer.
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Old 04-27-2002, 10:18 AM   #12
MrBear44
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Default Re: Open Twins Shootout: The Street

I'll use this opportunity to send an open message to Suzuki:



You need to give your twins a chance! You've clearly got one of the best sport twin engines around. You launched that engine in what can only be called an "experimental" chassis, with mixed results. It now looks like you're going to relegate the twin program to the back burner and stick to what you know, which is high performance, four-cylinder sport bikes.



I think you could compete very well with the likes of Ducatic, Aprilia, and Honda with a little continued development. Put the TL1000R motor in a chassis with the weight and handling of the GSXR1000, and they would be trying to figure out how to compete with you. I would be one of the first in line at my local dealer.



The TL1000Â’s are excellent bikes for your first foray into the sport twins market, but the fact that there is room for improvement is well documented (refer to the reason for exclusion from this test as an example). From my point of view it seems that you consider these bikes a business failure, or have decided the market isnÂ’t there. I think the market for sport twin motorcycles is clearly there, and if you produce a superior product (something that you are obviously capable of doing), you will sell a lot of them. Additionally, if you do this at or near your present prices, I believe you will gain market share at the expense of the European makes, not your own excellent four-cylinder product line. I think the twin/multi-cylinder choice is driven more by preference, not merely price and performance. I like them both, but IÂ’ve found that IÂ’m fairly unique among my motorcycling acquaintances in that regard. For many, a twin is the only way to go, and if they have to spend $4000 to $8000 more to get it, so be it.



But thatÂ’s just me. It seems a shame to give up after your first try, especially when it was an inspired first try at that.



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Old 04-27-2002, 12:07 PM   #13
Captain_1
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Default Re: Open Twins Shootout: The Street

Good piece. I agree, the Duc is (still) beautiful but is a masochistic street ride. My only comment on the test is that basically stock bikes were compared. In the real world, we all ditch the stock exhaust and add a Power Commander. Having done this to my RC51, (plus a new seat and steel brake lines) the machine was totally transformed. Its hard to believe how MUCH MORE power was waiting to be untapped. The character of the bike is also vastly improved (more motor, less weight - I don't miss my Ducatis anymore).

While I know its not practical to suggest modifying borrowed test bikes, it would be interesting to follow-up with a comparison of privately owned machines that have been set up with the basics, i.e. exhaust, chip. I would lend you my 51, but I'm east coast based.

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Old 04-27-2002, 01:48 PM   #14
minime
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Default Re: Open Twins Shootout: The Street

We have the titanium race pipe for the Aprilia (saves 12 pounds, Hackfu measure it Thursday) as well as the corresponding chip. JB's running around on the bike right now, and it sounds so delicious.



We'll see what Ducati can come up with as well as Honda. Maybe a follow-up after the track/drag-strip portion with resulting changes in weight/dyno charts.
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Old 04-27-2002, 03:34 PM   #15
Alan
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Default Re: Open Twins Shootout: The Street

Captain, I have a 2000 RC51 with Jardine street

pipes, but no PowerCommander. Does the

P/Commander richen the mixture? And does

it make a big difference in power?

Thanks,

Alan in Texas
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Old 04-27-2002, 03:42 PM   #16
DurangoKid
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Default Re: Open Twins Shootout: The Street

John, John, John! Welcome aboard and I couldn't be happier. I paid my subscription fee long before you joined and your presence makes this site worth twice the current cost. Maybe I will just pay more so that I don't have to be harassed by the Buell Advertisement any longer.



I laughed out loud when I read your comment about signaling turns by honking. I test rode the standard Mille today, ok so it wasn't the R, but the horn (read: turn signals) required way too much concentration to operate. Exactly why does a motorcycle priced at $13k not have self-canceling turn signals? And how about a gear indicator? I can quickly access my lap times, top and average speed, but can't tell which gear I am in.



I can hear that fat-ass Boehm nowÂ… "Hey John, forget to take your Paxil?" Hopefully you have a lawsuit pending for that crap. But dude, tone it down a bit, eh? I was thrilled to see that the first portion of your twins test was the street ride, since that is where most of us ride. Honestly, who the hell enjoys commuting? So to criticize any of these bikes in LA rush hour traffic is irrelevant. We, at least I, couldn't care less. Street riding is the "non-track" portion of the test. Put the bikes in the back of a truck and ***** about not being able to enjoy them because you are stuck in traffic.



Wow! The Mille kicks ass. What a tasty morsel that 60-degree V-twin is? Admittedly, I hate the way it looks. I read a comment earlier comparing the Mille's bodywork to a '94 GSXR. The guy that wrote that should be on your staff, brilliant, and nothing could be further from the truth.



I rode the Falco also. I love the way the Falco looks. However, the claim that the Falco's engine has been de-tuned for the street is meaningless. It revs up like an SV650, albeit a bad ass SV650. On the other hand, the MilleÂ… well you have to ride one to understand the difference.



Now if I could just have the Falco, with the Mille motor, self-canceling turn signals, a gear indicator, a slightly more relaxed riding position along with the swing-arm from the MilleÂ… Aprilia, are you listening?

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Old 04-27-2002, 04:36 PM   #17
HolidayC
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Default Re: Open Twins Shootout: The Street

I can't believe you guys can complain about riding bikes. If I wasn't in South Korea I would slap you. But it was a good article though. Some more pictures/videos/sounds would be nice too.
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Old 04-27-2002, 05:40 PM   #18
Captain_1
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Default Re: Open Twins Shootout: The Street

Yes, the Power Commander - properly programmed with the correct map - makes all the difference in the world. The stock ECU runs lean to meet emissions requirements. I have a full titanium Akrapovic system on my 2000 RC 51. Before installing the PC, the motor ran lean, especially noticeable when riding in cool temperatures (~45F). After uploading the proper map, the 51 was instantly transformed into an adrenaline pump. I cannot exaggerate the difference it made -- The bike is now SCARY fast and a lot more FUN to ride. The inside of the exhaust outlets also took on a black carbon film, previously grey before remapping the PC. Don't hesitate, get a PC for your 51, its one of the best investments you'll ever make.
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Old 04-27-2002, 05:55 PM   #19
Van
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Default Re: Open Twins Shootout: The Street

There isn't a real sport bike on earth with a gear indicator or self cancelling turn signals.



Hell, there's almost no bikes left of any sort that have self cancelling turn signals...
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Old 04-27-2002, 06:35 PM   #20
rippedoff
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Default Re: Open Twins Shootout: The Street

No, its not just you. I too would buy a TLR if it had been/ is developed. I have been saving up for the day when I will buy one of the Italians. However after many great years with a GSXR750, I would not hesitate on a comparable twin from them. Shame on Suzuki for not following through.



Martin.

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