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Old 03-17-2006, 03:00 PM   #71
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Default Re: Oh, Vlad...

Didn't you guys do a piece in which the conclusion was a standard style bike was the better tool for going fast on the street?
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Old 03-17-2006, 06:48 PM   #72
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Default This is a good question...

However, of the four of us (representing a pretty broad range of riding skill), we almost all went fastest on the GSXR. I think it had to do with comfort and confidence; the Suzuki just had the most familiar feel.

I'm sure that with more track time the time differences would become almost meaningless, yet Mladin keeps bringing back trophies for Suzuki, despite Kawi's best efforts.

Going fast on a track comes down to rider confidence, especially when you only have a day to wring the best times possible out of four largely unfamiliar, very fast bikes. In that situation, the GSXR was noticeably easiest to go fast on, but not so you'd notice on the track. The Kawi felt as smooth, planted and confident as the GSXR, and yet we were a bit slower on it.

Sure, it's as much the rider as it is the bike, but when you see a trend like this (and it's hardly scientific, how we do this), there must be something going on.

Maybe Sean can add to this?
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Old 03-21-2006, 05:03 AM   #73
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Default Re: MO Open Superbike Shootout

Why there is no Buell, Ducati and Aprilia in this comparo, no Superbike from them? So much text and you guys only mention too much alike sorts of Oranges but no Apples or Lemons? Geez... fruits aside MO knows very well to compare 4-in-line motorcycles.
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Old 03-21-2006, 05:21 PM   #74
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Default Re: MO Open Superbike Shootout

For all the folks who wanted to see a Ducati included in the test, check out the April issue of Roadracing World. In addition to the mighty four from Japan, they tested a Ducati 999S. That's a $24,000 motorcycle versus $11,000 dollar motorcycles. Maybe if the Ducati could shed 20 pounds, gain a little horsepower and torque......................

How much would that cost?
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Old 03-24-2006, 09:41 PM   #75
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Default Re: MO Open Superbike Shootout

I'm really not sure where the obsession for brand bashing comes from. All the bikes tested here, and the Yamaha R1 LE and Ducati 999s tested by Roadracing World are obviously great bikes. Why attack a company for not being able to price their bikes as well as the competition?

It all comes down to economics and marketing here. Ducati cannot and will not ever be able to compete with the big four Japanese companies on price. The best they can hope to do is compete in terms of performance (and this is obviously very difficult with the rapid development of the Japanese bikes) and hope that people will pay the premium they charge for their bikes.

Is this any different than Porsche pricing a 911 higher than a Chevrolet Corvette Z06? The comparison is slightly different, simply because cars include interiors, various electronics, and other class-differentiating features... but we're talking performance, and the Corvette beats the 911 in pretty much all performance categories. It will also sell better. The market takes care of itself that way. But people still talk about the soul of a 911, and it can put up similar lap times. Does the Corvette's price make it better?

To get back to motorcycles... "How much would that cost?" Who knows and who cares? It would cost more to buy a 20 pound lighter Ducati than it would to buy a 20 pound lighter Japanese bike. It would cost more to buy a Ducati with Ohlins suspension, a slipper clutch, carbon fiber fairing, etc. than it would to buy any of the Japanese four with the same components. The Japanese sell far more motorcycles because of their lower prices, and they have lower prices because they are bigger companies that sell more motorcycles (The two go hand in hand). Hell, the Japanese bikes are about the same cost, if not cheaper now than they were ten years ago when adjusted for inflation. They are all fantastic values in terms of performance. But is performance everything? They all look about the same, sound about the same, and have about the same features.

These sportbikes are not practical purchases to begin with, and are rarely used to set the best time around a racetrack. So specification sheets really shouldn't dictate purchasing decisions (but will because people like to get on forums and say "My bike has 3 more horsepower and cost less than yours.") They also like to claim that their brand is the best, because it makes them feel like their purchase is then somehow vindicated. Why not compare all the bikes in a class as they can be purchased? I thought the Roadracing World article was great because they included the Ducati as well as the $18000 Yamaha R1 LE. The Ducati got last, but proved that it can be used to keep up with the other bikes. I really disagree with including price in the final scoring, unless a "without price included" score is also shown. I've seen many automobile magazines do just that, so that you can see which vehicle the testers think is the best, and also which is the best value. Including price, or saying "All the other motorcycles should have $12000 worth of parts added to make them cost the same" just penalizes the smaller companies that can't compete price-wise with the big four. Do you want an economics shootout or a sportbike shootout?

Anyway, if you really feel better about your own motorcycle because you see that someone else posted a fast lap on it, or that it cost $3000 less than someone else's, or that it has 13 more horsepower and weighs 12 pounds less, I really question your motivation for buying the motorcycle in the first place. Just ride everything you can and try and make enough money to own all of them, so you can enjoy them all and share everyone's passion for all of them.

Someday maybe Ducati (and everyone else) will sell an inline-four, and it will sound the same, look the same, ride the same, and cost twice as much as the Japanese bikes. Then we can all ride carbon copies of each others bikes and laugh at whoever paid the most or has the least flashy graphics, that's what motorcycling is all about, right?
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Old 04-21-2006, 05:15 AM   #76
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Default Re: MO Open Superbike Shootout

As a new owner of an '06 CBR1000RR, I can say the reviews are pretty accurate for the Honda in this test as well as print mags out there. An animal, for sure! After 5-10 minutes in the saddle you can pick up on the quirks: low clip-ons, high/firm seat, aggressive steering angle, kinda stiff ride (there's the good stuff, too! Great power, handling, fit + finish, isn't exactly ugly either!).

But I AM a little disappointed with the throttle response on the bike. Talk about a hair-trigger throttle!! Dale made reference in the Second Opinion section that maybe only those who have dabbled in open class bikes, Busa or ZX12s should consider these bikes. Let me tell you, I owned a Busa (minor mods) for 4 years and it did not prepare me for the on/off nature of the CBR power. Is it not possible to give the same power across the range but perhaps with a little more throttle forgiveness??? Is this abruptness perhaps an atempt to "fool" the rider (read: test journalists) into thinking it's got more steam than it really does? Granted, I'm still getting used to the damn thing, but I will say, a few bumps in a hot corner combined with that stiff chassis will challenge ANY rider's right hand to maintain that throttle position so not to get the front wheel off the ground. Again, the article hit it on the head about inspiring more caution than confidence. In short, I dont think the more radical handling is the culprit, but the COMBINATION of the new handling with the lightswitch fueling.

Wonder if Honda is listening and will maybe come up with a "remedy" for those interested? An ECU re-flash or something? I'd be interested for sure since this is the only complaint about the bike from me!! An otherwise truly awesome machine! )

One other note: I was drawn to the CBR also because of its traffic friendly tranny gear ratios. The story mentioned a "pretty tall" gearing at 80mph. Who cares? Its the 3 other bikes with 1st gears capable of around 100mph i dont get. I plan on using my bike for some commuting too (with these crazy gas prices) and working a clutch in traffic while basically in what a lot of lesser bikes would consider 2nd gear does not appeal to me at all. The CBR's 1st gear is certainly not short, but definitely more reasonable than the other offerings.

Thanks for letting me throw in my 2 cents. Maybe these issues will help someone pick one bike or another, all of which are GREAT.
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Old 04-27-2006, 04:59 AM   #77
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Default Re: MO Open Superbike Shootout

All that talk about the fancy Kwak dashboard and not one of you thought to take a picture of it?
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Old 05-07-2006, 12:56 PM   #78
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Default Re: MO Open Superbike Shootout

How much does Suzuki pay you guys?

The K6 has the worst styling in the class

and vibrates like a rat crapping razor blades

after it has a few miles on it.
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Old 07-03-2006, 06:37 AM   #79
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Default Re: MO Open Superbike Shootout

How about a little info on reliability, and if the bike overheats (or just cooks you) when sitting at a stop light on a hot summer day. Are there any every day annoyances? I would like a long term report on how a bike is to live with.
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Old 01-11-2007, 12:57 PM   #80
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Default Re: MO Open Superbike Shootout

Yup, I'm in full agreement here....

I'm not disputing the results of the shootout, but I would have liked to have seen some concrete fact(s) that put the GSXR over the Kwak. The Kawk has the most horsepower and has a stock Ohlins steering damper. To me these are huge. I mean, the article speaks for itself...."If real estate is all about location, location, location, then a Superbike comparison is all about motor, motor, motor."

Obviously there's more to it than that, but if they were close in all other regards, my personal ratings has the Suzuki trailing by a couple points.
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