Author Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.  (Read 5706 times)

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  • Offline seezur   us

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    Offline seezur

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    Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.
    on: January 11, 2021, 08:39:39 am
    January 11, 2021, 08:39:39 am
    Hi all.

    I've been reading about the 2020 XR since it was announced at EICMA, and in many ways it seems like the perfect bike for me. I have not had a chance to go ride one due to COVID, and I haven't ridden the previous iterations.

    I am seriously considering putting a deposit down on a 2021 XR before they're all sold out for the Spring. That being said, ~25k is a decent chunk of change for me and I want to get the "right bike". In 4 years or so I went from a Honda sport standard, to an R6 to an F750GS. I liked the Honda, but it was slow and basic. The R6 was fun, but punishing ergos and unusable RPM range and speed made it impractical. The GS has been the best, having tons of tech and great hard luggage and reasonable comfort and handling. I've done week long solo tours, but ultimately the lack of power makes me yearn for more. I want a bike that can rip around on an hour jaunt but also tour in relative comfort for a week or two. I do have a shoulder injury, which rules out very wide bars, and some carpal tunnel. The GS has been fine with grip puppies and occasional cruise control to shake out my right hand.

    It seems the pros of the S1000XR are:
    -Amazing power and speed
    -Handling
    -Almost every tech option in existence (including their awesome TFT)
    -Good hard luggage
    -New maintenance free chains
    -BMW connected on dash GPS (when it works, which is a quarter of the time)

    The cons, as far as I have read, could be:
    -Vibrations in handlebars, still
    -I4 engine (the R6 had no power below 8k RPM, not sure if that's the same in the XR)
    -Seat comfort?

    The only other contender I can see is the new 2021 Yamaha Tracer 9 GT. It's lacking in power, but has most of the same features, sporty handling and tech as the 1000XR and it's a whole 10k cheaper with luggage included. It would be more of a side upgrade if anything. I've ridden the 1250 GS and while I actually like the boxer engine, it's a little too tame and the bars way too wide. The new Multistrada looked promising, but 19" front tire, first year model and 30k price tag rule it out. I've tested a 1290 SDGT and I didn't really feel like it was a comfortable bike, plus the fact that they don't have a factory lowered option rules it out.

    What's everyone's opinion? Outside of putting down a deposit with purchase contingent on a test ride, is there any angle I'm missing? Advice?

  • Offline esso_sa   ba

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    Offline esso_sa

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    Re: Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.
    Reply #1 on: January 11, 2021, 11:00:50 am
    January 11, 2021, 11:00:50 am
    After reading your entire post, I'm 99,9% sure that XR is the bike for you.
    Re the cons you've mentioned; Vibes are there, but not even close to annoying. I could say that they are typical I4 vibes.
    Re the lack of power, the XR is weak below 4000 Rpm's; Too weak for a 1000cc engine. It feels and delivers power more like a 600cc I4 engine. But over 4000 rpm's it starts pulling like a train, and by 8000 Rpm's your front wheel is in the air; even in 3rd gear.
    Only scenario where this lack of power below 4000 might be an issue for me are the 20 km/h hairpin turns in the Alps. But that remains to be tested (hopefully this year). I also have an R1200R LC and when I compare it against the XR, I can say that at 5000 Rpm's the XR already pulls stronger than the boxer.
    With the 3rd con - the seat, I agree. It's hard and locks you in place. Some people don't mind that lack of freedom of movement, I don't, but it could definitely be softer and more comfortable.

    And IMHO you can't compare the Tracer against the XR. They are a similar concept, but a completely different leagues. It's like comparing Mercedes against Skoda  :001:
    Last Edit: January 11, 2021, 11:16:09 am by esso_sa

  • Offline Winger   gb

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    Offline Winger

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    Re: Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.
    Reply #2 on: January 11, 2021, 03:03:29 pm
    January 11, 2021, 03:03:29 pm
    My quote when I was being asked about my X/R, ‘Best starting point I have ever had on a bike’ to get it right....a change of gearing,Headers,End can,Seats x 3 before I got the right one, screens x3, suspension Non ESA(Wilbers), Fuelling( Power Commander),wheels(

    If you are talking absolutely bog stock trim comparison....I’ll take my KTM every time.

    As for the OP...impossible to answer I don’t know you.

  • Offline garyculb   us

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    Re: Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.
    Reply #3 on: January 11, 2021, 04:36:42 pm
    January 11, 2021, 04:36:42 pm
    Agree with Winger. If you can find a 2019 or 2020 KTM GT- GO GET IT! They are great for shorter trips.  Kind of biased since I have a Gen 2 KTM GT.

     For the longer hall consider the Gen 2 XR or the BMW 1250 RS.

    Best,

    Doc :018: :018:
    2021 XR Sport

  • Offline Saint   us

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    Offline Saint

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    Re: Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.
    Reply #4 on: January 11, 2021, 07:58:57 pm
    January 11, 2021, 07:58:57 pm
     I bought the 2019 Triple Black, have had no problems with vibration.  I replaced the stock seat with a custom two-up made by my local custom motorcycle seat builder.
    Saint

  • Offline seezur   us

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    Offline seezur

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    Re: Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.
    Reply #5 on: January 11, 2021, 08:36:51 pm
    January 11, 2021, 08:36:51 pm
    Honestly for the price, if the 1290GT offered a factory low option, I would probably buy it. I think the GT is an extremely good value proposition but both times I test rode it I found the height of the seat was something I could see being a problem. The R6 was like 33.5” but it also weighed almost nothing. Also lack of a center stand sucks for touring. My last trip on my GS I had to oil the chain daily but center stand made it trivial.

    If there are vibrations, I wonder if the grip puppies would help? I was getting numbness in my right hand on the GS but with grip puppies I can ride hours straight.

  • Offline runnerhiker   us

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    Offline runnerhiker

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    Re: Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.
    Reply #6 on: January 11, 2021, 09:31:21 pm
    January 11, 2021, 09:31:21 pm
    The handlebar vibrations on the XR is no longer an issue.  When it's brand new, you will feel some vibrations at 5K RPM but that will diminish as the bike breaks in.  To help the issue along, I installed bar end weights and Grip Puppies, not that this was essential, but it helped.

    I had a Yamaha Tracer GT, its high frequency vibrations was worse than the XR, its ergonomics were GREAT, its engine power was OK but not great, it needs more RPM's than the XR to get power, the electronics of the 2021 seems to be equal to the XR.

    I had a KTM Superduke R, not the GT.  I don't have a single bad thing to say, great bike.  The only distinctions between it and the XR are the obvious twin vs 4 cylinder character.

    R1250 RS, I have a 2020 model.  Much better ergonomics than the GS.  Much better.  I like sportier bikes.  It sits lower.  The bars are narrower.  Posture is leaning forward just a little bit, perfect.  Shaft drive is a plus and yet it has similar wet weight.  If you had the 1200 LC and not the 1250, go ride a1250, it is noticeable better.  I like the RS ergonomics better than the XR.

    Summary.  If the Yamaha Tracer was smoother, its only detraction would be engine size.  The BMW XR & RS, and the KTM GT are all great bikes, I found the engine performance to be totally satisfying on all three, but the engine character was certainly different and a matter of preference.

    The seat on the XR did not work for me, at all, from day 1.  I test rode the 2020 model and it was no better than my 2019.  Terrible seat.  But..... $500 and an aftermarket seat can fix this.

    PS:  I just noticed your GS was not the R1200/1250.
    Last Edit: January 11, 2021, 09:37:56 pm by runnerhiker
    '19 S1000XR
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    '22 Kawasaki ZH2

  • Offline runnerhiker   us

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    Offline runnerhiker

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    Re: Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.
    Reply #7 on: January 11, 2021, 09:43:05 pm
    January 11, 2021, 09:43:05 pm
    *Originally Posted by seezur [+]
    Honestly for the price, if the 1290GT offered a factory low option, I would probably buy it. I think the GT is an extremely good value proposition but both times I test rode it I found the height of the seat was something I could see being a problem. The R6 was like 33.5” but it also weighed almost nothing. Also lack of a center stand sucks for touring. My last trip on my GS I had to oil the chain daily but center stand made it trivial.

    If there are vibrations, I wonder if the grip puppies would help? I was getting numbness in my right hand on the GS but with grip puppies I can ride hours straight.

    If seat height is important, pay attention!!!  The XR seat is designed for the showroom floor!!  The shape is what it is so you can reach the showroom floor.  A more comfortable seat will be higher and about 33" high.  They do make a low suspension version of the XR.
    '19 S1000XR
    '20 R1250 RS
    '22 Kawasaki ZH2

  • Offline smithy   au

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    Offline smithy

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    Re: Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.
    Reply #8 on: January 12, 2021, 02:56:46 am
    January 12, 2021, 02:56:46 am
    *Originally Posted by seezur [+]
    My last trip on my GS I had to oil the chain daily but center stand made it trivial.

    Ummm....Isn't the GS a "shaftie"..?? Or am I missing something..?? Or is it one of the "smaller" 800 GS's..??

    Smithy.
    When I die, I want to go peacefully in my sleep like my Grandfather....not screaming like the passengers in his car..!

  • Offline SimonUK   us

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    Offline SimonUK

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    Re: Opinions on 2020 XR vs other options.
    Reply #9 on: January 12, 2021, 03:35:21 am
    January 12, 2021, 03:35:21 am
    *Originally Posted by smithy [+]
    Ummm....Isn't the GS a "shaftie"..?? Or am I missing something..?? Or is it one of the "smaller" 800 GS's..??

    Details are in the OP's intro

    *Originally Posted by seezur [+]
    Hi all.In 4 years or so I went from a Honda sport standard, to an R6 to an F750GS.

     



    dysfunctional