Sunday, June 5, 2016

It's like riding a chainsaw, basically

The same day I test rode the XDiavel, I also dropped by the BMW dealer to check out an S1000XR. It was a model that was on my contemplation list to serve as my commuter/tourer bike, but after the test ride I put it safely in the "not for me" bucket.

First off, the XR doesn't suffer from the motorboat style dive and squat that the Multistrada did, so that's a good start. The suspension felt solid in all of the various modes, to the point where I really couldn't feel much difference between the modes at all. At least they all felt pleasant.

The engine modes were much the same story: couldn't honestly tell the difference between them, and they all delivered a delightfully absurd amount of power. That said, I found the engine's snarly, raspy character to be completely unsuited for something I would want to tour on. I feel like the engine would have been better off left in the S1000RR and R.

The bars were of course far too wide for me, and the whole bike was pointlessly tall, both in the fine tradition of adventure bikes. In the end I wasn't particularly thrilled, it felt more like a BMW response to the Multistrada (and I feel like it edges out the Multi in a few ways, especially the suspension) than a winning formula in and of itself.

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