Thinking about a k1200 or k1300GT to replace my LT - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 8 Old Jan 9th, 2017, 1:24 pm Thread Starter
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Thinking about a k1200 or k1300GT to replace my LT

Hi folks,
for the last 8 years I have been riding a 99LT which I felt in love with. Unfortunately it got totaled after a young driver in an SUV changed lane right in front of me the day before Christmas. It only had 55kmiles on it. I loved the LT but I would not mind a lighter bike and would like to stay with BMW if I can. I like all the bells and whistles the LT came out with like wind protection, cruise control, electric windshield, heated seat, etc... so I am looking at similar options. Also since I do most of the services and maintenance on my bike a bike easier to work on than the LT would be appreciable. I am thinking may be a k1200 or k1300GT as I like the K engine. It will depend on the price and condition of the bike I could find and the limited amount of money I can throw at it right now. I was not planning to replace my bike for at least another 18months to 2 years as I just replaced my main car few months ago, so buying a new touring bike, particularly a beamer is out of question. I would appreciate any input you guys can give me about moving from an LT to a GT (1200 or 1300), things to be particularly attentive on these used GTs, etc
Thanks a lot

Alain

Vieux motard que jamais
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post #2 of 8 Old Jan 9th, 2017, 2:36 pm
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Re: Thinking about a k1200 or k1300GT to replace my LT

I'm a K bike guy. I have some words of caution. K bikes both the 1200 and 1300 transverse 4's, are the most expensive BMW's to maintain. The valve check is many hours and not that easy to accomplish. You need a vacuum system to draw a vacuum on the coolant system prior to and while replacing the liquid along with many gaskets and seals if you need to make an adjustment. (narrow trapping passages in the head require vacuum to be refilled with coolant). The some of the 1200's have driveability problems that sometimes can not be eliminated. So I would recommend you stick in the K1300 zone and be sure to find one that runs well. Here is a K bike site: I-BMW.com; The K1200S, K1300S, K1300R, K1300GT, K1200GT BMW motorcycle Portal, Powered by vBulletin, go to the section of your choice K12GT or K13GT and spend a few evenings reading. Now, I have to say my K1300S is my favorite motorcycle of 50 years and over a million miles of riding bikes. It is fantastic. Because they are out of production and now vintage bikes, they are cheaper and especially the GT versions. They had a few more problems than the S bikes and there are fewer of them around. I also like my little S1000R bike.
The best all around road bike is of course the RT and it is economical to keep running.

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post #3 of 8 Old Jan 9th, 2017, 5:58 pm
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Re: Thinking about a k1200 or k1300GT to replace my LT

Hi Alain.

I have both the K12LT (2005 model) and a K12GT (2005 model) and while the engine and maintenance aspect is very similar (makes it easier on home maintenance), they are completely different bikes to ride.
The LT is exactly that, the LUXURY tourer.
The GT (or an RS) is a sports version that handles very differently to the LT, you can really appreciate the smooth power of the K engine with the 6-speed box.
I would only ride a few hours at most on my GT (mainly use it for commuting) but it is a bum killer on longer trips.
There's a lot of RS/GT riders that reckon its the best touring bike they've ever owned (read reviews in i-bmw or k-bikes) but I think for most of these guys the LT was never an option and they relate it to other sports bikes, but its pretty hard going backwards from an LT when it comes to comfort and protection for touring.
2c.

Chris
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post #4 of 8 Old Jan 10th, 2017, 9:00 am Thread Starter
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Re: Thinking about a k1200 or k1300GT to replace my LT

Thanks for your inputs. Would the cam chain jump guard that was missing on 1200gt 2007 models have been installed on 2008 models? Or is it something I would still need to verify if I buy a 2008 1200GT? There is a nice 2008 1200gt for sale at the local BMW dealer with 19k miles for around $8k which would be in my price range. Not sure I would go for that one but just exploring my options and understanding pros and cons of the GT models.

Alain

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post #5 of 8 Old Jan 10th, 2017, 12:04 pm
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Re: Thinking about a k1200 or k1300GT to replace my LT

The jump guard would not be factory installed, but it is a recall item and the dealer can check and or install one for free. Since it is a dealer sale, please take it for a reasonably long ride, see if it stalls at stops, that sort of thing. They do run a little rough and are a nasty around town bike, they are made for the road. If it was made after October 2008 it should have the up dated air box, another source of problems.
Check for a jump guard by opening the plug on the right side over the end of the crank. Look in and if you see a dark plastic crescent it is in there. Takes a 55 Torx for the plug.

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post #6 of 8 Old Jan 22nd, 2017, 4:09 pm
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Re: Thinking about a k1200 or k1300GT to replace my LT

So Alain, what did you end up getting?
I've always liked the K12 and K13 GTs

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post #7 of 8 Old Jan 25th, 2017, 9:48 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Thinking about a k1200 or k1300GT to replace my LT

Quote:
Originally Posted by zippy_gg View Post
So Alain, what did you end up getting?
I've always liked the K12 and K13 GTs
I am still looking. I just got the money from the insurance only yesterday anyway. Today I test rode a 2008 k1200GT with 19kmiles on it at the local BMW dealership. It comes equiped with enhanced seats, widder windscreen and highway pegs. Did both in town and highway riding. I liked the power and the ride in general. Not as comfy as the LT for long ride though. I don't like the gear shifter, too short to my taste but that can be fixed I am sure. I may need to extend the handle bar too to be confortable for long ride. So I am thinking that may be the one if we can agree on the price. It does not have a top case so I will need to get one both for the extra space but also for my wife to rest when riding with me. I still wonder about overall reliability of the k1200GT. I knew my LT so well. A well mantained LT could go for 200k miles but how about the GT? Not that I think putting that many miles on it but I would like for my next bike to do at least a good 60 to 70k miles with me. They told me that this 2008 model came with the cam chain guard. I used to do all the services and maintenance on my LT except valves adjustment which I have left to the dealer to do. Hopefully the GT is not more difficult to work on.

Last edited by Alpac; Jan 26th, 2017 at 7:45 am.
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post #8 of 8 Old Jan 26th, 2017, 11:02 am
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Re: Thinking about a k1200 or k1300GT to replace my LT

My quick $.02 on the K1300GT. I took a friend's GT for a ride on some lovely twisties in the Hudson River Valley. Here's what struck me most.

1. It handled beautifully. It's got a BMW front end so it gulps up bumps even while feeling a bit vague since it lacks the direct feedback of conventional forks. (Yes, my RT has a similar sense of vagueness, and it handles beautifully, too.)

2. The multi-function digital display in the center of the dash was completely illegible because my helmet reflected perfectly off that exact spot. Didn't much matter what direction I was headed, I had to move my head to either side a fair amount to see that display. (This may not be a problem for people who are taller than me at 5' 7" and have a different angle of reflection from their helmet.)

3. While the motor has great power, it was probably the vibiest inline 4 I've ever ridden. My hands and feet had that buzzy ginger ale feeling for hours after I got off the bike. (The F800GT I rode last year was likewise the vibiest parallel twin I've ever ridden.)

People who have owned a K1300GT will have more miles behind their opinions, but less than an hour in the saddle convinced me that it wasn't the bike for me. That said, I won't be riding your bike, so ride what YOU like.
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