RT or LT or GT - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 1:30 am Thread Starter
 
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RT or LT or GT

I am in between bikes at the moment but am anxiously close to buying one--I just paid off my 540i!!

I am considering the R1200RT, the K1200LT and the K1200GT but am having difficulty deciding which one--knowing that I will probably buy a second bike in a year or so.

Going crazy fast is no longer a desire for me. I am eager for day rides and have two multi-day trips planned in the months to come. I am looking for a nice touring bike that handle a GPS, Radar/Laser detector, and possibly some audio capabilities (external and not in my helmet). I don't like looking through a windshield but I like the ability to reduce the wind in my face.
Other info:
5'8" and 165 lbs.; previously on a K75s and stupidly sold it years ago.
I am not used to the low side view mirrors on the RT and LT--with a full-face helmet, I seem to need to look down and to one side or the other to use the mirror...but I have seen people put on additional, more standard mirrors.
I have heard that R's are "bullet proof" and cost less to maintain....but, again, that they are old technology and that K's are "better" but cost more to maintain....
I am concerned about dropping the LT but have some faith that I can master the approx 800lbs if enough informed people say so....
Is it possible to alter the GT's riding position to be similar to the RT? Is that the way to go....However, I do like the lower 1st gear of the RT....
I like riding "in" the bike rather than high "on top" of the bike....one up never two up.
and....before I take my Paxil....I rarely like to lane split but don't like the idea of completely having it removed from my repertoire.
Gratefully...and sorry for the length...OCD takes over at times...
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post #2 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 3:26 am
 
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Smile

I'm 5' 7" and while it can be a beast at low speeds and I can only get my tip toes on the ground at the same time, I just slide over a little bit to one side and can get my foot flat on the ground. I sat on a rt back in 2000 when I bought my lt. It is lighter than the lt but the lt has more room or seems to to me.
The lt has a killer stereo on it and while you can get the radio as an option on the rt it doesnt come with a trunk or tour pak unless you add it and there are no speakers in it or a place toy put them.
Oh and don't be discouraged by the negative stuff you hear in here.
After all its a forum where owners seek answers and report problem that they have had. I know after reading about all the rear drive failures, I got a little spooked and every time I got on mine I figured mine was doomed to fail, but so far so good. Go to your local Beemer dealer and arrange for some test rides and see which one you like better. I like my lt, and it's not perfect but what bike is. Service is expensive on all the Beemers, but then again so are most bikes.
Oh and yes I have dropped mine. Sooner or later almost everybody does, but mine have all been very low speeds or stopped and it just got over too far and all it did was lightly scuff the very bottom of the tip over plastic pieces and the black strip on the saddle bags. You cant tell by looking at it, but if you run your fingers on the underside of those pieces you can barely feel a little roughness. It's fallen over twice I think and knock on wood it has been quite awhile since I've let it fall over, but when it does happen unless your strong as an ox about all you can do once it gets over too far is slow it's rate of fall and kind of gingerly let it go down. This is a great forum and if you decide on a lt I'm sure you will like it as much as I do.

Last edited by Coot; May 11th, 2007 at 3:31 am.
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post #3 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 4:21 am
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G'day,

I just went through a similar process. I already had a 1200RT and I was unhappy with the ergonomics. I'm 6'4"" and 275 pounds... I'm also not too interested in going super fast or cornering with a knee scraping. The RT engine was great on the open road with what I considered to be good performance. Around the city the high first gear was a bit of pain, especially on hill starts.

I took a GT for a test ride and too be honest it scared me, fantastic acceleration and excellent cornering ability. I found the throttle a bit touchy and though that this would be a real pain in city traffic (I occasionally ride to work in the centre of Sydney) The seat was also uncomfortable after about 30 minutes and the windscreen ineffective for my height.

I decided the LT was the way to go. The radio can be heard at cruising speed, the comfort seat is fantastic and the performance, whilst not that of the GT, is still exciting. Cornering ability is great and matches my riding style perfectly, although I am scraping the undercarriage from time to time. Mine came standard with the tall screen, with the screen raised to the highest setting I am looking right through it, also sitting in a bubble of still air. Despite the weight of the bike I find it better in stop start traffic than the RT. Also, the electro/hydraulic stand is fantastic!! As well as the puddle lights and the central locking. It's just a pity that the LT doesn't have the newer technologies yet that the RT and GT have. I never got the chance to test ride the LT before I bought, however, I knew from sitting on it that it was going to right for me.


Cheers,

Brendan
Sydney
Australia
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post #4 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 4:49 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackie
I have heard that R's are "bullet proof" and cost less to maintain....but, again, that they are old technology and that K's are "better" but cost more to maintain....
I am concerned about dropping the LT but have some faith that I can master the approx 800lbs if enough informed people say so....
...one up never two up.
and....before I take my Paxil....I rarely like to lane split but don't like the idea of completely having it removed from my repertoire.
If you are considering new & given the above I'd go with the RT.

The current LT is due to be replaced in '09 so in it's current state is old tech. but well done, also resale value is dropping fast. The LT "brick" motor will no longer exist in any platform. The boxer continues to be refined.

You could always wait fot the new LT.

Dave

BMWMOA #120588
website has been hacked - down for now
Riding since '65 - 30+ bikes (lost count)
Current Stable:
'06 R12GS Adv, '98 Buell, '95 Ultra, '95 Fatboy, '71 Rickman, '53 Panhead
2009-2010 KxxxxLT or whenever BMW updates the platform


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post #5 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 5:26 am
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At present I own 2001 RT great bike has its quirks but love it, I looked at the "TNG" GT very nice bike great response but felt it did not offer the element protection I am interested in, also felt pressure on wrists and shoulders , I test drove the LT and bought the bike, awaiting its arrival from Germany should arrive early June. I am 5'7" 180lbs 29" inseam. Good luck with your decision.
Jeff

2001 R1100RT Opal Blue
2007 K1200LT Biarritz Blue
BMWMOA # 93149
Every happy ending needs to have a start
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post #6 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 6:35 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackie
I am in between bikes at the moment but am anxiously close to buying one--I just paid off my 540i!!

I am considering the R1200RT, the K1200LT and the K1200GT but am having difficulty deciding which one--knowing that I will probably buy a second bike in a year or so.

Going crazy fast is no longer a desire for me. I am eager for day rides and have two multi-day trips planned in the months to come. I am looking for a nice touring bike that handle a GPS, Radar/Laser detector, and possibly some audio capabilities (external and not in my helmet). I don't like looking through a windshield but I like the ability to reduce the wind in my face.
Other info:
5'8" and 165 lbs.; previously on a K75s and stupidly sold it years ago.
I am not used to the low side view mirrors on the RT and LT--with a full-face helmet, I seem to need to look down and to one side or the other to use the mirror...but I have seen people put on additional, more standard mirrors.
I have heard that R's are "bullet proof" and cost less to maintain....but, again, that they are old technology and that K's are "better" but cost more to maintain....
I am concerned about dropping the LT but have some faith that I can master the approx 800lbs if enough informed people say so....
Is it possible to alter the GT's riding position to be similar to the RT? Is that the way to go....However, I do like the lower 1st gear of the RT....
I like riding "in" the bike rather than high "on top" of the bike....one up never two up.
and....before I take my Paxil....I rarely like to lane split but don't like the idea of completely having it removed from my repertoire.
Gratefully...and sorry for the length...OCD takes over at times...
You sound like an almost perfect candidate for an LT. The GT is a lot of fun, but I did not feel I would like it for a long ride. I lane split every work day for 5 years on an LT, no problem at all. I got used to the mirrors, and actually liked them. I rode a K100 dealer loaner once, and keeping the mirrors on it out of harms way when lane splitting was stressful! It seems that the LT mirrors are just UNDER 80% of the mirrors on the road, where the K100 mirrors lined up with about half of them. All those SUVs and pickups in SoCal.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
No bike now, but maybe in the future.
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post #7 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 7:17 am
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Greetings all.

Hey Jackie

Don't expect too much sympathy around here now that you've just told us you've paid off your 540i.

Sweet ride...

Kindest regards to all

Paul Harrington
AU

E: [email protected]

1999 K1200LT Champagne "Bismarck"
1983 base K100 "Bavarian Belle"
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post #8 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 7:47 am
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Ride them all, and buy what you like and what fits you best! I love my LT, but I have never ridden an RT either. Next time I am in the market, I very well may try one just to see how it fits and how it rides and whether I think it would fit into my riding style. Good luck. Jim
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post #9 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 9:09 am
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I own an LT and have for over 2 years now. Bought an '03 used with very low mileage for a steal. I keep going to the BMW dealer and riding both the RT and the GT. I also keep coming away with the feeling that

1) I like both bikes
2) Both have more power then the LT
3) Both are not as roomy and comfortable as the LT
4) I am glad I have stayed with the LT... It is the bike for me.

Coming from someone that likes all three, I know I made the right decision but I wouldn't mind owning 2 or 3 bikes ...
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post #10 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 9:14 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrlakin
Ride them all, and buy what you like and what fits you best! I love my LT, but I have never ridden an RT either. Next time I am in the market, I very well may try one just to see how it fits and how it rides and whether I think it would fit into my riding style. Good luck. Jim
+1. Ya gotta ride each of them, and not just around the block. You've ridden before, so you will have a pretty quick intuitive feel for each, and they are quite different in their personalities. My guess is that you'll rule out the GT, although note that you can get a custom saddle for each of the bikes. If both the RT and the LT speak to you, my suggestion would be to try to get an '06 RT. The previous owner will have taken the inital depreciation hit. You're going to get another bike in 2 years, you can get the new LT (if, indeed, it ever comes out). At that point you will realize that you do not really need the RT and you can give it to me in appreciation for being so helpful .

Bill
Guilford, CT
'99 Canyon Red K1200 LT - Buddah Bike
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post #11 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 11:13 am
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I am 5'9" and 160 and have no problem with the LT. I ride 99.9% one up. I took the top box off and that has made the LT feel, look and handle much better. I have ridden the new and old RT's a lot and would not trade one for the LT, especially on a long trip. Once you get used to it the low speed handling it is not a problem anymore. Ya it may (will) fall over but the protection is great so the only thing that gets hurt is your ego and once you loose that it's all good!

05' LT Dark Grey, "Battle Star"
14' KTM 1190
03' KTM 450 EXC Dually
72' Honda SL 100
67' Triumph Bonneville
65' Honda CB160
70' Honda CB350
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post #12 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 11:33 am
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For what my opinion is worth, I would go for the LT, except that as you only ride one up, I would imagine the better bike would be the RT.
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post #13 of 18 Old May 11th, 2007, 12:04 pm
 
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Lt

Hey all,

I just picked up a used '99 LT with 23K on the clock. Last night. We're still getting acquainted. I'm real excited.

In response to the question posed at the beginning of the thread, you should ask yourself what kind of bike you plan on having for your 2nd bike. Personally, I have a modified Ducati 800ss, so I was interested in something completely plush with all of the amenities one would want on a long trip.

You want to avoid having two bikes that can be used for the same purpose -- unless your wife will be riding one of them. If you plan on only having one bike I would go for the GT or RT. However, if you are planning on buying a high performance road bike in the future, I'd get the LT now. (Not that the LT has poor performance......it's just HUGE).

BTW, consider what you will use the bike for before you decide you need the latest and greatest. Although the LT I bought is kind of old, I can still cruise comfortably at 85 while listening to music and the heated grips and seat keeping me toasty. Do I need more power? Not really. Can I use my Ipod? Yes. Sure, you can wait for two years for the new model, but will the few extra horses and a couple new gadgets be worth it? For me the answer was no.

Good luck. Fun problem to be faced with, huh?

Ian
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post #14 of 18 Old May 12th, 2007, 11:41 pm Thread Starter
 
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Thank you, everyone, for the informative and witty replies. Please keep them coming....I have heard from more than one person that the LT is due for a revision so I am leaning toward the RT for now...you have to pick a side, don't you? I am beginning to look at price-shopping...knowing that the one dealership that I have visited much will not deal much at all...but I guess that they will be okay with me paying them money to have it serviced there, eh? Too bad that Consumer Reports (or other places) does not have a function that can tell me the dealer cost on these bikes like they do for the automobiles....again, thank you very much for the replies...I am grateful.
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post #15 of 18 Old May 15th, 2007, 5:55 pm
 
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LT new owner

I just purchased a LT 2003 on ebay over the winter and now have about 1000 miles on it, my first Beamer. It is nicest most comfortable bike I have ever owned. I rode it with a BMW club to the Slimy Crud Run in S.W. WI about a week ago with about 30 riders and we did ??mph plus alot of the time and it never was lacking in power or comfort at any time. I did have buyers remorse after reading all the negatives on this web site, but I will just work thru all maintenance issues as they arrive. My cruise control did not work and I just read all the info on this web site and with the help of a few members and wal la I fixed it with out much trouble. without this web site I probably would be at least 200$ poorer, so far.

Ride on Mark

Last edited by madejasmile; May 15th, 2007 at 7:01 pm.
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post #16 of 18 Old May 16th, 2007, 10:02 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madejasmile
I just purchased a LT 2003 on ebay over the winter and now have about 1000 miles on it, my first Beamer. I I did have buyers remorse after reading all the negatives on this web site, but I will just work thru all maintenance issues as they arrive.

Ride on Mark
Mark, don't let the site get ya down. It should be the other way. If you have a good day ridding or a day that nothing bad happened, it's not posted. Only the bad things are gonna get on the site. Go to any other forum and it's the same thing.
I went for a short ride yesterday (about 20 miles) and nothing broke.

"BONES" <///><
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post #17 of 18 Old May 16th, 2007, 4:12 pm
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Good bikes all!

I've owned the previous version of the K1200GT (RS upgrade) Fantastic bike! But, the LT is better for me 'cos it made me slow down and smell the roses. I now use my LT every day to visit customers and my Beamer sits in the garage and sulks. I've had to by a GS Adv for weekends! Bottom line - what speaks to you? Get that one!

I would rather be riding my bike and thinking about God than sitting in Church thinking about my bike!

Regards
Allen
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post #18 of 18 Old May 16th, 2007, 5:03 pm
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Smile

I will trade my 05' LT for your 540. Can u send me some pic's. Problem solved!

05' Ocean Blue
Albuquerque, NM
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