Buying advice K1200LT - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 10 Old May 20th, 2009, 6:18 am Thread Starter
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Buying advice K1200LT

I am currently a member of a forum site for another touring bike that I currently own, but I am thinking of buying a K1200LT that I have been offered here in the UK, and as such thought the best place to come for advice was to current owners.

I was wondering if you could advise of any known weak areas of this bike that I should look out for. I have been trying to read through your forum for the last few days and seem to have noticed there have been a few recalls on older bikes and that the drive shaft can be prone to failure.

If I was to ring BMW with the VIN number would they be able to advise if all recalls had been completed?

If I had it delivered to a BMW bike shop would they give it a pre inspection, not looking for any sort of guarantee, just any definite info on faults they might find?

The bike in question is a very, very low mileage 2002 registered bike although I believe it may have been imported.

Your advice will be greatly appreciated, thanks.
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post #2 of 10 Old May 20th, 2009, 7:35 am
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Re: Buying advice K1200LT

Dealers do have the ability to look up **some** service records for you. When I purchased my 2001 privately, I did just that. They could not tell me about any regular service, but they did verify recall compliance and major component repair.

Also, my local dealer did a 'once over' for me after purchase and gave me a list of items that should be attended to. I had the dealer take care of some of them, did the rest myself.

Good luck with your purchase, and I would not worry about the final drive issues until you see/hear symptoms. For all the 4%'ers around here, I'm a 96%er with no issues.

Live Slow... Fly Fast

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blog that chronicled our trip to Alaska and back.

<- The Boy
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2001 K1200LT-C that's been to the Alaskan Arctic Circle and back
2008 VRSCAWA H-D V-Rod with a few goodies
2005 VRSCA H-D V-Rod
1981 Mooney M20J

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post #3 of 10 Old May 20th, 2009, 8:39 am
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Re: Buying advice K1200LT

They are expensive to have worked on if the dealer does all your services.

With that said, there's nothing else that compares to this machine.

1 Buy it. 2 Ride it. 3 Smile. 4 Repeat 1 through 3.

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post #4 of 10 Old May 20th, 2009, 9:26 am
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Re: Buying advice K1200LT

I have an '02 that I bought new and it has been a great bike for over 42k miles. Hopefully it will stay that way, but them's the chances you take in life. My radio has quit working and I haven't bothered to fix it as I'd rather ride and can't really afford something that my phone (a blackberry) takes care of. The center stand broke at the weld (replaced it with one of e-bay) and my left handgrip rubber deteriorated (got a new rubber and need to install it some day). So she's been pretty trouble free. I started riding in 1969 and this is probably the best bike I've ever owned. I traded in a 2000 R1100RT and wasn't sure at first I could handle this big machine, especially as almost all of my riding is one-up but it hasn't ever really been a problem. So I would have to say follow my 4 rules of riding (1. Don't hit anything, 2. Don't get hit by anything 3. Don't fall down (I know it's going to happen with this bike, but try) and 4. Don't get caught, along with Deans 4 rules and you'll be happy with this bike.

Last edited by Diolach; May 20th, 2009 at 10:21 am.
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post #5 of 10 Old May 20th, 2009, 10:26 am
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Re: Buying advice K1200LT

From what I have read the drive shaft problem doesn't happen that much. I called BMW when before I bought mine with the vin to check on any recall status. The only issue I have had with mine is the stereo. It works most of the time, but sometimes the right rear speaker goes.

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post #6 of 10 Old May 20th, 2009, 10:35 am
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BMW will help

Originally Posted by zebedee
... If I was to ring BMW with the VIN number would they be able to advise if all recalls had been completed?
Yes, BMW should advise you on pending recalls for your VIN. Did that for me a few years back. In North America, their phone is 800-831-1117 - you'll have to research a bit for the UK.

Their will also register you as an owner, to send you future recalls. Not a bad idea.

Enjoy the bike. Even though I also have the GS and had few K'RS, I still like the LT a lot - in particular for long interstate hauls and for bad weather. Excellent in rain and cold. Plus, THE bike for two-up riding.

Robert in Northern NJ

'09 R12GS, '08 R12RT, '03 R1150RT, '01 F650GS - time to thin the herd?

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post #7 of 10 Old May 20th, 2009, 11:07 am
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Re: Buying advice K1200LT

How many miles, Has the service been kept up, and how much money do they want? I have an 02 and have enjoyed it as much or more than any bike I've owned. Best 2 up machine I've ridden. I would look for an 05 or newer if it was me unless the price and mileage are very low. If so, jump in and take a long trip. you'll be glad you did.

Good luck
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post #8 of 10 Old May 20th, 2009, 2:29 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Buying advice K1200LT

Thanks for your replies.

Sorry a few other questions, mainly aimed at UK members, if there are any on here.

Roughly what are servicing costs here in the UK. The bike is below 5k miles.

Is it possible with all that plastic to service it yourself, is the plastic easy to remove ( I love fiddling), I currently do all my Pan European servicing myself.

What mileage (UK gallons) could I expect.

What mileage could I expect from the tyres.

I have seen some models give a puff of smoke from the exhaust after standing a while, is this anything to worry about.

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post #9 of 10 Old May 20th, 2009, 4:45 pm
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Re: Buying advice K1200LT


I have never used the dealer for service but I do know Mottrad Central charge 50 gbp per hour and it will take an hour to disrobe and redress her. Apart from that the costs are probably similar to a Pan. can supply all service parts and other bits. There are good destructions on tupperware removal in the HOW. I regularly get 45 mpg - sometimes a bit less sometimes a it more. Puff of smoke is 'they all do that sir' thing - normally after being left on the sidestand.

Happy to help if you are near Glasgow.


Graham Wintersgill
On the bonnnie bonnie banks of Loch Lomond

2001 K1200LT

1995 K75RT now deceased
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post #10 of 10 Old May 20th, 2009, 4:58 pm
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Re: Buying advice K1200LT

The two known problem areas on the LT are the final drive (not the drive shaft) and the clutch slave cylinder. Although the final drive gets all the publicity, the slave cylinder is a more problematic failure in my opinion. If the final drive fails, it is a two hour replacement, but the final drive unit costs over $1000. The clutch slave cylinder fails considerably more than the final drive, and parts cost is under $200, but this usually takes out the clutch too, and the labor is over $1000 and takes a lot longer. Both failures can be a $1200-1500 repair bill, but the final drive is quick to do.

Regarding the smoke after sitting, that is a common trait of the "Brick" engine, as on the sidestand the cylinders are pointed down, so oil collects behind the pistons and can slowly leak a little past the rings into the combustion area, thus the short time of smoke on start up. Lean the bike slightly to the right for a few seconds when shutting down to help, and more importantly, park on the center stand.

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

David Shealey
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