Prospective owner - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 13 Old Nov 9th, 2011, 10:04 am Thread Starter
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Prospective owner

Hey guys,

Interested in picking up a used LT this winter. I have two buddies who ride them and love 'em. I've gotten quite a bit of advice and insight but still have a few questions.

What are the model years with the enhanced power? Electric center stand? Colors?

I understand the final drive issue may be limited, are there any model years less prone than others?(not trying to start another FD thread here).

Finally, I had owned a 2008 Goldwing ABS/Airbag for a short period of time and sold it mainly because the ground clearance was so poor(I'm coming off sportbikes) and the front fork suspension sucked. Related to these two issues how does the LT compare? I've only ridden one once and only for a couple of miles so I cannot relate.

Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 13 Old Nov 9th, 2011, 10:30 am
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Re: Prospective owner

2005 & up have more HP , power center stand. & improved front end for better slow speed handling. Ground clearance is good as long as the shocks are not worn out. New after market shocks greatly improve ride & handling. I put Ohlins on my for around $1250.00 & the bike was better then new. The lean angle is far better the the Wing & the LT can hang with a lot of sport bikes in the twisties.

Stevie Shreeve
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post #3 of 13 Old Nov 9th, 2011, 10:55 am
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Re: Prospective owner

With sport tires I could easily drag the foot pegs. The problem was that I was also putting a portion of the fairing on the road.

I switched to a harder compound tire to get more miles out of them. I can still drag the pegs, but not with as much confidence as with the sport tire.


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post #4 of 13 Old Nov 9th, 2011, 2:47 pm
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Re: Prospective owner

The only years they had the pretty color was 2000, 2001. After that they stopped making the purty ones. Purple. (BMW Mauve Metallic)



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post #5 of 13 Old Nov 9th, 2011, 2:56 pm
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Re: Prospective owner

Originally Posted by wa1200lt
The only years they had the pretty color was 2000, 2001. After that they stopped making the purty ones. Purple. (BMW Mauve Metallic)

02 was the best year and one of the rarest colors. 50,000 miles in 8 years and not a burp! The difference in power and handling is negligible. The power center-stand is excess weight, additional hydraulics and electrons. A negative, in my opinion, not necessary or needed. Just my .02

Tampa, Fl.

12 K1600 GTL
02 K1200 LT (gone but not forgotten)
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post #6 of 13 Old Nov 9th, 2011, 4:59 pm
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Re: Prospective owner

Must teel you this. This bikes are great!!! I have being around bikes for over 20 years and decided to hit the open road. Found mine on craiglist south florida area about 3 months ago and WE LOOOOVE this bike. there is nothing we hate about it, well, just the height, I`m a 29 inseam, that`s all. very fun to ride and handle. we decided to go with a newer model because of the center stand mainly and also because it was easier to find them with lower mileage. You can pickup a good deal in Florida. Check this ones I just found. This one a decent deal I think. This one a bit old, but with good miles and maintenance This one a bit newer. I even found you a navi for it if you need it : HAVE FUN. If you find some posts with no pictures I would still travel and look at them. There is fun on that too. Believe it or not, the one we kept, the guy did not know how to load pics in the system and it was the newest and best bike on the market at that time.


Last edited by mechanic; Nov 9th, 2011 at 5:32 pm.
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post #7 of 13 Old Nov 9th, 2011, 5:05 pm
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Re: Prospective owner

I agree with DanDiver, the extra power on the 05's and newer isn't very noticeable, and the Power Center Stand, although nice, makes it much harder to change oil, and is just one other thing to go wrong. I have an 2000, and I really have no desire to own one of the newer ones.
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post #8 of 13 Old Nov 9th, 2011, 5:26 pm
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Re: Prospective owner

Originally Posted by wa1200lt
The only years they had the pretty color was 2000, 2001. After that they stopped making the purty ones. Purple. (BMW Mauve Metallic)

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post #9 of 13 Old Nov 9th, 2011, 6:34 pm
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Re: Prospective owner

I owned an 03 LT for 60K miles. I have an 05 now and the handling is MUCH improved. I was amazed. The power is not much different and the centerstand is OK. I'd go for the 05 and later...........

2006 R1200RT
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Totaled Oct 2, 2010
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post #10 of 13 Old Nov 9th, 2011, 10:31 pm
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Re: Prospective owner

If I were you, I would talk my buddies into letting me ride one of their LT's for an extended ride of at least 100 miles. This should give you a good feel for the bike's demeanor and capabilities, and aid you in making a final decision.

Early models ('99 to '04) have taller gearing and turn about 500 fewer rpms in 5th gear at road speed (70mph) than the '05 and later models (read: better gas mileage). The "extra" 16 hp in the '05 and later models is barely perceptible (and only if you run over 6K rpm). The torque figure (84 lb-ft) is the same for all years; torque is far more important than hp in a large touring bike. The hydraulic centerstand adds weight and can become a maintenance headache. Personally, I have never had difficulty with the much maligned "slow speed handling issues" of the early models. The early '99 to '02 models did not have the servo-assist brakes and are much easier to flush and maintain. I think '02 was the last year of the "linked" braking system where actuating the front brake (hand lever) would also simultaneously activate the rear brake; activating the rear brake pedal would engage only the rear brake and not the front. Individually activating either the foot or hand brake on the '03 and later models will simultaneously engage both brakes. Many riders seem to prefer the earlier "linked" system. Don't be too concerned about a rear drive failure. There are a few first-rate wrenchers on this site that can either walk you through a repair or do the repair for you at a very reasonable cost (including possibly a pre-emptive repair).

Best of luck in your quest. The LT is, overall, a superb machine capable of 500k+ miles with diligent, routine maintenance.
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post #11 of 13 Old Nov 10th, 2011, 1:10 pm
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Re: Prospective owner

Craig: This is a link I posted of my wife and I chasing some young bloods with a 2003 LT with Wilber shocks.The pace picks up after we get around the ditch cleaners.

Last edited by Samir; Nov 10th, 2011 at 1:23 pm.
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post #12 of 13 Old Nov 10th, 2011, 3:11 pm
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Re: Prospective owner

That was sooo nice! Kathy likes doing that with me a little, also. We did a hill country ride with some Suzuki riders and it was kinda like that...lovely, wonderful, thrilling. At that time I had an 850 Suzuki following a tricked out 750 Suzuki ,it would get along...not as sweetly as this LT, but, still nice. Thanks for the memory...You really don't need a sport bike to be sporty...just keep the rpms up and give it hell.

2000 Maroon [Canyon Red] K1200LTC
2006 DL650 [Red]
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post #13 of 13 Old Nov 11th, 2011, 5:18 am Thread Starter
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Re: Prospective owner

Thanks for all the great info and insight. I intend to heat up my search this winter. I'm still leaning towards a 2005 or maybe a 2006. Why not get the extra power even if only noticeable when wringing it out. I also like the electric centerstand feature even with the added complexities. Of course all this would be moot if I find a prior year for a ridiculous offer.

Is there a table available illustrating the colors offered by model year?

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