Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Prairieville, Louisiana, USA
Re: K or RT?
I agree that the K1600 would fit your requirement. However:
I spent this morning with a K16GLT with the SO on the back for her input. She is impressed with the seating, visibility over my head and lack of buffet when the windscreen is up. She reports that it is a far superior experience than the ride she took on the back of a K1300GT. After a 20 mile, 20 minute ride with her on the K13 that I was told to return to the dealership slowly. She said that was the worst ride ever and she was experiencing severe turbulence from the windscreen at all angles. The K16 wins over a K13 easily.
My take on the bike today (latest of several long rides on the K16):
1. The engine is a great powerful lump that is butter smooth, however, the engine/transmission makes a really obnoxious whine at certain RPM's. and the transmission is clunky on shifts. The SO specifically asked me what the clunking was on downshifts to stops, and that is something I have never heard her ask on any bike. She also mentioned the whine as being really bothersome to her.
2. The first time I took a ride, I noticed that the clutch moves in and out about 30mm or so when rolling on or off power. One reviewer commented that it makes clutch control problematic, but I did not find it a big deal if you already know good clutch control.
3. There is a growing list of K16 owners on a number of boards complaining that their bikes pull left, especially hands-off the bars. I tried that on I10 at speed and on several other roads at different speeds, and the demo bike I was on does, in fact, exhibit the same pulling to the left if hands-off the bars. I actually moved off the seat to the right a considerable amount to counter this effect, and my SO asked me what the heck I was doing.
4. I still find the windscreen on the GTL too tall for me. If I move it up just a little over an inch, I was looking through the screen and I really do not like that when I am running twisty roads. Perhaps the GT screen would be a better choice.
All in all the K16 is a fine machine with cutting edge technology, but I found myself firmly stating that I still prefer the R bikes. I love the R1200R I have, and would seriously consider obtaining a RT with the new engine before I would ever consider a K. Not my kind of ride.
Ride what grabs you and makes you smile, whatever it is. Nobody can tell you what you will be happy with. You alone will know it when you see/ride it. Good luck on the quest
2011 RT polar metallic
Instructor, Motorcycle Safety Program Louisiana Department of Public Safety
NAUI Scuba Instructor #36288
Divers Alert Network Board member