As the owner of a 2002 and occasional rider of a 2005, the differences I have felt are very slight. The 05 has a slightly shorter turning radius (I think) and is a little easier to handle at low parking lot speeds. The 05 has the power center stand, that to me is not worth the extra weight and hydraulics. I only use my side stand except when working on the bike.
I think there are a few differences in power and seat, but I really didn't notice them. I've got 30,000 miles on my 02 and probably not more than 100 on the 05. Just my .02
By the way, I'm planning to replace the shocks on my bike soon......
Opinions are like certain body parts, everyone has one! Mine differs from Dano's.
I've owed four LT's. 01-52,000 miles, 03-51,000 miles and two 05's-71,000 combined miles. There are subtle differences between the 05 up and pre 05, but when added up, they are substantial, IMHO. The following are the changes on the 05 up. Three degrees less rake to the front end. Results in much more nimble feel in low speed manuevers. Progressive damping in the rear suspension. Noticeably better ride. Redesigned dash. On board computer a part of the dash layout now, closer to your field of vision while driving and reseting the various windows on the computer can now be done at the handlebar with a touch of the BC button. 16 more HP. Noticeable in the higher RPM range. Redesigned headlight. Much better than the previous design but could still be better. Trunk handle. Front turn signals also running lights. Cosmetic changes to the tupperware, BMW roundel, etc. I might have missed some. This is just a quick list. Any additional money would be more than worth it to me.......but then maybe it isn't to you! Your call.
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