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Discussion Starter #1
Ok just have one question. I believe the new 1300 gt has a wet clutch. Shouldn't it be more reliable. and 2 Is the final drive beefed up to make it more reliable. I know only time will tell but what are the feelings right now?
 

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Old Slow Guy in A Fast Car
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As you stated only time will tell. The only known problem so far is a bad "switch cluster" (the ones on the handle bars) on bikes built before Feb 09. The dealers are changing all of them out.
 

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jvfowler said:
Ok just have one question. I believe the new 1300 gt has a wet clutch. Shouldn't it be more reliable. and 2 Is the final drive beefed up to make it more reliable. I know only time will tell but what are the feelings right now?
Actually, you have 2 questions. :D

The new slant 4 motors (latest gen 1200 and 1300) do have multiplate wet clutches vs. the single plate dry traditional to earlier (and still in the R bike) configurations. Time will tell on reliability, but having had a number of bikes with the single plate config in both R and K bikes I would not call them unreliable by any stretch of the imagination. I think the multiplate will be better and it's certainly easier to shift smoothly with it.

As for the final drive, yes, some change were made, and after 1800 miles mine hasn't blown up. :) Of course, the previous rev on my 1200GT didn't blow up after 12,000 miles. And in the 160,000 miles on 6 other bikes/final drives I've had only one had a failure, and that was on a 99 LT that I regularly flogged beyond reasonable measures for a large touring bike. But I'm sure as soon as someone has any issue whatsoever they will decry the newest design as completely flawed and BMW as the worst company in the world, and they would be wrong. ;)
 

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DavidTaylor said:
But I'm sure as soon as someone has any issue whatsoever they will decry the newest design as completely flawed and BMW as the worst company in the world, and they would be wrong. ;)
OK, my turn. :D

I've had two clutch replacements (36K & 65K) and two final drive replacements (63K & 73K) in two years on my '07 GT.

The multi-plate wet clutch is inherently a very robust design. It's what 90% of the bikes out there use. BMW has only been using it since 2005, so they're a bit new to the party. As such, they've had some teething problems related to poor oil flow, sticking clutch plates, and interference with other components. Most of these items simply mean the clutch is excessively noisy, but not necessarily prone to failure. Each year they introduce more minor changes to help fine-tune the clutch, and after riding a K1300 I think they've gotten pretty close.

BMW has been using the Paralever final drive for ~20 years, and it's their own proprietary technology. Because of an excessive number of failures on the LT's and RT's, they completely redesigned the Paralever for the 1200cc Boxer bikes in '04. The new Slant/4 bikes also have this newer Paralever, but mirrored to the other side due to engine layout requirements.

The newer Paralever is also experiencing a higher than normal failure rate. And BMW has made incremental changes for '08 and '09 to address these failures. In '08, they beefed up the input pinion bearings and added a drain plug. In '09, they changed the drive shaft to a 2-piece version. So theoretically, the newest bikes have the least chance of failure.

But when my factory-fitted '07 final drive failed last summer, they replaced it with the latest-greatest '08 final drive with all the improvements. Then 3 months and 10K miles later, that one failed as well. So much for incremental improvements.

As I said, the only evidence I can find between the '08 and '09 drives is changes to the drive shaft, not the drive itself. I want to believe that BMW has finally gotten it right, and I'd buy a K13 today if I knew for sure. But the fact is that we don't know for sure. So the best we can do is hope that they got it right, and wait until lots of folks start putting lots of miles on the new bikes and see how it all shakes down.

Note that I never said BMW was the worst company in the world, but they do have a few things to learn about reliability and standing behind their products. My dealers have been great, but quite honestly the factory should have found and definitely fixed the root cause of these failures long ago. Anything less is simply sub-par.

Note that I'm not telling anyone not to buy a new bike if you really want one. But you should be aware of the potential issues. At least as aware as we can be given the randomness of the problem and the complete lack of hard evidence here.

So as with everything else, in the end it's your choice. :)
 

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Ken I knew I could count on you for the counterpoint. I just wish you would have thrown in, "Dave, you ignorant slut." :D

And I'm not discounting Ken's post, either. His comments are correct and his experiences are a matter of fact, not hyperbole. His last statement is the most truthful and the one with the most weight for anyone making a decision on a new bike - "So as with everything else, in the end it's your choice."
 

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DavidTaylor said:
"Dave, you ignorant slut." :D
What can I say, Dave, I can see your K13 grin from all the way down here. :D

Trust me, I want to believe the new K13 is the Answer to Everything, but somehow I'm still a bit gun shy . . .
 

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OK come on Ken, we all know that the majority of the problems that plague your GT can be traced down to the nut that connects the seat with the handlebars....... :histerica
 

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amarider said:
OK come on Ken, we all know that the majority of the problems that plague your GT can be traced down to the nut that connects the seat with the handlebars....... :histerica
Can't really argue with that conclusion, but the best answer I've been able to come up with is "too many miles." :confused:
 

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I was thinking it had to be a short between the handlebars and the footpegs! :histerica

Ken, you put some miles on a bike. 10,000 miles in 3 months is remarkable. Thanks for your input and I appreciate your relating of your experiences with your GT. As your avatar says, I hope you don't have another failure.
 

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meese said:
What can I say, Dave, I can see your K13 grin from all the way down here. :D

Trust me, I want to believe the new K13 is the Answer to Everything, but somehow I'm still a bit gun shy . . .
If I had been through what you've experienced I would be a bit gun shy, too. Don't forget how I ended up with a K13, so my path hasn't been all rose petals and playful kittens, either. While I am enjoying the bike immensely and haven't had any problems so far, I still have a couple of threads running in the background in my brain watching for issues. So I'm not completely blinded by optimism; I'm pretty much a realist on this as well as most other things.
 

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DavidTaylor said:
"Dave, you ignorant slut." :D

."
I thought it was "Jane you ignorant slut".. :D
I kept that brain cell loaded with that memory, hoping I would be able to use that one and dang it ya'll sorta beat me to it..


Gotta love this site :rotf:
 

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haughty said:
I thought it was "Jane you ignorant slut".. :D
I kept that brain cell loaded with that memory, hoping I would be able to use that one and dang it ya'll sorta beat me to it..


Gotta love this site :rotf:

This isn't the weekend I go by Jane.
 

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I sold my '06 GT at the end of October ... still haven't replaced it. As much as I loved my GT (and former LT) I won't be buying another BMW until all these "silly rumors" of failing final drives go away.

Yea ... my final drive let go at 19K. But ... that might just be a rumor too. ;)
 

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THE Democracy Doctor
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My dealer "Mama" INSISTS that the FD's that are failing are the "iron butt" guys. You know, riding 8 + hours at a time, etc. I don't think that is jiving with what the guys on this site are saying, however.
 

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grifscoots said:
Alright, already! I'll ship the Jane suit back to you Monday. Sheesh!
Thanks, Sister! The Charo outfit I've been wearing is really throwing people off.
 

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messenger13_ver2 said:
I sold my '06 GT at the end of October ... still haven't replaced it. As much as I loved my GT (and former LT) I won't be buying another BMW until all these "silly rumors" of failing final drives go away.

Yea ... my final drive let go at 19K. But ... that might just be a rumor too. ;)
I hear ya bud. While I'm still head-over-heels in love with my FJR, I do want another (modern) BMW someday. But there is no way in hell I'm buying one until there's a marked improvement in both actual on-road reliability AND attitude from BMW.

I think it speaks volume that our own k-bikes.com GT forum has 4 sticky threads dealing with major flaws on the K12GT. That's just seems crazy.

My local BMW club has a huge group of R12GS riders. They too are plagued by trip-ending problems, several of them repeat failures on the same bike, others with more than one major failure on their GS. These are hardcore BMW guys that freakin' LOVE their GS's but they're near the end of their ropes. EWS, fuel pumps, fuel pump relays, FDs, fuel guages that can't be made to work after 5 attempts by the dealer, etc.

We had to trailer home one of these GS's just this weekend on day one of a planned week long vacation after the u-joint fragged.

I wish you guys many happy miles of riding but I'd make sure your tow plan is up to date and if I was you, I wouldn't ride one day or one mile past the end of the warranty.
 

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bmwhd said:
I think it speaks volume that our own k-bikes.com GT forum has 4 sticky threads dealing with major flaws on the K12GT. That's just seems crazy..
I did that. Makes sense now, eh?

I absolutely love my GT. It charges out of corners like satan is after it and leans till I freak out. I can ride it all day long comfortably and it's a breeze to work on. I'm even confident that I can adjust the valves now.



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bmwhd said:
I hear ya bud.
And speaking of "bud". ;~)

I believe I owe you a 6-pack or something. You won the bet fair and square, and I need to pay up. I guess that GT's still costing me money. ;)

PM me your address and beverage of choice. Or maybe just your address ... I'll send ya something worth while.
 
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