FJR 1300 AE (LONG!)

Marilyn Mason masonjs at
Tue Jul 10 05:55:12 PDT 2007

Cycle Canada had one of these as a long term test. They had a couple of
problems all due to low speed engagement of the clutch. 1.  Stopped on the
side of the road and wanting to turn around because you missed a corner.
Normally feather the clutch and dog walk the bike around.  With the auto
engagement the bike had a tendency to jump when it engaged.  Not good with a
large bike.
2. They got on a rough gravel road that turned into a cow track. Trying to
navagate around stones and such, they finally blew the transmission on this
one.  Not a good enduro machine.
Other than these 2 items they had nothing but praise for the system.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Rob Schwartz" <coldinvt at>
To: "Kawasaki GPZ1100 discussion" <gpzlist at>
Sent: Monday, July 09, 2007 10:10 PM
Subject: FJR 1300 AE (LONG!)

> As many of you may or may not know, I rented an '07 FJR for the Fandango
> this year.  We put ~1700 miles on it, 2up and pretty well maxed with
> on some of the best roads (in the world?) and I'd say it was a damn good
> test ride!
> We're looking to augment the stable with a more capable 2up tourer and the
> FJR is ahead of the K1200GT on my list by about, say $9000.  Anyway, the
> test ride confirmed that it's a damn fine bike and I'd really love to own
> one.
> Fast forward to this past Friday when an '06 FJR hit the local paper for
> $10900.  I called on it and it turns out it's the AE (as in electronically
> controlled clutch/sequential manual gearbox) with under 500 miles on it.
> The owner's one of those guys that can't even live with it for a minute
> until it's got dual 2bros slip-ons.  "He's got a Harley that he's riding
> more and just doesn't need this."  Anyway, $10900 is a pretty good deal
> a 500-mile-old FJR, but for the AE that lists for $2300 more?  It's a
> deal!  As long as the transmission doesn't suck...
> So I rode it.  In a word, it's cool!  It works just like a regular clutch,
> expertly manipulated.  The slightest rev when sitting in first eases the
> clutch into the "friction zone" and with a steady roll-on, you're off.
> Then, either lift the shift lever or press the thumb trigger and it
> instantly shifts to second with a very smooth clutch engagement, and so
> on...  I was skeptical of how smoothly it would downshift and was very
> surprised at how well it works.  You can blip the throttle a bit and you'd
> swear you were clutching yourself!  You don't have to be precise on the
> throttle at all, either.  Even a hamfisted moment is met with nice smooth
> clutch engagement.  With just the 15 miles or so of practice I did on open
> road, twisties, parking lots & neighborhoods, I had it working as smooth
> buttah.  I think I want it.
> So I ask The List:
> 1. 2006 Was the first year for the FJR AE.  Should I be concerned?  I
> t seen much in the way of common issues on the FJR boards but I'm
> Not "bad-feeling" hesitant just, "I should be hesitant, right?"
> 2. I don't think they've sold too many AE models, but WTF do I know?
> Anyway, do you think the dealer network will be as supportive if I should
> have an issue on the road?
> I wouldn't look at the AE if the price wasn't right.  It's a $2300 option
> a new FJR and, even though it includes the heated grips, it ain't even
> to worth it.  For even money though?  It's well worth it.  The clutch on
> rental was just fine and never caused any discomfort (which had been a
> concern of mine) so it's not like I couldn't live with the "regular" one
> (1300 A).  I do like the AE's color better than the cherry red of the A,
> that's not a huge deal.  If I had to, I could hold out for a used '06 A
> which came in blue which I'd prefer to the '07's red or there's an eBay
> A that a fanatical owner paid his dealer to switch all the bodywork from
> AE so it would be silver.
> Have I prattled on enough??  What'cha think?
> Thanks, thanks, thanks!
> Rob

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