Spring Fever. (NGPZC)

Paul Landry p_landry at telus.net
Thu Apr 16 20:54:38 PDT 2009

Riding season finally arrived for me yesterday!..
No distance, just out running errands here in the valley as there is still a
lot of snow in the upper highways and passes.
Stopped into the new Kawasaki dealership, Harleys new MEGA store (it is
HUGE!), the local BMW/Ducati/Triumph dealership too... 
Looking at all the new stuff (the Harley dealer stop was just because I
could!, wanted to see inside their new store, bigger on the inside than
out!), the Kawasaki dealer is small as this is a "satellite" shop of the
main larger store.  The BMW/Ducati/Triumph dealership is again, very large
and very well stocked with a great selection of toys to look over, including
a Troy Bayliss special, $50,000 Cdn!.  Very nice..  
Chatting it up with the staff of the BMW/Ducati/Triumph shop and talked my
way into testing out a few mounts..  Could have ridden more bikes but
restrained myself, want to get invited back!..  Today I rode a Ducati
Multistrada 1100S and a Triumph Tiger (both 2009's).
Very nice in their own ways, but very different characters.
The Multi was first.  Very upright position, bike feels very tiny under you,
handlebars and mirrors are right under your chin.
Loved the Ohlin's suspension, thing just rails and is effortless about it.
Had a hard time liking the air cooled V-Twin.  Very torquey motor when you
wind it up, but it did not like to be lumbered along at low revs at all.  It
was always "shaking", bigger thumps through the seat at lower revs, less
irritating at higher revs.  Oddly though, the handle bars were tingle free.
The mirrors are small, close to you, and were always blurred, some times you
could make out the traffic behind, sometimes you knew something was there
but what, who knows, it could be a barn or an elephant you would never
know!.  Found the throttle very sensitive too, but that is just something to
adjust too.  Bike is geared very tall, cruising at 100 Km (60mph) you needed
to be in 4th gear, 5th if going down hill, 6th was just way to tall and the
bike did not like it at all.. 
The Tiger, very different, while the suspension is good, the Multi really
out shines it there.  But, the motor on the Tiger is so much more forgiving,
smooth, full of torque that is delivered over a much wider rev range.  Makes
it much easier to ride as you don't have to spend so much time thinking
about it as I did on the Multi.  Seating is definitely more like a street
bike and less like a dirt bike, longer reach to the handle bars (good),
mirrors in a better position and they worked great!.  
Both are tall bikes but Multi is a little narrower and allowed me to get a
little more foot on the ground when paddling around the parking lot.  Could
not do this on the Tiger, it is a tall bike.  I could not push it backwards
sitting on it, even though I was on level ground, paved parking lot.  I had
to get off and push it.  I am 5' 10" with a 32" in seam..  Hmm.. 
Everything is Plus Plus..  The Tiger comes with the saddle bags but you have
to add the "inserts" to color match ($400), taller wind screen, heated
grips, centre stand all extra.
The Multi, was packaged with the bags too, but again heated grips,
windscreen, centre stand all extras.
Then add the extra cost of insurance, first, second and maybe 3 services in
the first year depending on your mileage it gets pretty expensive.
Of these two the Tiger won hands down for me, but still no convinced it is
what I want to replace the GPz.
Just for fun, I will be trying a Monster 1100 and a F800ST next week!..   
Note to self, remember to buy a lottery ticket tomorrow..   ;-D
Paul W. Landry
P_Landry at telus.net

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