Ducati Hypermotard and Other Bikes
This weekend I went to several dealerships with a friend who is in the market for a new bike. There was a Yamaha demo day going on and I got to ride a couple there as well then went to other dealers to ride a Triumph Thruxton, Ducati Monster 1200, and a Hypermotard SP. Thoughts on those other bikes are below, but first I need to share about the Hypermotard SP.
That thing was a blast. It's 821cc, weighs 430lbs wet, and was just so much fun to ride. The suspension was incredible and the bike was so flickable and nimble. I rode a 2015 with 800 miles on it and the dealer was asking $13k. I imagine I could get that price down $500 or so since they have a lot of used stock and I'm really considering picking it up. It's got Marzocchi forks, Ohlins rear, and these gorgeous forged aluminum wheels...I'm in love. Does anyone have one of these or have experience riding it? I'm not going to highway this thing, but for in town riding, I don't think there's anything that can match it. Plus, that seat height is great for taller riders.
Here's the other bikes I rode and the short takes:
XSR900 - Beautiful to look at, very nice suspension, and definitely living up to the reviews. Engine gets pretty buzzy at higher revs and it feels kind of cheap. Overall, it's not different enough of a riding experience to make me consider changing from the 919.
FZ09 - Similar to the XSR (since they share a lot) but less refined. I consider this and the XSR to be nice updates on the 919 formula. They're narrower, which is nice, but they don't feel as well put together as the 919, if that makes sense. Among other things, the turn indicators flop all over the place and look like they're going to fall off. Where the 919 is all metal and aluminum, the FZs and XSR are plastic.
FZ07 - If you want something that's really light and fun, but not as down on power as a 250-300, this is the naked for you.
Thruxton - The seating position isn't as aggressive as you think it would be with the clip ons. The new 1200 twin is a gem and Triumph has really done a great job making a bike that feels premium. Granted, it is a $16k bike, so it should feel that way, but I really like the changes to the 2016 relative to the old models. The liquid cooling makes a huge difference.
Monster 1200 - That thing is fast and goodness does it make a sweet noise. Seating position isn't as cramped as I remembered and the electronics on it are great. Suspension wasn't bad, but was noticeably less composed than the Hyper. Think of it as the 919s sexy Italian cousin.
After all this, I'm still having thoughts about that Hypermotard. I'm going to run the numbers this week and see if I can talk myself out of getting it. If I fail, I'll be posting pictures in 2 weeks max...