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Old 05-11-2012, 10:38 AM   #1
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Arrow Goldwing vs. K1600 GT for Commuting?

I am thinking of going with either the Goldwing or BMW K1600 GT as my next bike. I will use it to commute into downtown about four times a week, 40 miles round trip. I would definitely like to do long road trips, but would only be a couple a year.

I loved the R1 I had, just not practical for commuting. I only ever road it out in country roads. I did not like the Victory Vegas I had. Too slow and bulky, even for a performance cruiser.

I can't imagine a more comfortable bike than a Goldwing, but what's it like as far as maneuverability and city riding?

I plan to test ride both this summer, but would like others advice and experience.

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Old 05-11-2012, 10:48 AM   #2
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Old 05-11-2012, 10:50 AM   #3
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Old 05-11-2012, 10:51 AM   #4
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Why the flying brick and not an oil head? Seems more comparable to a Goldwing.
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Old 05-11-2012, 11:25 AM   #5
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The Wing will cost you less to maintain. Its easier to ride than an R1 also. I commute on both. I had a Wing many years ago and sold it and looked into the BMW. Once I did the homework on costs, I bought another Wing.
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Old 05-11-2012, 03:11 PM   #6
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The Wing is more comparable to the K1600GTL. The K1600GT is meant to go against Concours 14, FJR1300, and ST1300, but I suspect the BMW is priced on a different tier than buyers of these other sport tourers are willing to stomach. This is certainly the case for me. If I am gonna spend the $$ on a K1600GT, I might as well fork over a few $K more and get the GTL.

I love C14 as a commuter and can definitely see the GT in a comparable role. I used to look at the Wing as "the old man's bike", but it is looking better and better the older I get. The electric reverse would have been great on my last trip out to the 3sisters, where I had to park on some gravelly dirt roads.

Still, I can't get over the fact that ABS is optional on the Wing, and you have to spend close to $30K to get a package with it. Traction Control and ABS comes standard on the K1600GTL, which is a much more of a digital age design. The Wing is old-school with push button everywhere. No right or wrong, just different schools of thought.

In any case, if you are spending this much money on a commuting rig, you obviously can afford the maintenance cost of either ride. I wouldn't worry about manuvrerability, either. Obviously, they are both far heavier rigs than your R1, but they are also much more comfortable as well - both in terms of the rider ergonomics and all the luxury features. Even the Wing is surprisingly sporty, if you are so inclined to ride it that way. But really though, few people buy them to drag knees.

Keep your R1 for your Friday commute, afte you've been on the big rig all week. That's what I do with my ape. It's fun, refreshing and makes me glad to be back on the Sport Tourer come Monday.
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Old 05-11-2012, 03:16 PM   #7
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The BMW has some nice technology with the adaptive headlight and big LCD but it's more an upgraded sport tourer than a luxury tourer like the Goldwing.

If you crave long distance comfort for commuting, I would go with the Goldwing or look into cruiser tourers like Kawasaki's Voyager or the Victory Cross Country Tour.
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Old 05-11-2012, 03:39 PM   #8
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one thing I've noticed commuting on a fully faired bike ('87 Yamaha Venture, so may be totally different) is that I miss the wind. the shielding is nice when it's 40 deg. out, but I find myself uncomfortable in traffic when it's 70, because I just don't get the air flow I'm used to.
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