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Top 200 Current Motorcycles: Best Or Worst? - BMW K 1200 LT & GT

Updated on May 31, 2009

 BMW K 1200 LT

With the BMW K 1200 LT is Beemer trying to do a Honda Gold Wing or a Honda Pacific Coast? This bike falls somewhere in the middle and although it fortunately is not quite so plasticky and scooter like as the Pacific Coast, it doesn't quite have the chutzpah of the transcontinental Gold Wing. Let's call it a German version of the Kawasaki Concours and leave it at that, shall we?

There are some aspects of the K 1200 LT that I can appreciate and others that are straight out of lunacy land. I have to admit that I like the way that the saddlebags are removable and have a big easy to grasp handle, yet flow seamlessly into the lines of the entire motorcycle. I'm not as enamored of the side panel which again look far too much like they belong on a big scooter like a Suzuki Burgman. Frankly I think that the side of the full fairing is actually quite attractive and the chrome slats do harken back to classic Beemers of old, so I'm definitely all for that. The saddle for both rider and passenger looks quite cushy, although the pillion is a bit short so the passenger better have a petite derriere or it's going to be tight back there. Lunacy land aspects like that truly bizarro downward facing light underneath the main headlight are sheer products of hallucinogenic styling, and the handlebars are far too bulky and heavy-looking.

The motorcycle is driven by a roaring 1172 cc, water cooled, 4 - cylinders in line powerplant featuring a bore and stroke of 70.5 mm x 75 mm and a compression ratio of 10.8:1 which endows the bike a profoundly satisfying 116 horsepower (85.3 kW). When we compute the core weight of the motorcycle being 777 pounds (353 Kg.), and factor that into the superlative horsepower generated we get a total of 6.69 pounds per horsepower, a total which represents a fairly close approximation of the power to weight ratio of a Porsche 911 Carrera.

Verdict: A wonderous, powerful, prodigious Euro Tourer that does everything well except there are some aspects of the  styling which leave me flatter than a pancake. Still I have to give it props for what it is and what it does... all very close to perfect. BEST!

 BMW K 1200 GT

In the famous words of Ronald Reagan "well there you go again..." As soon as I started complimenting the marque for the 95% spot on styling of their alluring K 1200 LT model, they come out with the BMW K 1200 GT which bears a striking resemblance to a 1950s ferry. You half expect that big gun metal gray fairing to tilt up and let the cars come out onto the dock. Clearly an example of the "what were you thinking" school of motorcycle styling.

The bike has a Interstate-gobbling 1157 cc, water cooled, 4 - cylinders in line engine with a bore and stroke measuring 79 mm x 59 mm and a compression ratio of 13:1 which bestows upon the motorcycle an amazing 152 horsepower (111.8 kW). When we calculate the basic weight of the motorcycle being 548 pounds (249 Kg.), and factor it into the brawny power generated we get a total calculation of 3.6 pounds per horsepower, a number that is somewhat close to the power to weight ratio of a Lamborghini Reventon.

Verdict: Where the K 1200 LT does almost everything right, the K 1200 GT is its evil doppelgänger in doing just about everything wrong. WORST!

Read all about each and every Top 200 Current Aprilia, Benelli, Bimota, BMW, Buell, Ducati, Harley Davidson, Honda, Kawasaki, KTM, Moto Guzzi, MV Agusta, Suzuki, Triumph, Victory, and Yamaha Motorcycle Model!

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