What the heck is a sport tourer anyway? - Sportbike Forum: Sportbike Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-23-2002, 08:49 PM Thread Starter
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What the heck is a sport tourer anyway?

The "Best Sport Tourer Update" thread has revealed underlying disagreement about sport touring--although "non-agreement" may be a better way to put it. We differ in both mission profile and equipment requirements when we talk about sport touring.

For me, sport-touring is a one-up, multi-day ride primarily over twisty backroads, a minimum of 200mi per day (more often 400) and from several hundred to well over 1000mi total distance. I ride fairly fast, but no more than 8/10s on such a ride. If I'm not visiting friends, I eat in restaurants and sleep in hotels--no camping. I prefer nice weather, but a storm looming in the forecast won't change my plans. Sightseeing is often an important part of the trip, so I'll stop to visit interesting locations or just stroll around a town I haven't seen before.

I can choose between my VFR750, which I've had since '97, and my more recently acquired ST1100. I bought the ST1100 specifically for the missions described above. Integrated hard luggage, shaft drive, and excellent weather protection give it more flexibility than the VFR. The downside is that it's something of a handful on really nasty roads.

But the VFR still fills the role admirably on some trips such as my occasional overnights to LA (200mi away). It's easier to get through often-nasty traffic, and the limited carrying capacity of its soft bags isn't a problem. And if I have a chance to do some canyon carving while I'm there, it's the better tool for the job.

What about you? What do you mean by "sport touring" and what features do you look for in a "sport tourer"?
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-23-2002, 11:00 PM
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I would be interested to know when the term sport-touring came about, that would probably shed some light on the classic definition of sport-tourer, and what bikes would fall into that category,

I feel that a number of the motorcycles listed are more aptly called sport-touring substitutes, mainly anything that would more appropriately fall into another category, the ZX11/12, Hayabusa, and Blackbird are already considered open-classers so even though they can meet the demands of sport-touring for some people doesn't automaticaly make them into sport-tourers,

the ST1100/1300, Concourse, and now FJR1300 are certainly sport-touring motorcycles, as well as most of what BMW is now offering, the ZZR1200 which I believe is just a tarted up ZX11 just illustrates how well the ZX11 is up to the task since it is marketed as a sport-tourer,

the BMW R90s was a sportbike in its day, but it could be argued that it was one of the first sport-tourers, BMW seems to have gotten in to this because of their refusal to produce anything competitive with modern sportbikes, so saying that it is it's own special thing has kept them out of trouble, Honda tried this with the 6 cylinder CBX which was a slow seller in it's naked sportbike form so they slapped a fairing on it and changed it slightly and tried to market it as a sport-tourer, the VFR began as a sportbike as well but when lightweight inline fours began to make it less desireable as a sportbike Honda decided to market it as a sporty sport-tourer, which was a very good move.

although a classic sport-tourer should be shaft drive, have a decent range, good reliability and not alot of maintanance, as well as a more comfortable seating position and factory hard luggage as standard equipment,
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-26-2002, 06:07 PM
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Lt, I'go with your description except for the shaft drive part. I think that a sport tourer should have (either factory equiped or available) hard luggage, a reconizable resemblance to the Sport Bike that it came from, Sport bike like handeling, a comfortable seating position, and sport bike like power. With out most of these things the bike becomes simply a Tourer fitting it into Goldwing, FLH, Venture,and k class Beemer's classification.
I feel that Your sporttourer mission statement is right on at least as far as My useage goes. I bought my Trophy with much the same type of use in mind. Of course I could sport tour on my daytona with soft bags and the clip-ons but Im not going to.

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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-27-2002, 03:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lt.Gustl
I would be interested to know when the term sport-touring came about, that would probably shed some light on the classic definition of sport-tourer, and what bikes would fall into that category,
Dunno when it came about, but it could be argued that Kawasaki redefined (or defined?) the term in '86 when they came out with the Concours. Sure there were 'sport-tourers' before then, but most were turned into such by their owners. Those that came from the factory with bags, etc, didn't have enough power to get out of their own way. If memory serves, the Concours was the first bike to come from a maker with:
1. Decent power/brakes/handling
2. Luggage standard
3. Good weather protection
4. Good range (300 miles/per tank)
5. Shaft drive (not necessary, but darn nice when racking up miles)

Don't forget, at least one magazine (maybe more?) gave the Concours bike of the year when it was introduced.

the ST1100/1300, Concourse, and now FJR1300 are certainly sport-touring motorcycles...
One of these days somebody's gonna tell me what a 'Concourse' is!?

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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-28-2002, 06:00 AM
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Seeing I started this topic maybe I can fix It SPORTOURIER Is a very subjective term(opioniated) thats like saying its partly cloudy/sunny I could have added about twenty bikes to the list, I should have added the word Modern or 21st century .

This I s my defintion: Anybike that you could put on a Minium of 400 miles a day In comfert without touring Exp: Goldwing. I have been on at least 100 bikes in my life and the list I started covers about 90 percent I am sure a few guys would concider a ZX12 a sportourier, Myself no been On one for about 30minutes my left (or was it right) nut went numb. Or ask yourself can you put on at least 10,000 miles a year on your current bike (not including work) If so you may have a S.T. Their is no right or wrong answer just an opion Also when I first got my blackbird It was borderline on Sport or ST, since I put on a corbin seat Give taller shield and hel-bars Its 100 percent ST. put 17,000 miles on last year did a 600 mile day trip and a dozen 500 mile trip. i am very confident someone out their thinks his GSXR1000 is a ST. In his mind maybe but by popular Opion Also been on one, the ZX1200 is far more comfertable

Finally I meant CONCOURS I can only ride not spell
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 08-28-2002, 06:02 AM
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Seeing I started this topic maybe I can fix It SPORTOURIER Is a very subjective term(opioniated) thats like saying its partly cloudy/sunny I could have added about twenty bikes to the list, I should have added the word Modern or 21st century .

This I s my defintion: Anybike that you could put on a Minium of 400 miles a day In comfert without touring Exp: Goldwing. I have been on at least 100 bikes in my life and the list I started covers about 90 percent I am sure a few guys would concider a ZX12 a sportourier, Myself no been On one for about 30minutes my left (or was it right) nut went numb. Or ask yourself can you put on at least 10,000 miles a year on your current bike (not including work) If so you may have a S.T. Their is no right or wrong answer just an opion Also when I first got my blackbird It was borderline on Sport or ST, since I put on a corbin seat Give taller shield and hel-bars Its 100 percent ST. put 17,000 miles on last year did a 600 mile day trip and a dozen 500 mile trip. i am very confident someone out their thinks his GSXR1000 is a ST. In his mind maybe but by popular Opion Also been on one, the ZX1200 is far more comfertable

Finally I meant CONCOURS I can only ride not spell
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-02-2002, 12:55 AM
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I basically agree with you guys except it should be able to do MUCH more than 300 miles per day COMFORTABLY.

I posted this in the "Best ST" thread but it's appropriate here:

Quote:
Some, like the Falco and ZX12, are more sport bikes than sport tourers. A true ST should be able to take you on 800+ mile days that consist of something like this: 300 miles of superslab to get to a great road, 200 miles of flogging that great road and 300 miles of more superslab to get to your destination...all while carrying full luggage and possibly a passenger. At no time should you (or your passenger) feel fatigued or sore and at no time should you feel unconfident in your bike's abilities in all situations. That's a great sport tourer in my book. I rule out things like the ZX12, XX, Hayabusa, Falco, etc. because I know I would get too fatigued/sore and I would have a difficult time with luggage space and/or passenger accomodations. I rode on a friend's Futura for a day and found I could easily keep pace with the Gixxers and R1's in my group (repli-racers are out of their element on ALL public roads. They do only one thing perfectly: pushing 10/10ths on a race track. It took me years to finally figure this out.) Some good riders pulled me slightly on their repli-racers...at first. They inevitably got fatigued and, within an hour or two, I found them disappearing in my rear view mirrors, sloppily trying to keep up. At the end of the day I felt refreshed and ready for a long night-ride while my buddies all wanted to go home and sleep forever. That's when I discovered what a real sport tourer was all about.

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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-02-2002, 01:40 AM
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It doesn't matter to you what I think a sport-tourer is because the only defn that matters is YOURS. IMHO a sport-tourer has some sport and some tour to it. There is an obviously huge casm of difference between the two (sport vs tour) so when you say there is a blend of the 2 to form sport-tourer it can be anywhere from 1%/99% to 50%/50% to 99%/1%.

I plan on adding a S-T to the garage this spring if all goes well. I have to say I'm torn between the Futura (60%/40% IMO) vs. the FJ13 (45%/55%). I have to say I'm leaning towards the FJ because of the shaft drive (I hate lubing on the road) but am fearful that I'll be disapointed in the loss of agility and ground clearance advantage of the Futura. I've resolved that in my mind the FJ will work better as long as I have a track bike or seriously sharp edged street ride to keep me canyon happy.

Then again a Busa with hard bags (70/30?) and tall screen might be perfect, chain lube isn't THAT bad I guess......................................



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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-02-2002, 07:03 PM
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My sport-tourer used to be an '86 Ninja 600r, then a 99 gsxr750, and currently a gsxr1000. 600 mi days, 2-up, motels, or 600 mi days, solo, camping. Soft saddle bags. Other than a double-bubble, completely stock.
From Yellowstone to Deals Gap to Houston, been there on the 1k.
Been everywhere else on the others.

My point is, if you have a bike that is meant to go around corners very quickly, it is a sport-tourer if you tour on it without any support vehicle along. Comfort is all relative.
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 11-02-2002, 07:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Keith B

Comfort is all relative.
Bingo, amen to that........................


I guess if your into the passion/sport side enough it doesn't take much to satisfy the comfort/tour side??

Doesn't matter how bad your ass hurts, if you're all grins it's good.

Repeal helmet laws, they only protect people we most likely don't need in the gene pool any way!
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