If nothing else, the BMW "C" cruisers are a great example of what happens when professional designers put their minds to the cruiser idiom.
Those bikes make all others look like high school shop projects that used parts from Home Depot, including rattle can paint.
That "mile-long" driveshaft is priceless.
'12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S
I own a 03 CLC that I bought new in Feb of 04. I have just shy of 60,000 essentially trouble free miles. Just about everything said about the cruiser models and the CLC in particular is true. To summarize, 90% of Beemer community dislike the CLC and about 90% of owners of other marquees believe it is uniquely beautiful. Yet , if you check out the resale values for the 03 and 04 CLC's, ( see the latest MCN issue) they are within 5%-7% of the same year RT's! In another 10 years or so, it will be interesting to see how history treats the BMW cruiser line. Don' t forget, over 50,000 were sold from 98 to 04!
I bought the silver one in Feb.'05 when it was 2yrs. old and had 17k on it. Now I have
68K without final drive problems and a few mods to personalize it. The seat has been
redone, it uses both filiments on the high beam H-4 bulbs, I added Saeng mirrors to the handle bar holes, handlebar risers and LED stop/tail lights on the top box. It has
been a love relationship that I can't seem to get away from. A comfy bike that does all
I ask. I'm sure there are better bikes for different reasons. This just fills my bill. I hope it lasts forever.
I've owned a CLC and a 'regular' C. BMW never really enthusiastically advertised the "C", but it was around for like 6 years and slowly built a following. The CL/CLCs were only around two short model years. I guess we shouldn't have been surprised that if you take a great cruiser and slap on a huge fork mounted fairing and also install two non-removable saddle bags, you get a half-assed tourer.
The fairing was a bitch to push around. At very low speed it was dangerous to the newcomer. At highway touring speeds it was rock-solid, similar to a LT.
When it came out, motorcycle magazines kind of ridiculed it for it's 62HP and 1100-something CCs. Those bad reviews kept it's sales numbers down as much as BMW keeping it a secret. BMW already was selling the RT and LT tourers so this new model had an uphill battle. Just where did it fit in?
But even though it wasn't a rice burner off the line, it had a 6-speed trans and plenty of low-end torque. It was comfortable once you were traveling over 30MPH and/or on the open road. It was not a bike you wanted to hop on and go to the local store.
'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.