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Thread: What was wrong with the Criusers?

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  1. #1

    What was wrong with the Criusers?

    I love the BMW Phoenix and Montauk.

    What would you have done to them if you were an engineer at BMW to make them more acceptable to the Cruiser crowd?

    How could they evolved to make them compete with the HDs & VTXs?

    Is there any chance that BMW will again pick up a cruiser line.

  2. #2
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    They under powered them. The other BMWs of the time had lots more power.

  3. #3
    You would have to take the pipes off so they sounded right
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  4. #4
    Ohlins shocks and pipes with more "authority" for starters.

  5. #5
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    The Four P's - Power, Pipes, Phatand Profile

    They were underpowered.
    They sounded like a BMW not a crusier.
    They had the lines and style but somehow they did not look Pretty hot and tempting.
    and for the time they needed a big fat rear tire profile.

  6. #6
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    I took a demo on one. I owned a K11RS at the time. I had previously owned a H-D FLH (fat loud heavy).
    The R12C tried to straddle the fence between a BMW (a definitive sport-tourer) and a cruiser (long on looks and "feel", short on power and handling). It ended up being neither fish nor fowl- it did not have real BMW handling nor power, nor did it have the classic cruiser sound or look to it.
    i seriously doubt that BMW could have made the break necessary from their own history to make that bike competitive in that particular arena.
    Ride Safe, Ride Lots

  7. #7
    Registered User ANDYVH's Avatar
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    Much like the V-Rod is not seen as a "Harley" in its own market, the R1200C was not seen as a "BMW" in its own market.

    Harley has learned over the decades that anything that doesn't fit the HD mold doesn't sell. That is probably THE main reason HDs are still the bikes they are, heavy, low slung, under-powered, but shiny and make the desired noise. Its simply what sells in the USA.

    BMW tried, but in the respects others mentioned missed the "cruiser" mark by a long shot. Even a HD made more torque, but the R1200C had the HP, if you spun it. Perhaps if BMW had really been different and made a cruiser with comfort and smooth, useable real power it might have done better. But since it was down alomst 20hp compared to other Oilheads it simply didn't fit.
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  8. #8
    Hey Chromehead ! bobs98's Avatar
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    Love my '98 C

    Classic and elegant styiling, powerful looks and superb handling are all descriptive terms for the entire C family. Put on a set of ZTech pipes and it sounds great, too. BMW stopped selling them because they stopped marketing them. In 98 or 99, they were the top selling model in the US.

    Lots of cruiser enthusiasts over at chromeheads.org. But we are definitely the afterthought of the BMW crowd.

    Good thing you all make me feel so welcome here!
    Bob Smith
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobs98 View Post
    Classic and elegant styiling, powerful looks and superb handling are all descriptive terms for the entire C family. Put on a set of ZTech pipes and it sounds great, too. BMW stopped selling them because they stopped marketing them. In 98 or 99, they were the top selling model in the US.

    Lots of cruiser enthusiasts over at chromeheads.org. But we are definitely the afterthought of the BMW crowd.

    Good thing you all make me feel so welcome here!
    "superb handling"? well, maybe compared to another cruiser, but not even close to other BMWs. and certainly not compared to the more sporting models.

    remember- the question of this thread was "what was WRONG with the Cruisers?".. not "What do you love about your C model?"
    Ride Safe, Ride Lots

  10. #10
    This is an apples vs oranges discussion. The R1200C models aren't like BMWs and they aren't like other cruisers? So what. They are low hp for the market, that's a fact; even BMWs product line proves this. They aren't like HD, because they're shaft drive. They aren't watercooled. It's more about what they aren't that is a positive thing, for me. They kick butt when riding with those other cruisers and I can keep up with lots of sport bikes around our mountain roads. I like this comment I received from a two-up on an ST1100 after a group ride one day, "We thought we'd stay in the rear with you, 'cause you'd go slow, but you really hauled ***!" Geez, I was only slow to leave the parking lot because I was still putting on my riding gear.

  11. #11
    Registered User MOTOR31's Avatar
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    I looked at a couple CLC's. I actually didn't mind the look other than the "leather" bags. I really liked the driving position and height. What did turn me off was the low power. Once I found out about that issue I never looked at them again. I was looking to move up in power from a K75RT and the CLC just didn't cut it. Damn STUPID decision on the part of BMW to detune the engine. I hope whoever made that decision is now selling scooters in Greenland.
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  12. #12
    Rally Rat
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    Probably all true

    Quote Originally Posted by bikerfish1100 View Post
    I took a demo on one. I owned a K11RS at the time. I had previously owned a H-D FLH (fat loud heavy).
    The R12C tried to straddle the fence between a BMW (a definitive sport-tourer) and a cruiser (long on looks and "feel", short on power and handling). It ended up being neither fish nor fowl- it did not have real BMW handling nor power, nor did it have the classic cruiser sound or look to it.
    i seriously doubt that BMW could have made the break necessary from their own history to make that bike competitive in that particular arena.
    These comments and all the rest are probably why it didn't work in the marketplace. Too bad. It took me a couple 1,000 miles to get really happy with mine, but now you couldn't tear it away from me. It's solid, meticulously built, has all the bells and whistles for touring, lots of wind protection and great seats (heated, too). As far as the power is concerned, I never feel underpowered, and since I own both an R1100S and a K1200R, I think I have a fair point of reference. I think the R1200CLC is one of the finest motorcycles ever designed and built. Only niggle I have is the shocks. Stock ones suck.

  13. #13
    I like TANG! bubbagazoo's Avatar
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    I rode an R1100RT in 2006 and loved almost everything about it. I didn't like the fact that even at the lowest seat level, the seat height is 31.5 inches. That is why I dropped the dang thing 5 times in that year. Uneven ground and gravity beating me. I decided to trade the RT in for a 2003 CL almost entirely because its seat height is 2 inches lower. I dropped the CL once this past year (my own fault for coasting through a corner and then making a panic grab of the brake to avoid a collision). I love my CL even more than the RT for that reason. Don't get me wrong -- I had a goofy grin for 7 months in 2006 and 8 months in 2007. I love riding.

    What did BMW do wrong with the cruisers -- crappy marketing in my opinion. Until I was 3 months into owning the RT (I bought it in January and picked it up in the first week of April of '06), I didn't even know BMW had made cruisers. I knew they made touring bikes, sport-touring and adventure style bikes. I had been away from riding for 20 years and knew about the other model lines. I had no idea the "C" line even existed.

    A more comfortable seat on any of their bikes would be nice. I can ride for a couple of hours without any issues but to put in a 350-400 mile day is hard to do. This applies to both the RT and the CL.
    Robert
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  14. #14
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    Many of you have said you rode a C or CLC and didn't like them. I agree. I rode mine about 6 months before I bought it when the owner was trying to sell it to me and take my R80RT in trade. I didn't like it at all and preferred my old airhead. About Christmas of last year, he got in a financial bind and I made a very low offer that he accepted. When spring came, I decided to give the bike a try before I put it up for sale so I decided to ride it everywhere so I could get accustomed to the weight and odd low speed handling. It grew on me and I wouldn't consider selling it now. It is an acquired taste.
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  15. #15

    There is Nothing Wrong with the Cruiser.

    I've owned Hondas to Harleys Airheads and K bikes. Still have my 73 R75/5 toaster. The best and ONLY comment I ever got on a motorcycle was on my 2002 R1200c. They noted: "Now there is a bike that when they designed it they didn't look at any other motorcycle". This is why I own two. The other being a sidecar rig.
    Under-power? How fast and how often are you riding over 100? In your rush hour? HA!
    Comfort? I did the iron butt's SS1000 on a stock bike. 35 bikes out me the last, I was 5th back in under 16.5 hours. Dream ride.
    As they say, to each their own... I agree...
    But above all it's not another cookie cutter clone. Nothing else looks rides or handles like it and if you keep calling yourself an individual, it's certainly the right place to start.
    Last edited by grafikfeat; 12-21-2007 at 07:04 PM. Reason: Typos

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