Not bashing BMW... just the truth
Just a little background: I have ridden BMW's since 1983 and accumulated over 860,000 miles on BMW bikes.
I have been stranded several times dues to mechanical failures. Since I used to travel long distances, I always rode a well maintained bike. Thus the failures, which were always covered under warranty/ goodwill.
I'm sorry to say the BMW bikes today are not as relaiable as the bikes that I first started riding back in the 1980's.
When I get together with other BMW riders ( I still own a R1200GS), the conversation seems to always get arround to mechanical problems that the dealer fixed under warranty. BMW riders used to talk about the long trips that they just completed or had planned.
It is my personal experience that the new BMW bikes are not particularly reliable. I strongly suggest having a towing service contract, like AAA premier, prior to going on a long trip. It is also a good idea to have a complete listing of BMW dealers in case you need assistance.
The new "F" series bikes look very interesting, but for $5000 less you can buy a totally relaible V Strom. The V Strom may be "souless", but by that I guess you mean that you have a Mechanically uneventful trip. I feel that mechanically uneventful trips are a Good thing.
I have enjoyed ridding BMW's and I wish BMW would stop having their customers beta test their bikes. Perhaps BMW, which is a low volume mfg. should focus on making less models, but making them much better than they are today.
I am enjoying ridding my DL650, and leave the R1200GS at home.
IBA # 43