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Old 01-20-2013, 03:13 AM   #1
mtntrails OP
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Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki & Kawasaki - Listen Up, Please...

You guys are "missing the boat" in a big way...

The market is (and has been for years) screaming out for a proper, modern, mid-size (300cc - 450cc) dual-sport - a more potent version of the excellent Yamaha WR250R & Honda CRF250L

35 - 45 RWHP
Fuel Injection
6-speed Tranny
Target Weight at or Under 300lbs
3000-4000 Mile Oil Change Intervals
15k + Mile Valve Adjustment Intervals
Modern, Fully Adjustable Suspension
A Subframe Capable of Carrying Luggage & Camping Gear
An Electrical System Capable of Running Heated Gear, GPS, etc.
Build it for Unquestionable Reliability & Durability
$5000 - $9000 MSRP (depending on displacement & specs)

ADVRider, ThumperTalk, HorizonsUnlimited, et al are filled with threads and posts lamenting this huge "hole" in the marketplace. When will the "Big 4" step up and build this bike? Whoever is the first out of the gate will have a blockbuster hit on their hands - the rest will hopefully follow.

Don't forget to build a SM version too!

mtntrails screwed with this post 01-21-2013 at 03:40 AM Reason: Added "reliability and durability" line
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Old 01-20-2013, 04:30 AM   #2
Simosez
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtntrails View Post
You guys are "missing the boat" in a big way...

The market is (and has been for years) screaming out for a proper, modern, mid-size (300cc - 450cc) dual-sport - a more potent version of the excellent Yamaha WR250R & Honda CRF250L

35 - 45 RWHP
Fuel Injection
6-speed Tranny
Target Weight at or Under 300lbs
3000-4000 Mile Oil Change Intervals
15k + Mile Valve Adjustment Intervals
Modern, Fully Adjustable Suspension
A Subframe Capable of Carrying Luggage & Camping Gear
Build it for Unquestionable Reliability & Durability
$5000 - $9000 MSRP (depending on displacement & specs)

ADVRider, ThumperTalk, HorizonsUnlimited, et al are filled with threads and posts lamenting this huge "hole" in the marketplace. When will the "Big 4" step up and build this bike? Whoever is the first out of the gate will have a blockbuster hit on their hands - the rest will hopefully follow.

Don't forget to build a SM version too!
won't happen. this bike is far too sensible.
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Old 01-20-2013, 07:21 AM   #3
It'sNotTheBike
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It's not going to happen.

There is still a worldwide economic crisis.

Those who have decision-making power at the "Big Four" Japanese motorcycle
companies are aware of this even if you are not.

People with power in large corporations did not get to their positions by being
stupid. The market for a dual sport bike is small and before they spend money for
design and tooling, companies need to have a high degree of confidence that
they will sell a lot of units or that they will sell fewer units for a significantly higher
price ( KTM fits the second category here ). The way the Japanese play the game,
they want to know that they can sell X units per year and if they believe this is not
possible they will ignore that market segment ( strangely enough this is exactly what
is happening in the real world ).

In case you haven't noticed, motorcycle dealerships in the US are disappearing
at a high rate. They are going out of business. This is not a climate in which any
major manufacturer is going to invest in design and tooling for a bike which
will sell to a relatively small number of people in a niche market. And dual sport
motorcycles are sold to a relatively small niche market. Sport bikes and cruisers
are where the large markets are. And all the manufacturers know this even if you
do not.


Buy a used KTM 690 Enduro or RFS-engine KTM 450 or KTM 525 and ride now, while you are
physically still able to enjoy riding. That is what smart people who like to ride nice bikes
are doing. Riding beats dreaming about bikes that don't exist and probably
won't exist at any time in the next decade.


.

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Old 01-24-2013, 01:53 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by It'sNotTheBike View Post
There is still a worldwide economic crisis.

Those who have decision-making power at the "Big Four" Japanese motorcycle
companies are aware of this even if you are not.

People with power in large corporations did not get to their positions by being
stupid. The market for a dual sport bike is small and before they spend money for
design and tooling, companies need to have a high degree of confidence that
they will sell a lot of units or that they will sell fewer units for a significantly higher
price ( KTM fits the second category here ). The way the Japanese play the game,
they want to know that they can sell X units per year and if they believe this is not
possible they will ignore that market segment ( strangely enough this is exactly what
is happening in the real world ).

In case you haven't noticed, motorcycle dealerships in the US are disappearing
at a high rate. They are going out of business. This is not a climate in which any
major manufacturer is going to invest in design and tooling for a bike which
will sell to a relatively small number of people in a niche market. And dual sport
motorcycles are sold to a relatively small niche market. Sport bikes and cruisers
are where the large markets are. And all the manufacturers know this even if you
do not.


Buy a used KTM 690 Enduro or RFS-engine KTM 450 or KTM 525 and ride now, while you are
physically still able to enjoy riding. That is what smart people who like to ride nice bikes
are doing. Riding beats dreaming about bikes that don't exist and probably
won't exist at any time in the next decade.


.
except honda has been building shit nobody wants and therefore doesn't sell for years now. yeah the supersport market wont change but most guys want something more like the VFR800 or the CB1100 (which needs 6speeds not 5) especially guys over 40 that cant be straining their backs over a SS all the time.

Usually Kawi is pretty good at finding the uninhabited niches first (at least in the US) and thats why they own the beginner's bike realm with the Ninja 250 and now the Ninja300. also the versys has completely taken off, the Connie14 (6spd) is outselling the FJR13 (5spd) and the whiney ST13, the KLR is still the best selling 650DS thumper and the New ZX-636 even though it doesnt own its market, it still offers more than the competitors.

Also the Supermoto Market is where I'd be investing my money right now if i was in their shoes. but suzuki is the only one of the big4 with a big enough bike (DRZ400SM) to do everything. KTM, Husaberg, Husky, and Yamaha (except in US) are making 400+ cc bikes in this market and havin success, why cant Kawi and Honda do it?

Honestly the bike spoken of would be something like the WR450 with a 6spd with a full light kit standard, but a regular WR450f is over $8200 msrp which is ridiculous. a friggin 450cc non-legal single cylinder costs $1000 more than my 600cc, road-legal, fuel injected (2012 WR is FI), sportbike ($7200 new in '09). an offroad machine should cost about $5500-$6500 at the most. but honestly most people would still just buy a used RFS KTM, or a CRF-X, or WR450 and put lights and crap on it and for under $5000 have a kickass bike.
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:59 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SnappNBrrap View Post
except honda has been building shit nobody wants and therefore doesn't sell for years now. yeah the supersport market wont change but most guys want something more like the VFR800 or the CB1100 (which needs 6speeds not 5) especially guys over 40 that cant be straining their backs over a SS all the time.
Somebody doesn't like Honda!

Quote:
Usually Kawi is pretty good at finding the uninhabited niches first (at least in the US) and thats why they own the beginner's bike realm with the Ninja 250 and now the Ninja300. also the versys has completely taken off, the Connie14 (6spd) is outselling the FJR13 (5spd) and the whiney ST13, the KLR is still the best selling 650DS thumper and the New ZX-636 even though it doesnt own its market, it still offers more than the competitors.
The only "niche" that Kawi found there is a result of them staying in the 250 streetbike market for longer than Honda. (Nighthawk 250). The Versys is a poor attempt at cloning the WeeStrom, and the Triumph Daytona 675 has been ruling the supersport class for years now. Kawi sucks. Rotten limes. And zombie pus.

Quote:
Also the Supermoto Market is where I'd be investing my money right now if i was in their shoes. but suzuki is the only one of the big4 with a big enough bike (DRZ400SM) to do everything. KTM, Husaberg, Husky, and Yamaha (except in US) are making 400+ cc bikes in this market and havin success, why cant Kawi and Honda do it?
They can, they just don't see the market.

Quote:
Honestly the bike spoken of would be something like the WR450 with a 6spd with a full light kit standard, but a regular WR450f is over $8200 msrp which is ridiculous. a friggin 450cc non-legal single cylinder costs $1000 more than my 600cc, road-legal, fuel injected (2012 WR is FI), sportbike ($7200 new in '09). an offroad machine should cost about $5500-$6500 at the most. but honestly most people would still just buy a used RFS KTM, or a CRF-X, or WR450 and put lights and crap on it and for under $5000 have a kickass bike.
You can't compare pricing of dissimilar bikes across the years, especially with the recent run up due to the weakness of the dollar.

Moving on, most people WON'T buy a used whatever and put lights and crap on it. They may not have any interest in putting lights on it, and it may not even be legal where they live. Plus, they'v got to find a dirtbike that hasn't been thrashed, always a concern with any used bike, even more so with the higher strung (dirtbikes, MX bikes, race-replica streetbikes) ones. One thing forgotten about all these wonderful dirtbikes is they make, relatively speaking, LOUSY streetbikes for most people, even with "lights and crap". They're too frickin' tall. Seriously, if you put your foot down on the dirt and "things happen", you fall on your keester, your buddies whip out their cameras and take pictures, everybody laughs and you mount back up and go. On the street, where you're putting your foot down while stopping far more frequently, falling down can get you killed. You don't have buddies with you on your commute, there aren't a lot of convenient logs and rocks to put a foot on, and the cagers definitely aren't your friends. So next you supermoto the bike. Smaller wheels, fatter tires, instant lowering. Regear it. Add "lights and crap", weight goes up. Sling your college bag full of books on the tail, and one day you're toodling along, hit a speed bump wrong, and voila, the tail collapses, dumping your books into your rear wheel with "unpredictable" (but likely dire) results.
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Old 03-25-2015, 07:22 PM   #6
Trail Boss
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Quote:
Originally Posted by It'sNotTheBike View Post

Buy a used KTM 690 Enduro or RFS-engine KTM 450 or KTM 525 and ride now, while you are
physically still able to enjoy riding. That is what smart people who like to ride nice bikes
are doing. Riding beats dreaming about bikes that don't exist and probably
won't exist at any time in the next decade.


.
Great advice from 2013 that is even better advice today.
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Old 03-26-2015, 03:46 AM   #7
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Thanks for your thoughts TrailBoss (aside from "whining" and maybe "dreaming").

Bigger picture, it's not a niche or specialty bike we're talking about here, it's an entire class of bikes - UJM Thumper Dual Sports. Aside from the WR250R and CRF250L, the big 4 have completely stopped developing & innovating for anywhere from 15 to 35 years depending on the model. Put that into the perspective of a truck, SUV or car... what if your only options were new 1982 era Honda Accords or 1996 Toyota Tacomas or 1999 Nissan Pathfinders? Put it in perspective of other classes of motorcycles... 1982 Honda 750 NightHawk or 1996 Suzuki Bandit, or 1999 Kawasaki Concours - all good bikes, but really dated.

The whole point of this and other threads like it is to discuss & parse the issues and hope the big 4 are paying some attention to the needs of their customers -like manufacturers are supposed to.
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Old 03-26-2015, 05:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtntrails View Post
The whole point of this and other threads like it is to discuss & parse the issues and hope the big 4 are paying some attention to the needs of their customers -like manufacturers are supposed to.
I agree - the Big 4 are only giving us old dual sport options, which sucks. We would all like to see at least one of them produce a modern dual sport bike.

That being said I submit that the reason the Big 4 haven't updated their offerings is because they are paying attention.

How so?

The Japanese manufacturers watched Husky come out with a completely updated, modern, best dual sport ever, TE610 in 2006. Watched as Husky made it even better in 2008 with fuel injection. And then watched Husky improve it even more with the release of the TE630. And, more importantly, they watched buyers stay away in droves. Husky gave the adventure community the bike it claimed it wanted - 50 hp, wide ratio 6 speed tranny, decent electrical output, subframe, modern suspension, light weight, and modestly priced - and the adventure community refused to buy it. Husky finally gave up and discontinued the 630.

The Japanese watched BMW release the superb X-Challenge dual sport. The adventure community couldn't be bothered with that bike, despite it ticking most of the "must have" items the adventure community claimed to want in a modern dual sport. BMW lost so much money on that bike they discontinued it after 1 year.

And as the Japanese were watching the above they continued to see the KLR, DRZ, and DR sell in mass numbers. The adventure community buys more KLRs than they do DRZs and DRs combined. The KTM 690 is barely on the radar in terms of units sold.

I believe the Japanese are paying attention. And I submit that they have heard the adventure community claim it wants a modern dual sport thumper but refuse to buy the modern dual sport thumpers that are available to them.

When the KTM 690 outsells the KLR then we might get the Japanese manufacturers attention. As the old saying goes, "Money talks." Everyone who wants the Japanese manufacturers to "listen up" should talk to the Japanese manufacturers in the language they understand - spend your money on a new KTM 690.
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Old 03-26-2015, 05:59 AM   #9
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Agree with the prior post, but it is funny how finding a used Husky TE610/630 is almost impossible. Everybody wants them now. It seems we are slow on the uptake here.
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Old 01-20-2013, 08:03 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtntrails View Post
You guys are "missing the boat" in a big way...

...The US market is (and has been for years) screaming out for a proper, modern, mid-size (300cc - 450cc) dual-sport - a more potent version of the excellent Yamaha WR250R & Honda CRF250L...
^Fixed^

...and the US market isn't the top of the food chain--so to speak--any more. Get used to it.
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Old 01-20-2013, 08:44 AM   #11
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A WR250R lists at $6690, so I think you better adjust the low number on your price range by a bunch.

But I agree with you otherwise. It sucks to have the money to buy one now and have nothing out there to choose from.

Cue the KTM recommendations.
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Old 01-25-2013, 12:09 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trailrider383 View Post
A WR250R lists at $6690, so I think you better adjust the low number on your price range by a bunch.

But I agree with you otherwise. It sucks to have the money to buy one now and have nothing out there to choose from.

Cue the KTM recommendations.
Honda,Kawasaki,Suzuki,Yamaha, dont do niche market bikes,never have.
Euro companies specialize in just that. Either buy Euro or dream on.
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Old 01-20-2013, 09:19 AM   #13
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If Honda could just bore up (350cc) the CRFL, it would fit the bill.
I guess the frame, breaks and so on will be able to stand a less pathetic power.

We can still dream ... but maybe some aftermarket kits will popup.

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Old 01-20-2013, 09:54 AM   #14
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An important point missing here:


Americans still...STILL... feel "bigger is better". True, though in the core communities noted understand the difference offroad, BUT, the same people in the communities are a rounding error on a tally sheet listing the total number of possibe sales - or sales needed - to make a model practical to bring here.


These are extremely hard message to market in the US:


"Smaller is better; less engine capacity is what you need; 450 cc is enough for everything you need to do"


Outside the US, the message was learned a LONG time ago when insurance companies started tiering coverage to engine size...


We live in the land of bigger is better, for better or worse...and when it comes to midsized dual sports, I'd say we're worse off for it.
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:00 AM   #15
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How much money did Honda spend engineering this ATV that isn't even legal on the pavement? It only lasted two model years 2008-2009. That engine would have been perfect for a street legal big thumper. If they would have spent that money on a new 700 dual sport they would be selling a bunch of those.

http://www.atvscene.com/atv_reviews/...est-and-review
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