Archive for November, 2007

Check Out the New Concours 14

Friday, November 30th, 2007

After 21 years Kawasaki has totally redesigned the Concours, a bike near and dear to me because I ride one. You’ve probably heard about it–it’s been in all the moto mags. All the reviews have been strongly positive, and the one thing absolutely everyone is saying is that this thing has serious power.

Now Rider magazine has published a shoot-out between four big sport tourers, the Connie, BMW K1200GT, Honda ST1300, and Yamaha FJR1300A. A side-by-side comparison strikes me as the best way to judge something like this. The bottom line is, they unanimously prefer the Honda, with the Connie coming in third. When I bought my Connie I was also interested in the ST but the price differential was too big to swallow. The ST is still more expensive than the new Connie but the difference is enough smaller that, doing it again today, I’d probably pay a little more for the ST.

Here are a few notes about the Concours 14:
Base price is about $13,000, compared to the $8,000 I paid for my 1999 in 1999.
Fuel capacity is 5.8 gallons, compared with the 7.5 gallons in my ’99.
Gas mileage is 36 mpg. I get about 45 mpg on the ’99.
Displacement is 1,352 cc vs. 996 cc on the ’99.

Plus it has all kinds of cool extras that the older models don’t have. So there is good and bad. One thing for sure, it still looks like a Concours. Here’s a shot of a ’99 model like mine and another of the Concours 14:

1999 Kawasaki Concours

2008 Concours 14

Hot Dang! Concours Owners Group Coming to Colorado

Friday, November 23rd, 2007

Oh boy, I’m excited about this one. I own a Kawasaki Concours and I just learned that the Concours Owners Group is holding their annual rally here in Colorado. It’s going to be in Frisco the week of June 2-6. I may have to rejoin the organization.

I joined COG as soon as I bought my Connie in 1999 and went for a few rides but at that point I had other buddies to ride with so I didn’t renew my membership. Now the guy who seems to have been the linch-pin in our group has moved over to the western slope and while we still go for our summer trips, the rest of us don’t get together as much to ride. I had been thinking for awhile of rejoining COG in order to find some new riding buddies.

So anyway, this rally looks like something you really have to make a commitment to. Most rallies take place over the weekend but this one is Monday to Friday. That could be the one thing that stops me from going. I’m a contractor, working on an hourly basis, and when I’m not working I’m not making money. But to be in one place with a couple thousand other folks on Connies is pretty tempting. Plus, they may be offering demo rides on the new Concours 14, the first makeover for this bike in about 18 years. All the moto-mags are calling it one of the best touring bikes you’ll find.

Don’t know at this point what I’ll do but I’m pretty buzzed!