BMW North America????????
My FD gave up the ghost at about 100,000 miles (161,000 Kms) on my 2005 RT. I suppose 100,000 miles maybe reasonable for the life span of a final drive, I don't really know, but I think they should go farther with todays technology. In this thread and others the name BMW North America is mentioned several times. My RT is a Canadian bike and I was in the USA when it failed. I ride in Arizona each winter. GO AZ BMW in Scottsdale were great and attempted to get a financial assist from BMW. There seemed to be some type of misunderstanding with the rep., Canadian bike, huh?, we can't find the serial number in our files, what's a Canada, eh?
So, does BMW North America realize that there are two countries involved, do they talk to each other, are there any plans for riders breaking down in the neighbouring country? Do they care? I usually have three or four relatively new BMWs in my garage. I have in the past bought a new bike every two years. I was due to purchase in 2011, but did not, due to the final drive issue. I still can't decide whether to get a new bike or not and I am not sure what is holding me back. It is not the money, I have that set aside, I think it must be some sort of a trust issue.
The last time I dropped into my dealer, the staff asked me where I have been. Well, now that my bikes are off warranty, I do all my own service, such as replacing plugs, for a third of the cost than at the dealer, change and balance my own tires, change oil and filters, flush brakes etc.
I am not annoyed about the financial loss so much, I am retired and can afford a few toys. I think my concern is that I trusted BMW, but when they had a problem that left me stranded on the side of the road, I was treated like I was riding a Honda or something. It was like they were hiding something in plain sight by not at least acknowledging there was a problem with "some" final drives. The drive shaft failed on the RT a month after the final drive and I accepted I had a lot of good miles on the bike, so it didn't bother me that much, but I was stranded in the middle of nowhere again. I have just kept fixing them and I will likely not buy a new bike in 2013 either.
The salesmen talk a good line, mentioning BMWNA a lot, road side assistance anywhere, etc., as if it were one big happy family. But I still have my doubts. I really like BMW motorcycles, the fit, the technology and the handling. But, if BMW expects loyalty from us, and want to expand the North American market, they have to reciprocate even if it is a sorry dude letter we can't help you, but here is a coupon for a free, authentic BMW coffee mug. Or possibly, we called the Canadian rep and he said the bike was too old, too many miles for assistance, but here is his telephone number if you want to talk to him in person. At least you know they considered it. BMW may have good lawyers, but good PR guys will sell more bikes. It doesn't take much effort to keep one in the family and at this point in time I think it is the individual dealers that are filling that role.
(This is post is officially designated as an opinion and a non-rant)
Dash 2005 R1200RT, 2007 R1200R, 2009 K1300GT