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Thread: Robb leaves BMW

  1. #76
    Dances With Sheep GREGFEELER's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rinty View Post
    I'm glad you posted this Greg, because I've been shopping for an ST, and recently pulled up a bunch of old road tests. So here's Kevin Ash of the Telegraph, working over my favourite bike:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/motoring/...converted.html
    Exactly. Did you notice that he/they apparently didn't ride the ST enough to burn a whole, entire, tank of gas? For me, any review that doesn't involve using several tanks of gas over a variety of conditions is only misinformation - worse than no review at all - but that's often the way it is in the motorcycle press.
    Greg Feeler
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  2. #77
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    I'm a little disappointed to see how much influence the "motorcycle press" has within the BMW corporate structure. I guess I'm not surprised that a couple of dozen riders with english degrees can push the market buttons so effectively, but it's sad to know I trust their opinions more than my own, and I'm not sure why. On the other hand, I sell paint for a living, and the annual Consumer Reports paint tests have made and broken a lot of careers in my business.
    The only honest answer to your question is "It depends".

  3. #78
    rabid reader dbrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mckayprod View Post
    I'm a little disappointed to see how much influence the "motorcycle press" has within the BMW corporate structure.
    What evidence supports this? BMW stopped producing the ST because it didn't sell well, not because Kevin Ash didn't like it. And Ash's review wasn't responsible for the poor sales - the bike's unusual looks were. Mechanically it was a perfectly-BMWish piece of machinery; esthetically, it didn't make people swoon when the garage door was raised.

    If BMW corporate paid attention to the motorcycle press, BMW's unusual turn-signal controls would have been abandoned decades ago.
    Last edited by dbrick; 02-21-2012 at 08:26 PM.
    David Brick
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    Quote Originally Posted by GregFeeler View Post
    Not likely. BMW knows that the top two reasons that people buy a given motorcycle are 1) the magazine reviews, and 2) the test ride - in that order. Pieter de Waal told me directly that the RS-type bikes are gone because they didn't test at the top of any recognized category of motorcycles (as defined by the motorcycle press). He said BMW can not afford to build bikes that don't test at at the top or near top of these categories, and because the RS was a jack of all trades and master of none (my words), it had to go. That breaks my heart as I've always been an RS-guy, but I can see the marketing realities of this decision. I'm keeping my K1200RS until they throw the dirt over me.
    This is the quote I should have included in my earlier post. Sorry for any confusion.
    The only honest answer to your question is "It depends".

  5. #80
    Dances With Sheep GREGFEELER's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbrick View Post
    If BMW corporate paid attention to the motorcycle press, BMW's unusual turn-signal controls would have been abandoned decades ago.
    They didn't start listening until just a few years ago. We all have to remember that they are in the business - and only the business - of selling *new* motorcycles, and some battles just aren't worth fighting.
    Greg Feeler
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    1972 R75/5, 1990 K75, 1990 K1, 1992 K75S, 2003 K1200RS

  6. #81
    Registered User 36654's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GregFeeler View Post
    They didn't start listening until just a few years ago. We all have to remember that they are in the business - and only the business - of selling *new* motorcycles, and some battles just aren't worth fighting.
    I really like the unusual turn signals on my R11Rs.........
    Cave contents: 99 R11RS, 2013 Toyota Tacoma, 03 Simplicity Legacy, 97 Stihl FS75, Dewalt DW625 & DW744

  7. #82
    Dances With Sheep GREGFEELER's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 36654 View Post
    I really like the unusual turn signals on my R11Rs.........
    Yes, I love the "dual switch" configuration on my bikes as well.

    However, the interesting thing to me about this switch discussion is that BMW didn't always use the dual design. The /5's used a single switch which was round with a small lever that you flipped up or down. The later airheads had a slider switch basically like other brands. The dual switch configuration was introduced with the (then) new K bikes line in 1984. Eventually, BMW applied that to all models. For many riders, that's all they've ever known, but historically, the dual switches were just a phase for BMW.
    Greg Feeler
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  8. #83
    rabid reader dbrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GregFeeler View Post
    They didn't start listening until just a few years ago. We all have to remember that they are in the business - and only the business - of selling *new* motorcycles, and some battles just aren't worth fighting.
    Greg,

    I agree they listen to the market, especially in the last half-dozen years. My point earlier was that they give little weight to the opinions of the press.
    David Brick
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    2007 R1200R

  9. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbrick View Post
    Greg,

    I agree they listen to the market, especially in the last half-dozen years. My point earlier was that they give little weight to the opinions of the press.
    Agreed. Apparently, they spent a fair amount of money to find out who their potential customers were listing to, and changed for that reason.
    Greg Feeler
    BMW MOA Director & Ambassador
    1972 R75/5, 1990 K75, 1990 K1, 1992 K75S, 2003 K1200RS

  10. #85
    rabid reader dbrick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GregFeeler View Post
    Agreed. Apparently, they spent a fair amount of money to find out who their potential customers were listing to, and changed for that reason.
    I can understand research to see what potential customers think. But research to see who potential customers listen to? Who'd that be? Is mckayprod correct?
    David Brick
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    2007 R1200R

  11. #86
    Dances With Sheep GREGFEELER's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbrick View Post
    I can understand research to see what potential customers think. But research to see who potential customers listen to? Who'd that be? Is mckayprod correct?
    I'm not a marketing geek, nor do I want to play one on the Internet, but I do have the need to talk with them a fair amount. What I've learned is that one thing you look for if you are selling something is your customer's "centers of influence". Who or what do they turn to for credible information to influence their decisions. And, then you want to do what you can to influence the influencers.

    Given that many bike dealers don't provide demo rides, then bike magazines are about the only place you can read "impartial" comparative reviews of different bikes. Speaking for myself, I can pick apart a lot of those reviews because they a) got some facts wrong, b) were biased (IMO), c) didn't ride the bikes long enough or under the conditions I would, d) don't have the right (read: *my*) criteria, and so on. But, these reviews are pretty much the only game in town, especially if you're considering a brand or type of bike you've never had before.
    Greg Feeler
    BMW MOA Director & Ambassador
    1972 R75/5, 1990 K75, 1990 K1, 1992 K75S, 2003 K1200RS

  12. #87
    PAULJR
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbrick View Post
    What evidence supports this? BMW stopped producing the ST because it didn't sell well, not because Kevin Ash didn't like it. And Ash's review wasn't responsible for the poor sales - the bike's unusual looks were. Mechanically it was a perfectly-BMWisj piece of machinery; esthetically, it didn't make people swoon when the garage door was raised.

    If BMW corporate paid attention to the motorcycle press, BMW's unusual turn-signal controls would have been abandoned decades ago.
    I test rode an ST and loved it, just knew I would have to get off and look at it on occasion so it was a no for me. On the other hand I like the turn signal layout as is on my 12 GS.

  13. #88
    Still Wondering mika's Avatar
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    FWIW I think the Suzuki Bandit had more to do with the demise of the ST than anything the press had to say. The Suzuki was a big hit in Europe with the sport touring crowd at the same time that ST came out. While I think the ST was a better bike dollar for dollar, pound sterling for pound sterling, euro for euro or what ever the Bandit was a heck of a value and cut far to deep into the primary European customer base that BMW needed to make the ST a viable bike in the lineup.
    Pass the mustard and UP THE REVOLUTION!

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    Clones

    I am very new to BMW bikes but I suspect there is a great deal of stress going on at HQ. Look at the number of clones to the 1200 GS now and in the future. Triumph is going head to head with BMW on most models. The new Explorer and in a few years the RT will be challenged. Cheaper bikes from a well known marque. To top that off, the advent of liquid cooled boxers can only add to the equation. Times can not be fun with the number of challenges ahead. I like the BMW, that is why I just bought a new RT but in 3 years or less, the competition will fierce. That kind of pressure is bound to have some effect on how a business operates and hence interesting dynamics with personnel possibly leading to change.

  15. #90
    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anchorbend View Post
    I am very new to BMW bikes but I suspect there is a great deal of stress going on at HQ. Look at the number of clones to the 1200 GS now and in the future. Triumph is going head to head with BMW on most models. The new Explorer and in a few years the RT will be challenged. Cheaper bikes from a well known marque. To top that off, the advent of liquid cooled boxers can only add to the equation. Times can not be fun with the number of challenges ahead. I like the BMW, that is why I just bought a new RT but in 3 years or less, the competition will fierce. That kind of pressure is bound to have some effect on how a business operates and hence interesting dynamics with personnel possibly leading to change.
    A most interesting perspective not previously presented.
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