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Thread: C650gt

  1. #1
    100,000+ miler 32232's Avatar
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    C650gt



    Wolf BMW had a test ride day today with the BMW Motorrad Canada test fleet. I signed up for the C650GT, and got in a 90 minute ride. I have a bit of an odd build; a 6 footer's torso and arm length but short 30" inseam so observations are based on that.



    My frame of reference is an R1200RT, which is far more comparable than you might expect. The C650GT isn't the stereotypical scooter that so many motorcyclists will dismiss out-of-hand. The first impression is of its large size: as can bee seen here, it is as long as an RT, and dry weight is 45lbs more than the RT. It carries the weight extremely low so it feels much lighter.



    There are a few quirks to get used to if you ride a motorcycle. When the side stand is deployed, it activates the brakes and will not move at all. The GT will not start until the side stand is retracted, ignition on, the brakes applied and the starter pushed. Due to the CVT there is no engine braking when you roll off the throttle; that must be factored into your stopping decisions.



    Switch gear conforms to the new BMW standard, with seat and grip heat on the right and power windshield, trip meter and dash computer on the left.

    The range of motion of the adjustable windshield on the 2011 RT will deflect wind anywhere from the tops of my shoulders to the top of my helmet, depending on setting. The C's windshield has a similar range of motion, but lower. Wind would hit me anywhere from mid-chest at low setting to mid-helmet at the highest. This made for a bit more helmet noise than on the RT.



    The ergonomics are those of sitting at the kitchen table, completely erect, feet on the floor(boards) in front of you. The bars are closer to the rider so the aftermarket trade may not be making any money selling bar-backs. The seat is surprisingly high, and since you have to reach beyond the floorboards to reach the ground, I was on tip-toes at a stop, compared to on the balls of my feet with the RT low seat.

    I sat at the very rear of the seat cushion with lots of lower back support from the bump in front of the passenger portion. The padding is cushy by BMW standards and is the most comfortable stock seat from them I've ever encountered.

    There are two good size storage cubbies either side of the dash,



    and a huge under-seat bin that will swallow a helmet with plenty of room to spare.



    Acceleration with 60 hp and more weight than an RT is adequate, but once up to speed is much more lively. With the CVT it is a true twist-and-go scooter. Although we didn't get much over 60 mph on rural roads, it felt like there was plenty more to be had. I expect cruising in the 75 mph range would be quite doable.

    Right lever is the very good front brake and left lever is a ferocious eyeball-popping rear brake. Used together, they will haul the GT down fast.

    Wind protection is close to that of the RT, better in fact for the feet and legs as they are up on the floorboards and behind the leg-shields. With heated seats and grips, this would be a fine foul-weather mount.

    With the ease-of-use in stop and go traffic, good cargo capacity, superb weather protection and power to cope with any real-world traffic, the C650GT would make a great commuter or light tourer.

    It can probably best be summed up as a lazy man's RT light. For those who don't buy in to the stigma that many riders attach to scooters, the C650GT would be a fine choice.
    Last edited by 32232; 08-16-2012 at 01:46 PM.
    Dave

    '06 Triumph Scrambler (Trans-Labrador veteran)

  2. #2
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    Nice review and great pictures as well! Good looking scooter. The glossy painted finish between your feet will likely get scuffed up pretty quickly though.
    14 R1200GSA, 93 R100R. No car is as fun to drive as any motorcycle is to ride.

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    Thanks!

    Motorcycle Consumer News wants YOU!

    Where I live, I'll probably never even get to see one of these, so your complete and detailed review is much appreciated. You hit all the right subjects.

    The "seat-height" issue is a little worrisome, as I'm sure this scooter is aimed squarely at the new rider demographic, and also at the distaff side. New riders like to put both feet on the ground until after they have the MSF course!

    Still -- from your review, it sounds as if they did it right, and I hope they sell a load of these and thereby increase the size of the tribe.

    Walking Eagle

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    Best honest review and pictures i have seen !!

    Thank you .

    Hope they get here to the lower 48 sooner than later.

  5. #5
    Old man in the mountains osbornk's Avatar
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    My short inseamed friend bought a 650 Burgman and he had the same complaint about the seat height. He said he can reach the ground better on a K1600GTL than he can on his R1200RT or his scooter so he is going to buy himself one.
    'You can say what you want about the South, but I almost never hear of anyone wanting to retire to the North.

  6. #6
    Cage Rattler wezul's Avatar
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    Paging Carey Caldwell!

  7. #7
    Jeff Wilson life member
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    Smile

    I rode the same scooter on the 18th (2 days after this review) I loved the ride, I am 5'6" and found the seat height to be perfect. This review was good, wind protection was good even at 140km per hour (85mph) with my height the wind blew over my head at the high setting with very little wind noise as I heard the exhaust more. At the highest setting I was still looking over by a little . I was not wearing a motorcycle jacket, I was wearing a dress leather coat and it did not blow up like a baloon. The step through was showing scuffs after 2000km or 1200 miles as some people do not have respect for other people's property (you will take better care of your own). The only thing I found poor was the mirrors, as half of the mirror on both sides was looking at my elbows (nothing a bar end mirror would solve). Fuel economy showed as 4 litres per hundred km or about 60 miles a US gallon at 60mph I also wished the hand grips to be a little larger. All the controls were easy to work, and it should only take a few minutes the understand (I have not ridden in over 12 years) and found it easy (I wear glasses for reading and) found the only thing I could not read was the tachometer. Why does the scooter have a tachometer as you do not shift gears and you cannot over rev the engine. As for the space under the seat we put 2 full face helmets under with room to spare and closed the seat (24" long or 28" corner to corner).
    Last edited by 43362; 08-21-2012 at 11:32 AM. Reason: Added more info

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by 43362 View Post
    ... Fuel economy showed as 4 litres per hundred km or about 100 miles a US gallon at 60mph .
    Wouldn't that equate to about 60 mpg? I recall it is actually is rated to get less mpg than the F650 Twin.
    14 R1200GSA, 93 R100R. No car is as fun to drive as any motorcycle is to ride.

  9. #9
    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
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    What IS the engine?

    I know its a 650, but what configure? V Twin, water cooled no doubt, or what??? 100mpg, did I read that right? Driveline, a belt? More below deck info please! Sure looks like a NEAT ride and maybe the new tourer of the future, IF its built to LAST the miles added. We are a 100000m biker kind a group here, or many of us ride a LOT of miles per bike.... I'm sold on the looks, very nicely done scooter. Randy

  10. #10
    Jeff Wilson life member
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    Correction

    Quote Originally Posted by Polarbear View Post
    I know its a 650, but what configure? V Twin, water cooled no doubt, or what??? 100mpg, did I read that right? Driveline, a belt? More below deck info please! Sure looks like a NEAT ride and maybe the new tourer of the future, IF its built to LAST the miles added. We are a 100000m biker kind a group here, or many of us ride a LOT of miles per bike.... I'm sold on the looks, very nicely done scooter. Randy
    Sorry I did correct the mileage to 60mp gallon as for the engine it is a parallel twin with a low angle configuration (70 degrees) and it is liquid cooled. Rear drive is similar to my Isetta as it is a chain drive in a sealed oil bath. From the engine to the chain is a belt that works a centrifugal clutch system
    Last edited by 43362; 08-21-2012 at 11:35 AM.

  11. #11
    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
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    Wierd drive line?

    It seems a tad overdone, belt and chain system! We'll see. An oil bath chain is/maybe a nightmare about to occur,imo. What a mess to deal with. Why, I wonder they couldn't do it simple, with belt only? I sure hope they figured how to keep the oil bath system sealed up, high miles! These things are going to leak, you watch. Hope I'm not too right here, as this IS A COOL looking bike, I like what it MAY be able to do, touring. Randy

  12. #12
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    I want a Maxi sooo bad so i can keep on riding for at least a few more years.

    I almost pulled the trigger on a Burgman a while ago but decided to wait and see what the real world results on the BMW offerings was.

    I am optimistic that they will live up to BMW's reputation and give us lot's of trouble free miles, ( well there is that pesky final drive issue lately on some R models)

    My gut tells me to hang on a wait until we get some more real high mileage reports from owners of the C 650GT.

  13. #13
    Cage Rattler wezul's Avatar
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    Yeah, but this is a Bergermann.
    Emailed my local dealer, they got back to me right quick.
    No delivery date.

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  15. #15
    Themason 42906's Avatar
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    Eh, an F-800 costs less, performs better and is easier to maintain. Ever work on a scooter? Not fun at all. Anyone who passes an F-800 up for this thing is doing so because it's trendy, not because it's better.

    Btw. once you put some miles on a bike with a modern carbon fiber drive belt, you do not go back, even to a drive shaft. Oil bath drive chain? Didn't Harley Davidson fit that to early FXRT's and the original FLT (now called the Road Glide) with less than stellar results? They ditched it for a drive belt. BMW ought to do the same for this scooter thing. Not that I would waste my money on one when more capable motorcycles can be had for less money.
    Experience is what you get when you don't get what you want.

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