Kawasaki Motorcycle Forums banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My brother is looking into getting a Buell Firebolt and wanted my input, so I went along with him to the dealership. Because they're part of Harley (well, not technically, but close) they fall under the same insurance policy, and that means that they'll let you test-ride a new bike just by filling out a "I know it's dangerous, i won't sue you" form and letting them make a copy of your driver's license. They had two models, the XB9R and the XB12R - I rode the 12, my brother rode the 9. Let me tell you... TORQUE. Torque like there's no tomorrow, torque like an easy wheelie (controlled, mind you) shifting into 3rd gear at 45-50mph! It was a blast to ride, comfortable, cool looking, really great.. mostly. The thing vibrated way more than my EX, and for all of the hype about how nimble the bike is, it's a pig compared to a 500R. You have to push the bars quite a bit on the XB while the 500 is practically begging you to tilt it over and drag your knee. My overall feeling is that both are pretty good street bikes (the Buell is really stable) but in a straight line I'd want the Buell, curves I want the 500R. Surprising, really, you figure the radical frame design plus the extra 700ccs would make up for it, but they don't - it's just way different. Makes me appreciate my little EX a lot more though! :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
302 Posts
Low torque, hard to handle, plus it's hideously ugly..........I'll take 5 of each.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
305 Posts
I just recently found out the connection between buell and harley, a really interesting story. i personally think the motors they put in those things are way overkill for the actual size of the bike.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
408 Posts
Tobydawg said:
...i personally think the motors they put in those things are way overkill for the actual size of the bike.
There is no such thing as "too much torque"! :grin: Well...OK...maybe if a slight twist of the wrist were to flip the bike on top of you. :lol:
 

·
the "fun" guy
Joined
·
32,859 Posts
Neo said:
There is no such thing as "too much torque"! :grin: Well...OK...maybe if a slight twist of the wrist were to flip the bike on top of you. :lol:

Can't we just get one with a drag bar on the back? :)
 

·
the "fun" guy
Joined
·
32,859 Posts
I agree....and some glasses to keep the bugs out of the eyes. LOL :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
408 Posts
whistle clean said:
Can't we just get one with a drag bar on the back? :)
Yeah, I'm also a big fan of things like the "Monster Miata" where they stuff a Ford Mustang 5.0 L V-8 engine & transmission into a Miata. I guess it's kind of like Carrol Shelby's original Cobra.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I know I was raggin' on the handling a lot but in defense of the Buells, it was only at lower speeds when that was annoying. As far as the engine goes... I would have to disagree about it being too big. I'm not ready for a bike with as much power as the XB12R has (engine AND brakes), I've got some learning to do before then - but if I didn't, the power is so smoothly and predictably delivered and in only the quantity that you ask for (all over the rev range) that it would be quite a treat.

@GK: Yeah you're probably right - and I was actually was comparing on the way back over the mountain from the Harley dealer, and my 500 is more what I want... I'm spoiled by the high-revs and featherweight handling. Wouldn't give it up for anything!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,803 Posts
From my experiance with the Buells I would have to say they are ugly, slow, handle badly, and vibrate like a harley. Those are all the reasons I got a sport bike :p. When I say slow I mean higher end. The Buells do have some nice low end but after you're out of 1st or 2nd gear its all over. I road with a guy who was on one of those new firebolts. He could keep up with us in town but after our speeds got over 80+ he was so far back he couldn't even eat our smoke. I know I harp on the 250s and the 500s but I'd take an EX500 ANY day before a 1200cc Firebolt.

I don't think I ever would though because my ZX-9R is everything I would ever want. Its a great sport bike, handles nicely, plenty of power, and its also a great touring bike. I can ride ALL day and never get any cramps. All my friends on 600s can't keep going more than 4 or 5 hours. I'm not sure what I want to do a few years down the road when I look for a new bike. Heck, I might just keep my 9 cause from what I've seen (not from what I've tryed) the ZX-10R doesn't look as comfy as my 9.

As a question for anyone who has riden both a ZX-9R (2000+) and a ZX-10R. How do you rate the ergonomics of them comparativly?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
267 Posts
Sorry for bumping an old thread but I stumbled across this while searching for something completely different.

Buells...amazing bikes. No matter how you put it, absolutely amazing bikes. Full range, easily adjustable EFI...lighter than any other V-Twin supersport...perimeter braking (superb idea)...compact and reliable (despite popular belief)...just amazing bikes.

Just to dive into a few issues...

1...Handling. Daekar, you said the handling was poor...later saying it was just at slower speeds. Keep in mind that you were on a 1200cc bike...everything on the bike is bigger than your 500. Any day of the week I can run circles around my TL1000S with my Suzuki Bandit 400...especially at slower speeds. It's just the way it works, and it'd work like that with any bike...U guaruntee you that even though a 10R is putting down 3 times the crank hp or your 500, you'll be able to run circles around it. Small bikes are praised for this.

The XB's handling is quite phenominal. They handle as though on rails at the upper speeds...they hold the road truer than most other bikes I've been on. Unless you're willing to push further than the hypothetical "your friend told you it sucked" limits, you'll never know anything about the bike's capabillities.

2...Vibration. How many V-Twins have you ridden?

3...Underpowered and slow. How many V-Twins have you ridden? Who on earth would invest in any V-Twin expecting to hang with modern superbikes? The design of the engine prevents high peak hp, but creates tremendous torque down low...this is because of the unevenly spaced firing pattern. If you bought a Firebolt, or a TLR, or a VTR with the hopes of beating your younger brother's new Hayabusa you're in for a disapointment.

As far as them not being able to go faster than 80...your buddy doesn't know how to ride. The 12R touches 155 just fine, just a little slower than my TLS. Eric's design of the EFI and head allows the bike to make 80% of it's power from idle to rev-limit...sorry. It doesn't just go away after 80mph.

Out of curiosity, who here thinks the RC51 is cool? You'll be disapointed in it, too...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,803 Posts
makenzie71 said:
As far as them not being able to go faster than 80...your buddy doesn't know how to ride. The 12R touches 155 just fine, just a little slower than my TLS. Eric's design of the EFI and head allows the bike to make 80% of it's power from idle to rev-limit...sorry. It doesn't just go away after 80mph.

Yeah, it can go way faster than 80. It just doesn't pull as hard as any of the inline 4s after that thus leaving it way behind. Either that or the guy just doesn't know how to open the throttle wide open. We were having to slow down or stop to wait for him to catch up. I don't remember hitting any speeds over 155 so as him topping out being the reason. I supose we could agree that part of it was that he wasn't using the bike to full performance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
267 Posts
Green Knight said:
Yeah, it can go way faster than 80. It just doesn't pull as hard as any of the inline 4s after that thus leaving it way behind. Either that or the guy just doesn't know how to open the throttle wide open. We were having to slow down or stop to wait for him to catch up. I don't remember hitting any speeds over 155 so as him topping out being the reason. I supose we could agree that part of it was that he wasn't using the bike to full performance.
If you bought a Firebolt, or a TLR, or a VTR with the hopes of beating your younger brother's new Hayabusa you're in for a disapointment.
V-Twins = not fast. Not comparitvely, anyway. If you guys were just cruising at sub-sonic speeds and he couldn't keep up, then no, he doesn't know how to ride the bike. He wouldn't have been able to keep up on a modern I4, either.
 

·
Red Lodge Approved
Joined
·
1,732 Posts
IMO

Buells are not even close to a TLR, RC51, DUC, etc.. Looks aside, they do not handle as well or move as fast as the "big name" v-twin superbikes.. I cant believe they even sell..

again.. IMO..

Yes.. Ive rode all bikes listed..
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top