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Last week I took my R1200GS LC to my local BMW dealer to have the left handlebar switches replaced for the second time (cruise control not working, again). Whilst it was being repaired I went for a walk. Just up the road was a Honda car dealer. In pride of place on the forecourt was a new Honda Civic with a sticker price of £14995. I later looked up details of said car to find a surprisingly high specification for that price. My GS would now cost £14640!

Don't get me wrong, if asked if I would like to drive the Civic or ride a GS, the latter would win every time, but why does a motorcycle cost so much when I get so little for my money. I am not directly criticising BMW since I regards all large capacity motorcycles as being overpriced.
 

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I reckon it's simply return on investment, BoF. They sell more cars than bikes, so volume sales make for cheaper production costs and they break even more quickly.
Bikes need to be priced higher as they sell less. If they didn't make a profit, they wouldn't make em.
And we'd be staring out windows like neutered tomcats...
:wink2:>:)
 

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Agreed

BMW sold 40,000 R1200GS+R1200GSA units worldwide in 2015 which was a sales record.

Honda sold 400,000 Civics in North America alone.

At those volumes the tooling amortisation for the BMW would be significant per unit sold
 

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Motorcycles are overpriced

Well, I heard a "*******" axiom when I was a kid that I've never forgotten. My uncle rode his new Harley Panhead dresser to our home to show it off and my dad wanted to know what it cost. My uncle said, "They're about the same as a new Volkswagen." True then, true now.

Mike
 

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So here's a question to get you thinking about why things cost what they cost. Do you think things like cars, motorcycles, refrigerators, and whatnot should be relatively priced according to how they cost to make or according to how much the market will pay?

This is a totally different question than what *you* might be willing to pay for something. There are people that think a Lexus is just an expensive Toyota and would never buy one. There are people that put some value on what the Lexus offers that aren't important to the other buyer and they'll buy it for a much greater margin to the factory than the Toyota.
 
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Buy either an airplane or boat and you will think the BMW moto's are very inexpensive.:wink2:
Considering my '14 GS LC cost about 1/6th of my last airplane and is sometimes even MORE fun, and I don't have to have someone's permission to change the brake pads or add farkles, I think it's really cheap!!!!!
:grin2:
 

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Considering my '14 GS LC cost about 1/6th of my last airplane and is sometimes even MORE fun, and I don't have to have someone's permission to change the brake pads or add farkles, I think it's really cheap!!!!!
:grin2:
You need a more exciting airplane!



I spent 10x on this one in 2004 but it's been something that just about defined me for the last decade+. What's really frustrating is to own something this simple and still yet be a certified airplane that requires all the oversight. Bikes are so much easier.
 

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Would point out you're comparing apples to squid. The Honda Civic is an economical commuter car, so a more appropriate two-wheeled equivalent would be the NC700X, with a list price of about £6000 (and actual sale price a bit less, at least here in the USA). The GS is more appropriately compared to something like a Range Rover, which lists for something over £60,000! By that standard the GS is a bargain!
 

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It's what you like to have.

You get economy of scale. They pump out about a gazillion Honda Civics over a period of a year, over 500,000 the world over I am told. They make 40,000 BMW R-1200GS sold world wide, I am told. The Honda Civic is a cheap commuter car, no real performance there, everything is pretty vanilla. Honda gets it to drive amazingly well and last a long time, but if you dive into what's really there it's a pretty cheaply made car.

Over in Berlin our bikes are pretty much hand made one at a time. BMW uses jigs and limited robotics to get each one perfectly and uniformly assembled, but human hands touch each one as it's built. Looking at YouTube videos of BMW bikes and engines being built you can see that the workers there really pay attention to each step and BMW cares about the outcome. It's a well made motorcycle.

Cross company platform, a 7 series Bimmer would be a good analog to our GS bikes. It's an $80,000+ cage. Just like our GS's, when you get into a 7 series you know you are in a car of top quality. The feel, the finish the driving experience is hard to forget. Um, wait, swing you leg over a GS Beemer, you also know you are astride a motorcycle of the highest caliber too, also providing a top notch riding experience. Mind you, I am not dising Honda at all, in reality a much better value, try an Africa Twin. Nice. GS with the active suspension option? Much better. The Honda? It's not. But it cost only 50% of what the Beemer did. When I am on my GS I feel like I am on top of the world, the Africa Twin, well, I feel like I am on top of a motorcycle. A very good motorcycle, but not as good as a BMW.

Aircraft? I am also an aircraft owner and pilot. I fly a 2 place Bellanca Citabria, and aerobatic sport plane. Aircraft cost a lot of cash, especially if you go new. The technology in that engine is Jurassic. 6.5:1 compression ratio, magneto ignition (with points thank you), air cooled, splash and pressure oil lubricated and induction is with a single barrel carburetor, with a hand pump primer for easy cold starts. My aircraft has wooden spars, wooden formers and is is covered in fabric. Flying it is almost telepathic though, (The Pitts S1S is even more so) just like my GS is to ride. Point being there isn't much there. $175.000 will get you a new one, why so much? They don't make a lot, every one of these is hand built one at a time. There are something like 250,000 aircraft in the USA, spanning from the 20's to today. Not a lot are made every year. No wonder a Cessna 172 (The Chevy Impala of the air) new is a quarter of a million bucks. For those of you who don't know, 172 a four place aircraft (that can only take 4 150 lb people), a cursing speed of 120 Knots, really not too much more than a training platform or weekend toy. Why so expensive? They don't make too many of them. Comfortable? Luxurious? Quiet? NO! You get seats that try to break your butt, it's small, and so loud inside you need to wear hearing protection. Good? No, er well for a a light single engine aircraft, YES! Low volume production? Yes! Expensive! Yes.

In the end, it's not the cost, it's what you like to have.

- John.
 

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....... priced according to how they cost to make or according to how much the market will pay? ......
The price variation from one country to another shows that they are priced to whatever the market will sustain. My R1200GS in Australia cost a bit over (AU)$30,000. I could buy that same bike in South Africa for around (AU)$20,000.
 

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walk in a bicycle shop ....

Walk in a high end bike shop and look at a top end racing bike if you want some real sticker shock. After racing for 20 years I retired from it about 5 years ago. Prices are complete lunacy now. I bought my used 2012 GS for the price of two medium level racing bikes. CRAZY!
 

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Yesterday I went into a bike store and looked at a $7800usd bicycle. $7800! Yeah, carbon fiber everything etc... $7800!

Kam
And what an awesome bike it is too. Rolls so nicely and so light you almost think you don't have to pedal it. But you do.

Once again, it's not what it costs, it what you like to have.

If cost were the only issue we'd all be riding a Huffy. "Pump really hard, not get very far" :laugh2:

- John
 

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Walk in a high end bike shop and look at a top end racing bike if you want some real sticker shock. After racing for 20 years I retired from it about 5 years ago. Prices are complete lunacy now. I bought my used 2012 GS for the price of two medium level racing bikes. CRAZY!
Crazy and all... but you still bought it!!! Then again, is not the cost, is what you want!
 

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Well, a BMW motorcycle is an exclusive machine, priced to be exclusive too. Is it better than the rest, I think so, but some of my KLR riding buddies think the KLR is superior to the BMW. Try the KLR, I WANT MY BEEMER BACK!!! RIGHT NOW!!! (shouting intended)

Ah, but it was a much better value. Does the KLR make motorcycle rides happen? Yes, and quite well. I am all
for bikes like the KLR, if it gets people out there on the road (paved and non) I'm all for it.

So, does this have anything to do with nothing? Well, yes.

- John
 
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