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Offline Royal Tiger

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My next dual sport
« on: December 18, 2013, 07:26:01 PM »
I have been hemming and hawing for a while now on what to get next.  I love the XChallenge and will HATE getting rid of it, but I want something lighter.  I was at the International Motorcycle Show in New York City and got to try out a few.  I have decided on this one:

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2014 KTM 500EXC

Anyone have some KTM experiences to share?  I have been reading up as much as I can, and it looks like KTM has drastically improved their reliability.  I love the 990 Adventure Dakar in blue, but it's not what I'm looking for at the moment.  I want a light woods bike.  Not a fan of orange, but you can get aftermarket black plastics so that's the first thing I'll change.   Just wanted to see if anyone had any input.  Cheers.   :beerchug:
~Dan

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Offline bomber

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2013, 10:37:14 AM »
The only experience I have with KTMs is drooling at the booths at motorcycle shows . . . I can attest that KTM uses carpeting that is highly absorbant.
We had two bags of grass, 75 pellets of mescaline, five sheets of high-powered blotter acid, a saltshaker half-full of cocaine, a whole galaxy of multi-colored uppers, downers, screamers, laughers... Also, a quart of tequila, a quart of rum, a case of beer, a pint of raw ether, and two dozen amyls. Not that we needed all that for the trip, but once you get locked into a serious drug collection, the tendency is to push it as far as you can.

Offline Max Wedge

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2013, 11:22:27 AM »
The only experience I have with KTMs is drooling at the booths at motorcycle shows . . . I can attest that KTM uses carpeting that is highly absorbant.

Me also.
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Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2013, 01:36:04 PM »
~Dan

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Offline Black Hills

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2013, 01:42:06 PM »
Love my KTM's!! first one was a '97 and have found them to be just as reliable as their Japanese counterparts. For tight woods riding I would go with the 300XC-w or exc? the 500 are great but a handful in the tight stuff. of course one of each would be perfect ;)
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Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2013, 03:12:54 PM »
Love my KTM's!! first one was a '97 and have found them to be just as reliable as their Japanese counterparts. For tight woods riding I would go with the 300XC-w or exc? the 500 are great but a handful in the tight stuff. of course one of each would be perfect ;)

I asked the factory rep about the 350.  That's the one I was leaning towards.  He suggested the 500 as it has the fan already installed and because of my size and prior run of 650's he thought I'd get bored with the 350.  I thought the 350 would be fine.  They weigh just about the same and they are only $300 apart.
~Dan

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Offline Black Hills

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #6 on: December 19, 2013, 05:01:55 PM »
the 4 strokes are just so brutal right off idle that they wear me out after a few hours. the two strokes will hang right with them but if you lug them they are nice and mellow. Of course it depends what you ride, this is definitely 2 stroke only for me:
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the above are merely the ramblings of a hamfisted fuckwit who has broken too many helmets.

Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #7 on: December 19, 2013, 07:00:13 PM »
Street legal is a must, so it leaves just the 350EXC-F, 500EXC, and 690 Enduro R.  The 690 is no different then my G650X in reality, so that's out.  I want something lighter then my current bike.  The WR250R and Husky TE310 were the front runners until I started asking around on ADVRider.  The 350 I thought would be ideal, but I keep getting steered towards the 500.  It will be the better street portion of dual sporting for sure.  The factory rep said the 500 is also easier to ride slow as it's stronger right off idle.  I'd like to ride both first, but I don't know if that will be possible.
~Dan

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Offline Black Hills

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2013, 08:29:15 PM »
Either will have its advantages, good luck and have fun ( the fun part will be easy)
the above are merely the ramblings of a hamfisted fuckwit who has broken too many helmets.

Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #9 on: December 20, 2013, 04:57:10 AM »
Either will have its advantages, good luck and have fun ( the fun part will be easy)

Thanks.  One day I might lose my love affair for the 30th Anniversary 990A Dakar in blue.  But I doubt it.  :D
~Dan

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Offline Black Hills

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #10 on: December 20, 2013, 08:21:20 AM »
Either will have its advantages, good luck and have fun ( the fun part will be easy)

Thanks.  One day I might lose my love affair for the 30th Anniversary 990A Dakar in blue.  But I doubt it.  :D

have you ridden one? if not don't unless you can buy one ;)  all my  friends (street or dirt riders) thought my 990 was the dumbest motorcycle I could buy. Everyone of them changed their mind after a ride, and the 1190's are supposed to be even better!
the above are merely the ramblings of a hamfisted fuckwit who has broken too many helmets.

Offline Cablebandit

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2013, 08:28:12 AM »
Buy the WR.  Then in a year I can buy it from you at a DEEP discount.   ;D

Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #12 on: December 20, 2013, 08:29:36 AM »
Buy the WR.  Then in a year I can buy it from you at a DEEP discount.   ;D

The WR is nice.  But that KTM is in a whole nother league!
~Dan

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Offline Max Wedge

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #13 on: December 20, 2013, 10:26:44 AM »
Thanks.  One day I might lose my love affair for the 30th Anniversary 990A Dakar in blue.  But I doubt it.  :D
You sir, have impeccable taste.

Now tell us a little about the G650X......? Just curious....
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Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #14 on: December 20, 2013, 10:45:18 AM »
Thanks.  One day I might lose my love affair for the 30th Anniversary 990A Dakar in blue.  But I doubt it.  :D

You sir, have impeccable taste.

Now tell us a little about the G650X......? Just curious....


She's an amazing bike.  Blows all the Japanese 650's into the weeds.  They only made it for 2007.  It was made by aprilia for BMW with a Rotax motor.  About 53hp and 320-330lbs wet.  Mine has been heavily breathed on by the Touratech catalog.  :D

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~Dan

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Offline Max Wedge

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #15 on: December 20, 2013, 10:50:08 AM »
Very nice. Haven't seen many in the wild. Reliability been okay?
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Offline Cablebandit

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #16 on: December 20, 2013, 11:08:08 AM »
It's a Rotax.  That's like asking if a stone is reliable.   :lol:


Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #17 on: December 20, 2013, 11:16:23 AM »
Very nice. Haven't seen many in the wild. Reliability been okay?

Absolutely.  I'd keep it if it was up to me, but she said I have to let it go if I want the KTM.
~Dan

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Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #18 on: December 20, 2013, 11:16:53 AM »
It's a Rotax.  That's like asking if a stone is reliable.   :lol:

Yep!  :D
~Dan

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Offline Max Wedge

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #19 on: December 20, 2013, 12:23:27 PM »
It's a Rotax.  That's like asking if a stone is reliable.   :lol:

Yep!  :D

I did not realize it was a Rotax. Question withdrawn, your honor.

So what might a fine reliable piece of iron like this set one back these days?
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Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #20 on: December 20, 2013, 02:03:16 PM »
They seem to be holding steady in the $4500-6000 range. 
~Dan

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Offline garry

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #21 on: December 20, 2013, 02:42:43 PM »
the 4 strokes are just so brutal right off idle that they wear me out after a few hours.

This is true. When geared like the XC-W, my 530 EXC is a handful on tight/technical stuff. It does wear you out. I try riding in a higher gear and slipping the clutch to smooth it out a bit.

Even the 500 is a bit heavy compared to the two strokes. I prefer quad-trails, double track, dirt roads (more open stuff), so the 530 works great there.
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Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #22 on: December 20, 2013, 02:53:51 PM »
the 4 strokes are just so brutal right off idle that they wear me out after a few hours.

This is true. When geared like the XC-W, my 530 EXC is a handful on tight/technical stuff. It does wear you out. I try riding in a higher gear and slipping the clutch to smooth it out a bit.

Even the 500 is a bit heavy compared to the two strokes. I prefer quad-trails, double track, dirt roads (more open stuff), so the 530 works great there.

The 350 & 500 EXC's are about 260 wet.  Extremely light for a street legal bike.  The WR250R is around 300 wet.  Even the Husky TE310 weighs more then the KTM 350. 
~Dan

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Offline Black Hills

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #23 on: December 20, 2013, 05:27:31 PM »
the 4 strokes are just so brutal right off idle that they wear me out after a few hours.

This is true. When geared like the XC-W, my 530 EXC is a handful on tight/technical stuff. It does wear you out. I try riding in a higher gear and slipping the clutch to smooth it out a bit.

Even the 500 is a bit heavy compared to the two strokes. I prefer quad-trails, double track, dirt roads (more open stuff), so the 530 works great there.

The 350 & 500 EXC's are about 260 wet.  Extremely light for a street legal bike.  The WR250R is around 300 wet.  Even the Husky TE310 weighs more then the KTM 350.

 the weight numbers can be surprising, the 500 isn't much more than the 300 two stroke, but riding them the 500 feels a lot heavier. If I wasn't doing single track though the 500 would be my choice.
the above are merely the ramblings of a hamfisted fuckwit who has broken too many helmets.

Offline Scottzilla

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #24 on: December 20, 2013, 05:39:46 PM »
I can't get past why anyone would need anything more than a KLR.  :)

Congrats on the decision.  I would get the WR from a value perspective but the allure of a KTM sure is strong. I think for me the deciding factor may be the total lack of a dealer network within a hundred square miles.   :o

Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #25 on: December 20, 2013, 07:07:56 PM »
I can't get past why anyone would need anything more than a KLR.  :)

Congrats on the decision.  I would get the WR from a value perspective but the allure of a KTM sure is strong. I think for me the deciding factor may be the total lack of a dealer network within a hundred square miles.   :o

I had a KLR.  A tractor trailer killed it.  And almost me.

The BMW is a great bike, I just want something lighter.  And it's already 90 pounds lighter then the KLR with more power.  I still like KLR's.  For what they are they are fine bikes.
~Dan

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Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #26 on: December 22, 2013, 10:18:06 AM »
I thought I had myself convinced I wanted the 500 after talking to the factory rep.  Now I'm back to thinking the 350 would fit better for how I'll use it.   Ugh.
~Dan

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Offline JonS

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #27 on: December 23, 2013, 08:49:20 AM »
The only experience I have with KTMs is drooling at the booths at motorcycle shows . . . I can attest that KTM uses carpeting that is highly absorbant.

Same here. The only thing I do know is you have to keep up on the maintenance. Here in Colorado, KTMs are very popular. I would say that the ratio I see in the back of pickup trucks is about 10 to 1, KTMs verses anything else.
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Offline Black Hills

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #28 on: December 23, 2013, 09:02:37 AM »


Same here. The only thing I do know is you have to keep up on the maintenance.

No more than Japanese brands. they are dirt bikes and if you use them for what they are designed for you will be doing a lot more maintenance than you do on your street bike. but, KTM is no more maint. intensive that anything else. I've done the same with my KTM as I did with my Honda's with very similar results. I have also found them to hold up to crashing a bit better than CR's?
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Offline mxvet57

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #29 on: December 26, 2013, 09:00:51 PM »


Same here. The only thing I do know is you have to keep up on the maintenance.

No more than Japanese brands. they are dirt bikes and if you use them for what they are designed for you will be doing a lot more maintenance than you do on your street bike. but, KTM is no more maint. intensive that anything else. I've done the same with my KTM as I did with my Honda's with very similar results. I have also found them to hold up to crashing a bit better than CR's?

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Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #30 on: March 06, 2014, 06:07:07 PM »
My buddy is the defacto general manager of a Yamaha dealer and we bought her XT from him directly at a steal.  He has me strongly considering the WR over the KTM.  Damn him!!!!!  lol
~Dan

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #31 on: March 08, 2014, 04:46:30 PM »
I do have a WR and have put a few (*though not a lot) of miles on it.  The WR might just define what a true dirt focused "Dual Sport" is really about. Dead reliable, fully street legal in 50 states (*a big deal for Cali).

That is, all 300# and 24 horsepower of it! 

It's not the most exciting bike in the world but it will get you where you need to go every time. 

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Damn.  Was that really a good idea?

Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #32 on: March 08, 2014, 07:35:42 PM »
I do have a WR and have put a few (*though not a lot) of miles on it.  The WR might just define what a true dirt focused "Dual Sport" is really about. Dead reliable, fully street legal in 50 states (*a big deal for Cali).

That is, all 300# and 24 horsepower of it! 

It's not the most exciting bike in the world but it will get you where you need to go every time.

The weight is the big issue for me.  My KLR was a good bike, but it was over 400 pounds.  The G650X is a lot more powerful and around 330-340.  Problem is it wants to go 100mph ALL THE TIME!  lol  With her now doing off road on her XT, I'm not barreling through the woods anymore.  Plus, the G650X seems more western USA oriented.  We just don't have the open areas in the Northeast.  Less weight and not so high strung are definite pluses.  I was liking the KTM 350 as it's still killer fast, but that just takes me back to where I started with the BMW.  She likes the fact the WR is about $3k cheaper.
~Dan

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #33 on: March 09, 2014, 05:58:52 PM »
This followed me home today...

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Online sleazy rider

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #34 on: March 09, 2014, 06:52:00 PM »
This should be an interesting summer in Michigan.  More and more of us are going to the dirty side. 
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Offline Max Wedge

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #35 on: March 09, 2014, 07:01:55 PM »
This followed me home today...

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Pick that up in new Baltimore? If you did, I saw it on ADV and thought it might be a good deal and I had a feeling that the owner would be negotiable.
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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #36 on: March 09, 2014, 07:16:58 PM »
Yup, I took a trip over there today and picked it up.  It seems to be all there, and I think I got a decent deal.


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Offline Max Wedge

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #37 on: March 09, 2014, 08:52:54 PM »
Glad someone here got it!
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Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #38 on: March 10, 2014, 12:50:12 AM »
I miss my KLR for what it was. 
~Dan

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #39 on: March 10, 2014, 09:57:23 PM »
I think I have a disease....
I just "spoke" for a TTR125 for my boy via Craigslist.
I don't have time to see it until Wednesday, but the current owner claims he'll hold it for me until then.

Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #40 on: March 10, 2014, 11:20:08 PM »
I think I have a disease....
I just "spoke" for a TTR125 for my boy via Craigslist.
I don't have time to see it until Wednesday, but the current owner claims he'll hold it for me until then.

I had a TT-R225.  Solid bike.  My daughters have long outgrown the PW80.  That needs to go.
~Dan

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My next dual sport
« Reply #41 on: March 12, 2014, 08:25:12 PM »
Expensive week...


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Offline Royal Tiger

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Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #42 on: March 12, 2014, 10:21:26 PM »
Very nice!   :bigok:

I soooo need to sell the PW and get a 125.  Ideally a KLX140L would find it's way to the garage, but I don't want to spend that kind of money if I'm looking to add a new WR250R at some point.  Selling the G650X will help offset that somewhat, but I still want to stay at the lower end for a sometimes bike.
~Dan

2013 Yamaha XT250 * 2012 Kawasaki Ninja 250 * 2007 BMW G650X XChallenge * 2005 BMW R1200ST * 2003 Yamaha PW80

Offline marc11

  • Member
  • Location: Orange County, NY
  • Posts: 550
Re: My next dual sport
« Reply #43 on: March 13, 2014, 06:27:38 AM »
Very nice!   :bigok:

I soooo need to sell the PW and get a 125.  Ideally a KLX140L would find it's way to the garage, but I don't want to spend that kind of money if I'm looking to add a new WR250R at some point.  Selling the G650X will help offset that somewhat, but I still want to stay at the lower end for a sometimes bike.

I picked up a KLX140L for my son exactly this time  last year to move him up from a klx110 to a true gear box and clutch bike. His is a 2010 so new it had the OEM tires on it with hardly any wear and full service records from a dealer for oil changes and a new battery for $1200!!!  The kid out grew the bike and parents wanted out of the garage. Didn't even have a scratch on it. Does now ha ha.  We sold his 110 the exact same weekend for $1000.

They are great bikes and deals can be had if you look.

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2014 R1200RT
2002 XR400