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Okay, so maybe not so serious with that title but can you cruise on this? Silly question, right? I tour often and I've been eyeballing one of these bikes for the longest time. I think they are just plain sharp and I love the new 2018 white color scheme. I just had a local dealer give me a really super nice trade offer to get a 2018 F, trading for my best motorcycle I've ever owned in my life (best among probably 25 or 30 bikes, I lose count), a KTM 950 Supermoto. Why would I trade the best motorcycle I've ever owned and loved for the last 24k miles in the last 2 years? Well, the bike is now getting to be 35k miles old and I'm getting to a place where I would like a little bit of fairing and also a decent bit better power to fuel economy. I recently completed a 3300 mile trip to Colorado and back. My KTM averaged about 32mpg and has a range of about 110-130 before the light. I've toured EXTENSIVELY on my KTM and loved it. But I felt like I half lived at gas stations on that trip. And after those 24k fantastic miles, the KTM has averaged about 31mpg. I'm starting to feel like maybe it's time to change. I'm attracted to the GSF for things folks on here will probably think are ridiculous or funny. I love that it's a bedrock proven platform and straight up boring in terms of issues. I love that it cranks out that much power and still manages 40mpg or more. I love that it seems on paper almost like an old man's sport bike. LOL.

Back on topic, one of many, many things I love about my KTM is it is a truly Jekyl and Hyde bike. It is happy to putter around and do the boring duties, and then rips nicely when called upon otherwise. It will troll along peacefully in the scenery, allowing you to soak in the ride, and then literally eat twisties when you get to them. I've owned some mega powered bikes before. My formerly 2nd gen modified FZ1 comes to mind. After mods it turned about 135 plus HP. That bike WAS NOT happy to cruise. It was constantly and forever begging you to go faster and faster. Riding it at slow speeds was not a joy. You did not enjoy the scenery. You did not take the whole of it in. In fact, I sold it in less than 2 weeks when I realized I was only riding it to go out and find places where I could go fast upon it. We all do that a little, right? But when a bike is not a joy to ride doing anything but that, then I know that bike is not for me.

So I ask, can the GSX cruise? :D
 

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One thing I really love about this bike is it's laid back personality. It's like "You wanna cruise around town and get some food? We got this, no problem man. You wanna shred pavement and tires, twist that thing and let's freaking go! Whatever you want to do, we'll do it, just set the grip where you want it.
 

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The GSXS-1000 is really a great all around bike! In my opinion it is happy commuting in stop and go traffic, great on curvy mountain roads, and great when you feel like being a hooligan! Cheeks are tired from smiling every time I get done riding! Don’t think you would have any regrets! And you will definitely have alot better fuel range!
 

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I can't compare it to the KTM, but it is a hoot to ride in every situation, and pretty much a Jekyl and Hyde as far as being as relaxed as I want it to be, and scaring the begeezus out of myself at will too. ;)

I'm getting about 48 mpg commuting, and I get higher than that on longer trips with fewer stops (> 50mpg). It's a 4.5 gallon tank (not sure what the KTM is) so best to have < 200 miles between planned fuel stops. As far as cruising goes, it depends what you mean. The GSXS loved to be revved and has fairly close gearing all the way to 6th, but you can hit 80+ in 1st, and it doesn't mind being at higher RPMs. It's actually more fun to ride that way. ... but it is NOT a cruiser. It has good torque throughout with a slight flat spot between 4-5K, but I actually spend time between 4-5K on my commute and it does just fine. Take one for a ride if you have the opportunity. I think you will love it.
 

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I'd say if you can cruise on a KTM 950 you can cruise on a GSX S, although I've failed miserably at cruising in the first 1000 miles or so of ownership...it's too moreish to take it up the revs! From a purely technical stand point the engine is great for anything....better than most sports bike engines for mid range, meaning it's good to go up the gears early and still have plenty of go in 6th if needed, riding around at 3-4k rpm all the time....you don't NEED to take it up and over 10k...

However is there anywhere you can test ride one first for an hour? Your question might be a yes for some and a no for others, it's a very personal thing I'd say.

I did own a ktm 990 sm-t from new for 25K miles / 2 yrs so I know the mpg issue but also the versatility of the bike. The riding style of the KTM never got old...out of all the bikes I've had I miss it the most tbh. Is there not a way you can keep the 950 too that's one special bike mate!
 

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I also have a 2018 white F, three months old and 1835 miles so far, fuel economy average since Day 1 is 45.4 mpg. The sum total of changes from stock were a Throttle Tamer and I backed off 2 notches on the compression damping on the fork and 1/4 turn softer on the rear shock damping. Those tweaks made it a perfect all-arounder for me. It's my daily commuter and my weekend day-tripper.

One thing though, if you're intent on touring -- apparently not much thought was given to luggage accommodations on this bike from the factory. I'm sure you could make a bagger out of it somehow, I just wouldn't know exactly where to start.
 

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Yarp, I've got luggage on it, Hepco&Becker. Makes a nice platform for strapping extra baggage on the passenger seat. If you can pack light, you can tour far on her. Only complaint for long trips is the seat. But if you wanna tear it up she's ready to go. But don't expect to go far on one tank of gas, it's a motorcycle, twice the fuel economy of a car with a fourth the fuel capacity only gets you half as far.

And it's not a cruiser.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I'd say if you can cruise on a KTM 950 you can cruise on a GSX S, although I've failed miserably at cruising in the first 1000 miles or so of ownership...it's too moreish to take it up the revs! From a purely technical stand point the engine is great for anything....better than most sports bike engines for mid range, meaning it's good to go up the gears early and still have plenty of go in 6th if needed, riding around at 3-4k rpm all the time....you don't NEED to take it up and over 10k...

However is there anywhere you can test ride one first for an hour? Your question might be a yes for some and a no for others, it's a very personal thing I'd say.

I did own a ktm 990 sm-t from new for 25K miles / 2 yrs so I know the mpg issue but also the versatility of the bike. The riding style of the KTM never got old...out of all the bikes I've had I miss it the most tbh. Is there not a way you can keep the 950 too that's one special bike mate!
Yes, there is certainly a part of me that is tremendously loyal to my 950. Historically, I've crammed those 20 plus different bikes into only about 14 years of ownership; thus, my garage tends to turn over at a fairly rapid rate. But nothing upon nothing has been close to that 950 in terms of smiles, reliability, and sheer joy of riding. And at 35k miles it still has a lot of years and miles left. We've seen CO, WV, TN, NC, AR, GA, and IN together. I've got a ton of mods on her too. Hard to imagine letting it go, but the last trip had me finally saying well maybe enough. You get tired of stopping so much for gas and you get tired of the total nakedness of the bike a bit. I could possibly do a used F and keep the 950 for a while but I'm finding my eyeballs are just drawn so nicely to that white. The heart wants what it wants and in terms of bikes I've found it's better to just spend and get what you want than settle on a so called "better" deal, though I'm sure a used F would be fine as well.
 

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What about a KTM1290?
I've been off touring a few times this year on my GSXF and a couple of the guys have the 1290.
I was really impressed with it. It was comfier and had better luggage facilities. Shed loads of torque and until the pace got rather hot there wasn't anything it couldn't handle.
That said, it's horses for courses. The GSX F is a little sportier than the KTM, handling is superior and with a good luggage set up it's just as happy dawdling along as it is ripping it up and gives better economy to boot.
Tuff decision. I don't know which i would go for given the choice.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
What about a KTM1290?
I've been off touring a few times this year on my GSXF and a couple of the guys have the 1290.
I was really impressed with it. It was comfier and had better luggage facilities. Shed loads of torque and until the pace got rather hot there wasn't anything it couldn't handle.
That said, it's horses for courses. The GSX F is a little sportier than the KTM, handling is superior and with a good luggage set up it's just as happy dawdling along as it is ripping it up and gives better economy to boot.
Tuff decision. I don't know which i would go for given the choice.
Not certain but I think you here might mean the Adventure? If so, I like those bikes - and love KTMs in general - but the 950 I own is only about 420lbs dry and while nowhere near as powerful as the 1190 nor the 1290, it still kicks out some stomp (rejetted for the FMF pipes I have on it) while still undercutting even the mighty Duke in poundage, let alone the Adventure line. And too, I'm about 5'9" with a 30" inseam, about 155lbs soaking wet. I find the 1290 and even the 1190 Adventure to an extent, to be large and somewhat top heavy bikes, at least compared to my 950SM - though admittedly, the Adventures are some of the lightest in that class. I've given more thought to a 1290 Duke but I still maintain I'd likely buy an F here well before I'd plop down the cash for the Duke.
 

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Super Duke 1290 GT with factory hard bags would be a good way to go. But you can get the F for so much less $$$ and it'd make probably just as good of a touring bike.

I've ridden one of those 950's and they are fun. I wanted one so badly at one point in time. I'm very very happy with my GSX-S1000 right now though, but I also have a bike better built for touring as well so best of both worlds really.
 

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My formerly 2nd gen modified FZ1 comes to mind. After mods it turned about 135 plus HP. That bike WAS NOT happy to cruise. It was constantly and forever begging you to go faster and faster. Riding it at slow speeds was not a joy. You did not enjoy the scenery. You did not take the whole of it in. In fact, I sold it in less than 2 weeks when I realized I was only riding it to go out and find places where I could go fast upon it. We all do that a little, right? But when a bike is not a joy to ride doing anything but that, then I know that bike is not for me.

So I ask, can the GSX cruise? :D


I have the S1000F and you will not like it. This bike just wants to go fast. It almost begs you to trash it all the time. You're always worried about exceeding the speed limit or looking out for cops. If you want to cruise, enjoy scenery, then get a cruiser.
 

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My favorite bike up to this one was a CBR 600 F4I. Very similar design, but less power. I loved the F4i and regretted selling it more than any other bike until I bought the 1000F. I've had the full on race bike (Ducati 996) and the very laid back cruiser (VTX 1300), and this is absolutely my favorite. I did a 300 mile ride a couple of weekends ago and felt great afterwards. The fuel range is going to be comparable to a cruiser. Maybe the adventure bikes can get more, but I from my experience the ~150 mile range is pretty standard. I was usually stopping around 130 miles on the VTX.

This is all subjective though. You are asking on a forum with GSXS owners, after all. Go sit on one and see for yourself. I'm not an experienced distance rider, but I think I could do 3-400 miles a day on one consistently and not hate myself. The engine and transmission are outstanding.
 

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My favorite bike up to this one was a CBR 600 F4I. Very similar design, but less power. I loved the F4i and regretted selling it more than any other bike until I bought the 1000F. I've had the full on race bike (Ducati 996) and the very laid back cruiser (VTX 1300), and this is absolutely my favorite. I did a 300 mile ride a couple of weekends ago and felt great afterwards. The fuel range is going to be comparable to a cruiser. Maybe the adventure bikes can get more, but I from my experience the ~150 mile range is pretty standard. I was usually stopping around 130 miles on the VTX.

This is all subjective though. You are asking on a forum with GSXS owners, after all. Go sit on one and see for yourself. I'm not an experienced distance rider, but I think I could do 3-400 miles a day on one consistently and not hate myself. The engine and transmission are outstanding.
How was the VTX? Last time I sat on the Fury/Stateline, it felt very comfortable (I am 6'1). Used models are not that expensive.
 
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