Shiny. New.

Concourse_14It’s shiny.  Its red.  It’s new.  It’s a blast.  I’ve owned it for a little more than 24 hours at this point.

I’m in the process of moving to single motorcycle ownership again.  On my way home from teaching a motorcycle class recently, I stopped off and traded in my venerable ol’ BMW police bike for a nice new Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS.  Even though a 2014 model, as a factory demo unit, it’s still new from a titling standpoint and I got a screamin’ deal on a great bike with only 4500 miles on the clock.

The next step is to sell my R1200GS.  I’ll then be back to one motorcycle in the garage for the first time since 2004.

This will be the machine that will carry me on my upcoming coast-to-coast-to-coast trip starting Memorial Day Weekend.

One quick mod that I find necessary already is to add pullback bar risers.  I’m not of the Orangutan-armed variety, and having a couple of inches of additional height and rearward positioning in the bars will help quite a lot.

At 1352cc, this is not a small bike, nor a low powered one.  In fact this motor has a larger displacement than that of the last car I owned.  I’ve never had a four cylinder bike before and right off the bat during the test ride, I found the smoothness and tight control of the available power very nice.  Watching the speedometer will be vital – this is a quick ride, but highly manageable and comfortable.

I tested two bikes while shopping, both of which I’d researched ahead of time.  The bike that lost out to this one int he test ride was the Yamaha FJR 1300A.  Not because the FJR was a lesser bike, but mostly because this one has better wind/rain protection and felt much smoother and more controllable on the road.

First new bike in my garage in nine years.  Guess it was time.