Generally you have to add panniers yourself to overlanding bikes - only the pricey BMW ones come with them already. Are you sure that soft bags are not for you?
There are loads of old 1990s transalps in France which might do you. They come up on ebay all the time: scruffy but tough. Under 2000Euros - nearer to 1000. Comfortable on the road. What are your thoughts on that? They don't hit your tank capacity target though. Frankly, I can't think of many bikes that do. Maybe other can. Although, if you are planning on shipping the bikes home, then the Transalp is out, as you cannot register it there.
Shipping anything home will cost you, of course. Is it really worth paying half the purchase price to get a bike home? Second, you need two weeks to organise shipping. Then you have to get it from the port of arrival (L.A. probably) to your home, and then go through the paperwork for registration. It is worth having a think about this aspect of your plan.
Have you thought about buying something small - 250ish - and then leaving them in Africa? Perhaps a local will give you a few hundred to take them off your hands. A bit of research will give you an answer on that possibility. That sort of size bike would be perfect for Africa, and give you a big range with a gerry-can strapped on the back. Small bikes are more sellable than big ones. As you are only going for a month, the investment needed for a big machine increases your proportional loss, if you see what I mean. And the shipping home plan increases your admin burden significantly.
For 3000Euros you get a very recent 250 road-trail bike in France in top condition. This went on ebay a few days ago for 2000Euro
"superbe occasion pour cette moto tout terrain, peu utilisée en enduro, utilisation quotidienne domicile-travail, suivi et entretien par concessionnaire, révision complète avant mise en vente: kit chaine, pneus, bougie, filtres air/huile neufs, TRES BON ETAT!!"
That would be my choice - the bike Lois went on.
In my opinion your plan is falling between two stools. Best to either spend a pile and ship home with your shiny new Beemer, or go small leaving a happy local in Africa. I would definitely recommend the latter - more of an adventure.
I am in Nantes, 400km west of Paris, but I may be able to help. Let me know. In my dreams we buy the bikes off you when you are finished and ride them home to France.....
Around the world 2000-2004, on a 1993 Honda Transalp
Last edited by Simon Kennedy; 22 Sep 2008 at 13:15.