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Which Bike? Comments and Questions on what is the best bike for YOU, for YOUR trip. Note that we believe that ANY bike will do, so please remember that it's all down to PERSONAL OPINION. Technical Questions for all brands go in their own forum.
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  #1  
Old 31 Jan 2007
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Ultimate fuel economy -- what bike?

Can forum members recommend bikes that deliver truly outstanding fuel economy? By outstanding, I mean upwards of 75mpg (on UK, or 'Imperial' gallons).

I have a specific trip in mind, in North America, and for my own peculiar reasons -- not just economy -- I am researching the possibility of doing a journey of several thousand miles at the absolute maximum practical fuel economy.

Sure, I know I could get a 50cc scooter to give me 100+ mpg, and maybe even a Honda C90 could get close to such figures -- but do forum members have other, more rational, more comfortable suggestions for bikes that might achieve similar levels of fuel economy?

The idea is at the earliest stage of planning, but the trip would involve as much as 10,000 miles, all on paved roads, but not necessarily with many l-o-n-g travel days, meaning a 200 mile day might be a long one, and that a machine comfortable at cruising at 50 or 55 mph (solo rider, not a huge amount of luggage) would do the job.

I would welcome any input from people with some practical knowledge to share.


ron
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  #2  
Old 31 Jan 2007
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Royal Enfield 500 single. easy to maintain, cruise all day at 55 - 60 mph and give you 80 mpg easy.
but then i'm biased. sure you hear horror stories. we have 2 electra 500's, cdi ignition, electric start, disc brakes...3000+ trouble free miles, cheap on fuel, tyres, tax and insurance. ok not for the mechanically inept, but even they can learn to fix 'em they are that simple.
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  #3  
Old 31 Jan 2007
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Hi Bikerz,

The Enfield was already in my thinking, though I don't know if they're readily available in North America. And then there is the worry about parts/service when the bikes are so rare. I see one of the posters here (Cameraman? Something like that) says his Yamaha Serow 250 gives great mileage and good reliability.

I know it seems like a daft question, but I have something rather daft in mind, and it does not require a bike capable of 800-mile days, and which means something like the Enfield or the Serow -- or even a comfortable scooter -- might be suitable.

Anyone else have ideas?

ron
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  #4  
Old 31 Jan 2007
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I have`heard that the BMW F650 can get over 70 mpg (US gallons), that would be about 84 mpg Imperial gallons. And it will go freeway speeds with luggage.
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  #5  
Old 31 Jan 2007
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Hello John,

Thanks for that. I am well aware that the F650 has a superb reputation among long-distance tourers, but I confess its ability to cruise on such a frugal amount of fuel had escaped me.

I know there must be an endless number of threads on F650 issues, and don't want to be a newby pain in the derriere by starting another one -- but is anyone here with experience of long-distance touring on the F650 able to back up the 70 mpg (US Gallons) that John has heard of?

And any other bike suggestions?

Thanks for this! The feedback and food for thought is much appreciated.


ron
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  #6  
Old 31 Jan 2007
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I am with Bikerz on this one, get the new electra, whole world of difference to the 1950's bike . ( although it looks similar it is completely different).
they are available in USA at http://www.royalenfield.com/app/US/default.asp
If you really want high mpg try searching this site:= http://www.dieselbike.net/
the only recurring problem I have heard of is the clutch cable barrel at the handlebar lever end is sometimes is too tight and causes premature failure of the cable. just make sure the barrel is free in its hole and lubricate once a week.
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  #7  
Old 31 Jan 2007
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Thumbs up 2003 650

Not certain about 75 but my 2003 650 Dakar provides consistent 65mpIg returns. Better in fact than my Suzuki DRZ400S. Though I doubt its as easy to work on as the Enfield?

Cheers Steve
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  #8  
Old 31 Jan 2007
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At the Chain Gang site they have a forum
http://f650.com/phpBB2/
Do a search using "mpg"
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  #9  
Old 1 Feb 2007
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Gas economy

If you are looking for a bike in the states that will run and run without being worked on look in to the Honda 250 rebel and the yamaha 250 virago. Both get in excess of 80 mpg US gallon. The serrow or XT225 as it is called here will also get 80 MPG US ridden briskly and who knows what when driven with economy in mind. These bikes should have service and parts availability across the US. Just what is your plan? You have me courious.
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Old 1 Feb 2007
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The Buell blast gets about 70 mpg US so that would be close if not meet your goal. While lots of people laugh at the blast it handles very well, can do freeway speed and is low maintance. They are inexpensive new and dirt cheap when used in exellant condition. They are a small bike and a bit underpowered off the shelf. Also the gas tank is small. They are worth a consideration IMHO.
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  #11  
Old 1 Feb 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueron
-- but is anyone here with experience of long-distance touring on the F650 able to back up the 70 mpg (US Gallons) that John has heard of?
On our last trip through the ME, we consistently got over 60 mpUSg. The high was 75mpg over 2 tanks with tail wind. We were 2-up (abate 2 light weight individuals) with gear.

Besides from 1 flat tire and being hit by a minibus, we got no problem from the bike.

Having said that, it seems that you're looking for an even more efficient bike. Perhaps one of the 250cc fuel misers would fit more.
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  #12  
Old 1 Feb 2007
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[quote=mollydog]What "peculiar reasons" are at work here? Are you trying to invent a career for yourself? Set some or sort of economy "record"? Perhaps write a book on how to cross America for 5 pounds a day? Mooching off "kind hearted Americans" along the way? Showing us how stupid we are driviing Ginormous SUVs while you putter along smugly on your 80 mpg scooter? So what's your point here?


You're not so far off, MollyDog -- though it would have nothing to do with pouring shame or scorn on anyone, nor with 'mooching' off of anybody. I like the idea of achieving a lot on a minimal amount of fuel, but not to the extent that I'd take you up on the kind offer of the wooden cross and the crown of thorns -- or elect to ride a Honda Super Cub, which might be the equivalent. I'm a writer and photographer and eternal wanderer, forever on the look-out for another daft adventure.

My thanks to everyone who is taking the time to offer their thoughts. The Buell Blast does look like a serious option, too. Which leaves me with, at present, a shortlist of the BMW F650, the Buell Blast, the Enfield 500, and the Yamaha Serow -- not counting possible scooters.

ron
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  #13  
Old 1 Feb 2007
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I second the sugestion that you consider the Honda Rebel. Late 2004-05 models are available for around $2,000 U.S. and they are known to be quite reliable. Fuel economy can be in excess of 85 mpg, depending obviously on how you ride.
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  #14  
Old 1 Feb 2007
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On my '05 f650gs I easily get 55-65 MPG (US) on interstates at speeds 70MPH (+). Drop it back under 70 MPH and it climbs to 65-75 MPG. Gives me around 225 (+-) per tank when the reserve light comes on. I'm 200lb and have Jessie Paniers on the back. As for comfort, I've done Baja top to bottom and back. Some off road. Very comfortable. Done several Iron Butt rides (1000+) miles in 24 hours. No problem. A 1200 GS it's not. There are many varibles that can add or substract a few MPG either way. The biggest varible is interstate vs back road travel. As someone noted, we scream when gas goes above $2.50 I did once, until I did an extended trip across Europe. We practically give our gas away. Go to WWW.F650.com and you'll see tons of info. www.advrider.com can give you a lot of trip bike specific info.
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  #15  
Old 3 Feb 2007
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Fuel economy

Hi Chaps,

yep you were right T'was I with the XT250 Serow and I previously ran an F650GS & an R1200GS.

The Serow's covered 31,000km in 16month and has averaged around 85mpg.

My R1200GS used to give around 60mpg.

Mr F65GS gave around 68mpg but when treated gently could give nearer 80!

The Serow cruises all day (and everyday) at 95kph and is well within it's limits at this sort of speed. Flat out she manages 131kph but I wouldn't like to do that for long.

The R1200GS was the ultimate in long distance tourers for me but well to heavy for anything else.

The F650GS was had similar restictions to the R1200GS.

The Serow's a blast! You can tour (OK at a leisurly pace but that's my type of touring). You can trail easily and even get it out of bogs on your own. You can commute through heavy traffic (like I do daily).

Cheap & fun biking.
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