Author 2019 CT vs 2014 GS - my thoughts  (Read 3243 times)

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  • Offline TheCrossTourer

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    Offline TheCrossTourer

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    2019 CT vs 2014 GS - my thoughts
    on: Sep 27, 2021, 09.58 pm
    Sep 27, 2021, 09.58 pm
    Well, I got the BMtroubleU back from repairs a few days ago and took both for a spin to compare. Here are my thoughts bearing in mind I've only had the crosstourer for a few days now.
    BMW is lighter on paper but feel heavier to manage at slow speed and in and out of garage.
    CT surprised me how easy it is around corners, I feel more confident in bends and in roundabouts with CT than with GS. Both feel well planted and CT possibly more stable at speed.
    GS has all the bells and whistles, CT has what it needs and I feel less is more.
    CT speedo cluster is minimalistic sufficient and handlebar controls basic. GS has a very busy speedo with so many buttons on handlebars making it difficult at night finding the right buttons. All with a purpose though.
    CT better balanced at low speed it think, will be a breeze at low speeds in city for commuting
    CT is narrower low down and around tank and much less cluttered than the GS
    Fuel Consumption TBC after a few weeks on it, seems similar on paper.
    CT has large oval/rectangular mirrors, easier to see behind me but seems higher, will see how it fares while  filtering in narrow lanes
    CT front brake feels more firm and grippy than GS front. Rear brake on GS is like a marshmallow and rear on CT is spot on.
    CT suspension very basic compared to GS but does the job. It is set up quite hard as it is and I feel every bump on the CT. GS adjustable ESA is great but expensive when it goes wrong as I found out. Less is more, CT is perfectly capable of doing the same job.
    CT has smooth flowing contours, nice 'n easy to wash it, with the GS I don't know where to start washing with so many bits sticking out.
    CT don't have the torque low down like the beemer but hell it goes when it picks up speed. CT = speeding points
    Less wind protection on CT, my legs and upper body does feel exposed, no aftermarket touring screen available for CT with adjustable screen height??
    CT seat not the best and not height adjustable where GS is more comfortable and adjustable.CT seat height is quite high as standard though.
    You also sit "in" the GS whereas you sit "on" the CT. Riding position is very different although both upright.
    CT footrests in the way when stationary.

    Love the CT though, I have parked the BMtroubleU after a final ride home from work today and CT to work from tomorrow on. The GS can do it all and is certainly up to anything you throw at it. Everything is adjustable on the GS which makes for expensive repairs and servicing.

    The CT's practicality makes so much more sense with less farkless for everyday use. The engine is super smooth compared to the boxer and it actually feels like I'm riding a motorbike again with the CT and not trying to launch a spaceshuttle with the GS.

    I fear I may be a bit colder in winter on the CT but nothing that heated grips, bigger screen and my heated trousers won't sort out..

  • Offline Nogshere

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    Re: 2019 CT vs 2014 GS - my thoughts
    Reply #1 on: Sep 28, 2021, 01.48 pm
    Sep 28, 2021, 01.48 pm
    Hi, never ridden a GS but a very interesting comparison. Agree with most of the points on the CT and would say once you have sorted the suspension, seat, windscreen to your requirements you won't find a better bike pound for pound  :464:

  • Offline Pickaxe   gb

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    Re: 2019 CT vs 2014 GS - my thoughts
    Reply #2 on: Sep 28, 2021, 06.52 pm
    Sep 28, 2021, 06.52 pm
    Bet that would make them giggle on the GS forum

  • Offline Hartley   england

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    Offline Hartley

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    Re: 2019 CT vs 2014 GS - my thoughts
    Reply #3 on: Sep 29, 2021, 07.22 am
    Sep 29, 2021, 07.22 am
    Interesting to read your comparison.
    After 8 years on 2 CTs manual and DCT I switched to the dark side and bought a 1250 GS in May.
    I find the GS feels a lot lighter when moving around and whilst riding.  Whilst I’m MotoGP riding god I also find the BMW appears to handle better in that it’s lighter and easier to change direction. I paid a lot of money to upgrade the suspension on the CT which did improve it but it was never upto the standard of the GS.
    The BMW does have all the tech and the Honda is, by today’s standards, very basic. But, as you say, this can actually detract from the “ride”. When I first got the bike I was so preoccupied with the bells and whistles I wasn’t actually enjoying the journey. More recently I’ve just got on and rode it a
    and I’m really beginning to have some fun on it
    Which leads me onto something that has surprised me and that I feel is very different about the two bikes. I enjoyed my CTs , they served my wife and I very well and took us on some great adventures but, and it’s quite a big but. I never found it “fun”  My XJR and Himalayan put a smile on my face when I ride them in a way that the Honda just didn’t.

    I do feel the CT is a better built bike than the BMW ( and most other to be honest)When I looked last you could get a brand new CT for around 11k. That’s just over half the cost of a fully spec’d GS. That is amazing value for such a good bike that will do just about everything with no fuss. My wife told me with the exception of the suspension she preferred touring on the Honda.

    For me, I’m glad I made the swap, mostly because I’d wanted to try the BMW for so long and I found myself in a position where I could do so.
    That said, if Honda had brought out a new CT,  kept it upto date, invested in what is a very good bike, I may well have been riding my third now.


  • Offline Pickaxe   gb

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    Offline Pickaxe

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    Re: 2019 CT vs 2014 GS - my thoughts
    Reply #4 on: Sep 29, 2021, 01.08 pm
    Sep 29, 2021, 01.08 pm
    Sales figures don't lie, the GS is a very accomplished bike. However, having owned and ridden a 1200 GS and two RTs, IMO the CT is superior in the following areas.
    Stability at all speeds.
    Carrying a pillion and luggage in respect of handling and stability.
    Reliability.
    DCT transmission/V4 engine is unique and impressive.
    I don't think the Honda's build quality is up to some of their previous models, but is still equal to BMWs

  • Offline Big Tex

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    Offline Big Tex

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    Re: 2019 CT vs 2014 GS - my thoughts
    Reply #5 on: Oct 13, 2021, 03.31 pm
    Oct 13, 2021, 03.31 pm
    I dropped my 2016 CT off last Friday to get new tires. And sat in service and talked with another rider there with a new R bike. He has 600 miles on his and it has been in the shop three times already. He said it is a $28K piece of s--t. Almost ten years ago I was riding a Suzuki VStrom and swapped bikes with a friend who had one for a while. I was unimpressed.

  • Offline Melmoth

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    Re: 2019 CT vs 2014 GS - my thoughts
    Reply #6 on: Nov 28, 2021, 07.44 am
    Nov 28, 2021, 07.44 am
    I bought a 2015 CT (DCT) with 4500 miles on the clock for £7,500 in March. I have since happily ridden 5000 miles on it. I have also ridden a 2012 GS for several hundred miles (in the US) and a 2017 GS for about 1000 miles (in Spain). I've not tried the newest GS. I think a 4,500 mile 2015 GS would probably cost about £11k here in the UK which would represent about a 6k-8k drop on the new price depending on how highly specced it was. The CT probably dropped about £6k-£7k in value over the same time period making the Honda a rather better secondhand buy.

    I very much liked the GS and was looking for one at the time I bought the CT (which I had never heard of or ridden at the time I bought it.) I was, however, tempted by its price, reviews and the fact that I felt it was less likely to be nicked and (from owning a Honda car) was likely to be well made and finished. The latter is an important consideration when you live by the sea.

    To the extent I can compare the two bikes, I would say that on the minus side that the CT is less comfortable, feels heavier, has worse suspension and worse wind protection. It also has far fewer gizmos, the only one of which I would actually want (apart from ESA) is cruise control. I also find the foot rest position when stationary clumsy. On the plus side the engine pulls harder, the bike feels more solid, it is very reliable (which I am told GS's are not), it is less common-place (and doesn't automatically categorise you) it has fabulous brakes, and, once it had new tyres (pilot v's) the handling dramatically improved to something closer to the GS - though it was still let down by its rather crude suspension. Its biggest advantage over the BM, though, is its DCT which is a joy.

    Since buying the bike I have fitted a new screen and seat and adjusted the suspension fairly dramatically. (I've also added heated grips, a power jack, side panniers (second hand)  and spotlights.) All of this has pushed up the base cost by some £8-£900. This has improved the bike significantly. Wind protection is now very good, the suspension is much smoother and less choppy (though not perfect) and I can ride for around 2 hours without getting a sore bum (The BM seat, from memory, was still more comfortable) It feels planted and fast on motorways and I feel confident riding hard on all but very twisty more minor roads where the bike still feels bulky and baulks at mid-corner bumps. (The bike is, considering its bulk, surprisingly good in town as a result of its DCT.)

    Generally, I suspect that for most people the BM is a better bike.  But for me, the CT wins on price, robustness, lack of gizmos, DCT, and general hassle-free ownership (including the fact I don't worry about it being stolen.)




  • Offline Pickaxe   gb

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    Re: 2019 CT vs 2014 GS - my thoughts
    Reply #7 on: Nov 30, 2021, 06.49 pm
    Nov 30, 2021, 06.49 pm
    *Originally Posted by Melmoth [+]
    I bought a 2015 CT (DCT) with 4500 miles on the clock for £7,500 in March. I have since happily ridden 5000 miles on it. I have also ridden a 2012 GS for several hundred miles (in the US) and a 2017 GS for about 1000 miles (in Spain). I've not tried the newest GS. I think a 4,500 mile 2015 GS would probably cost about £11k here in the UK which would represent about a 6k-8k drop on the new price depending on how highly specced it was. The CT probably dropped about £6k-£7k in value over the same time period making the Honda a rather better secondhand buy.

    I very much liked the GS and was looking for one at the time I bought the CT (which I had never heard of or ridden at the time I bought it.) I was, however, tempted by its price, reviews and the fact that I felt it was less likely to be nicked and (from owning a Honda car) was likely to be well made and finished. The latter is an important consideration when you live by the sea.

    To the extent I can compare the two bikes, I would say that on the minus side that the CT is less comfortable, feels heavier, has worse suspension and worse wind protection. It also has far fewer gizmos, the only one of which I would actually want (apart from ESA) is cruise control. I also find the foot rest position when stationary clumsy. On the plus side the engine pulls harder, the bike feels more solid, it is very reliable (which I am told GS's are not), it is less common-place (and doesn't automatically categorise you) it has fabulous brakes, and, once it had new tyres (pilot v's) the handling dramatically improved to something closer to the GS - though it was still let down by its rather crude suspension. Its biggest advantage over the BM, though, is its DCT which is a joy.

    Since buying the bike I have fitted a new screen and seat and adjusted the suspension fairly dramatically. (I've also added heated grips, a power jack, side panniers (second hand)  and spotlights.) All of this has pushed up the base cost by some £8-£900. This has improved the bike significantly. Wind protection is now very good, the suspension is much smoother and less choppy (though not perfect) and I can ride for around 2 hours without getting a sore bum (The BM seat, from memory, was still more comfortable) It feels planted and fast on motorways and I feel confident riding hard on all but very twisty more minor roads where the bike still feels bulky and baulks at mid-corner bumps. (The bike is, considering its bulk, surprisingly good in town as a result of its DCT.)

    Generally, I suspect that for most people the BM is a better bike.  But for me, the CT wins on price, robustness, lack of gizmos, DCT, and general hassle-free ownership (including the fact I don't worry about it being stolen.)

    I totally agree with the above and have to say it again " the DCT system is the dogs whatsits"