Ducati.ms - The Ultimate Ducati Forum banner
  • Hey Everyone! Enter your bike HERE to be a part of this months Bike of the Month Challenge!
1 - 20 of 27 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm sure this has been discussed several thousand times but from this forum's prospective what are pros cons for each(duc/honda). I am coming off a BMW R1150rt looking for something smaller less touring easy to handle at slower speeds but all day ride on weekend // 7mile ride to work week days.
 

·
Registered
2007 MTS 1100s
Joined
·
598 Posts
I believe bags for the VFR can be obtained for an added cost. Now, coming from a BMW, you know all about... dare I say... quirky motorcycles (splines, clunky transmissions, etc)? I am definitely biased but if you are looking for utilitarian, look at the Honda. If you are looking for soul, more power, better suspension and a pretty well built piece (see quirky statement above), give the 3s a look. Something to definitely think about when considering a Ducati though, is proximity to a good dealer if you are not pretty proficient with a wrench. Also, recently, some 06 owners on this board have encountered some issues. With respect to the 04's and 05's standard ST, there seems to be some pretty positive press from the bulk of the owners on this site. Don't forget there is always the demo ride option... at least as far as the Duc goes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
882 Posts
mcd said:
Don't forget there is always the demo ride option... at least as far as the Duc goes.
But be careful! I rode one back in 2001 and that was it - I bought it. Until that point I had never felt a motorcycle with such character and soul. That 90 degree V-Twin is something else.
 

·
Ducati Designs
Joined
·
1,125 Posts
Lots of opinions out there. Some may be echoing what they've read on other opinion-based boards, some may have actually experienced the bikes. I've owned both a well-equipped ST2 and a 2003 VFR, and have ridden a fairly-new ST3. While there are differences, they're not that far apart. Both tour easily, handle very well in the twisties, get decent mileage and are relatively reliable. Some newer Ducs have had reliability issues, and so have the newer VFRs. A good dealer and some personal investment goes a long way to mitigate the risk.

The whole "soul" nonsense is just that. Both these bikes have unique personalities with positive and negative attributes, and only you can decide which you like. I love the sound and feel of the VFR V4 at high revs through Staintune pipes; nothing makes that sound and growl. The Duc benefits from good pipes as well, the throatier and deeper the better.

On the downside, the VFR is a technically overblown design. It is extremely complex in some areas and self-servicing can be challenging. While I really like the linked brakes, it adds a lot of plumbing. The VTEC valve train thingy is a nice gimmick that maybe reduces emissions (if you care about that), but is again overly complex and makes tuning a bit of a challenge. The famous "VTEC Kick" is certainly there on some bikes and not there on others. Mine makes a tiny kick (mostly sound changing) at a few throttle positions, but it really has no effect on riding. It sounds neat, but they could have just as well left it off. The bike makes plenty of low end torque (for a 781cc bike), but not the stump-pulling grunt of the 4s. Top end power is fine with good pipes.

Honda's hard bags cost $999 and work and look great, just like the ST bags. They've been available since 2003.

I suggest you ride both, see what you like. I'll keep my VFR for a while.

pg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
623 Posts
I always liked the 2000-ish VFR design and engine. If that one was available without the linked brakes and some factory bags I may have bought one. I even considered GIVI bags.

Now riding a ST3 and I love it. The factory bags are great, too - way better than BMW!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
I went through the same decision process a couple of years ago. I test rode the VFR and found it to be a fine bike. I found it was very easy to get comfortable on it and very easy to ride quickly through twisty roads even with no prior experience on the bike. Predictable and smooooooooth power delivery, predictable brakes, comfortable ergos...in short, a very pleasant ride. But in some strange way, it was almost too easy...too smooth...too refined?

It did not make me feel as involved in the riding experience as my previous Monster or the ST4S which I also test rode. The Ducati just made me feel better.

Bike choice is a very personal thing and at the end of the day, you should choose the bike that best suits the mental image you have of yourself and your riding. Which bike do you identify with more closely?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
132 Posts
What?

You did say ST3s? Your kidding, right?
My best friend rides a '04 VFR, I rode his, he rode my ST3, I couldn't wait to give it back! He said his next bike will be a Ducati.................
 

·
Registered
2007 MTS 1100s
Joined
·
598 Posts
pgeller said:
The whole "soul" nonsense is just that. pg
PG, first and foremost... a very well thought out and very informative response. But, if there are any old guys out there who remember the now defunct Help Needed section of the Ducati Index you very likely remember a whitty gentleman by screen name of "EastBay 888". Anyway... one day the stars all seemed to align when he generated a post which summed up the whole "soul" concept in a way us mere mortals dream about. A free beer to the person that comes up with the details of that splendid post.
 

·
Member
Joined
·
7,733 Posts
A bike with soul doesn't look like a Star Trek movie prop, it looks like a motorcycle. A bike with soul is not called an "Interceptor" because it embodies free spirit, not police action. A bike with soul does not copy famous original style, it forges its own. A bike with soul has few iterations over a long production run, rather than dramatic styling/engineering changes. A bike with soul stands out from the crowd rather than being a part of it.

I guess one could go one endlessly and perhaps pointlessly and I hope someone finds and posts that article that was mentioned, but for me, a bike with soul is what owners of Japanese bikes eventually want after a while: that intangible something more from the ownership experience, and it's *not* speed nor dead solid reliability.

VFR's *are* great bikes, but they're nothing special. Ducatis are special.

I think you may also want to include the new BMW 800 series if comparing VFR's to "something different", but the ST3 will outclass and most likely outperform any VFR. YMMV.
 

·
Registered
2007 MTS 1100s
Joined
·
598 Posts
Amen, Frank.

But one small thing I am trying to overlook. Don't you think the current ST3's and 4's front head light look hauntingly similar to the 5th generation VFR? Yeah... must be a figment of my imagination and, as such, I will dispatch the thought immediately. With respect to that prior article: I've taken my request to a higher authority. No... not that high. I've solicited the assistance of Mark Buckelew who one of the moderators of this board and who knows the original author. I hope I have some luck as, I believe, it is truly a wonderful read. Unbiasedly speaking... of course.
 

·
Member
Joined
·
7,733 Posts
mcd said:
Amen, Frank.

But one small thing I am trying to overlook. Don't you think the current ST3's and 4's front head light look hauntingly similar to the 5th generation VFR? Yeah... must be a figment of my imagination and, as such, I will dispatch the thought immediately. With respect to that prior article: I've taken my request to a higher authority. No... not that high. I've solicited the assistance of Mark Buckelew who one of the moderators of this board and who knows the original author. I hope I have some luck as, I believe, it is truly a wonderful read. Unbiasedly speaking... of course.
Guess how one interprets similar is relevant. "Similarities" have been know to happen. To me, there are enough subtle differences in the details between the VFR and ST3 headlamp/upper fairing.
 

Attachments

·
Site Sponsor & Senior Member
Joined
·
193 Posts
soul,
my Yamaha’s have soul, founded in 1886 I believe.
a buddy went to Japan and brought back a 2000 r1 pictured signed by
Kenijko Miwa-the original R1 designer. they had lunch with him
an interesting point they came a way with was the fact that kawasaki, honda suzuki and yamaha engineers get together once a year and discuss they're philosophies. (image that with ford & gm? Or audi, bmw & mb?)

Kawasaki's was all engine- “more power grasshopper!”
Honda's was make it the best- best fit and finish. best whatever. v-tech linked brakes, not afraid of technology or hand cuffed by tradition.
Yamaha's was, "the energy of man and machine" "passion" there's a Japanese word for it. not just a tool

for myself,
I feel there is a innate connectedness between being a bi-ped and bi-cycle be it motorized or not. Something that requires balance, management.
And your undivided attention while managing the trajectory and 100/150hp through the contact patch the size of ½ a tennis shoe. heheheh

Does that apply to 2 cylinders as well?
Maybe.
A racing buddy pu a harley fulldressor. (his wife wanted go for rides)
he noticed it as well, it occurs as something with a life of its own.
the 4cyclinders do as well, just more of a song, or tune, more subtle still ominous

yes imo. the 04 and later look a wee bit vfr for me. I liked the 98-03
classic bullet fairing, cant tell if its a 73 or 2003. And unless it has a DucatiDesigns hd light, its not very nice at night.

(disclaimer- a lil liberties on the spelling and grammar- thx!)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
re soul

I had a Yamaha that had "Soul"........it was a guitar!.......BUT.......it NEVER had as much soul as my GR12 Esteve Spanish classical guitar that I have now!

Hehehehehe. Ok. Seriously, soul is where YOU find it not where everyone else does. I've had 11 japanese bikes, 3 BMW's and 4 Ducatis and have to admit the Ducati's did it for me, and maybe the R80 and the CBR1000FM....It's a personal thing.
 

·
Member
Joined
·
7,733 Posts
acpdx said:
soul,
my Yamaha’s have soul, founded in 1886 I believe.
a buddy went to Japan and brought back a 2000 r1 pictured signed by
Kenijko Miwa-the original R1 designer. they had lunch with him
an interesting point they came a way with was the fact that kawasaki, honda suzuki and yamaha engineers get together once a year and discuss they're philosophies. (image that with ford & gm? Or audi, bmw & mb?)

Kawasaki's was all engine- “more power grasshopper!”
Honda's was make it the best- best fit and finish. best whatever. v-tech linked brakes, not afraid of technology or hand cuffed by tradition.
Yamaha's was, "the energy of man and machine" "passion" there's a Japanese word for it. not just a tool

for myself,
I feel there is a innate connectedness between being a bi-ped and bi-cycle be it motorized or not. Something that requires balance, management.
And your undivided attention while managing the trajectory and 100/150hp through the contact patch the size of ½ a tennis shoe. heheheh

Does that apply to 2 cylinders as well?
Maybe.
A racing buddy pu a harley fulldressor. (his wife wanted go for rides)
he noticed it as well, it occurs as something with a life of its own.
the 4cyclinders do as well, just more of a song, or tune, more subtle still ominous

yes imo. the 04 and later look a wee bit vfr for me. I liked the 98-03
classic bullet fairing, cant tell if its a 73 or 2003. And unless it has a DucatiDesigns hd light, its not very nice at night.

(disclaimer- a lil liberties on the spelling and grammar- thx!)

AFAIK The Yamaha Motor Company is celebrating its 50th this year. I really like Yamaha products, I've owned 5 yammies, and loved each one, but not for their soul. R1's are awesome and I'd love to have one in my stable, should I ever afford a stable. The "r1" I-4 can be had in MC, or PWC, or outboard motor form. No exactly special. Call any yammy dealer for parts for a V-max, or Warrior or an Adventurer as examples, and you'll have to differentiate with the parts counter person whether you mean the bike or the snowmobile or the atv. Not exactly special.

I've often read that some folks are reminded of (4th generation?) VFR's when they see an '04 or later ST. I guess it's a matter of taste and interpretation, but in my eye, they are improvements over the older style, because in my opinion, the older style evokes similarities with Katanas and Hurricanes. YMMV.
 

Attachments

·
Site Sponsor & Senior Member
Joined
·
193 Posts
thank you!
well, the motorcycle divison began importing motorcycle to the US, in the 50's

Torakusu Yamaha travels the world in 1880's visiting all the piano manufactures of that day,(remember this is when a ocean crossing was a 4-6wks.)
Torakusu Yamaha founds what will become Yamaha Corporation
here's a link to Yamaha History
http://www.yamaha.co.jp/english/product/piano/about/about.html

this is where Yamaha's logo of the 3 tuning forks came from.
 
1 - 20 of 27 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top