As soon as you start this bike you fall in love with the sound. Ok maybe I am a bit of a bike nerd but I loved the tone. All controls are super easy to work and after only a few minutes riding you feel right at home on this GS. The heated grips (which I think should be available on every bike made) seemed to heat up much faster than what I am used to on my R1150GS. Big plus! While we are talking about grips just a personal thing I guess, I found wearing a gel pad quality glove (Olympia Gel Gloves http://olympiamotosports.com) with this bike made for a very comfortable feel as far as grip size goes. The new 800GS comes with chain drive as with all the smaller GS’s. A little more maintenance and care than on my huge 1150 but we all know the benefits of more power and less weight and that seems to be a fair trade especially on this bike. Let’s talk about the ride. Surprising Torque is the first thing that comes to mind. This bike is stuffed full of power. All areas are more than adequate but it seems to shine in the 4000 -5500 RPM range to me. It’s very competent in city riding and the gear ratios seem to work really well on the mild off roading. I got to open the bike up on the highway a few times during the 400-500 miles I rode it. Passing a few trucks or slow caged drivers is no problem. I do know for a fact that in 6th gear after only a very small amount of asphalt passing by on the highway it will easily do well over 100MPH, don’t try this at home.
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