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New Buell SM?

7659 Views 54 Replies 32 Participants Last post by  JeffS
Looks like Buell is going to introduce some kind of street motard. The website video shows a rider on both pavement and dirt roads. Probably along the lines of the new KTM. Go to:

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I just got back from the Denver press intro for the Buell Ulysses.

The thing is really an adventure tourer, we spent the day hooning around twisty canyons and unpaved gravel roads and it was a total blast.

It's heavy, but the weight is down low (gas frame/tank and exhaust). It felt like a supermoto in steering and a 4 gear shift from 5th to 1st had the thing hacking beautifully.

It's on a slightly stretched chassis (compared to the CityX and the rest of the range) - I'd say it's a pretty good 'tard style bike - I can see some crossover action here. The more people who dig into this genre are more likely to start looking towards a Supermoto - it happened in Europe...

I can't wait to ride one, I'm selling my SMR and I don't ride my XB9r much this might be the bike for me!
The new Buell XB12X is NOT, I repeat NOT an Adventure bike. It might be a Touring bike but don't be fooled by the press it's getting. The Buell is being compared to the KTM 950 Adventure and the BMW R1200GS in the new Cycle World. They test the Buell with the BWM and A Ducati Multistrada. Sure the Buell will hold it's own on the street but this is not a Dualsport/Adventure bike. Trust me I know! I currently own the 2005.5 KTM Adventure S in the picture and I am a former Buell owner. The Buell couldn't hold a candle to my Adventure. It beats it in every category, except maybe fuel economy. Yes, I've had my KTM off-road. It weighs a lot less than the Buell. They are claiming 471# for the Buell. The KTM weighs in at 437# due mostly to the lightweight engine compared to the lump in the Buell. You also have 100rwhp in the KTM and maybe 85 in the Buell.

For the record, Adventure bikes are for traveling around the WORLD, not down to the store.

S Won
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For the record, at the last dyno day I was at a recent Buell with some mods did 74.1hp, a Duk 998 did 115.6, My TL did 116.5, a KTM 652SMC (not stock) did 50.6hp. I think its very unlikly that you will see more than 75rwhp out of a stock Buell and the 950 Adventure while a very sweet bike isn't going to be very close to 100rwhp stock, ~100hp at the crank perhaps but probably 85rwhp. Still no slouch by any means:)

Swon, that street tracker in your sig looks like its going to be some serious fun:cool
I think Quickbritt is right the new XB is an adventure tourer. A comfy quick street bike with some off-road ability. It's going to be able to go anywhere that 95% of the riders are willing to take their 12-16k "Adventure" bikes. I have ridden truly thousands of miles in the cascade mountains and I can only think of a few sections that I wouldn't take that new buell on. I don't need to go around the world so, It's o.k. for me to turn around and go back!

Besides... I'm gonna kick ass on my riding buddies!
Cycle World tested a stock KTM 950 Adventure and got 91hp out of it. My bike is not stock, anymore. The old tube framed Buells were in the 70 to 80hp range but not the new XBs. They dynoed one at my local dealer and got 96rwhp out of it stock with just jetting. Saw it! You can easily get 100hp out of the new XB bikes. I made nearly 100rwhp with my stock 1998 Buell S1W and just bolt on parts, no headwork. Later, I made 120rwhp with S1W but it was nowhere near stock. NRHS Stage 3 ported heads, 1250 Nikasil Cyliders, CP forged pistons w/11.5:1 CR, Race intake manifold, Mikuni HSR45, .536" SE cams, Force Race pipe, etc... Don't underestimate these bikes. I have spent a lot of time with Buells in the past 6 years or so and have owned numerous Buells myself. Headwork really wakes them up. My last Stage 3 XL1200R/XB heads from NRHS flowed 180cfms with stock castings and just portwork.

bikepilot, yeah, the new Street Tracker bike is way cool. It better be. I sold my 625 SMC to build it. Well, actually I sold it to buy the Adventure S but I justified (to my wife) the new bike with the sale of the SMC. We are only shooting for 110rwhp out of that engine this time. Check back in the New Street Tracker thread, on this Forum to see the specifics. The new XR STD heads have 2" intake valves and are going to flow like crazy. They'll put the stock casting heads to shame.

To me, Adventure means off-road. Yes, it's just a name but it should be an indicator of capability. The KTM Adventure is an Adventure off-road bike. It has the suspension to do off-road terrain. Yes, the new Buell XB12X can go off-road, as in gravel roads, dirt roads, fields, etc... Taking it off-road any further would result in too much damage to justify. Rocks, mud, water-crossings, Siberia, not going to happen with that bike. I still think it's sort of cool, but I won't be buying one.

My only point was that the new XB12X is not an Adventure bike.

S Won
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Cool, for some reason even the new XB's are in the 70-75hp range with exhaust and fueling mods at the dyno day I was at last week. I think a lot of it has to do with dyno optimism/error and if the numbers are SAE corrected or raw ( I belive CW is corrected hp, look at their numbers for other bikes as a reference). For reference and clean, low miles Ducati 998 dynoed at 115.6hp on the same day the Buell did 74 (both raw numbers). I don't think a KTM950 is going to be withing 15hp of a 998 without major mods. Of course, if you go by the numbers in the magiznes the duk is closer to 130-140hp and its easy to imagine a 950 being 100hp on the same scale. I fear that we are suffering from hp scale inflation along with grade point inflation in this country:)

Either way, its all good and I know that they 950's are fast. I've been trolling your street tracker thread:) I'm in total agreament that anything labled adventure should be able to handle a wide range of terrian.
That's just it. If everyone labels their newest bike an Adventure model just to sell more of them, then what will make a bike an Adventure and how will you be able to tell. To me, it should mean something other that a name or label.

I don't think that many people who dyno bikes are capable or have very good equipment and I agree. There are probably a lot of happy dynos out there. On the other hand, if the mags are inflating numbers then they misleading people. All my numbers for my Buell were given to me first by my engine builder (who has a dyno) and backed up on the dyno after I built the engine. We had to dynotune the bike in. If that's not done it's hit or miss, as to what the results will be.

S Won
Makes good sense. I doubt the mags are outwright lieing about the numbers, its just that they seem to use more optimistic dyno's and then apply SAE (or that other convention, the acronym escapes me right now) correction factors, which almost always result in a higher numerical value. The idea is that they account for differences in ambient tempature, humidity, altitude etc. Manufactures usually state their numbers in crankshaft hp which is of course almost imposible to verify, but is usualy much higher than you'll see on a dyno. For example, yamaha claimed 180hp for the new R1, but most are dyno'ing at 140-155hp depending on dyno, temp and alt.

cheers and have fun on that sweet KTM:)
There's a significent price difference between the Buell and the big KTM too..

The Buell will reatail at 11,500 - the Katoom is more than a couple of grand more... that's a lot of adventure touring gas money.

I think the power of the new Buell might surprise some.

Sorry, but that is completely wrong! I paid $13,200 for my 2005.5 KTM Adventure. It's an S model that goes for $1000 more than the regular Adventure. MSRP for my bike is $14,098 but nobody but Harley and Buell owners pay MSRP, or more. My dealer discounted the bike down to $13,200 and that was the out the door price. No freight or dealer prep. Since Buell is calling the new XB12X an Adventure/Touring bike it should come with hard bags. My price included the hard bags. The Buell XB12X does not come with bags. Add $800 and the price jumps to $12,295. Don't forget dealer prep and freight. Now the price difference really isn't that significant. Your talking just a couple hundred bucks here. The difference is night and day. I could have purchased the standard Adventure for $11,999 out the door. That's actually less than you can get the new XB12X and bags for and you get the excellent LC8 engine.

Listen, as a Buell owner (I have owned several models), I am VERY familiar with the service that the Harley techs provide on these bikes. You need to be prepared for what you will face from them, if you let them touch your bike. Avoid them if you can, at all costs. These engines are very easy to work on, if you get one, plan to do your own service and repairs. I'm not here to bash the brand, but to bring some truth to the sunshine that is being blown up people's dresses. Buell has turned their backs on the old tube framed bikes. That is one reason for my street tracker project. I liked the bike but I hated the dealer support. Soon, the only place to find parts for the older bikes will be eBay. All of the dealers in my area have quit selling the Buells in their dealerships. The XB bikes have had excellent reliability and very few warrantee issues. Buell claims the best in the industry, I'm not so sure but I don't have the numbers either.

If Buell would have flown me out to the press introduction then maybe I'd be saying good things about the bike too. I'm sure that Buell & H-D paid big dollars to Cycle World for the adds in the September 2005 issue. You know, the one with the great writeup and all the glowing reviews of the XB12X. If a very capable sportbike is what you're after, I'm betting the Buell will make a good bike. If you need an Adventure bike you might want to look at something else. All of the newer bikes are very capable nowadays. This bike is taking Buell in a different direction and that's a good thing. I for one, am looking forward to seeing new bikes like this, with even more techonlogy and capabilities. I use my KTM as a commuter bike to get up the gravel/dirtroad to my farm. The Buell would work equally well for that, but I have high goals for this bike someday and the Buell would not work for that.

As Buell owners maybe they should have given us the heads up to what they were going to do with this bike. I think I still would have purchased the KTM over it though!

Just my opinion!

S Won
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Looks like Buell is treading more on BMW land than KTM. Except that the Buell still looks to have a non existant rear seat.....

s won said:
The new Buell XB12X is NOT, I repeat NOT an Adventure bike.

I agree, and don't see why everyone else doesn't see it.

I'm amazed that Buell has been able to take one bike and sell it as three or four "unique" models. A set of tires and a lift kit do not an Adventure bike make. The Buell fans are quick to compare the lines to the likes of KTM, BMW, Aprillia, Ducati, etc. I'm sorry, but I just don't see how they realistically expect to pull the same price premiums as these companies - especially at the rate they're doing REAL R&D. So far, all I've seen is a transmission and a few knick-knacks.

Charge a premium for the bike, have only one engineer on staff, and I guess you don't have to sell too many of them to turn a profit.

My feeling is that if you put it head to head against either vstrom, the only reason it would win is the rider's desire to "stand out".
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