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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i think the big 4 from japan still make the best motorcycles money can buy. i understand people just go nuts for bikes from Europe. from what i have seen in my life japan perfected the motorcycle a long time ago. i do think the gap has closed. Quality to me is not how TRICK a brake caliper is made, it is how long does it operate properly without a problem.
does BMW and DUC make fantastic motorcycles YES. are they better NO.
i have been in the auto repair busness for over 34 years. European cars do not impress me at all. they are very hard to work on and seem to always need something repaired that lasts forever on a toyota, or honda. also even a civic or corolla are very high Quality cars ,just less toys that more expensive cars. most owners of Ducs think their problems are just part of owning a motorcycle.
Editors from your fav motorcycle magazine never will pay for repairs on a bike they might be raving about. long term Quality is what most of us are interested in. when you are deep in a loan on a bike and are having to visit the dealers for repairs that cast big bucks that really sucks. i have a friend that bought a DUC monster. he cannot scrape up the money for his first service so it sits.
take a honda CBR1000RR change the oil and filter , clean and adj the chain, maybe adj the cables. most of the time that is all it needs.
forget to do the full maintence on a DUC and you will have trouble.
many jap bikes never get a valve adj or ever see a dealer service in their life run great for a very long time.
take a honda night hawk 750 for example. Hyd valves never need adjusting. that bike will not impress many folks, but it sure impresses me. people use them to go to work on and they see no love. a marvel of Quality for the money.
do some owners of jap bikes have problems YES. some people are unlucky, others could break a ANVIL. i am a huge fan of the big 4 from japan. my 04 Z1000 was bought used and has not had one problem in 14,000 miles. i love it.
 

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I suppose that depends on how you define "best". The Best bikes, from the factory, are made in Italy. These are high maintenance bikes, but they perform the best, source out the best parts "Ohlins, Brembo, Marchesini etc) and come out of the box with everything you need to go race competitively. If you're not into racing, you still get all the good billet stuff and shiny little bits on the Italians. Take a side by side look at the Z and the Ducati streetfighter. The designs are similar, besides vastly different engines, but the Ducati looks like it was more cared for in it's design. Every little piece is done perfectly, it all fits exactly.

By better, I'm talking seconds, or fractions of seconds though. Stuff you and I would never notice on the street, and only the best riders in the world would notice on a track. I'm also talking about billet master cylinders and forged wheels instead of cast pieces. Stuff that make a difference, if only teeny tiny differences. A person could take a ZX10R and rip it around the track out of the box. But in order to be compeitive, they need new shocks, wheels, springs, brake lines, exhaust, etc. All the stuff we all do or read about here on this forum. That takes your "cheap" ZX10R and turns it into a $18k bike. $60k if you do all the stuff the pros do to the engines and replace everything that's steel with titanium etc. A new Ducati 1098 costs about $16k.

So, in my opinion, because of my financial situation (I'm not rich), I think the Japanese make the best bike for the money. I only think this because they're, as you stated, more reliable, easier to maintain, just as fun for me, and it gives me something to do as a hobby. By that I mean, if my bike already had everything on it I wanted, it wouldn't be quite as fun for me. Part of the fun of motorcycles is making them faster, and making them unique. Can't do that very much with a Ducati or MV Agusta.

So, Italy makes the best bikes, while Japan makes the best bikes.;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Italy does something very smart. they make more than 1 model of each bike. the less expensive one gets standard suspension, for extra money you get all the trick racing parts. why japan only makes one model of their super sports i do not know.
saying that i still would take my z 1000 over a street fighter. i am not a fan of all that STUFF showing. it is like a bike that somebody removed the fairing and just left it that way. my 04 ZED is a very minimal clean naked, i like it that way.
riding a street fighter in town is not fun. the dam engine is very edgy. it does not like to smoothly take off from a stop light. the clutch is not happy. unless you keep the RPM up all the time it jerks and complains. if that is better fine. the riding position also sucks. everything negative i found on the street fighter, i love about my ZED. i go in the garage ,turn on the lights and just look at my green Z1000. i do understand why some riders love the street fighter. it reminds me of the old days with my muscle cars. big lumpy cams, ticking solid lifters. big holly carbs. they had lots of charm. do i want one today NO. if i was 30 years old and never had a nasty car or bike maybe the street fighter would make me happy for a while. for my riding style the Z1000 has more than i need. i like the clutch,smooth shifting and the gearing. maybe it will only do 150 MPH but the gearing around town is perfect for me. my engine is very happy at all speeds and RPMs. no flat spots. under 7,000 RPM the engine is very smooth.
 

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It really depends on what you personally like.

Fir instance, the japs make fast, reliable, light and inexpensive motor cycles. They work great and really fit the style they are going for(they really define it, honestly).

Italian bikes are often touted as having "soul" and "passion", but the italians haven't yet figured out how electricity works, so most italian bikes and cars are kept under a cover with a dead battery, except maybe fiats, lol.

American bikes are typically over priced and dripping oil. Honestly though, I do think buell's are outstanding. IMHO, they make any italian bike for looks and style. Taking a big cruiser style V-twin and putting a sportbike frame around is very cool to me.

Italy is all about style and fashion. Presentation is everything, thus they make extremely presentable bikes.

Japan is a small country with twisty mountain roads. A breeding ground for bikes that corner great, accelerate fast and brake fast, thus they produce these types of bikes.

America is a large country with an elaborate highway system. Taking a trip to another city could easily be 4-5 hours or 250-300 miles. These long distances gave birth to the American cruiser, specifically designed for long distance riding and comfort.

Atleast that's my opinion, lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
it really depends on what you personally like.

Fir instance, the japs make fast, reliable, light and inexpensive motor cycles. They work great and really fit the style they are going for(they really define it, honestly).

Italian bikes are often touted as having "soul" and "passion", but the italians haven't yet figured out how electricity works, so most italian bikes and cars are kept under a cover with a dead battery, except maybe fiats, lol.

American bikes are typically over priced and dripping oil. Honestly though, i do think buell's are outstanding. Imho, they make any italian bike for looks and style. Taking a big cruiser style v-twin and putting a sportbike frame around is very cool to me.

Italy is all about style and fashion. Presentation is everything, thus they make extremely presentable bikes.

Japan is a small country with twisty mountain roads. A breeding ground for bikes that corner great, accelerate fast and brake fast, thus they produce these types of bikes.








America is a large country with an elaborate highway system. Taking a trip to another city could easily be 4-5 hours or 250-300 miles. These long distances gave birth to the american cruiser, specifically designed for long distance riding and comfort.

Atleast that's my opinion, lol
purdy good:+1:
 

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I guess it all comes back to "To each There Own". I love my Z and it is so smooth (just for zephyrboy) and easy to ride you almost forget you are on a bike. I prefer Jap bikes.
But my Harley friends don't agree at all. Nor does my friend that has ridden a Gold Wing for 30 years or more. My Son and the guys I know that ride sportbikes think their bikes are the best.
My feeling is "Bang for the Buck" has to be the Jap bikes!
Don't get me wrong here I like like lots of other bikes and would love to have a different bike for every kind of ride I was going on, but... until I marry a rich widow I'll stick with my Zed. So if money were no object I'll take one of each thank you.
 

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Its gotta be a JAP Bike for me, anything else won't do. It also has to be a Kawasaki! Honda is right there in second though....
 

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coming from a Ducati, I can say that Jap bikes have nothing to prove. i had Marchesini wheels and brembo brakes. $1000 for the 6000 mile service. Why?? Mcycles are vehicles. most people use them to go from point A to point B. I relly think its not worth getting a bike that says Ducati on the side and brembo on the bottom if you want to be on the road. Every saturday i had to go to dealership and ask them to fix something else. I was not comfortable to go on a long ride if I was close to the valve adjustment service. Now with my Z I change the oil at the garage and ready to go anywhere. I can also take my wheel off by my self and not have to buy a special european stand so i can take the Ducs wheel off.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
coming from a Ducati, I can say that Jap bikes have nothing to prove. i had Marchesini wheels and brembo brakes. $1000 for the 6000 mile service. Why?? Mcycles are vehicles. most people use them to go from point A to point B. I relly think its not worth getting a bike that says Ducati on the side and brembo on the bottom if you want to be on the road. Every saturday i had to go to dealership and ask them to fix something else. I was not comfortable to go on a long ride if I was close to the valve adjustment service. Now with my Z I change the oil at the garage and ready to go anywhere. I can also take my wheel off by my self and not have to buy a special european stand so i can take the Ducs wheel off.
YEP well said :+1:
 

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Well since i do own a 2011 ducati streetfighter and 1198 and a 2011 z1000. I can tell u without any hesitation that as good as the z1000 is the street fighter duc is better in all categories. I'm not being biased and I don't drive a magazine so don't believe everything u read. The duc fighter is hands down a winner in my book and still just as practical as as my z1000. I ride all bikes regardless of name brand.
 

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coming from a Ducati, I can say that Jap bikes have nothing to prove. i had Marchesini wheels and brembo brakes. $1000 for the 6000 mile service. Why?? Mcycles are vehicles. most people use them to go from point A to point B. I relly think its not worth getting a bike that says Ducati on the side and brembo on the bottom if you want to be on the road. Every saturday i had to go to dealership and ask them to fix something else. I was not comfortable to go on a long ride if I was close to the valve adjustment service. Now with my Z I change the oil at the garage and ready to go anywhere. I can also take my wheel off by my self and not have to buy a special european stand so i can take the Ducs wheel off.
Its the Italian "sport version" of what Harleys are.... a status symbol, or statement of my $h!+ costs more than yours....:2cents:
 

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IMO:

"best"= Japan
"most desirable"= Italy

Chew on defining best and most desirable. Then define what is "Is". :cool:
 

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^^^ I would echo that sentiment. Roll up to bike night on a shocking-red mount bearing the Ducati brand, and without a doubt, everyone there will be inwardly drooling and outwardly calling you a pretentious c0ck! From what I understand (having never owned anything motorized from Italy) the reliability factor of their machines has been greatly improved over the last decade. While still retaining that hand-built, each-one-is-slightly-unique personality.

My new Z, as with the numerous Japanese bikes I've owned over the past twenty-some-odd-years, has been absolutely flawless in operation and reliability. Not once have any of my little Jap bikes needed repair -- only maintenance. Examining any modern piece of Japanese motorabilia (heh, did I just coin a phrase? :) for all it's power, surgically precise build quality and downright slickness....one can definitely tell it was punched out of a cookie-cutter mold. Whenever it was born, you know several hundred exactly like it, were cranked out the same day.

So my answer to the OP is -- depends on what one values in a bike. Power, slick op and reliability; no doubt Japan makes the "best." Exclusivity and individuality, right outta the box; "Italy." Though....let's not forget the quirkiness of them Bimmers!
 

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I don't know about the exclusivity, there maybe a few less.... BUT... There are enuff Ducs around here to choke a horse!
 

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Dang! You must live in yuppie suburbia hell, haha! Lol....does everybody drive a BMW (cage) too? Only time I get to see a Ducati, is during BikeWeek or Biketoberfest, parked around the speedway. Yes....y'all can hate on me for that, I live about an hour south of Daytona Beach. Every year the "Jap Four" and numerous other manufacturers show up to promote their wares, and many offer demo rides. Unfortunately, I don't remember any Italian makers ever doing that. Although this past 'toberfest, my buddy and I did get to demo a Boss Hoss!
 
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