All Comparisons – Comparo K1600GT, 1400GTR and Sprint GT: the road on 3, 4 or 6 cylinders! – Impossible to go wrong

Comparo K1600GT, 1400GTR and Sprint GT: the road on 3, 4 or 6 cylinders !

All Comparisons - Comparo K1600GT, 1400GTR and Sprint GT: the road on 3, 4 or 6 cylinders! - Impossible to go wrong

The GT motorcycle segment today offers a very wide choice of makes, models and engines. Site brought together the Triumph Sprint GT, the Kawasaki 1400GTR and the BMW K1600GT for a three, four and six in-line comparison… Test !

Impossible to go wrong

Coming out of a bend or as soon as a stretch looms, the German quickly gains the upper hand: not only does the K16 benefit from enormous torque, but "70% of the maximum torque is available from 1500 rpm", rightly emphasizes BMW Motorrad France.

The slightly disagreeable whistle of the six-cylinder (shared by the Triple, but not the "quadruple") is quickly covered by the hoarse hiss of the pots: Sehr Guuuut! The 150 Nm of the French version are there … but not the 160 hp of the free version !

Morality: no need to scream the engine "made in Berlin": we go up the gears around 6500 rev / min, or 2000 revolutions before the start of the red zone. The frustration of not having the 53 additional horses is great … but yet not as intense as on Akashi’s "TGV" !

The Kawasaki does not begin to react until 5,000 rpm and cannot be detached from the Triple English despite its larger displacement. Worse, the overweight of the Japanese and the French bridle (perfectly sensitive from 8000 rpm!) Prevent it from following the Sprint, which takes advantage of the trunk and then the impressive extension of the 3-cylinder, as well as his weight more measured.

What we had previously observed on the technical sheet is confirmed on the road: the Sprint GT is the least penalized of the three by the restriction of 100 horses. So that by insisting a little, the Triumph definitely moves away from the Kawa and goes back to the BMW. !

The K 1600 GT to stay behind

The muffled sound of the Hinckley GT, however, makes the Sprint lose a hint of character. On the other hand, the gain in pleasure is real, especially for the passenger who is little "music lover" or not at all a fan of "motorcycles-which-make-noise" !

All three in sixth gear, our three VGTs (Grand Touring Vessels) are content to purr when stalled at 130 km / h meter. The engine of the BMW turns at 3800 rpm, a relatively high speed for the six-cylinder which responds to the slightest request of the right grip.

Conversely, the GTR’s tachometer needle lands at around 4,100 rpm. The last gear is similar on this bike to a real "Overdrive" – ​​even the engaged gear indicator indicates "OD" instead of "6" -, so that the Japanese engine struggles to restart the beast..

To overtake or catch up with his accomplices, it becomes essential to drop one or even two reports. This probably partly explains the higher average consumption of the Kawa during our test: 6.8 l / 100km for the Ninja against 6.4 for the Bavarian and 6.3 for the British.

Placed higher in the towers (4500), the Triumph is much more responsive on the expressway and prevents the left foot from playing too much of the selector. Too bad that 1000 turns higher, the crackling starts to tickle the hands too much and then the feet. But "fortunately", the speed limits encourage you to give up throttle and de facto reduce these vibrations !

We also note on the GTR that around 4000 rpm (a little before 130 km / h), little tingling runs through the fingers if they remain in contact with the levers. On the BMW on the other hand, no shaking, crackling or other parasitic vibration.

Set in "Comfort" mode, the big teutonic suspensions erase all the imperfections of the road and do not prevent you from putting on big gas! If necessary, the adoption of "Sport" mode even makes it possible to scrape the footrests..

No "ESA" system – or similar as Ohlins offers, for example – on the competition: it’s a safe bet that owners of GTR and Sprint will keep the original settings, as the compromises made by the engineers of the two brands match the character of their bike.

A very varied GT offer

The BMW also offers impeccable protection. The bubble, whose height can be configured to the nearest millimeter, allows you to completely isolate yourself from the wind and the elements to better listen to your favorite music or the 107.7 traffic announcements! Even the feet are protected from the elements thanks to the fairing and the motor placed just in front.

On the Kawasaki, despite the presence of the high electrically adjustable bubble, the older ones will still have to slightly bury their heads in the shoulders to eliminate the last noises and sloshing of the helmet. The legs remain as well protected as on the BMW and the heated grips are just as effective.

Faced with these two pure "Grand Touring" products, the Sprint – which however bears the suffix "GT" – is no match. In addition to the more restrictive position – even if with the speed, the pressure on the wrists is less present – the lack of protection of the original screen is obvious.

Similarly, the British cargo capacity is slightly less than its two competitors of the day. A full face helmet finds its place in Triumph suitcases, but it took a bit of force to fit the Site camera bag, which fitted easily in the BMW or Kawa trunks’.

In terms of mirrors, those of the Kawasaki are particularly practical since they offer a clear and unobstructed view of what is happening on the road – not much to tell the truth, because the other two are in front! – and also allow, thanks to their lower cutout, to monitor that everything is going well with the suitcases.

Displayed at 13,440 €, the Sprint GT does not however steal its owner! The engine is particularly convincing and the cycle part follows suit without flinching. More "sporty" than its two competitors of the day, the Englishwoman offers sufficient saddle comfort to lengthen the stages … and the pleasure !

Equipped with an on-board computer, the Sprint GT does not bother with traction control and lets the pilot manage his rear wheel alone. ABS on the other hand is welcome due to the hardness of the right lever which can affect the dosage. Finally, MNC persists and signs: Triumph should imitate Kawasaki on this specific point by offering the original high screen on its Sprint.

Final verdict

For the biggest riders – and the more fortunate, especially – the choice of the BMW is obvious. The K 1600 GT shines with its ultra available and torquey engine, its balanced and configurable cycle part, and its very practical dial precisely to manage the quantities of information and settings offered by this vessel..

But beware, the German – this is not a generality! – is heavy when stationary. And if its weight is not felt in the curves, you can be surprised when braking. Finally, as usual with BMW, it is good to note that the bill climbs quickly with the essential options: 855 € for the Safety Pack, 1055 for the GT pack and 1110 for the audio-GPS, a total of 23 420 Oïros for Deutsche Qualitat…

Finally, the GTR is an interesting alternative: billed at 17,499 euros, it offers general high-end services that allow you to drive quickly and far in good comfort and in complete safety (ABS but also traction control as standard).

Unfortunately, if we can tame the behavior of the falling nose gear – agile ?! -, it is much harder to come to terms with the engine’s lack of gnak at low revs … Especially in France, where the restriction of the 4-cylinder in high revs is more felt than on the "small" 3- cylinders or the "big" six-cylinder !

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