All the Duels – Honda VFR 1200 DCT Vs BMW K1300S: supremacy challenged … – Globe-gallopers …

Honda VFR 1200 DCT Vs BMW K1300S: supremacy challenged…

All the Duels - Honda VFR 1200 DCT Vs BMW K1300S: supremacy questioned ... - Globe-gallopers ...

Considered as the benchmark for Sport-GTs, the Honda VFR is adorned with a new 1237 cc V4 and above all a double-clutch transmission (DCT) to keep its crown. Will this innovation suffice against a fully mature BMW K1300S? ? Duel.

Globe gallopers…

With 277 kg all full for the Honda and 254 kg for the BMW, our two duettists of the day show themselves a little "borrowed" in built-up areas: maneuvers at a standstill or on a slight slope are a real punishment – especially with the VFR 1200 – and their generous sizes certainly do not help to squeeze through the flow of traffic !

Benefited by a more agile front axle – at less than 40 km / h, the German Duolever requires arms! -, the VFR also benefits from a more upright position and a perfectly calibrated injection to make the fuck to the K13S.

Clearly more lengthened towards the bubble, the pilot of the BMW suffers from a more sporty comfort but not demanding so far, thanks to the narrow tank at the crotch – almost as much as on the VFR -, the judicious placement of the footrests and at the saddle available free of charge in a low version (from 820 mm to 790 mm).

On both motorcycles, the cruel lack of space under the passenger seat makes it necessary to bring a backpack, while the turn signals integrated into the mirrors (effective in both cases) require attention when reassembling the lines.

Flexible, the two four cylinders on the other hand distill many calories (stopping at crossings under 30 ° C is similar to a real sauna session!) And their long strides propel very – too much! – quickly well beyond the legal speeds … These two "globe-gallopers" are definitely more suited for large spaces than for the urban jungle !

All the more so as the K1300S – which stuck your hands by turning it all the way! – suffers from a harsh clutch and selection: two points that the shifter option cannot completely conceal, magic when changing gears without disengaging at full load, but whose usefulness remains limited to go up a gear at mid-speed … Obviously, with its dual-clutch gearbox (the first of its type on a two-wheeler), the VFR 1200 DCT is not subject to the same hassle !

However, if the device turns out to be very smooth and precise, a few small details tarnish the picture: of course, walking around in automatic mode – the electronic control unit then taking care of automatically up and down gears – in town is relaxing and provides undeniable comfort and even a slight feeling and enjoyment when the VFR leaves in place, with a simple rotation of the accelerator, the usual herd of scooters, cars and buses during restarts at traffic lights red !

But by choosing function "D" of automatic mode (AT), engaged by default at start-up, the times of the beautiful Honda are far too timid to hope to extricate themselves from the urban jungle at once: all the reports are thus passed under 4000 rpm, a regime under which the V4 to distribution Unicam is not particularly expressive for a 1200 cc.

Conversely, the "S" mode is almost too sporty: the ECU constantly plays with the first three gears in order to promote gun pickups and thus remains "blocked" in second at 50 km / h and in fourth at 110 km / h on the ring road! Quickly unpleasant, the phenomenon further amplifies the astonishing gluttony – up to 8 liters per 100 in town and on small roads! – Honda block…

Hardly better off than its rival in terms of consumption and range (6.6 l / 100 km average for the K13S against 6.8 l for the VFR), the BMW makes up for it, however, by offering a slightly larger tank. (19 liters against 18.5 l) and above all a trip and a reserve indicator light.

Finally, the sequential type system (AT) is quickly adopted for urban journeys … and others! Thanks to the "+/-" triggers placed on the left comodo (be careful not to confuse the "-" with the turn signal control!), The driver himself chooses the ideal moment to shift gears without any hindrance. The electronics agree to let the V4 go up to the switch (10,500 rpm against 11,500 rpm for the K1300S) and even to downshift suddenly at high speeds, de facto allowing a steering that is sometimes sunk, sometimes downright sporty..

And that’s good, since the first curves are already emerging in the jubilant Vexin valley (95), where we have decided to confront the dynamic skills of our two Sport-GTs…

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