Yesterday I took my 2019 FT1200R Base to the local Indian dealer (Indian Motorcycles of Metro Milwaukee) for it's 5000 mile servicing, oil change, and to have the coolant tee safety recall issue taken care of. I was on vacation (I'm also on vacation today), so I decided to wait at the dealership for the work being done to my FTR, to be finished, and ride it home (I didn't want to spend money on an Uber ride home). I bought my tablet (it's internet capable, and has an e-book reader, and games on it) to pass the time in the waiting area. While I was waiting, I noticed the 2023 FTRs on the showroom floor. Also the same salesperson who sold me my 2019 FTR back in 2020, also showed me a 2023 FTR Rally, that wasn't on the showroom floor (I really liked the way it looked). Out of curiosity I asked the salesperson if she could do a loan workup, using my 2019 FTR as trading material, on a Base 2023 FTR, and a 2023 FTR Rally. She did so, and while the loan payments were definitely higher than what the payment is for my 2019 FTR, they were doable by me.
I took the 2023 FTR1200 Base for a spin. It was pretty good. Power delivery was a tad smoother than my 2019 FTR Base. As expected the, handling was bit faster than my 2019 due to the smaller 17 inch front wheel, (fine with me - I've had bikes with 17 inch front wheels in the past). The narrower bars were also fine. The only downer was the seating. Like my the BMW R1200R I owned before I bought my 2019 FTR (before I put the optional high seat on it), the 2023 FTR Base (and I assume the Sport, and the Carbon Black), the seat felt too low for my taste, actually being kind of uncomfortable in my hips. I said to myself, is "nice bike, but no thanks." It was too bad, my 2019 FTR1200 Base may have tall seating, but I don't feel scrunched up in the seat - It's decently comfortable.
Still, the seating shortcomings of the 17 inch wheeled FTRs wasn't the end of the world, after looking at the 2023 FTR Rally, I was more interested in it, than the 17 inch wheeled FTRs. Unfortunately, I couldn't take the Rally for a spin. It turns out that the Indian dealership doesn't own it. It is the personal bike of the regional Indian sales rep (for some reason he stores it at Indian Motorcycles of Metro Milwaukee.
B,ut I did get the chance to sit on it, to check the seating position, and it felt fine to me - I didn't feel scrunched up on it at all. I was told that if was willing to put up with a 4 to 5 week waiting time, the dealer could get me one. I said I'd have to think about that.
As of this morning, I'm feeling torn. From what I've read, and gathered from my test ride, there have been improvements to the FTR engine (though I will admit that the cylinder disengagement, when you're stopped, was kind of weird). Also, the 2023 FTR Rally looks kind of cool, but I wonder if I would really be gaining anything by getting rid of my 2019 FTR Base, and getting a 2023 FTR Rally (especially when you consider that they both have 19 inch front wheels).
What are your thoughts? Is the 2023 FTR Rally worth the extra cost, or would it just be best to hang onto my current 2019 FTR, despite the cool looks of the 2023 FTR Rally (thought I will admit, cosmetics aren't everything to me - as long as a motorcycle doesn't look hideous, and has decent performance, I'm fine with it).
2023 FTR1200 Rally