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The 20 greatest motorcycle flops of modern times

The 20 biggest motorcycle flops of modern times
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With which models did the previous trend continue? Are there models that have taken a different path and have become sought-after collector's items? And which models are still being developed by manufacturers today? For example, if you look at the BMW C1 scooter, which took first place at the time, you cannot speak of a complete flop. Although BMW stopped production relatively early and sold the naming rights early on, there is still a fan scene that is enthusiastic about the somewhat idiosyncratic concept to this day. The current used market prices for the covered scooter also show that the C1 has not yet completely disappeared from the scene.


Ducati Multistrada in 3rd place

Another positive example is the Ducati Multistrada. Even then, the travel enduro, at least in its home country, could not be described as a complete flop. Ducati stuck to the Multistrada and continued to develop it. Today the Multistrada is one of the most popular travel enduros on the market. So not all flops back then have disappeared into oblivion. You can find out below and in the picture gallery which two-wheelers were voted “Flop 20” by readers back then.

Original article from MOTORRAD 22/2007

You have voted, dear readers. And so the ten biggest two-wheel flops of modern times were determined from 22 suggestions. MOTORRAD has researched for you why these bikes were not favored by the public and what advantages they still offered. But read for yourself ...


In the film festivals of the worst stripe will be honored on the eve of the Oscar ceremony with the 'Golden raspberry'. In the motorcycle sector this has not yet happened. At least officially. However, there are some models that seem to have been developed by the customer - the sales success did not materialize. There can be many reasons for this. In most cases, however, it had something to do with courage.

Flop or not? Today, five years after the end of production, the C1 is already considered a cult.

Courage, something To dare to do something new. For example, many ideas came from the Bavarian innovation forge that were perhaps ahead of their time. The covered scooter C1, for example, the fully clad and aerodynamically optimized K1 or even the F 650 CS Scarver: All of them past the taste of the audience.

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Some bikes flopped also because the bike did not coincide with the image of the manufacturer. Ducati made the leap into the cruiser business with the Indiana and tried to cut a large piece of the Enduro cake with the Multistrada. Buell also wanted the latter with the Ulysses. It failed. Yamaha felt that courage in technical terms is sometimes not rewarded either. The elaborate Ackermann steering did not bring the GTS 1000 noticeable advantages either when driving or compared to the competition.

In addition to smoothly functioning technology is ultimately The look is also decisive, because quite a few buyers let their guts guide them. If it tingles while looking at it, the machine can be so fat, have too little horsepower or turn the corner worse than the competition. Then it's love.


BMW C1 is the clear winner

they are, the twenty biggest flops, which you, dear readers, have chosen. It may come as a surprise that 41.6 percent of all entries were for the BMW C1. The R 1200 C Montauk could only still 10.1 percent of the votes and nine percent fell on the third-placed Ducati Multistrada.

Clear double victory for BMW - albeit in the negative -Ranking: The R 1200 C Montauk takes second place on the flop list.

Among the motorcyclists There is probably a consensus on what they don't like, because up to tenth place (Suzuki TL 1000 with 1.3 percent), 93 percent of the votes had already been awarded. The manufacturers have drawn their conclusions from the failure, butthey should not lose the courage to set off for new shores in the future either. Because standing still is a step backwards. And courage is often rewarded. Unusual ideas don't have to go straight to the trash.


place 20: BMW K1

Very daring: BMW K1.

Bayern's attempt to bring a super sports car to market went completely wrong. The angular shellfish has just sold 2,000 times in Germany.

BMW K1 in the MOTORRAD used market

More articles about the BMW K1

19th place: Suzuki RF 900 R

Suzuki RF 900 R.

The design, which took some getting used to, and Suzuki's idea of ​​wanting to offer a 'comfort athlete' made customers shiver . 2,912 items could be sold.

Suzuki RF 900 R in the MOTORRAD second-hand market

More articles about the Suzuki RF 900R

18th place: Honda VTR 1000 SP-2

Honda VTR 1000 SP-2.

It was too hot for sports touring riders, but against the racer from Bologna was considered a weapon that was too blunt. From the SP-1 to the SP-2 only 9,000 units were sold.

Honda VTR 1000 SP-2 in the MOTORCYCLE Second-hand market

More articles about the Honda VTR 1000 SP-2

17th place: Kawasaki KLE 500

Kawasaki KLE 500.

It was neither a travel machine nor an enduro. The range is too short, the motorcycle is too heavy, the engine is too slow. In twelve years of construction it has just sold 10,000 times.

Kawasaki KLE 500 in the MOTORRAD used market

More articles about the Kawasaki KLE 500

16th place: Moto Guzzi Centauro

Very fashionable: Moto Guzzi Centauro.

Fat tail, a crowbar as a handlebar - that's how Guzzi shocked his clientele in the mid-90s with the fashionable Centauro. A fashion that was rejected.

More articles about the Moto Guzzi Centauro

15th place: Honda FMX 650

Honda FMX 650.

The attempt to knit an inexpensive entry-level bike from simple components has failed. By the way: It should have been more than 38 hp ...

Honda FMX 650 in the MOTORRAD second-hand market

More articles about the Honda FMX 650

Place 14: Buell Ulysses XB12X

Buell Ulysses XB12X.

This is how the Americans interpret the topic of travel enduro. It is no wonder then that so far only a few globetrotters have fallen for the Ulysses that took getting used to.

Buell Ulysses XB12X in the used MOTORCYCLE market

More articles about the Buel Ulysses XB12X

13th place: MZ Skorpion

MZ Scorpio.

Whether tour, traveler, sport or replica, all scorpions could be seen. But a worn-out Japan single in a German chassis? A no-go!

More articles about the MZ Skorpion Tour

More articles about the MZ Scorpio Traveler

More articles about MZ Skorpion Sport

12th place: Sachs Roadster 800

Sachs Roadster 800.

It looked nice, the two-cylinder Sachs. But who wanted a middle grader with a cardan who had already ridden a Japan bike ten years earlier? Hardly any.

More articles on the Sachs Roadster 800

Place 11: Yamaha BT 1100 Bulldog

Yamaha BT 1100 Bulldog.

A lot of displacement, little power: many found the air-cooled V-twin-cylinder cardan all-rounder not only too weak , but also boring and far too expensive.

Yamaha BT 1100 Bulldog in the MOTORCYCLE used market

More articles about the Yamaha BT 1100 Bulldog

10th place: Suzuki TL 1000

Half-baked: Suzuki TL 1000.

When is a flop a flop? Is it thatAdmission numbers? In its prime, more TL 1000s than Ducati 916s were certainly sold. Is It The Wrong Concept? Ducati still builds magnificent sporty two-cylinder, Aprilia does it, KTM comes with the RC8, and even BMW spices up the boxer. And why? Because you can have a lot of driving fun on a sporty two-cylinder. Also on the TL 1000.

So it depends on how you define 'flop'. According to the criteria mentioned above, the TL 1000 was definitely not a flop, but one of the most exciting, beautiful and exciting motorcycles to have come from Japan in the recent past. However, if a motorcycle is considered a flop because it is not fully developed, keyword rotary vane damper, missing steering damper, engine misfiring, oil increase, then the TL 1000 could fall into this category.

Suzuki TL 1000 in the MOTORRAD used market

More articles about the Suzuki TL 1000

9th place: Aprilia RST 1000 Futura

Canted: Aprilia RST 1000 Futura.

Your name said it all. But unfortunately only related to design. Many of those touring sports fans who were able to make friends with the very angular disguise outfit were puzzled by the lack of technical features. Because a “machine of the future” without G-Kat and ABS - at least the German customers showed little interest. While the sports tourer was available for sale in Italy for another year, the Futura disappeared completely from German shop windows in 2002 after only two years of stage appearance

Aprilia RST 1000 Futura imMOTORRAD used market

More articles about the Aprilia RST 1000 Futura

8th place: Yamaha GTS 1000

Thigh-tapping: Yamaha GTS 1000.

It could have been the FJR 1300 of its time, thanks to its suitability for touring and the excellent driving comfort that it offered. But these virtues were played smoothly against the wall by the steering knuckle. It's just stupid that this didn't bring any advantages over a much criticized telescopic fork.

At least none that customers and testers could use . Disadvantages such as the uneven suspension on staccato bumps, the stubborn self-steering behavior of the flat contoured 130 mm front tire and a comparatively stiff steering, however, noticed most immediately and renounced the self-tormenting pleasure of innovation for the sake of innovation.

Yamaha GTS 1000 in the used MOTORRAD market

More articles about the Yamaha GTS 1000

7th place: Ducati Indiana

InteriorValues: Ducati Indiana.

A chopper from a sports motorcycle manufacturer? That just had to go in the pants. Even if soft choppers were very popular in the 80s. The Indiana had a V2 engine, but it didn't spread its cylinders by the 45 degrees that promised easy-riding, and was basically a real sports engine. To make matters worse, it was also stuck in the context of a large enduro ...

And above that, the real qualities of the Indiana came completely falling behind. Because the high seating position caused by the chassis turned out to be quite comfortable and ensured that there was no lean angle. On top of that, the Ducati was nimble and agile. And what many overlooked: The Desmodue was tailored to its purpose, offered great torque and an extremely wide speed range.

But it was like in real life: If it doesn't spark at first glance, getting to know each other will not work out. And so the Indiana remained a tip for friends of the exotic.

More articles about Ducati Indiana

Place 6: Bimota Mantra


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