Hi Everyone. I managed to test ride today back to back the two bikes that I really like, the Buell XB12ss and the BMW K1200r. I also test rode a FZ1N a couple of weeks ago to try and cover a few more bases. (btw, i'm new to the forum so please forgive my formatting). Let me explain: I'm after a naked bike to commute mainly, no real touring except once in a blue moon a quick trip up to brissie, some trips up to the blue mountains and some general fanging around on weekends, the Royal National Park is great. I'm 5.11' and weigh around 110kgs. I've settled on K1200r as choice 1, XB12ss as choice 2, and am open to suggestions for choice 3. Now for the reviews. Buell XB12ss. Everything you've read about them is true, the good the bad and the ugly. The vibrations at idle will make any bike feel smooth as glass, hope you're into alien abductions, cos all you'll see is UFOs (unidentifiable funny objects) in your rearview mirrors. Once on the move it's fine though and you can start to make out shapes. You know you're riding a motorcycle. The engine sounds great, the bike feels alive, you feel alive, the fun factor is very high. On the down side, for a machine that's supposed to own the corners, I see a major problem; when braking into a corner which is near impossible not to do since there is almost no engine braking and the rear brake is a token one, the bike does stand up under medium to heavy pressure. One can avoid this by entering the corner at the perfect entry/exit speed but sometimes you just have to. Unless I'm alone on this one. What this means is you have to muscle the machine into the turn which surprisingly feels very stable, however it also feels like you have to lay down the rails as well, a lot of hard work. Not very flickable at all. As a commuter, the pipe breathing on your left leg is just great...not. But overall it's hard not to grin, the torque is delicious, it just begs to go, and despite all the contradictions, the XB12ss has the X factor. You're not sure what it is, but it feels wrong to pass it up. it needs an owner. Ah yeah, comfortable as too. K1200r. Everything you've read about them is also true. It's powerful, almost too powerful. The bike is machined down to the atomic level. It feels perfect. Except for the clunky gearbox.(turn a blind eye), the weird turning signals (look the other way), the shaft drive (why all that noise?), and the softly spoken super polite exhaust noise. Unlike the Buell which is a party animal and will forgive you forever no matter what, the K1200r demands discipline. Make sure you shave, shower, put on some deodorant, cut your nails, study clutchology, shaftdriveology, and master the art of Zen throttleology before riding it because this motorbike will not forgive you. If you don't get up to its level of perfection well you're in for a wild ride. However if you comply and don't resist (it's futile) you will be rewarded in the end by becoming the borg you know you were meant to be. Man and machine as one, blood and fuel pumping at the same rate. Emotions disappear for cold hearted nanotech clutch feeds. When you get off the cube.. i mean motorcycle, you know what astronauts are going through at take off. No X factor here. Just pure mathematics. FZ1N. It had to be done, so I did it. I tried the "normal" version of the R1 aka the FZ1N. N is meant to mean Naked, however in my opinion it means Normal. Like the sun going up in the morning or setting at night, yeah, that's normal. Water has no taste, that's normal too. They certainly know how to make great bikes in Japan. Maybe not great, but very very good ones. Normal ones. Kinda like they are now the benchmark for normality. Well it became clear they were indeed while riding it in town. Unlike the Buell or the BMW, riding the Yamaha FZ1N was effortless. Except for the oddly shaped tank which is definitely on the bizarro side, the bike felt just right. Like walking, totally and absolutely normal. Perfect gearbox, perfect engine sound, perfect engine braking, perfect braking, perfect front feel, perfect fueling and throttle feel blah blah blah. Now replace the word perfect with the word normal and that's how it felt after riding for half an hour. It's almost bland. I returned it early. Now to the meaning behind the reason I started the post. I don't know what to do, both the XB12ss and the K1200r appeal to me greatly. It's so hard to decide. While worlds apart it almost feels like getting one over the other would do the other an injustice. Their personalities are certainly unique. I am open to any suggestions and to be honest, there are so many bikes out there that I would love to try. If money was no object I'd own a few however I have to settle on the one and hope it serves me well for a few years. Btw, I'm over 30 so I think R1s are out for commuting unless some of you do just that and can relay to me your experiences. I've been commuting for over 2 years now on bikes and it has become the highlight of any workweek day, the ride to and from work. Looking forward to hearing from you all. Cheers.