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Well, Russ asked me post a comparison so here it is. I`ve now done 1500 km on the new S3. On Thursday, I did a 930km run on it, on some of the best motorcycling roads I know, including the Mt. Lindsey Highway, The Waterfall way, Numinbah Valley road and the Old Armidale Rd. between Grafton and Ebor. My conclusions are...

The S3 is a much faster and better handling bike than my ST. However, on bad, very bumpy roads (we have a lot them in Aus) it`s hard work. The suspension is still on the factory settings and I only weigh 65 kg, so it may improve if start adjusting it. I was getting bounced out of the seat on some bumps and it was bouncing off line on some corners. I`ve never felt worried on my ST when cornering hard on bumpy roads, it always seemed to glide over even the roughest of surfaces. Overall though, the S3 WILL outride the ST on most twisty roads.

I`m used to gassing the ST hard when exiting a corner, doing this on the S3 can lead to the front wheel lifting enough (2nd and sometimes 3rd gears) to lose steering, which takes a bit of getting used to.

This may surprise you, the S3 was more comfortable over this kind of distance than the ST. I hadn`t yet had the screen fitted, but as a short bloke, riding at 120-140kph, the headwinds didn`t really affect me. The last time I did this kind of mileage in a day on the ST, I had more than a couple of aches and pains. If I had ridden all day in the pouring rain though, I might have a different opinion.

I layed flat on the tank and took the S3 up to an indicated 240kph (I couldn`t go any faster I`m still running it in) on the Summerland way and it was a solid as a rock. I slowed down to 180kph, which almost seems like walking pace after doing 240 and rather stupidly sat upright and my arms were almost pulled out of their sockets! I made a mental note not to sit up on a naked bike at that speed again! At that speed, my ST feels like it`s got a hinge in the middle, again, probably the softer suspension.

The S3, obviously doesn`t have the luggage carrying capacity or weather protection that the ST has, but it ticks a lot of boxes in all the other areas.
 

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A good, real world review of the S3 Rob. Thanks. I can understand why the S3 might be more comfortable over distances than the ST, what with the higher bars.
 

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Thanks Robbo,
pretty much what I would expect, but always to get the real world report from someone you know. :upthumb:

I would imagine that your ride in bumpy high speed corners on the S3 will improve as the suspenders break in.
Also you are a fairly trim bloke so you might need to back of the springy things a little.

I don't very often do 240kph (like only once) but my ST was rock solid (no hinge effect).......... but then I have my suspension set up very firm for a solo rider.

My lighter mates all think it is way to hard but it is right for me....... being just slightly heavier! :hihi:

Thanks Robbo.

Davem :cool:
 

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Ah... so you REALLY liked the roads down here after sampling the 'Nymboida loop' during the National Triumph Rally.

Just a query, is the S3 definitely faster or does it just feel faster?

Rod
 

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On 2006-12-11 05:24, TripleTreat wrote:
Ah... so you REALLY liked the roads down here after sampling the 'Nymboida loop' during the National Triumph Rally.

Just a query, is the S3 definitely faster or does it just feel faster?

Rod
Yes I did the extreme ride, did my best to keep up with the very talented Phil from Grayson Sonter but only managed maintain third place behind him and another quick rider on a white 955 S3, was that you????
I`ve done the Nymboida loop many times, though. I took the pack that way when we went to the Port Macquarie rally and I first rode the Old Armidale road on my Tiger when it still had a large dirt section.

In answer to your question, yes the S3 is definately faster than my ST.
 

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Yes I did the extreme ride, did my best to keep up with the very talented Phil from Grayson Sonter but only managed maintain third place behind him and another quick rider on a white 955 S3, was that you????
Christ no, that man is a maniac! I had the Aston Green Sprint with panniers, we were chatting before the ride began. Actually I was warming into things nicely after many months of just commuting when the young dude binned his 675 right in front of me after we left The Old Coaching Station. Making sure he was OK left me well behind.

Rod
 

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Aaah, I remember you now! Chap with the glasses. Shame about the young guy on the Daytona, seemed like a nice bloke, unfortunately there was a bit of a discrepancy between the size of his testicles and the size of his ability! Luckily he was OK! What do you think happened?
 

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On 2006-12-12 04:14, welshrob wrote:
Aaah, I remember you now! Chap with the glasses. Shame about the young guy on the Daytona, seemed like a nice bloke, unfortunately there was a bit of a discrepancy between the size of his testicles and the size of his ability! Luckily he was OK! What do you think happened?
He simply ran wide, which would have been fine apart from the oncoming car, so he had to run wider onto the dirt shoulder with nowhere to go except down or tree. He went down. He wasn't actually going all that fast, he was just obviously not at ease on his new bike.

Rod
 

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Bugger that's a bummer. I've run wide on the Nymboida Rd myself, there's a couple of spots with decreasing radius corners to catch you out.

Scary being on the "American" side of the road with a car coming towards you!

Funny afterwards when you get it under control and back on your side of the road and remember seeing the wide-eyeball look of the lady driving the car :) ...

Hope he's ok.

Russ
 

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On 2006-12-13 13:59, ruscook wrote:

Hope he's ok.

Russ
Yeah he was fine, the 675 had a few scratches on the plastic but remarkably little damage. I`ve taken a 675 out for a day`s thrashing, I`ll tell you about that another time!
 

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Just something to consider when comparing bikes without having some kind of actual test numbers to compare. The feel of an ST and of an S3 are very different. I ran an RS and ST over the same loop of about two lane twisty roads which include the Cherohala Skyway and Dragon (both well know to yanks on east coast) several times during a period of a week. The RS felt like it was going faster and the ST actually felt slower. Funny thing was I always completed the loop faster on the ST. My point is that "feel" can be deceiving.
 

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On 2006-12-13 18:50, rodneybrown wrote:
My point is that "feel" can be deceiving.
Mate, you`re 100% right, but in this case I`ve done much faster times on the same roads on my S3. One of my good friends, Chris, has an 03 sprint and when we are both on the ST`s and going hard, he can normally keep up with me on our favourite roads like the Tomewin. On the S3 I left him for dead.

I`m not bagging out Sprints, I love mine with a passion and I still think they`re the best sports tourer in the world. They`re just not up to a shoot-out with a bike that`s got more horsepower AND more torque, 40kg less weight, upsidedown forks, radial brakes, better EFI and way better suspension. If you`re touring two up, the Sprint is King and it`s a pretty good scratcher, too. However, with two equally matched riders on a twisty road, the S3 will just blow an ST into the weeds.
 
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