Voted most helpful review
Liverpool, United Kingdom
Reviewed on September 21, 2006
My bike is a K2 built in 02. I will start by telling any potential buyer of a 01-02 Bandit 1200 to take it on a long test ride and when fully warmed up check for blue smoke from the exhaust. I myself bought this bike without a test ride as I have had a few Bandits and all were great bikes but some 01-02 model...
My bike is a K2 built in 02. I will start by telling any potential buyer of a 01-02 Bandit 1200 to take it on a long test ride and when fully warmed up check for blue smoke from the exhaust. I myself bought this bike without a test ride as I have had a few Bandits and all were great bikes but some 01-02 models were plagued by a problem (oil burning) that stems from the manufacturing stage and if you buy one it will burn almost as much engine oil as petrol!!! It would appear (so I am told) that the oil holes in the pistons on some were drilled a fraction of an inch above the oil control rings thus allowing the oil into the combustion chambers where it was readily burnt with the fuel. Another theory I have heared is that the valve stem oil seals were at fault, which ever it was caused a lot of oil burning and if you end up with one of these it will cost a major amount of cash to remedy the problem. I was lucky, the dealer where I purchased the bike put it right for me at great cost to themselves. Right, please don't be put off by all that as the Bandit really is a great bike for the cash. I found the 600cc model runs out of steam quite easily and the new 650 model is not much better but at least it does have abs brakes. The 1200's are by far the better option, bags of grunt/torque with the standard set up, change the exhaust and fit k&n filters and it will give most sport bikes a run for their money. You only have to drop a spanner near the engine and the bhp will improve!!! It is, as most will know, an old school engine but what an engine it is. The roll on accelleration is outstanding and it wants to pull your arms out of their sockets at high revs. Be careful, it a wheelie monster as well!! I know a couple of mates who have accieved over 100,000 miles on theirs with no major probs. Bulletproof springs to mind!! Really though, they are a very tough engine which has been tried and tested and is very long lived. Standard windscreens leave a bit to be wanted, the wind buffeting above 80mph is awful, fit a taller aftermarket to this fine all round bike and the world will literally be you touring oyster. This machine is capable of doing everything well, be it solo or two up touring, commuting or taking it for a blast on the twisties you will not go far wrong with this all rounder. Try one and buy it, you WILL enjoy!!