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Discussion Starter #1
I'm a long-time GoldWing rider (had three of them since 84). Great bike--loved all three of them. About six months ago I got Harley fever. Time for a new bike, anyway (you know how that goes!). Rented a Street Glide for the weekend and had more fun on that bike than I've had on all three of my Wings put together.

So, after a few rides, was very close to buying a Harley Road Glide Ultra. In the course of firming up my decision, the XCT 2012 surfaced. It took my breath away. I've never considered a Victory before--but this bike really got my attention.

I still haven't ridden one but will this weekend. The dealer passed the "friendly" test today--talked to a couple of very nice guys (GM and an engaged sales guy) and pretty quickly had a warm and fuzzy dealer feeling (which, by the way, I also had with the H-D dealer).

Only one thing sorta jammed me up a little. The GM, as nearly a parting comment, said, "Oh yeah, it's really important to buy the Stage 1 kit. You won't be happy without it." Now, I'm an old guy. I'm not gonna try to wheelie from stoplight to stoplight. I just want a reliable, comfortable bike that cruises comfortably at 75mph or so and will let me pass a big truck without much fuss.

The GM gave me the advice without qualifying what's important to me. Yeah, I'd like a nice V-Twin sound, but I don't need to jar anyone's fillings out. Yeah, I'd like to get to 60 or so merging onto a highway without the bike panting.

What gives? Do I need that Stage 1?
 

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Thmbgone,
106" Vics don't pant, period. Granted, it ain't no GL1800, but it'll whup ass on most any H-D out there. Out of the box, the Cross bikes are fantastic in every respect. Although this is my first cruiser (like you, I had full boat touring bikes for decades) I found the exhaust too quiet, so I drilled the muffler baffles and deleted the O2 sensors per information you can find through a search in this forum. I can leave home without the neighbors knowing and I can make her bark when accelerating hard getting onto a freeway. One of the fun things about a big V-twin over Jap multis. My XR is not lacking for power in the least, but if more is desired, there are many ways to go per mods discussed in this forum. I think that GM was just trying to put some profit icing on his cake. The one thing you have to do in order to know what the Cross bikes are about is take a test ride - one that involves some really tight twisties. That's what sold me after being impressed with the features. I saw my first XCT a few days ago and all I can say is WOW! What a unique bike - its like no other on the road. Which suits me just fine.
 

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About Stage1 kit... it depends on who you ask. If you were to ask me, Stage1 is not worth the investment as it's almost as quiet as the stock pipes. If you're doing Stage1 for more power, that's another story, but these bikes have plenty of horsepower and torque in their stock form.

I liked the quiet stock pipes, but got bored of them after almost a year, and went with a set of D&D slip-ons. Love the sound - louder and deeper than Stage 1 pipes.

FYI, your dealer might also say you need extended warranty, paint finish and lo-jack. They work on commission so you can't blame 'em for trying, but use your best judgement when attempting to throw money out the window. ;)
 

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Mines stock

I purchased my 2011 XC from a member on this forum that had done a ton of nice cosmetic changes and bought all the options minus any engine changes. I still own my Bonnie T100 and love her handling and acceleration (she's a light steel pony) but my XC is bigger...has a ton of storage (it came with the trunk)...corners like my bonnie (still haven't scraped the HUGE foot boards)...and reaches 'merging speed' with no problems at all (I commute in the DFW area so merging/braking/getting out of the way are critical daily requirements). I find the XCs low end a little on the weak side but nothing a little twist of the wrist doesn't fix...so I wouldn't worry about the bike lacking any power.

Funny, I was looking at moving to a sport touring bike before I got the hankering for a cruiser (with some help from my wife)...the ST, Connie, Wing, and BMWs were all on my short list. But once I rode the XC (my Metal Monster) I was hooked (just like when I rode my bonnie). Learning about the bike's reliability (and quirks) made my desire grow even more!

I love motorcycling...passionate about the feeling I get riding (even my 120+ mile daily commute)...the XC has met and exceeded my expectations and fuels my passion every time I ride her or see her sitting in the garage...she's definitely a keeper just like my bonnie.

Hope you enjoy the test ride...let us know how you feel it compares to the HD (that was the cruiser I thought I'd buy if I ever got a cruiser...go figure), and would love to hear comparisons to your wings...;~)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Victory Extended Warranty

Great info, guys, thanks a ton. I'll keep you posted on that test ride. I'm really looking forward to it. I did put a deposit on a black 2012 XCT they're getting in three weeks--contingent on a good test ride. Which I am pretty sure will go just fine.

But one more thing.. how about Victory's extended warranty? Is that a good thing. I'm not much of a mechanic--and I don't consider bikes a lifestyle choice--I just want to ride! With the electronics alone on the XTC, I think the Stage1 money the GM wanted would better serve me with the extended warranty. Am I on the right track?

Thanks again!
 

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Like RogueRider, I was seriously considering an ST for my next bike. Had it between the Connie and the FJR, all I needed was a test ride. Then I saw the XC. Rented one for a day in Las Vegas (2010 model). Had not ridden in over 7 months due to me being in Afghanistan (leaving next week and get my new bike!!!!!) and rode her for 8 hours and over 400 miles. I was fully expecting to be sore in the thighs and back for 3 days. The only issues I had was being tired that night and my left wrist being dead weak the next day. Otherwise, no issues. I was sold on that bike immediately. She is beautiful, fun to ride and as stock, the most comfortable bike I have ridden. The ST's didn't go any further. Got a great deal in CT on my new bike and pick her up on the 20th. You will not regret the purchase. :)
 

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I think the Victory Stage 1 is about a grand. If you were to do an aftermarket stage 1 with filter, gasket under tank removed, D&D mufflers or one of many other options, and a Power Commander V, you spend about the same amount and have much more for your money.

Or you could read THIS THREAD and do it for $50 or so. I ran it like that for a long time until yesterday when I installed the Nascar6 re-cored stock mufflers. It sound really good now. Mean even. :D They are $200 plus shipping both ways.

Witchdoctors just came out with two models of slip-on's that caught my eye. A fully cored stock muffle with no baffles (loud) and a re-cored set of stockers that sound really good going by the video. If you like a bit of sound but not too much; the D&D's or Witchdoctors re-cored ($280 or so) would be excellent choices.

Either way you go; the dealer is correct in that the motor needs to breathe and the EPA mandates have it restricted down quite a bit so a Stage 1 really is in your best interest. If you want to really wake up the motor; get some of the Lloydz VM-1 cams installed. The stock Freedom motor excels in the mid range but the cams bring out the low end grunt (from what I'm told) that many like. I hope to get them installed in mine in the not-too-distant future. :)
 

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The stage 1 kit does not make the bike louder but it does give it a little more ooomph and sound when you get on it. It's a personal choice. My 2011 had plenty of passing power and was almost too quiet. When I purchased my 2012 XCT I got a discount on the stage 1 (under $700) and because I bought it at the time of purchase they agreed to install the kit for free.
 

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But one more thing.. how about Victory's extended warranty? Is that a good thing. I'm not much of a mechanic--and I don't consider bikes a lifestyle choice--I just want to ride! With the electronics alone on the XTC, I think the Stage1 money the GM wanted would better serve me with the extended warranty. Am I on the right track? Thanks again!
I passed on the extended warranty cuz I never read about any major breakdowns in these forums and my dealer said I'd just be throwing money at him as the only time Vics come in are for accessories or regular maintenance. However, if you really think you want one, I have heard of them being offered as low as $350. Keep in mind that EWs are primarily commission builders and are in effect during that period in which they are LEAST needed. :mad:
 

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I passed on the extended warranty cuz I never read about any major breakdowns in these forums and my dealer said I'd just be throwing money at him as the only time Vics come in are for accessories or regular maintenance. However, if you really think you want one, I have heard of them being offered as low as $350. Keep in mind that EWs are primarily commission builders and are in effect during that period in which they are LEAST needed. :mad:

+1. I had the same experience
 

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I passed on the extended warranty cuz I never read about any major breakdowns in these forums and my dealer said I'd just be throwing money at him as the only time Vics come in are for accessories or regular maintenance. However, if you really think you want one, I have heard of them being offered as low as $350. Keep in mind that EWs are primarily commission builders and are in effect during that period in which they are LEAST needed. :mad:
Well said! cheers
 

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I'm a long-time GoldWing rider (had three of them since 84). Great bike--loved all three of them. About six months ago I got Harley fever. Time for a new bike, anyway (you know how that goes!). Rented a Street Glide for the weekend and had more fun on that bike than I've had on all three of my Wings put together.

So, after a few rides, was very close to buying a Harley Road Glide Ultra. In the course of firming up my decision, the XCT 2012 surfaced. It took my breath away. I've never considered a Victory before--but this bike really got my attention.

I still haven't ridden one but will this weekend. The dealer passed the "friendly" test today--talked to a couple of very nice guys (GM and an engaged sales guy) and pretty quickly had a warm and fuzzy dealer feeling (which, by the way, I also had with the H-D dealer).

Only one thing sorta jammed me up a little. The GM, as nearly a parting comment, said, "Oh yeah, it's really important to buy the Stage 1 kit. You won't be happy without it." Now, I'm an old guy. I'm not gonna try to wheelie from stoplight to stoplight. I just want a reliable, comfortable bike that cruises comfortably at 75mph or so and will let me pass a big truck without much fuss.

The GM gave me the advice without qualifying what's important to me. Yeah, I'd like a nice V-Twin sound, but I don't need to jar anyone's fillings out. Yeah, I'd like to get to 60 or so merging onto a highway without the bike panting.

What gives? Do I need that Stage 1?
I demo'd a stock XC and it rode just fine without the kit. I decided to put one on my new XR for a couple of reasons. On the demo, I really never needed to accelerate hard like I might in real life to pass someone, so I figure a few extra ponies can't be a bad thing. The other reason is that stock mapping of new bikes is generally very lean in order for the bikes to show best mileage and lowest emissions. Re-mapping them for "off-course use only" tends to richen the mixture.

Running bikes lean causes them to run hotter. Aside from sitting at a stoplight on a hot day, I don't have any heat issues with my Stage 1 XR. I do see heat on the left leg being repeated as a niggle by journalists reviewing stock Victory Cross bikes.

Heat is also the enemy of mechanical systems, so if you plan to keep it a while, it stands to reason that it may last a little longer.

As others have noted, the Stage 1 pipes are very mild. It's got a nice song under acceleration, but is perfectly gentile departing my neighborhood for work at 6:30 am.
 

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[Funny, I was looking at moving to a sport touring bike before I got the hankering for a cruiser (with some help from my wife)...the ST, Connie, Wing, and BMWs were all on my short list. But once I rode the XC (my Metal Monster) I was hooked (just like when I rode my bonnie). Learning about the bike's reliability (and quirks) made my desire grow even more!
To Rogue Rider,
I am interested in which BMWs you were thinking about and how they compared to the XC.

I got a R1200 RT last year to replace my Goldwing. I love the BMW but....my wife hates riding as a passenger on it. She got spoiled by the Goldwing seat comfort, space and wind protection.
I want her to enjoy the biking but am reluctant to go back to a Wing. I happened to stop by a Victory dealer and looked at the XCT.
Spent a lot of time reviewing magazine reviews and everyone raves about them.
I did have a Nomad for a while and enjoyed it. My wife found that acceptable. I also rode the Vision for a few thousand miles with a company that had a contract to do reliability testing on the Vision before it was put into production.
Guess I'm interested in your opinion relative to the XC versus the Wing and BMW.
 

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The dealer may have simply been telling you to consider the Stage 1 because it seems that is one upgrade many people do. Some for the performance and others for the sound.

However, as others have stated you can get a better sound out of many of the aftermarket pipes. However, many of those still REQUIRE you to have the Stage 1 mapping done by your Vic dealer. IMHO, the Ness Big Honkers (under $500) or the D&D's (around $600) are the two most dominant options for aftermarket pipes but simply de-coring your own as shown in that link appears to be a great, cheap alternative. If you don't want to de-core yours yourself, send them to Nascar6 and spend the extra $250 to have him do them for you.

I've had my Ness XC for about 6 months now and did get the 5-year factory warranty (for $350) but did not get the Stage 1. However, I can tell you that with regards to performance, Stage 1 is really not needed as this bike gets up and goes. Now, some sites show that the ness bikes already have Stage 1 and so I may already have it and not even know it.
 

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To BMW or not BMW...

To Rogue Rider,
I am interested in which BMWs you were thinking about and how they compared to the XC.

I got a R1200 RT last year to replace my Goldwing. I love the BMW but....my wife hates riding as a passenger on it. She got spoiled by the Goldwing seat comfort, space and wind protection.
I want her to enjoy the biking but am reluctant to go back to a Wing. I happened to stop by a Victory dealer and looked at the XCT.
Spent a lot of time reviewing magazine reviews and everyone raves about them.
I did have a Nomad for a while and enjoyed it. My wife found that acceptable. I also rode the Vision for a few thousand miles with a company that had a contract to do reliability testing on the Vision before it was put into production.
Guess I'm interested in your opinion relative to the XC versus the Wing and BMW.
@ Vulcan--I love the BMWs...my biggest gripe was the minimal positions for my feet (I was focused on touring and their touring bikes are awesome...but the riding position is pretty fixed) and how tall they make their bikes. I only have a 30" inseam and don't mind 'one-footing' at stops when I'm riding solo but a touring bike with a pillon is a bit nerve racking...so I want both feet on the ground. Their maintenance costs and ease caused me a little pause too...but I think that of all the bikes.

Looking cool on any of these bikes was pretty easy to get to...but that shouldn't be a major selection criteria right?

So, the model I got fixated on was the GS1200...when the realization on its size and weight hit me I turned to the GS800...but passenger seating on both were 'very poor' (review provided by said passenger :rolleyes:). I also admitted that it was the dual sport look I liked (very cool looking) and that my riding would encompass 99% street (I do love the occasional fire road), so I took a hard look at the tourers...again, they were sexy and puuurfffeeecccttt on the showroom but when I looked at the riding position (and the rear seat) I decided to assess what I 'wanted and needed' vs 'needed and wanted' and the cruiser-tourer took center stage (I did ride a gorgeous Triumph 800cc dual sport...liked it over the BMW...but discounted it for the same reasons).

I toyed with the BMW cruiser (not enough touring goodies to prep it for what I wanted...and it didn't really fit the 'cool' criteria); the Triumph big cruisers led the pack at first but they too lacked all the goodies I was looking for; the HDs had all the goodies but the cost and the vibration just turned me off a little...then I read an article in "Road Runner" magazine of a couple that rode the Victory Cross Country across multiple states and their only con was, "Having to give the bike back!" That got me researching the Victory line-up...which led to a road test...which led to many hours looking for the right bike...which led me to this forum...which led me to the Metal Monster I found up in Wichita, KS.

The BMWs and GWs are great touring platforms and I know any of today's bikes will fit the bill given a rider puts time and $$$ to make their ride their own...it just so happened that my (I mean 'our') bike criteria were best answered with the Victory XC without having to put a lot of extra $$$ (it came pretty much the way I wanted it) into the bike. It took a lot of soul searching during the 'want and needed' vs 'needed and want' to get me to the cruiser-tourer platform, but for me (I mean 'us'), it was a journey worth taking.

That's my story on how I got to picking the XC...I still own my Triumph T100 (although she's not getting much riding time right now) and everyone's reasons for picking a bike is different...I can only tell you that I hit a homerun because my rear passenger LOVES the bike (the sissybar is great...she can hear the stereo perfectly...loves the comfort and storage space when we put the trunk on...REALLY loves the four speakers when the trunk is on...loves the big foot-boards...did I miss anything else about the rear of the bike?) and we ride it every chance we get. The icing on the cake...in October she will go with me (willingly!) on our FIRST joint long distance ride to Arkansas and back (three day trip to RECON the area for a longer spring ride!)! cheers

Good luck on your decision journey...and yep, I love my XC's 'cool look' too! dance 1
 

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Rogue Rider,
Thanks for your insight.
I really appreciate it.
Stopped by the local Victory dealer today. He has a 2011 XCT demo that he said to take for a ride.
It was raining though so I'll go there sometime this week with my wife and take a ride.
It'll be interesting. She still is hung up on the Wing so we'll see.
Thanks again.
Mike
 

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I did it!
Did take an XCT for a test ride with my wife and she approved the riding postion, confort, lack of wind,etc.
I wound up trading my 2011 R1200RT for the XCT.

I really like the bike. I don't get the numbness in my feet like I did on the BMW because of the foot position.
It doesn't handle like the BMW in the twisties but I'm getting old for too much of that. The BMW liked to cruise at 80 or so. The Victory more like 70. I did find the speedo optimistic by 5mph at 70.

Most importantly my wife enjoys riding on it and is talking about some trips.
The only thing I added so far are the passenger handholds and a heel shifter.
 

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Congrats! My XC's sweet spot on the freeway is 80. I recommend the stage 1 kit for the fact that it fattens up the torque curve and gives it more torque down low around 2000-2500 rpm's. The stage 1 pipes are not loud, I removed mine and added the D&D pipes for more sound and even more torque. A better way to go if you don't mind the noise is a fuel controller, hi flow air filter and the D&D's.
 

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Congrats!

Glad to hear that you got the XCT...and even more important, that your wife approves! thumb up

We just returned from a four day ride (right around 1000 miles) through a ton of different terrain (Texas to Arkansas to ride the Arkansas roads...awesome!). The riding conditions were pretty close to perfect except for a nasty crosswind on the final two hours of the ride home. My wife loved the day-long riding and slept like a baby every night (she usually has trouble sleeping). My favorite quote from her about touring on the XC, "I didn't realize that the whole time you're riding you're concentrating on so many things. After a few hours it really wears you out!"

I love this quote becuase for years I've tried explaining how the long rides differ from our short daily rides. She never really understood why I would say that at the end of a great day riding I'm completely relaxed metally and physically feel like I've been 'doing something' vice just sitting around. You know, the whole 'when a body is in motion it tends to stay in motion' thing. :crzy:

The comfort of the XC makes it so my wife enjoys the ride and now she understands all the hype about motorcycle touring...and is looking forward to more day-long and multi-day trips! :D

Congrats again and please share your (and your wife's) riding impressions! cheers
 

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I've put 7500 miles on mine in the last 6 months, with the wife on there 2/3s the time. I've had a lot of bikes, BMW R1200RT, a couple GL1800s, 3 Harley Road Glides, Kawasakis, Yamaha, yada,yada, yada. We where stopped the other day and my wife told a crowd of motorcyclist the Cross Country was her favorite bike by a long shot. Needless to say that made me feel pretty good. Killer bike.
 
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