In the good old USA, we have been duped into thinking that something north of a liter of displacement is what you need in order to travel around the country, ride two-up, or even to commute. The F800ST destroys that notion. Case in point, a recent weekend. To begin, a 200 mile sprint on the interstate to make an appointment early one evening. It was threatening rain, but only a few miles of light rain developed. The rain protection kept me and the uncovered tankbag perfectly dry. The trip was mostly at speeds above 80MPH, with many instances of rapid 70MPH roll on passes. Triple digits were seen more than once. At the stop, I stashed the helmet in the top box, and the jacket in the stock luggage which looks strange, but functions pretty well in instances like this.

After the stop, dark had descended, and the rain was light but steady. The stock headlight is surprisingly good, and rain protection with the ZTeknic shield and Rain-X was excellent. The machine was sure-footed and the 40 remaining miles in the dark and rain were without drama. The next day, the F800 was the errand runner. Light and easily maneuvered around town, it was an efficient pleasure. Fast forward another day, and it blasted 200 miles back home over interstate with some twisties mixed in. Other than situations where outright power is king, it would stay with most sport bikes. Great handling.

By the way, it did all of this averaging 56.8 miles per gallon ! The fuel range was under 200 miles, but I have no doubt that at a more reasonable pace, it would easily last 200+ miles to the tankful. This machine is not in any sport tourer shootout, or sport bike contest, or commuter challenge, but I am duly impressed.

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