1100 Breva vs 1200 Breva

Hi - newbie considering a Breva - either 1100 or 1200 flavour.

I know it’s the 2 valve lump, but I’m wondering which might be smoother to ride.

I rode a 1200 Sport when they first came out, and I remember having to stop the engine at traffic lights to give my hands a rest from the vibration!! It was like riding a road drill, though I don’t know if this was the 2v or 4v head, and it only had about 1,000 on the clock, so do they get smoother with age?

Is the 1100 sweeter?

Incidentally, there’s an 1100 Breva at Blade m/c in Swindon which has been done out like a 1200 Sport - looks bloomin’ marvellous, but I think it’s taken root to the showroom floor - they’ve had it for about 8 months.

How easy is it to make a Breva look like the sport? is it just a case of fly screen and pillion seat cover, because I would definitely go this route. Prefer the upright sitting position of the Breva, but love the way the Sport looks.

Well I have the Norge, which is the same as the B1200 apart from the tupperware.If you had that much vibration, then there was something amiss with the state of tune, they don’t vibrate much if set up properly.I don’t think there is any real difference between the 1100 and 1200 either.

I purchased a 2006 Breva 1100 just over a month ago and love it. It’s really smooth, with virtually no vibration at all through the bars; when stationary in heavy traffic, I sometimes have to check the rev counter to make sure the engine’s still running! For me, the forward lean is just right - any more and I’d have too much weight on my wrists; any less, and the wind blast would be tiresome. I’ve heard it said that mechanically they’re fully run in at about 18,000 miles, so I may have another 10,000 to go before it’s as smooth as it can be.

Agree with Brian to a large part… though you can see the handlebars of mine vibrate when they are stationary at traffic lights - something I like personally, a bit of character and grunt not offered by the Japanese road rockets :slight_smile:


I agree with GrahamUK - my 1100 Breva doesn’t vibrate, it just has a nice “thrum” to remind you it’s a big V-twin… mine came with a screen, which I’ve set as low and as angled-back as it’ll go, and I get no buffetting up to 80-ish. The gearchange might produce a slight “clonk” from somewhere in the transmission around town, but I don’t expect Jap levels of sophistication. Comfy seat, absorbant suspension, all I want is more noise!

I didn’t say they were vibration free, I said they don’t vibrate that much.A few people have complained about numbness in their right hand, but this is often down to other reasons, and a cramp buster normally helps.If you really are getting a lot of vibration in the bars, then get the throttle body sync checked.

Most of my previous bikes have been air-cooled boxer Beemers, so I’m very used to a gearbox wot go “clonk”

Of course I would like to be reminded that I’ve got two ginormous baked bean cans going up and down somewhere, otherwise I’d get a Honda Sewing-Machine UJM 1000.

More noise needed? Sir may wish to avail himself of the Quat-D Carbonia and remove the “quiet stick”.

I do like these two videos!



In the past I have owned and enjoyed a BMW R75/R and an R850R. I regularly had problems with my hands going numb through the vibration on the R850R; I don’t have that problem at all with the Breva 1100. In fact, in many ways it feels like a slick and faster version of that BMW. I hope that’s a helpful comparison.

That is, thanks Graham. I had an R1100R at one stage and I loved it, but chopped it in after the siren call of the R1150GS lured me over to the Long Way Round. R1150GS - lovely bike. In fact I had two of 'em. Tried the 1200 when it came out. Hated it, never tried it since!

The R850R was supposed to be smoother than the R1100R, so I’m interested to hear you say the Breva is smoother! This 1200 Sport I rode some years back was properly jack-hammer like in the vibes department, so I guess either it had something seriously amiss or it needed a lot of running in. I’m not to fussed about 1100 or 1200 but will probably end up with the 1100 as I reckon it’s a bit smoother. I do suffer from arthritic fingers, so anything I can do to relieve the symptoms helps.

That 1200 Sport had a problem, unless that was sorted, no amount of “running in” would help.

Any issues with the Breva to look out for?

I had mine for 4 and a half years and 27000 miles and didn’t have any problems apart from a final drive seal and a couple of warning lights stopped working on the instrument panel.

Make sure that you get one that has been looked after and has the extras you need as they are expensive to buy afterwards. Greasing the suspension linkages regularly is advisable and fit a hugger to keep the muck off the shock.

I loved mine they are a top bikeHorton9162013-11-21 09:41:55

Not much. It seems to be a really sound and reliable bike. Few faults are reported, and those that are seem to be trivial and easily fixed:
The final drive seal sometimes fails, weeping some oil onto the back wheel and tyre - this looks alarming, but it’s a cheap and easy fix (there was a recall for the Carc on the earliest models).
I think there were issues with early petrol filters splitting, but these have mostly been upgraded by now. Some people have had problems with the starter, which I gather is easily fixed with an extra wire.
The only expensive problem I’ve seen reported is if a puddle of water develops in the dashboard, eating away at the circuit board, and eventually requiring a replacement dash; a misting dash may indicate that this could be a problem that is developing, although most dashes seem to mist occasionally at certain times of year.Graham UK2013-11-21 09:46:49

I did post a fix for the misting dash problem, copied from the Guzzitech forum.Basically it was making a couple of small holes in the bottom of the unit so that any moisture could drain out.

Do the 1200s suffer the cam problem as some other 1200 MGs?

The 1200 Breva is a two valve per head engine, as is the Norge, and there have been absolutely no issues with the valve gear on these models.

Thanks Gents - good stuff. Can’t understand why those that are for sale appear to be rooted to the showroom floors!

Perhaps it’s because many people haven’t heard of them and so don’t consider them, and others either want a full-on Japanese sports bike or a legend like the Cali. Whatever the reason, it makes the Breva a great 2nd hand buy.

They are a well kept secret

The one I’ve had my eye on has been turned into a 1200 Sport lookalike which, for me, is part of its attraction. Would I be right in thinking this is easy to do with just a fly screen and a passenger seat cowl thing? Anyway, turns the slightly pedestrian-looking Breva into something much nicer to behold IMHO.