Have you ever seen a new product whose concept was so strikingly obvious that you thought to yourself “Why has no one done this before? Why didn’t I think of this first?”. This was my reaction to Touratech’s DriRide seat.
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The Age Old Problem
Lets get down to the nitty-gritty. After hours in the saddle your backside heats up, pressure points form and things get, well, uncomfortable! What was the point in spending all that money on a state of art Gore-Tex riding suit, which you then crush between your rear-end and your seat, resulting in a body zone (yep, your backside) that can’t breathe through the Gore-Tex suite.
Whilst we’re at it, tell me this, why can we put on man on the moon but not sort out a solution to a soggy bike seat after a rain storm?
The idea and production methods that have gone into Touratech new Dri-Ride seat are aimed at combating a few of motorcycling’s oldest issues. Check out Touratech’s promo page for their DriRide Seat and you’ll read...
Your riding gear is designed to allow moisture to escape your body but it can’t do its job in the most important area unless you have a seat that breathes.
A seat may not be on the top of your modification list, but perhaps it should be?
After years in the saddle and having clocked up over 400,00 miles on this trip alone, I can tell you that other than suspension, a great seat can be the difference between love and hate at the end of a days ride.
InstallationI installed the Touratech DriRide seat when I picked up my new R1200GSA. After riding the stock GSA I knew I wanted a little higher seat, if only to decrease the angle of bend in my knees when sitting. I’m 6 4” and those 400,000 miles have taken a toll. When I ordered the DriRide seat I’d requested the ‘high’ version. It fits me like a charm.
Out of the box the seat clicked into place on the R1200GSA and looked right. It located into the seat slots easily and comes on and off without fuss.
My first long test ride of the new bike and the seat was a blitz ride from BMW Motorcycles of Riverside (where the new bikes had been custom built), who are just east of LA, across the continental USA to the AIM Expo in Orlando Florida. We made it in 4 days. By the end of day one I knew I was in love. We were 8 hours into that first day when I realized that I was comfortable. I hadn’t wriggled or manoeuvred my rear end once!
Out of LA and Lisa and I had hit the slab instantly. The DriRide seat had done an incredible job of smoothing out all the vibrations that normally find their way into the rider. Yes, I had new suspension and yes, I was riding what I’d call a ‘dream-bike’, but I know from hard-earned experience that the seat and what Touratech call their Ergo-Response Long-Distance foam had made all the difference. Touratech state very boldly “The longer you ride the better it feels”. It feeling pretty good right now, tomorrow it should feel even better.
One of the most interesting aspects of the seat for me, and to be honest one of the real reason for wanting it was Touratech’s claim of the seat being waterproof. It’s miserable getting onto your bike at some ungodly hour in the morning and having to endure a cold wet, water-logged seat. The ride to Florida called for few very early starts, following nights of heavy dew. I did not suffer from soggy butt syndrome once. In Baja Mexico just recently, the heavens opened and we got drowned for half a day. Amidst a desert of mud my new favourite mod’ stayed true to it’s name. It staid dry and I was all the more comfortable for the experience.
It’s interesting to realize that Touratech have employed their own fabric technology called Rain-Block. It may not be the most mesmerizing brand name but it’s incredibly accurate. At the other end of the temperature spectrum is this seats ability to breathe. I’ve just had 3 months riding the length and breadth of Baja in what I can best describe as ‘egg-frying’ heat. Off road for much of the time, my Touratech Companero suit takes care of my heat management and keeps my cool. But whilst we were down there we also rode our fair share of long asphalt days, when the temperature soared into the 100’s and our lips were chapped by the dry dusty Baja air. The breathable DriRide seat did what it promised. Think of this seat as air-conditioning for you butt.
DesignI love to ride off road and if I’m honest I’ve never been a fan of the BMW split seat design. The ridge between the rider and pillion seat tends to interrupt my leg position when I need to transfer my body forward or rear when I’m off-road. Although Touratech offer a range of seat design with their DriRide technology, I’ve chosen a single sport seat design. For me, less is more and the seat does exactly what I’d hoped it would. Moreover the design of the single piece sports seat adds to the aggressive off-road look of the GS. It just looks right!
As you hope and expect from a premium priced product (MSRP: $634.00) the attention to detail and build quality is exceptional. From the custom shaped backbone of the seat through to the stitch work and fabric. All the components hit the mark. No corners have been cut to make a few extra bucks.
One aspect of the fabric choice I’ve found interesting is Touratech’s choice of seat cover. Initially I found it a little slippier than I’d become used to, compared with my very old R1150GSA. After riding in Baja I see the fabrics merits. It’s tough but also allows me to move around easily and quickly on the bike, whether I’m seated or standing. When in technical terrain I need to move and adjust my weight and position often very quickly. This seat only makes all that easier and hence I believe Touratech fabric choice. Nice one!
I‘ve now had this seat on my R1200GSA for 5 months and it taken my abuse and looks brand new.
At the end of the day if your not comfortable on your bike, you’re being distracted. If your distracted, your safety is being compromised. Think I’m laying it on thick? Trust me, whether you a casual once a week rider or a full-time adventure rider, my above statement holds true. As a stand alone product the new Touratech DriRide seat will add to the enjoyment your next ride provides.
If you’re in the market for a new seat or wondering where to best spend you heard earned dollars, the DriRide seat is definitely worthy of your attention.
Well done Touratech on another quality product that adds to the rider experience.
Touratech Part no for the DriRide High Sport Seat: Part Number: 045-5914
|▲ Great comfort||▼ At the higher end of the price bracket|
|▲ Quality construction|| ▼ Smooth seat material takes a little getting used to
|▲ OEM quality design|
|▲ Good ergonomics|
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