Sargent World Sport Performance Motorcycle Seat Review
[This Sargent World Sport Performance Motorcycle Seat Review was originally published in the May 2010 issue of Rider magazine]
When the original owner bought the BMW R 1200 GS currently suffering my neglect, he did so with the tall seat option, a popular choice among riders who are—duh—taller, and dirt donks who don’t want to chew up the seat with the tops of their motocross boots when they ride standing up. Having a 29-inch inseam myself, I managed to ride the bike home from the seller’s without getting a nosebleed, but called the folks at Sargent Cycle Products the very next day. Like many of Sargent’s seats, its World Sport Performance saddle for the R 1200 GS is manufactured using Sargent’s own PolyTec base pan, so I didn’t have to send my seat to them and could enjoy the first few days of new-to-me bike ownership uninterrupted (albeit on my tip-toes).
As the pan is precision molded and comes complete with Sargent’s “better-than-stock” hardware, when the new rider and passenger seats arrived (within a week as they were in-stock; custom seats take longer), they clicked easily into place just like the stockers. As the “Regular” Sargent GS rider’s seat is comparable in height to the stock BMW high seat I already had, I ordered it in the “Low” version, which can still be adjusted to two positions at 32 or 32.8 inches high (stock BMW low is 32.3). Not being a flashy sort, I requested subtle black welts; metallic silver ones are also available. These surround the Sargent CarbonFX vinyl inserts, which have a cool carbon-fiberlike pattern that is smooth and comfortable without being slippery. Sargent’s upholstery is marine-grade for outdoor use, so its seats are virtually maintenance-free. The vinyl is also UV-stabilized, color-coordinated and hand sewn over its Super Cell Atomic Foam, a blend it developed for resilience, firmness and vibration absorption.
Best seat shape is a highly subjective matter, and quite the crap shoot when you’re ordering an off-the-shelf product without trying it, but I’m very happy with that of the Sargent. Compared to the relatively flat stock seat that gets old in a few hours, the WSP cradles my cheeks firmly without putting pressure in the middle, and has a bit of a scoop in back to prevent sliding forth and back, yet I can still move around easily. Foam density is decidedly firm, too much so I thought at first, but remains amazingly supportive and comfortable on long rides. Most aftermarket seat makers seem to go with firmer foam than stock, apparently for good reason.
The WSP GS passenger seat comes with a handy storage area built-in underneath, in which I immediately stashed my flat kit. It has a much more lifted front than the stocker, however, and my wife found that it forces her back against the bike’s uncomfortable backrest on the top case. Its foam and covering are fine, so we may ask Sargent to build us a flatter one, perhaps without the storage space. You can buy the rider and passenger seats for the GS and GS Adventure separately, but may want the Sargent passenger seat for the built-in storage and so the front and rear seats match.
Sargent offers some custom options for its World Sport Performance seats, including seat heaters with variable heat control, and all of its seats come with a 30-day money-back guarantee. The World Sport Performance rider’s seat for the BMW R 1200 GS is $384.95 and the passenger seat is $324.95; ordered together the pair is $669.95. Sargent or (800) 749-SEAT (7328)