How good are the sports? I really like the look of them but what about reliability?
The biggest thing to overcome / adapt to on the Sport 1100 is the seating position. If you can't handle the full-race tuck, then it won't be the bike for you. There isn't enough room under the fairing to move the bars much. It is what it is.
Otherwise, my 1996 Sport 1100 has been super-reliable over the past 18 years.
Changes I've made:
-Keihin FCR 41 carbs with K&N filter in the stock airbox.
-Full Staintune exhaust.
-Brembo front GP mastercylinder.
-Brembo cast iron front rotors.
-WP spring kit and 10wt oil in the Marzocchi forks.
The engine has the personality of a hotrod, and I guess that's what it is. The factory tuned the Sport a lot hotter than the California. The transmission is sort of agricultural, but I have grown used to it. 5th gear has gone bad on many of these bikes. The bikes are geared so tall that I don't really use 5th all that much, unless on the freeway droning along, point-A to point-B at 80mph speeds.