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My wife and I spent a week in California where I rented a BMW R1250RT and she got a HD Softail Classic. We rode in the Los Angeles and Palm Springs areas. The BMW was the basic version. It didn't have electronic suspension, a top box or heated grips, but it did come with a heated seat. When I picked it up, it had 940 miles on the odometer. A week later, it was returned with 2270 miles. As you might expect, the engine was tight at the beginning, not wanting to pull below 3k rpm which made starting from a stop rather interesting. By the time I returned it, the engine had loosened up.
We rode the twisties of Angeles Crest Hwy and Mullholand Hwy the first few days then took the super slab to the Palm Springs area. There, we rode the desert roads and up into the hills. The following are my observations of the bike.
-Sixth gear is very tall and definitely designed for the Autobahn. The bike needed to be traveling a minimum of 75mph for this gear to be useful.
-The suspension was on the soft side allowing the chassis to wallow a bit in the curves. Without the tools to make adjustments, I just lived with it.
-The sat was very comfortable. We rode every day and in some cases spend 6 to 8 hours in the saddle without complaint.
-The windshield is electronic. Its up and down range is on a par with the C14. Interestingly, the shield goes down when you turn off the engine (as with the C14) but returns to its previous position when the engine is restarted.
-The bike uses a FOB. The FOB has two buttons on it. One remotely locks the saddlebags and glove boxes, the other unlocks them. Just like my car, I can lock and unlock the bike compartments from afar.
-The forks can be locked or unlocked with the push of a button located below the instrument cluster.
The headlight works well but I just couldn't find the high beam switch.
-The saddlebags are not detachable, but are roomy. I bought some cheap bag liners that fit perfectly and worked well.
-Th bike felt lighter that my C14.
-My gas mileage was between 45 & 50 mpg.
-The passenger accommodations seemed roomy but never got used.
-Cruise control worked great.

Overall, I liked the bike. It had a bunch of qualities that suited me well. Should be relatively easy to work on. But I don't think that its worth the price of admission, especially when you factor in the upgrades and Farkles that I'd want.
I rode my brothers for about 100 miles and came to some similar conclusions. And I totally agree with your final summations, the initial buy in and the cost to own and maintain was just a non-starter and deal breaker for me.
Sounds like something I'd like. The C-14 windshield can be set to return the same way, but I never have. Thanks for the review.