How to get the best price on a new bike (or car)
  1. Determine exactly what you want, i.e. what exact model with what options
  2. Call Dealer #1, tell them exactly what you want (model and options) - they give you a price
  3. Call Dealer #2, tell them you want the exact same thing, but you want them to beat the price Dealer #1 gave you
  4. Call Dealer #3, tell them you want the exact same thing, but you want them to beat the price Dealer #2 gave you
Repeat this with local (or as far as you're willing to drive) dealers until you get the best price. Worst case scenario at any step is that you get "Sorry, we can't beat that deal," in which case, your lowest price is the previous dealer, and you can try another dealer. When you run out of dealers, go back to the last one. Usually at this point you can even squeeze some extra goodies out of the deal such as some kind of accessory, a pair of gloves, free oil changes, etc.

The neat thing about this system is that you can be totally honest with the salesperson regarding what you're doing and just say something like "Well, Bob's Honda gave me this price, if you can beat that I'll buy from you." Many times they'll beat it simply because they didn't have to waste any sales time on you, and it's instant commission for them. It's really quite amazing how well this system works, on any kind of item without a fixed price.

Also, never underestimate the power of the below phrase in being able to get you what you want (spoken by you, to the salesperson):

"If you are willing to do this for me, I can be down there in one hour with a deposit check for $1000 for the bike."

Regarding Salespeople
If there's one piece of advice I can give to prospective owners of machines of any number of wheels is to avoid salespeople and instead talk to owners of the bike (or whatever) you're considering purchasing. I have nothing against salespeople in general, but they usually have to know about dozens of wildly different models. Unless you're lucky enough to have a salesperson who happens to actually own the machine you're considering buying, take everything they say with a grain of salt because they most likely only know what they read in the sales brochure. It's kinda like Home Depot claiming they have experts in every isle - puh-lease. Ever try to get truly professional advice from one of those people?

As a final note, your best tool in the purchase of a bike is research. Do research on both the bike and your dealer. There's many ways to do this such as the internet, local groups and clubs, chamber of commerce (dealer only), magazines, brochures, etc. As for the internet, be careful what you read out there and don't take the first thing you see as gospel. Even these pages are only my opinion on most things. Sure they are based on my experience and education (which culminates in wisdom), but there's always another opinion if you look for it.