I don't blame you! I love the GSA don't think the normal GS does it for me. When I decided I was buying a new bike I had 3 choices. The GSA, the KTM950 Adventure and the Strom. I could afford any of them, and took hard good look at all of them. I recently even thought really hard about trading the Strom for the new F800GS this fall.
At the time of purchase, I could not bring my self to pay the sticker price on either the KTM or BMW. I did lots of research and even though both bikes called me hard, I could not drop the money on them. I got a great deal on the Strom and have taken the bike anywhere the 2 big ticket bikes will go.
When the 800 was announced I was dead set on getting rid of the Strom for it. Then I got to thinking.... The Strom is fully farckled, all it needed was a new rear shock and front springs and gold valves to really polish the farkling. The new F800GS sticker price is about 13k, add hard luggage, skid plate, modulators, bark busters, stabilizer, seat, larger windshields, Zumo mount, crash bars etc and I am looking at over 20k!!!!!! I decided to get an Elka rear, new springs and valves up front and enjoy the Strom.
After my test with the new Elka rear, I am sure I made the right choice. Once I get the front done I will take it to some nice sand to test it out and see how she does.
Add to the price of the BMW or KTM the cost of the parts for repairs, or actual shop time if needed, and you will loose that itch really soon. Its not that I cant afford it, just dont see how parts and labor can be so much more just because of a name.
Also read up on reliability issues... There are tons more strom than GS bikes out there, and the stroms just dont break nearly as much as the GS. If I was stranded in Mexico lets say with a bike because it broke, I would like it to be a Strom since I know I can find parts just about any where. And when a chain goes, you can make due in a little town in the middle of nowhere.... where are you going to find a shaft for your BMW in the middle of Montana 300 miles away from the nearest BMW dealer.
Just my 2 cents