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BMW Motorcycle Road Tests
& Reviews

BMW Motorcycle Guide

BMW, an acronym for Bayerische Motoren Werke, is a German motorcycle, automobile and engine manufacturing company founded in 1917. BMW motorcycles were first manufactured in 1923, powered by an air-cooled, horizontally opposed 'boxer' twin engine, a much modernized version of which still powers several models in BMW's current lineup.

2013 BMW R 1200 GS Road Test

2013 BMW R 1200 GS

Mark Tuttle
July 19, 2013

Given its status as adventure-touring’s most popular, versatile motorcycle and worldwide best-seller, we made sure to cover BMW’s new liquid-cooled R 1200 GS touring enduro pretty thoroughly following the introduction in South Africa (Rider, April 2013 and at ridermagazine.com). Now that we’ve... Read more »

2013 BMW F 800 GT Road Test

BMW’S new version of its sport-touring parallel twin is seen here with optional touring side cases and centerstand. The F 800 GT is much improved over its F 800 ST predecessor.

Mark Tuttle
May 30, 2013

Earlier this century, when BMW Motorrad decided to shed its gray-haired, pipe-and-slippers image for good, rather than abandon the boxer engine that had been synonymous with the German company for more than 80 years, it completely revamped the flat opposed twin and its drivetrain. The 2004 R 1200 GS... Read more »

BMW Concept Ninety Celebrates 40 Years of the R 90 S

BMW-Concept-90-featured

Press Release
May 30, 2013

Ninety years of BMW Motorrad, 90 years of two-wheeled history—few motorcycle manufacturers can boast such a longstanding and successful heritage as BMW. The BMW R 90 S likewise has cause to celebrate: the BMW Motorrad design icon turns 40 this year. As a tribute to both these anniversaries, the BMW... Read more »

Five Fast Fellows: 2013 Sport-Touring Shootout

Even in the dark cold of winter, it’s well worth it to get up early for sunrise over California’s majestic Sierra Nevada range.

Greg Drevenstedt
May 6, 2013

Sport touring, a hybrid category that blends the performance of sportbikes with the comfort of touring bikes, takes many forms. Some add a taller windscreen, bar risers and soft luggage to their GSX-R, while others bevel the pegs and scrape the belly pan on their Gold Wing. Between these two extremes... Read more »

2013 BMW R 1200 RT Review

The RT’s boxer twin makes the least power, but its handling and wind protection are hard to beat. And, at 626 pounds, it’s the lightest bike here by 37 pounds.

Greg Drevenstedt
May 6, 2013

Now in its 34th year of production, the BMW R 1200 RT has long been sport touring’s standard-bearer. Designed, built and refined in the shadow of the Alps, the RT name is synonymous with tractable power, intuitive handling and first-rate comfort and wind protection. Its trademark air/oil-cooled boxer... Read more »

2013 BMW K 1600 GT Review

More cylinders, more torque, longer, heavier, more fully featured and more expensive than the rest. As the saying goes, you get what you pay for.

Greg Drevenstedt
May 6, 2013

Tremors and aftershocks are still being felt two years after the Big One, when BMW’s dynamic duo—the K 1600 GT and GTL—reconfigured touring’s tectonic plates (Rider, May 2011, and on ridermagazine.com). After impressing us in their respective solo and comparison tests, both models shared Rider’s... Read more »

BMW F 800 GS Adventure – First Look

F-800-GS-Adventure-2bike

Greg Drevenstedt
May 2, 2013

Adventure touring’s rapidly expanding universe can be traced back to a Big Bang moment: BMW’s introduction of the R80G/S in 1980. Gelände/Strasse—Off-road/Road in German, or GS for short—has become much more than just a model designation. Among the BMW faithful, it has become an expansive identity,... Read more »

Comparison Test: 2013 BMW C 650 GT vs. 2013 Honda NC700X

The C 650 GT is a sport tourer in scooter clothing; the NC700X is nimble, adequately quick and easy to ride.

Mark Tuttle
April 3, 2013

We aren’t normally a shiftless bunch except for an hour or two after lunch, but we recently spent the last two weeks swapping between two new “automatics”—BMW’s C 650 GT maxi-scooter, and Honda’s NC700X with dual-clutch transmission—in an effort to see which type of shiftless two-wheeler... Read more »

One World, One R 1200 GS Tour USA

One-World-One-R1200GS-01

Greg Drevenstedt
March 7, 2013

Since returning from South Africa in January, where I was among the first wave of journalists at the world launch of BMW’s all-new, air/liquid-cooled R 1200 GS, I’ve had a jones to ride the bike again. As I wrote in my first-ride report, “The new, more highly evolved R 1200 GS is better in nearly... Read more »

2013 BMW F 700 GS: Ridden & Rated

The agile, versatile BMW F 700 GS has the tallest standard seat height here, at 32.3 inches, but with the factory accessory low seat and low suspension kit, seat height is just 30.1 inches.

Greg Drevenstedt
March 7, 2013

Height-adjustable or optional low seats can drop seat height by an inch or so, but for many riders that isn’t enough, especially on dual-sport/enduro motorcycles with large-diameter front wheels and long suspension travel. Given the popularity of BMW’s GS line, the Germans have gone one step further.... Read more »

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BMW Motorcycles, Who Uses Them?

BMW motorcycle reviews feature street-legal motorcycles for touring, sport touring, sport riding and dual-sport/adventure. BMW also owns Husqvarna, an Italian manufacturer of dirt bikes.


BMW Motorcycle Standouts

BMW's most iconic current model is the BMW R 1200 GS, an adventure touring motorcycle that is the company's best seller. Originally introduced in 1980 as the R80G/S, it popularized the concept of Gelände/Strasse (German for off-road/on-road) and helped launch the dual-sport/adventure touring market. The 1979 BMW R100RT was the company's first touring motorcycle, which featured a windscreen, fairing, saddlebags and shaft drive; later versions of the R-RT introduced oil cooling for the trademark boxer engine, BMW motorcycle road tests examine the unique Telelever front and Paralever rear suspension, as well as electronic suspension adjustment. The 1983 BMW K100 was the first model in the company's lineup powered by a liquid-cooled, in-line four engine, the K-series was BMW's debut platform for an electrically adjustable windscreen and anti-lock brakes

BMW motorcycle reviews made the K 1600 GTL Rider's 2012 Motorcycle of the Year because it broke new ground in the luxury touring segment with a powerful in-line engine, the best power-to-weight ratio in the class, remarkable handling and performance, as well as useful features such as the Multi-Controller and optional Adaptive Headlight.

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