’17 BMW R1200GS Rallye
There comes a time when you’ve got to let your hair down, and let it all hang out. This time has arrived, and although I don’t have any hair, I can surely let it all hang out with this heavy-weight enduro. Steve, the Sales Manager at BMW Supertech Motorrad in Pinetown, told me to take this beast for a few days, just to get my blood pumping and my heart thumping the way it should.
And so I did, with one hell of a smile on my face, and some pressure on my forehead as the horns started to grow — heeltyd speeltyd!
It was on a weekend, and during one of my Advanced Rider Courses, that I tested and played with this machine. First I thought: “Too big man, too big!”, but as we started to know each other, any concerns for size left the grey matter, and a pure rush of joy followed all the way to Monday.
“BMW GS” has stood for universal motorcycling pleasure for more than 35 years: “GS” embodies the ideal combination of touring and long distance suitability, dynamic performance and off-road capability. This applies especially to the BMW GS motorcycles with a flat-twin boxer engine. They are the perfect companions in extreme conditions when it comes to exploring the most remote corners of the earth.
The new BMW R 1200 GS Rallye – even more supreme on all terrain types.
The unique overall concept of the R 1200 GS with its down-to-earth character and powerful high-torque engine thrills a large number of motorcycle fans all over the world. It is not for nothing that this motorcycle has dominated its market segment for many years and is the top-seller within the BMW Motorrad model range. With the new R 1200 GS, BMW Motorrad expands the GS portfolio not only in the form of additional product optimisations but also by means of further potential broadening of the motorcycle’s properties. For the first time, customers can give a BMW GS a more marked touch of enduro or distinguished style to suit its preferred area of use by ordering the style packages Rallye and Exclusive.
The most popular travel enduro bike in the world, the R 1200 GS has now been optimised in a wide range of areas. Designed for even greater versatility than before, it taps into a previously unknown breadth of properties, ranging from dynamic performance to comfort and off-road suitability. This is due to selective improvements, numerous new features and not least a much-expanded program of optional equipment and optional accessories.
Riding Modes Pro as an optional feature with dynamic traction control DTC and new Hill Start Control.
For individual adaptation to rider preferences, the new R 1200 GS offers the two riding modes “Rain” and “Road” as standard in conjunction with Automatic Stability Control ASC for optimum traction. As an optional equipment item ex-works, the new R 1200 GS can be fitted with “Riding Modes Pro” featuring the additional riding modes “Dynamic” and “Dynamic Pro”, “Enduro” and “Enduro Pro” as well Dynamic Traction Control DTC, which enables even more efficient and safe acceleration especially in banking position.
The riding modes “Dynamic Pro” and “Enduro Pro”, activated by means of a coded plug, also offer customisation options which allow the character of the motorcycle to be adapted. Other elements of “Riding Modes Pro” are the new set-off assistant Hill Start Control for convenient hill starts, ABS Pro for even greater safety when braking, even in banking position, and the dynamic brake light which is even more effective in drawing attention to the fact that the motorcycle is braking.
Electronic suspension Dynamic ESA “Next Generation” with fully automatic self-levelling suspension function.
A whole new dimension of riding safety, performance and comfort is harnessed with the optional BMW Motorrad Dynamic ESA “Next Generation” (Electronic Suspension Adjustment): here, the damping automatically adapts to the situation depending on riding condition and manoeuvres, and there is also an automatic self-leveling function to compensate all load states.
Tight sports suspension for off-road enthusiasts as an ex-works option for the R 1200 GS Rallye.
The Rallye package available ex-works allows the new R 1200 GS to be optimised for more ambitious off-road use. Off-road performance is significantly increased due to an increased spring rate (“harder suspension”), longer spring struts and extended spring travel.
New paint finishes and styling in three attractive variants.
While the underlying design architecture of the R 1200 GS has been preserved in the new version, optimised ergonomics in the knee area ensure further improved off-road qualities, while more pointed contrasts, new paint finishes and the two optional equipment packages Rallye and Exclusive emphasise the distinctive talents of the R 1200 GS in its differing forms. Details have been optimised on the front mudguard and at the centre of the front wheel cover, while small slipstream deflectors known as winglets add a touch of aerodynamic perfection. The trim of the air intake and the side fuel tank trim panels have been newly designed, too. New styling has now also been applied to the cooling air ducts and radiator trim elements, which either feature a galvanised surface or are made of stainless steel (Rallye and Exclusive).
The off-road character of the new R 1200 GS is particularly emphasised in the Rallye version.
The paintwork in Lupine Blue metallic, the over-painted deco elements on the fuel tank sides in BMW Motorsport colours and the frame in Cordoba Blue go together with the black drivetrain to create the sportiest series production GS of all time.
The sheer presence of the R 1200 GS Exclusive is underscored by means of fuel tank side trim panels in Monolith metallic matt with clear over-painted deco elements, a front wheel splash guard and central fuel tank cover in Iced Chocolate metallic and a frame finished in Agate Grey metallic matt. The black drivetrain and the gold-finished brake callipers lend a refined contrast here.
An overview of the highlights of the new BMW R 1200 GS:
- Boxer engine with new catalytic converter and adapted data status to meet EU4 requirements and an unchanged output of 92 kW (125 hp) at 7 750 rpm.
- New appearance with visually enhanced robustness.
- More marked styling and attractive colour variants.
- Even more ergonomics options with numerous seat heights and seat variants.
- A significantly wider spread of model variations in relation to the basic version, from the refined R 1200 GS Exclusive through to the R 1200 GS Rallye for riders with off-road aspirations.
- R 1200 GS Rallye – new version with additional product substance: Rallye seat, sports windshield, radiator and frame guard, wide enduro footrests and cross-spoke wheels as well as a professional sports suspension and optional studded tyres.
- Innovative functions provided by the latest generation of Dynamic ESA: automatic damping mode and automatic self-levelling suspension for a new riding experience.
- Riding Modes Pro with DTC, Hill Start Control and the new customisable modes Modi Dynamic Pro and Enduro Pro as optional equipment items ex-works.
- New optional accessories such as cylinder protection bracket, a top case for two helmets and off-road protection parts as well as radiator guard and frame guard.
R 1200 Rallye: the sportiest standard GS of all times.
The off-road character of the new R 1200 GS is particularly emphasised in the Rallye version. The colouring in Lupine Blue metallic, the over-painted decor elements on the fuel tank sides reminiscent of the BMW Motorsport colours and in particular the frame powder-coated in Cordoba Blue go together with the black drivetrain and gold-finished brake callipers to create the sportiest standard GS of all times, even from a purely visual point of view.
Functionally speaking, the new R 1200 GS Rallye underscores its claim to be the sportiest GS with numerous refined details. These include the Rallye seat, which features perfect ergonomic shaping for maximum freedom of movement while still offering excellent seating comfort – for two if necessary. As before, a low-cut sports windshield provides a clear view of rough terrain to the front while offering increased freedom of movement when the bike is ridden standing up.
In addition to the radiator trim in robust stainless steel, a radiator guard protects the radiator from a stone chip. Wide enduro footrests ensure a firm foothold and a special frame guard protects the section of the suspension in the boot area from unwanted scrape marks.
The new R 1200 GS Rallye rolls on a cross-spoke wheel with off-road capability: alternatively, these can be ordered with studded tyres as an ex-works optional equipment item. Off-road enthusiasts can also opt for the sports suspension ex-works. If the new R 1200 GS Rally is to be ridden in the purest form, i.e. with the luggage bridge removed and without passenger footrests, these elements can be neatly covered with caps that are included.
In closing, I can say, that riding and playing with this Adventure Enduro heavy-weight, has been the most off-road fun I’ve had in a very long time. In the hands of a pro, most definitely not me, this will be the only toy you’d want to play with.
Test bike provided by BMW Supertech Motorrad – 031 7014772