BMW's 100,000th R1200GS
August 3, 2007 - The BMW R 1200 GS, together with the model
variant Adventure, celebrated an impressive record: In Berlin, the
100,000th 1200 GS rolled off the assembly line.
84,373 units of these were allotted to the
classical GS, and 15,627 units were allotted to the
model Adventure. No other BMW motorcycle has
ever been built so often within such as short space
of time. Hence, the BMW R 1200 GS is the most
successful BMW motorcycle of all times.
The predecessor has held first place of the
registration statistics for years; the 1200 GS
already managed to achieve this right from the
start. It has continued extending its lead to
this day. In 2006, 31,138 units were delivered to
From 1999 until 2003, the predecessor model R
1150 GS was built a total of 58,023 times. In
addition to this, 17,828 units of the model variant
Adventure (until 2005) were produced. Since
1994 to this day, a total of 219,468 GS models of
the boxer engine generation with four valves per
cylinder have been built. A figure that proves
the popularity, supremacy and unique universality of
the GS concept.
Significant new improvements to one of
the most popular BMW motorcycle models! Photos courtesy BMW AG - BMW
North America |
R1200GS named Motorcycle of the Year | BMW R1200 GS also won the IDSA 2004 Industrial Design Excellence Competition - (Los Angeles, CA -
June 25, 2004) "Once again, BMW Group has sped past the competition,
winning "Gold" in the Industrial Design Society of America's 2004 IDEA
(International Design Excellence Awards) for the R1200 GS BMW
Motorcycle. This marks a stellar repeat performance for BMW Group's
Design Team. Last year, the BMW Group received several awards from the
Industrial Design Society of America (IDSA), including Gold awards for
MINI, Gold and Bronze awards for DesignworksUSA and a Bronze for BMW
On this page: Summary of changes
| BMW press release | Detailed
technical analysis | Specifications
| Optional equipment | HP
and torque curves | Colors
More: Many owner comments appearing in
Micapeak R1200GS owners list | R1200GS recall - BMW
has experienced failure of the rear axle on some R1200GS motorcycles in
the U.K. due to supplier problems; owners will be notified (per MCN UK)
| Nice R1200GS road test
Motorcycle News Australia |
First Road Test - Telegraph (U.K.) website
R1200GS Road Test: The Star (Maylasia) |
BMW R1200GS road test review on Motorcyclist online |
BMW R1200GS Forum (U.K.) |
BMW R1200GS Owners
Registry at Micapeak
R1200GS Parts - Accessories: LED brake
lights, tail lights and directionals for the R1200GS (and other BMWs) at
Nippy Norman's |
R1200GS bags are now available at
| Hepco Becker bags for the R1200GS at
Motorsports | Nice looking
| More R1200GS goodies
from Best Rest Products
R1200GS Adjustable Screen Mounts: Tobinator
screen mounts for the R1100GS, R1150GS and R1200GS
R1200GS Exhaust Systems:
Laser Duo Tech Exhaust Systems
and tuning chips; claimed to be "approved by BMW"; R1200GS system now available
| See also the wBW
Exhaust Systems page for many more
BMW Increases Production of R1200GS: Due to the enormous demand, BMW Motorrad
has decided to increase the production of the R 1200 GS. "Incoming
orders have exceeded all our expectations and we want to reduce delivery
times for our customers as fast as possible. The aim is for
customers who order now to receive their motorbike in the summer", says
Peter Müller, head of sales and marketing of BMW Motorrad.
Additional shifts have been arranged in the short term with the work
force of the Berlin motorcycle plant. All suppliers are also
co-operating. "This shows", says Dieter Schliek, plant director in
Berlin, "how very flexible our workforce is and how it is dedicated to
satisfying our worldwide customers". Quite a few employees were
even willing to put off their annual holiday so that the R 1200 GS could
also be assembled during the plant holidays.
BMW Press Release -- More technical details
below. (top) Even more agile, more powerful and
lighter for maximum riding pleasure on and off the road! The new BMW R 1200 GS fulfils the old
dream of the ideal touring enduro: Superiority in every respect,
outstanding performance and superior comfort even on the longest tour,
equally superior handling and agility for maximum riding pleasure on
winding country roads and mountain passes give the rider exactly what he
wants. Add to this low weight of just 225 kg or 496 lb quite unique in
this class, plus outstanding chassis and spring qualities, and you can
be sure to enjoy even the toughest tours on the roughest terrain.
The BMW R 1200 GS offers an unparalleled
synthesis of harmony in its combination of off-road an on-road riding
qualities. With its predecessor, the R 1150 GS uniquely successful over
so many years, setting the standard in its segment consistently
throughout its lifecycle, the R 1200 GS now takes you into a new
dimension, raising the outstanding features of its predecessor to an
even higher level on all important counts.
R1200GS Specifications: (top)
- Weight reduction of 66 lbs through precise calculation, intelligent
lightweight construction, and the use of high-strength materials.
- New 1200-cc Boxer-twin power unit with balance shaft for supreme
- Torque and output increased by 18 percent.
- Fuel consumption reduced by 8 percent.
- Sodium filled exhaust valves.
- Highly advanced, newly developed engine electronics using CAN-bus technology
(Controller Area Network) and the latest
emission technology for optimum environmental compatibility.
- Quiet exhaust system with a throaty sound.
- All-new six-speed gearbox with superior running smoothness and shift
- Newly-developed lightweight Paralever with weight-optimized
- New Telelever for even greater precision in front wheel guidance
- All-new, extra-stiff running gear for greater safety, outstanding
stability, superior handling and accuracy in turns.
- High-performance EVO brakes with on-demand Integral ABS.
- High-strength cast light-alloy wheels and cross-spoke wheels
- Electronics used for fewer cables and lower weight.
- Electronic immobilizer standard.
- Wide range of equipment and tailor-made accessories to BMW’s high
At the same time it goes without saying
that the R 1200 GS continues all the traditional features and fortes so
characteristic of all BMW motorcycles: First-class and extra-safe riding
conditions ensured by even more stable running gear with the unique BMW
Telelever for the front wheel and a newly designed weight- and geometry-optimized
Paralever at the rear.
High-performance brakes of the highest
caliber together with BMW's unique Motorcycle Integral ABS guarantee
supreme safety even in a critical situation. Superior environmental
compatibility, in turn, is ensured by a fully controlled three-way
catalytic converter with the most advanced emission management - a
technology, incidentally, which has been a natural feature on all BMW
motorcycles for years.
Equipped with dual ignition, brand-new
Digital Motor Electronics featuring integrated knock control, as well as
further improved catalytic converters and separate oxygen sensors for
each cylinder, the R 1200 GS increases the leadership of BMW motorcycles
in the large-volume touring enduro segment to an even higher standard
than ever before.
A further feature not to be forgotten is
the maintenance-free driveshaft avoiding the need for unpleasant and
time-consuming service particularly on long trips. The sophisticated new
luggage system as well as the wide range of accessories available
straight from the factory and tailored to the R 1200 GS also help to
clearly prove that this new machine is powerfully continuing the
tradition of large-capacity BMW touring enduros which now goes back
almost 25 years to the R 80 G/S launched in 1980: This is most certainly
the original straight from the inventor of this type of motorcycle, a
machine once again setting the standard in this class.
TECHNICAL DETAILS OF THE NEW R1200GS (Specification
Chart Below) (top)
In its design principle and fundamental structure, the newly developed
power unit of the R 1200 GS follows the same standards as BMW’s
proven engine. But at the same time the new power unit is a new
all-round, with fully revised and improved components. Optimization of
geometry and application of the most advanced calculation and simulation
methods serve to reduce the weight of the engine by 8 percent despite
its larger capacity and wider range of functions. Engine width, in turn, is the
This is the biggest engine ever seen in an enduro so far, the increase
capacity to 1,200 cc, providing the foundation for superior output of
and muscular torque throughout a speed range wider than ever before in
past. The result is superior power under all conditions and in all
clearly a great advantage above all on difficult off-road terrain, with
torque constantly available regardless of engine speed, the gear in
the conditions facing the rider.
The most important innovation featured on the basic engine block is the
balance shaft eliminating any unpleasant vibrations: Despite their
design principle with the cylinders opposing each other to provide a
balance of primary forces (connecting rods and pistons moving to and
their overall effect, conventional flat-twin engines cannot run entirely
vibrations. The inevitable displacement of the cylinders always
“circulating”, or secondary forces (that is forces not acting on one
same level) causing unpleasant vibration the rider will feel on the
footrests and seat. The severity of such mass forces and the vibrations
in this way increases as a function of engine size and, in particular,
Precisely this is why the engine of the R 1200 GS is the first power
unit in the
history of the Boxer engine to feature a balance shaft: Running in the
direction, the shaft carries two balance weights 180° apart from one
and exactly spaced out in size to provide a counter-force which,
on the mass forces in the crankshaft, reduces vibrations to an absolute
minimum. This keeps running conditions smooth and comfortable throughout
the entire speed range, vibrations even being dampened in particular at
engine speeds without the flat-twin losing its bullish character.
The balance shaft itself is arranged exactly where it should be, saving
through its intelligent and elegant concept: Running in anti-friction
the balance shaft is positioned within the countershaft and is driven by
spur gear from the crankshaft (direct 1:1 ratio). The rear balance
outside of the oil cavity and is bolted on to the shaft extending
one end to the other. The front balance weight, in turn, is integrated
Like on the former engine, the countershaft again serves to drive the
pumps and carries the sprockets driving the camshaft. The transmission
of the countershaft versus the crankshaft is therefore 2:1, the
itself being driven by a roller chain. The crankshaft is also a new design from the ground up – it is now
more compact in the interest of extra stiffness and the crankpins
are even closer together (a modification made possible by the narrower
counterweights). Despite the increase in stroke from 70.5 mm or 2.78"
to 73 mm or 2.87", this change in design helps reduce weight by 1 kg
or approximately 9 percent. And to give the rotating assembly the balance
required, some of the counterweight masses have been moved to the
and the drive gear on the balance shaft.
As before, the flywheel holds the single-plate dry clutch enlarged in
from 165 to 180 millimeters (6.50–7.09"). The clutch lining is free
asbestos and heavy metals, the pressure plate, membrane spring and gear
plate being balanced individually to allow easy and convenient assembly
of these components without any negative effects on running smoothness.
The piston design has been slightly revised and features three rings.
just 410 grams they are a bit lighter than the former R 1150 GS’s
grams). Through the use of advanced casting and computer technology, the
is a lot lighter than before. It has been optimized in wall thickness as
stiffness and strength. Weight has also beed reduced in the process by
Well-conceived and effective solutions are also to be found in the
details of the
engine design. To minimize undesirable pressure pulses within the
(the air pressure going up and down as a result of piston motion), a
assembly opens and closes the air purge outlet automatically as a
pressure conditions in the crankcase cavity and at the same time,
large air purge cross-section whenever required. This serves to reduce
pressure fluctuations and air flow in the crankcase to a minimum, with
advantageous effect on engine output, internal efficiency (reduction of
ventilation loss), oil foaming, and oil consumption, particularly at
New Cylinder Head Design
Maintaining their basic design and configuration, the cylinder heads
been modified. From outside they are recognizable by their different
and less-rounded rocker arm covers.
The principle of chain-driven camshafts below the valve plane and the
operation of valves by means of tappets and rocker arms has been
maintained. The reason, quite simply, is that this design concept has proven its
countless times – and although it is not necessarily designed and laid
high speed s, the concept has confirmed its qualities and reliable
even under tough racing conditions in the BMW Motorrad Boxer Cup. The big
advantages of arranging the camshafts in this way are the economic use
of space available (width of the cylinder head) and the ease of
important both in everyday use and on long journeys (adjustment of valve
Valve face diameters have increased by 2 mm
(0.79") on the intake and
exhaust valves to 36.35 mm/1.43" and 31.0 mm/1.22", respectively.
better and more efficient dissipation of heat, the exhaust valves are
filled with sodium. Valve duct design has been modified to match the larger valve
diameters and the duct contours have been improved in their dynamic flow
conditions. In conjunction with the increase in engine capacity, these
modifications contribute to the 18 percent increase in engine output
and torque (85 lb-ft).
As the final result of this design improvement
most advanced, computer-aided methods, weight of the cylinder heads has
been reduced by 15 percent. Internal oil cooling of the cylinder heads already featured on the
has been adjusted to the higher level of output and torque by improving
flow conditions and avoiding any kind of throttle effect. Oil cooling
the dissipation of heat from the valve rim and ensures a more consistent
distribution of temperature within the cylinder head. All this
contributes to the
engine’s robust thermal stability and helps to ensure the high
reliability so typical of a BMW. And these are definitely the criteria
when traveling full of luggage to all four corners of the globe under
most difficult conditions.
New Engine Management Systems
Engine management now features two oxygen sensors,
modified dual ignition and knock control.
The new R 1200 GS further improves the leading position BMW Motorrad
has had for years in the area of electronic engine management. The
Motor Electronics code -named BMS-K (BMW Engine Management System)
is an in-house development tailored specifically to the requirements of
a motorcycle. Fully sequential fuel injection, integrated knock control,
processing of complex sensor signals by means of the most advanced
microelectronics, compact layout and low weight are the most important
features worth mentioning in this context.
The principle of indirect air volume monitoring and control by means of
throttle butterfly angle and engine speed (alpha-n control) carried over
BMW’s existing motorcycles has been further enhanced on the R 1200 GS,
creating a concept referred to as torque-based engine management. The basic parameters determining the optimum engine operation point
remain engine speed and the throttle butterfly angle monitored by a
potentiometer on each cylinder. Applying additional engine and ambient
parameters (such as engine temperature, air temperature, and air
engine management, together with control maps and correction functions
contained within the system, tailors the injection volume and ignition
exactly to the engine’s and rider’s current requirements.
many factors into account, the system is able to control torque with
accuracy, adjusting engine running conditions perfectly to all relevant
parameters. Fuel is injected into the intake duct exactly as required and exactly on
the intake cycle of each cylinder (fully sequential fuel injection).
oxygen sensor being allocated to each cylinder, fuel/air composition is
controlled individually in each cylinder according to current
oxygen sensors are arranged close to the engine in the respective
manifold, thus ensuring individual and even more precise emission
management. Whenever necessary, the fuel/air mixture may be adjusted
much faster than before, naturally with individual control and
The positive results of this process are exemplary emission management,
greater fuel economy, improved riding conditions, and an even finer
to the rider’s commands. Or, to put it in a nutshell, even greater
compatibility together with enhanced sheer riding pleasure.
BMS-K also incorporates all the functions of automatic idle speed
as well as cold start enrichment with warm-up control. An appropriate
in idle speed while warming up is ensured automatically by so idle speed
steppers integrated in the throttle butterfly manifolds, together with
a corresponding adjustment of the fuel injected.
Featured in all BMW Boxers (with the exception of the 850-cc power
since 2003, 2 Spark ignition has been further modified and improved in
R 1200 GS. The auxiliary spark plug is now arranged at the outer edge of
cylinder, the ignition timing of both plugs being freely programmable
possibly varying in time as a function of load and engine speed in order
further optimize running smoothness, emission management, and fuel
economy. Referred to as phase shift, this adjustment process is
consistently all the way from part load to full load.
In practice, this means different ignition timing points on both spark
defined control map areas: When approaching full load where dual
longer provides any benefits, the phase shift effect is so large that
crosses over on the auxiliary plug in the expansion cycle (60° ATDC).
For all practical purposes this corresponds to single ignition on the
spark plug under full load. The BMW R 1200 GS introduces a new system of knock control never seen
before with these features in a motorcycle engine. Engine knock is
by a solid body sound sensor matched specifically to the cylinders.
the appropriate signals, the electronic engine management will retard
ignition and protect the engine from possible damage.
temperatures are also taken into account in evaluating the signals, helping to
safety function. Benefiting from knock control, the mechanical combustion ratio on the
engine has been increased to 11.0:1, certainly a remarkable figure for
an air/oil-cooled engine with cylinders of this size. Specific fuel consumption
accordingly, the R 1200 GS being almost 8 percent more fuel-efficient
predecessor in the EU2 test cycle.
Designed for unleaded premium fuel, the engine, thanks to
knock control, is able to run also on regular fuel or other fuel
sometimes to be found in various countries, without requiring any kind
manual intervention or adjustment. Within the limits available, knock
adjusts the ignition angle automatically to the fuel on which the engine
Interacting with a wide range of sensors, knock control adjusts to even
the most extreme conditions and requirements, for example with the
having to withstand extremely high temperatures and thermal exposure
in desert areas. To provide this reliability, the electronic engine
adjusts engine running parameters and thus ensures supreme reliability
under all conceivable operating conditions.
New Intake Manifold Design
Intake manifold now has larger volume for an optimum cylinder charge.
Numerous calculations and examinations of the entire cylinder charge
taking the intake manifold into account, were required in order to
optimum charge cycle throughout a wide range of engine speed. Increasing
the capacity of the airbox to almost 9 liters, BMW’s engineers have
the very best out of the conditions dictated by the machine and the
position of the manifold, naturally taking all ergonomic requirements
To filter the intake air, the R 1200 GS uses the paper filter system
already very effective in the R 1150 GS. In designing and configuring
the shape of the intake funnel, the responsible engineers have succeeded
in creating perfect
harmony of flow conditions and acoustic requirements (level of intake
Revised Exhaust System
The new exhaust system has efficient sound engineering for low noise with a throaty note. The
exhaust system is made up of two manifolds, a pre-silencer with
catalytic converter, and a tailpipe muffler. The entire system all the
way to the pre -silencer fitted beneath the gearbox is a twin-chamber
consistently of stainless steel. Weighing exactly 10.7 kg or 23.6 lb
overall, the emission system is approximately 33 percent lighter than on
the former model.
Flowing through the two single manifolds, exhaust gases merge in a
Y-shaped unit combining the two flow processes and continue into the pre
-silencer that houses the central catalytic converter. A crossover tube
between the two manifolds provides the appropriate balance of pressure
and helps boost
engine torque at low and medium speeds. With cell density of 200 cells
per square inch, the metal-based catalytic converter comes with a
rhodium/palladium coating combining high temperature resistance with a
long service life.
Introducing an all-new tailpipe muffler, BMW Motorrad has succeeded in
creating an ideal match of smooth torque, low noise and a pleasant sound
pattern. The interior structure of the muffler is based on the
reflection principle, an inner sleeve with absorption material serving
dampen high frequencies. The muffler is oval in shape not only for
aesthetic reasons, but also to minimize
the transmission of noise for smoother and more pleasant riding
Another special feature is the pressure -controlled valve integrated in
the muffler and controlling exhaust gas counter-pressure for an
additional reduction of noise under the engine's primary running
conditions, that is at medium to lo w engine speeds, thus keeping engine
noise at a low level
both objectively and subjectively, while at the same time giving the
rider that "throaty" sound that he - or she - appreciates so
Lightweight Alternator and Starter
Both alternator and starter lighter than before.
Apart from the mechanical components in the engine, the electrical
ancillary units also help to reduce weight to a minimum. To begin with,
the R 1200 GS features a newly developed lightweight alternator with
maximum power of 600 Watts. The layshaft starter has also been optimized
for lower weight, and
just like the battery, it is absolutely free of maintenance
requirements. In all, the total weight saving on the electronic
components is 2.2 kg or 4.9 lb -that's 17 percent lighter than before.
New Six-Speed Manual Gearbox
Now with helical gears. The R 1200 GS retains
the proven principle of separating the gearbox from the engine - and at
the same time the six-speed manual gearbox is an all-new development
with features significantly improved once again over the previous
version. Weight has been reduced to approximately 13 kg or 28.7 lb and
for the first time, BMW is using high -strength helical gears with
smoother and more gentle gear mesh to ensure low noise and a high
standard of refinement. All gear increments are designed for active
riding behavior, meaning that
sixth gear is not an overdrive or economy gear, but rather has an
appropriately "short" transmission ratio.
The gear shafts run in anti-friction ball bearings, the gears themselves
in low-friction needle bearings. The ball bearings come in clean bearing
mounts sealed at the surface to keep out even the finest particles. This
allows even longer maintenance intervals and reduces the cost of
service, with only one oil
change required in the gearbox every 40,000 km or 25,000 miles. The
gears themselves are shifted by means of a shift roller, shift forks and
shift sleeves (as opposed to shift gears used in the past) to ensure
smooth positive engagement of the gears. Made of aluminum, the hollow
shift roller runs
on ball bearings.
Detailed improvements to optimize friction on the
shift box, the shift shaft and forks improves gearshift operation once
again and guarantees accurate, safe mesh on all gears.
Revised Lightweight Shaft Drive and Paralever
An innovative rendition of a traditional principle. An absolutely
indispensable feature of the new R 1200 GS like on all BMW Boxers is the
traditional, maintenance -free shaft drive extending to the
rear wheel. Having proven its merits for more than 80 years, this is the
only logical drive concept with the crankshaft in longitudinal
arrangement. And in practice, this concept reaps great benefits for the
customer, considering that chain drive, despite many improvements over
the years, is not
quite appropriate, given the need to regularly tighten the chain and the
short lubrication intervals, for a large -capacity, high-power touring
Over the years BMW has consistently improved the shaft drive
principle, meeting new requirements and demands in the process. The
innovation came in 1988 with the introduction of the Paralever swinging
arm on the most powerful enduro at the time, the BMW R 100 GS. By using
an additional pivot between the final drive and the swinging arm, BMW's
engineers were able to nearly eliminate the unavoidable reaction of the
driveshaft from the swinging arm, thus eliminating the "shaft
effect" with the rear end moving up and down when accelerating and
applying the brakes. A further advantage provided by the Paralever is
that the springs do not harden when accelerating all-out, providing a
significant improvement of traction
as an important feature when driving up steep gradients on very rough
terrain. Considering these significant benefits, the higher weight and
the increase in unsprung masses with a driveshaft versus chain drive are
In developing the R 1200 GS, BMW's engineers did not stop
until this feature
of the system was optimized on this enduro motorcycle that is used more
often off-road than on. The result is a drivetrain that together with the
much stiffer Paralever swinging arm, reduces weight by approximately 10
Unsprung masses are down accordingly, ensuring an even more
response than before on the rear wheel suspension already acknowledged
for it superior qualities. The main components of this new system are the axle drive and the
swinging arm itself. Made of an ultra-strong cast aluminum alloy, the
Paralever swinging arm, through its design and specific dimensions
tailored to load conditions, is even lighter than before but also
stiffer and stronger. The geometric configuration of the entire swinging arm has likewise been
modified, dive compensation is now almost 100 percent. With forces
acting on the final drive housing now being supported above the swinging
arm, ground clearance at this point is greater than before, efficiently
swinging arm even on very rough terrain against damage caused by rocks
or similar objects.
The swinging arm itself is a two -piece forged aluminum unit. Another new
feature is the reconfiguration of the swinging arm mount moved from the
final drive to the rear frame again in the interest of extra strength
under the most extreme off-road conditions. The pivot point of the axle drive unit resting in the swinging arm has
been moved down to provide a more favorable geometric arrangement with
greater stiffness. The bearing point, in turn, has been reinforced to
match the higher load and forces from the more powerful engine.
With its improved kinematics, the driveshaft no longer changes in length
as a result of geometric conditions. This also helps to save weight,
since the plunging joint unit is no longer required. The shaft itself
now comes as one single piece and - like before - runs without oil in
the shaft sleeve. The final drive housing is matched in its size and dimensions precisely
to the inner contours of the angle transmission, avoiding even the
slightest waste of space.
The hub assembly has been redesigned and is also lighter than before.
The wheel flange is now being made of aluminum in order to save weight.
With its larger diameter, the flange offers the wheel better support,
with additional weight-saving potentials for the rear wheel around the
The outer sign of distinction and a visual highlight of this extremely
compact and elegant lightweight structure is the 50-mm hole drilled
through the axle of the final drive housing. The final drive itself
comes with a lifetime oil fill, meaning that there is no need to change
the final drive fluid throughout the
entire running life of the motorcycle. In re-configuring the design
principles of the entire machine, assembly of the final drive has been
simplified and further refinements introduced: The hollow
axle sleeve helps to dissipate heat from the final drive through its
large surface and efficient flow effects.
Signals for the ABS brake
system and the speedometer are read by a sensor mounted directly on the
Paralever arm, making the outer emitter wheel used on the former model
superfluous on the
new machine. Increasing the diameter of the drill holes on the wheel
engineers are able to use five light wheel bolts measuring 10 mm in
diameter and with longer expansion length instead of the former
relatively heavy wheel bolts with a cone. This means even greater safety
once again in bolting on the wheels and allows use of a smaller wheel
bolt wrench (which means less
weight in the toolkit).
New Running Gear
Now with stiff, high-strength steel tube frame. The R 1200 GS
retains the basic configuration of all Boxer suspension concepts with
the engine/transmission unit serving as a load-bearing element
and the wheel guidance components being bolted on to the frame. The Telelever longitudinal arm, in turn, pivots on the engine housing, as
before. The actual frame of the R 1200 GS is made up of the front
subframe supporting the Telelever at the top and the rear frame with its
swinging arm mount. The engine/gearbox unit is bolted on to the rear
frame at four and on to the
front frame at two points.
Together, this composite structure
incorporating the drive unit forms the motorcycle's load-bearing
framework. The two frame elements of the R 1200 GS are lightweight
structures in what is called truss design: The front frame is a
triangular structure made up of high-strength
steel tubes welded to one another. It offers the great advantage of
highly robust support on off-road terrain plus package benefits over the
former cast aluminum front frame as well as greater stiffness with
weight remaining unchanged.
The rear subframe is also made up of straight steel tubes welded to one
another. Precise calculation of all tubes serves to optimize both tube
diameter and wall strength to exactly the right requirements, creating
an overall configuration of maximum stiffness and strength on low
weight. New features
are the special mounts for the side-stand and main stand as well as the
driver's footrests connected directly to the rear subframe. The side
-stand, incidentally, folds in easily and conveniently even when the
rider is already sitting on his machine.
Ensures even greater stiffness. To this day, no other
system of front wheel guidance and support is able to match the
first-class functions and qualities of the BMW Telelever introduced
in 1993 on the four-valve Boxers. The revolutionary principle of the
Telelever using a wishbone to relieve the telescopic arm of longitudinal
and lateral forces ensures unprecedented, highly sensitive front-wheel
response on all road surfaces, together with tracking stability never
seen before. The big advantages
of this design concept are supreme riding precision and response
combined with the utmost in suspension comfort and anti-dive control.
Refinement and modification of the front wheel geometry now further
improves the qualities of the Telelever on the R 1200 GS over the former
The longitudinal arm is an all-new, extra-strong and light forged aluminum
component. In the interest of superior handling, front wheel
trail has been reduced by 5 mm (0.20") to 110 mm (4.33") and the
steering head angle remains at 62.9° (27.1° caster) in standard
position. A change in front wheel
kinematics eliminates brake dive to an insignificant residual effect
actually designed to give the rider the right feeling. The superior
stiffness of the
Telelever, in turn, has been further enhanced by once again increasing
the diameter of the support tube from 35 mm (1.38") to 41 mm (1.61"), thus making a further contribution to the crisp and clear
riding behavior of the R 1200 GS.
An important detail is the holes drilled into the lower fork bridge
efficiently distributing brake pressure to the steel flex brake hoses
for the right and left brake calipers without requiring an additional
distributor unit. Featuring fully encapsulated ball joints with
permanent lubrication and
with a lifetime oil fill in the telescope, the entire Telelever is
absolutely maintenance -free.
Now with adjustable spring base and TDD spring strut at the rear.
To optimize riding qualities off the beaten track, the spring base of
the front gas pressure spring strut is mechanically adjustable to 9
different position in order to provide extra reserves even under the
toughest off-road conditions. Spring travel at the front is 190 mm
(7.48"), with a 68 mm (2.68"):122 mm (4.80") ratio in the basic setting between the outward and rebound
mode. Real-wheel suspension incorporates a high-tech gas pressure spring
strut with travel-dependent damping (TDD) and infinite hydraulic
adjustment of the spring base by means of a hand-wheel. The damping
effect in the outward
mode is manually adjustable. The travel-dependent damping principle was
introduced by BMW Motorrad for the first time in 2002 on the R 1150 GS
Adventure, providing a progressive
damping effect as a function of spring travel.
The machine therefore
responds smoothly and comfortably to even the smallest bumps on the
road, while nevertheless offering adequate potential for rough terrain
with hard jolts and deep holes in the surface.
Spring travel at the rear is 200 mm or 7.87", with positive (inward
stroke) versus negative (rebound) spring travel being increased over the
former model to a new ratio of 135 mm (5.31"):65 mm (2.56") in the
basic setting. Wheels and tires - offering a choice of cast or
cross-spoke wheels for
the first time. The lucky purchaser of the new R 1200 GS has the choice
of either high-strength
cast light-alloy wheels or BMW's well-known cross-spoke wheels measuring
2.50 x 19 " at the front and 4.00 x 17" at the rear and running on
110/80 -19" and, repectively150/70-17" tires.
Developed for the R 1200 GS, the cast light-alloy wheels with five
double spokes are both stable and light. And while, at 0.1 kg, the
reduction in weight
at the front versus the spoke wheel is virtually negligible, weight
reduction at the rear is a significant 1.6 kg, down by 12 percent.
advantage of cast wheels is that they retain their excellent running
smoothness and circular geometry throughout a long running life and are
easier to clean. Clearly, this makes them first choice for riding on
roads and un-tarred tracks.
Benefiting from their special design and configuration, the cast wheels
on the R 1200 GS are likewise fully suited for moderate off-road
conditions. Gravel tracks, nature trails and the usual off -road tracks to
be found all over the world are no problem with these wheels as long as
the "normal" rider maintains a
moderate style of riding observing the elementary rules. In practice,
therefore, cast wheels reach their limit only when exposed to very
substantial loads over a long period, for example on extreme tracks, at
high off-road speed, and when jumping on rough terrain with violent bumps
The ambitious off-road rider using his R 1200 GS mainly off the beaten
track and often mastering rough terrain at high speeds, should therefore
opt for BMW's proven cross-spoke wheels, which are naturally also a good
alternative for the rider not keen on cast wheels on his enduro. As
before, the particular
arrangement of the cross spokes also allows the use of tubeless tires
and the spokes can be replaced individually.
Brakes - High-Performance
EVO Brakes and Integral ABS
The R 1200 GS is fitted with BMW's well-known EVO brake system, which
has already proven its benefits such as maximum stopping power under
minimum manual force on the R 1150 GS and other BMW machines. Brake disc
diameter is 305 mm or 12.00" at the front and 265 mm or 10.43"
at the rear. As an option at extra cost, the R 1200 GS is also available
with BMW Integral
ABS already well-known on the former model. Complete with on -demand
deactivation when riding off-road, Integral ABS also features a
semi-integral function with the handbrake lever activating both brakes
on the front and rear wheel. In the conventional mode, by contrast, the
footbrake lever acts only
on the rear wheel brake for precise application of the rear brake alone
under specific conditions in very tight bends and on rough terrain.
stainless-steel-clad brake lines, finally, not only look good but also
offer a slight decrease in weight and ensure an even more stable
BMW Motorcycle Single-Wire
Yet another special feature of the R 1200 GS is the all-new on-board
electric system. The term Single-Wire System describes a highly
innovative on-board network using electronics and CAN-bus technology
(Controller Area Network)
to offer functions and features never seen before: Reducing the number
and length of cables required, this network offers a much wider range of
functions than a conventional on-board network, information being
transmitted along just one single path (hence "single-wire")
as opposed to the double-wire
system otherwise required.
Apart from the wide range of functions, the
main advantages of this intelligent
combination of electric and electronics are the lighter wiring harness,
substantial resistance to interference, and the complete range of diagnostic functions.
A further point is that the system may be flexibly
expanded by simple updates.
The basic principle of the single-wire system is to connect all control
units, sensors, and power-consuming items via one single, common wire in
order to form a complete network transmitting all signals regardless of
their subsequent function. In other words, all information is readily
available at all times
within this network for all the components attached.
assigned and transmitted to the respective power-consuming item at
junction points in the electronic system of each control unit. Here the
signals/data are processed and then used to activate the functions
desired in the respective power consumer. This eliminates the need for
elaborate cables otherwise required for each function operating through
a separate wire, thus reducing potential effects and errors in a
network otherwise resulting from the large number of cables. Clearly,
this is an important factor contributing to the system's high standard
of reliability. All control units are connected to one another, thus
being able to communicate directly and exchange data in a bi-directional
mode. This allows simple
and comprehensive diagnosis of the overall system from one central
point, the electronics incorporating suitable programs in order to
filter out unimportant data and interference signals within a defined
tolerance, thus making the system less sensitive to electromagnetic
In all, the new R 1200 GS comes in standard trim with three control
units (the cluster instrument also representing a control unit of its
own). The control unit for the Digital Motor Electronics (BMS-K) is not
only responsible for the engine management already described, but also
transmits all data to the central
diagnostic system. Central Suspension Electronics (CSE), in turn,
serves to mastermind the electrical units and functions not specific to
the engine. And if the motorcycle is fitted with Integral ABS and an
anti-theft warning system as an option, the control units are also
integrated in the network. There is no need for conventional fuses at any point throughout the
on-board network, the electronic "brain" simply switching off
the function involved in the event of a short-circuit or malfunction,
subsequent diagnosis serving to quickly trace and remedy the defect.
since the other functions are not affected in such a case, the network philosophy featured on the
R 1200 GS
again offers further advantages in terms of reliability and failsafe
operation. The control units also provide relay functions, only the
starter being controlled via a conventional relay.
The electrical system on the R 1200 GS is supplied with power by a
low-weight alternator developing 600 Watts at 40 Amps. The maintenance -
free battery has a capacity of 14 Ah. After 20 years of experience in electronic engine management and 15
years of experience with ABS technology, BMW Motorrad, introducing this
new on-board network, has taken its next innovative step into a
To ensure optimum security at all times, the R 1200 GS comes with an
electronic immobilizer standard. Controlled by a transponder in the key,
the immobilizer offers the very best in anti -theft security,
maintaining the same high level to be found in BMW cars. As soon as the rider inserts the key and switches on the ignition, a
chip within the key communicates with the electronic immobilizer
integrated in the Digital Motor Electronics via the ring aerial
integrated in the ignition lock. This allows the systems to exchange and
compare the coded chip data, on the one hand,
and the electronic immobilizer data, on the other. After confirming that
the data and signals comply with one another, the engine control unit
will release the ignition and fuel injection, allowing the rider to
start the engine. This technology is the best and safest immobilizer
system currently available
New Instrument Cluster
The new on-board electronic system featured on the R 1200 GS allows the
introduction of a high -tech, extra-light instrument cluster based
completely on digital technology. Incorporating the speedometer,
tachometer and the Info Flat-screen Display, the instrument cluster
replaces the former Rider
Information Display, providing permanent information on the oil
temperature, fuel level, remaining range on the fuel in the tank, the
time of day, and the gear currently in mesh. Both overall and trip mileage are presented on demand, and any
interference or defects are shown on the screen as a printed message.
The entire instrument unit is automatically illuminated as soon as the
weather gets dark, with precise control by a photoelectric cell.
Both the switches and controls are new.
basic arrangement of the
switches and BMW's logic for operating the direction indicators have
been retained, the switches are now even easier to use and reach, and
come in even clearer, more distinctive design. Body and design -
superior function combined with clear, distinctive shapes.
motorcycle components form a close link of function and looks at the
outside, much more so than on a car. The fuel tank, for example, is not
just a container for fuel, but also a highly significant design feature
its shape to the rider's seating position and the overall look of the
motorcycle. The same applies to the front fairing together with the
windshield not only protecting the rider, but also - in conjunction with
the headlight - giving the entire motorcycle its special
"face" and characterizing the look of the machine
also in the front side area.
Using BMW motorcycle language, the faring
components, the fuel tank as
well as other function and control elements are jointly referred to as
the "body" of the motorcycle. In its overall design and look, the R 1200 GS stands for dynamism,
agility and lightness combined with the robustness typical of an off-roader.
Clearly structured and contoured surfaces create a feeling of
tension and excitement, interacting to provide clear and harmonious
lines. Various surfaces finished
in plastic, paint and aluminum are assigned to specific functions,
combining elegance and value with the ruggedness rightly expected of an
enduro. All visible technical components are included in the design of
the machine, the delicate structure and light character of the rear
subframe being enhanced
and accentuated by the silver paintwork. The slightly curved, oval form
of the Paralever swinging arm, finally, combines superior stiffness with
a slender and dynamic look all in one.
Color Scheme (see below)
scheme offers a perfect blend of diversity and aesthetic style, setting
unique accents in the process. And with the owner being able
to freely combine the color of the paintwork with that of the seat and
side covers, the connoisseur obviously has a wide range of choice.
three basic colors are elegant and classic; Ocean Blue metallic and two
special metallisée Rock Red and Desert Yellow non -metallic color
schemes both highlighting the sporting character of the R 1200 GS. Two
seat colors (Light Grey and Black) as well as two different colors on
the tank side cover (Granite Grey and Black, soft paint) provide a total
of 12 different combinations, each giving the motorcycle its own
Front Fairing With Adjustable Windshield
Through the functions they comprise, the components on a motorcycle also
vary in design. Seen from the front, the fairing, for example, is a
typical, striking and distinctive sign of character giving the GS its
particular identity. And at the same time this component serves as the
air guide for the oil cooler.
The new BMW R 1200 GS provides a modern rendition of the design features already boasted by the former model around the headlight.
all-new, asymmetric dual headlight unit with the low and high beams
varying in diameter gives the GS its characteristic "face".
the same time the reflectors
in free -form technology as well as the clear glass cover make it quite
obvious from the start that the entire headlight unit is brand-new.
oval design of the reflectors is indeed not only up-to-date, but also
enhances illumination of the road ahead thanks to the large light
The windshield adjusts to five different angles without requiring any
tools in the process, offering riders of different size optimum
protection from wind and weather through its design alone. The two
plastic side covers right and left at the side of the tank, in turn,
come off easily by means of rapid catches.
Plastic Fuel Tank With Side Covers
The 20-liter fuel tank on the R 1200 GS
is made of special, extra-light and
impact-proof plastic. Two side covers made of thin aluminum and a
painted top cover give the tank its special shape and look. Appropriately slender towards the rear, the tank offers good knee and
leg support also when riding off-road whenever the rider is standing
upright on the footrests.
The seat - ergonomic design and greater variability of seat height.
Maintaining BMW's usual standard, the new two-piece double seat offers
both the rider and passenger ample space. The seat is not only available
in two colors - Grey and Black - but also adjusts to two different
height levels for the
rider (840 mm and, respectively, 860 mm/33.1" and, respectively, 33.8"). And with a higher (+30
mm/1.18") and lower (-30 mm) seat
also being available as special equipment, the customer is able to
choose among four different height levels ranging from 810 mm (31.9")
to 890 mm (35.0"),
thus benefiting from unprecedented variability and freedom of choice.
In determining the ideal seat height and contour on the R 1200 GS, BMW's
engineers and designers have applied a new dimensional criterion for the
first time: the rider's step length. Forming the entire distance between
two resting points of the rider's feet (measured across the inner length
of his legs), this
criterion considers not only the absolute, geometric height of the
rider's seat, but also its shape and width throughout the relevant area
at the front. Even where geometric seat height is the same as on the
former model (840 mm/33.1" and, respectively 860 mm/33.8"), this
new seat design
significantly improves the rider's ground contact while keeping his knee
bending angle when riding within comfortable limits.
Luggage Rack and Removable Passenger Seat
Carefully conceived stowage options even for bulky luggage.
stable but light plastic, the luggage rack on the R 1200 GS is all-new
in design and offers adequate storage space for additional luggage easy
to fasten and transport safely thanks to the lashing points. A further
option is to fit
a top case, and the plastic cover beneath the removable passenger seat
serving as a flat loading area at the same level as the top edges of the
case is both functional and practical all in one. Fitting the cases
available as special equipment here, the rider has lots of space for
additional baggage, once again
with integrated lashing points for optimum security. Ergonomic handlebar
and handle design.
Made of thin-walled steel tubes, the strong and stylish handlebar easily
copes with the heaviest loads and is tapered at each end. Weighing only
slightly more than an aluminum handlebar, a steel handlebar is much
less prone to damage should the machine fall over to the side (for
example on off-road terrain)
and allows emergency repairs. A further advantage of the steel handlebar
is the lower thermal conductivity of steel retaining the heat where it
belongs when the machine is fitted with heated handles available as an
option. The hand levers for operating the clutch and brakes have been
for perfect ergonomics and are adjustable in their span. At the same
time the diameter of the handles h as been reduced to provide an even
Optional Extras and Special Equipment
Cases variable in size and a wide range of customization features.
complete systems supplier by tradition, BMW Motorrad has developed a
wide range of customized extras and special equipment for the new R 1200
GS, offering the owner the very best in individual choice. Optional
extras are fitted directly at the factory in the production process in
Berlin. Special equipment, in turn, is fitted by the BMW motorcycle
- BMW Motorcycle Integral ABS (semi-integral and with on -demand
- Cross-spoke wheels.
- Heated handles.
- Hand protectors.
- Case supports.
- Anti-theft warning system.
- High rider’s seat (+30 mm/1.18" versus standard seat),
adjustable (max seat height 890 mm/35.0").
- Low rider’s seat (–30 mm/1.18´ versus standard seat),
adjustable (lowest seat height 810 mm/31.9").
- Case supports.
- Cases variable in size by single-lever control.
- Mounting plate for topcase.
- Inner bags for cases/topcase.
- Water-tight tank bag.
- Hand protectors.
- Small cylinder protection hoops.
- Large cylinder protection hoops.
- Anti-theft warning system (also available as an optional extra).
- Additional power socket.
- BMW Motorcycle Navigator.
Both the cases and the top case are an all-new development. A unique
is the sophisticated, single -lever control function for adjusting the
of the cases easily and conveniently: Both the cases and the top case
varied in size by 9 liters, allowing the rider to flexibly adjust the
system to individual space requirements and reduce the width of the
well as the height of the top case when taking along less luggage.
The left-hand case on the muffler side offers maximum capacity of 37.5
the right-hand case holds up to 46 litres. With the top case also
offering capacity of 46 litres, maximum storage capacity is almost 130