Top test BMW K 1200 RS / GT
5 star deluxe
BMW K 1200 GT ?? even more confident, even more comfortable. At least that‘s what the Bavarians promise us. A top test in comparison with its sister RS clarifies what the quality of the new Wuchtbrumme is actually like.
This year’s Intermot took BMW almost as easily as the soccer players from FC Bayern Munich their appearances in the Bundesliga.
The BMW program for 2003 is therefore not exactly brimming with innovations. However, one could not be overlooked at the Intermot because of its lush dimensions: the K 1200 GT, whose engine, chassis and brakes are identical to those of the RS. The abbreviation GT stands for Grand Tourismo, which the Bavarians define as a synonym for “maximum travel enjoyment”. The K 1200 RS has been meeting this requirement quite impressively since 1997. In the meantime, there may be significantly stronger, lighter and therefore, above all, more agile representatives of the »sports tourer« genre, the RS comes to the fore in every comparison at the latest when the key words safety, suitability for everyday use and comfort are mentioned. Although, it should be mentioned here, there is always room for improvement, especially when it comes to the ergonomics of the RS. In view of the stately sum of around 16,000 euros, that is how much an adequately equipped RS costs today, it is hardly surprising that the frequent and discerning customers expressed more or less quiet criticism of the seating position and a high level of noise caused by the windshield. BMW took plenty of time to think it over. Only since last year are the driver’s footrests 30 millimeters lower, those of the front passenger 20; a higher comfort handlebar, previously subject to a surcharge, has been available as standard since then, and the two-way adjustable windshield grew in width and height.
Regardless of whether RS or GT, no matter whether you have never driven an RS or how the author has unwound many thousands of kilometers on the long-term test K 1200 RS? it takes time to get used to a K. It’s not a Honda, don’t sit down, drive off and feel at home right away. Is a BMW. A mighty heavy one too. That instills a lot of respect at the first contact. OK then. Don’t overdo it. Curl up slowly. A K seems to stagger below 70 kilometers per hour and has a slight right-hand twist when the load changes. Oh yes, right, longitudinally installed four-cylinder, longitudinal crankshaft with a lot of flywheel. Great-grandson of the K 100 engine from 1983, an old boy with modern ingredients. Manifold injection, G-Kat, exemplary low emission values and respectable consumption values. A real Langhuber. And a steam engine straight out of a picture book. Presses off like an ox from idle and reacts silky smooth to commands from the accelerator hand, which keeps load change reactions within surprisingly pleasant limits. On the country road, everything happens in the range between 3000 and 5000 rpm and gears five and six, an impressive demonstration of power. Over its entire speed range, the four-cylinder articulates itself quite robustly, especially the engine of the GT rattles solidly. Fortunately, the driver notices little of the sometimes hefty vibrations, because the drive unit and cardan in the aluminum bridge frame are completely made of rubber. Although it increases the weight, it is easy on the crew’s nerves, especially in the longer term, for which a K was designed in every respect. For the big tour.
And after about 100 kilometers of getting used to it, you really feel like it. Doubts as to whether the grip on the front wheel is going well are blown away. The Telelever front suspension, the BMW trademark, almost completely prevents the brakes from pitching. Which initially irritates because the driver feels deprived of vital information about what the road has in store for him. Even on extremely bumpy passages, the forehand of the GT and RS absorbs almost all bumps, while the rear suspension strut does not work quite as well and draws attention to itself with metallic impacts, especially under load on hard heels. This hardly does any harm to driving comfort. What is missing? Maybe a little more lean angle. The fact that the footrests occasionally ratchet gently across the asphalt when driving quickly is not a problem. If necessary, they can be attached higher in a few minutes. The real nuisance is the main stand. In fact, it hits the ground when you least expect it: when driving quickly over waves or road edges at a comparatively low incline. No safety risk because it can give way thanks to rubber stops, but it makes driving less fun. And otherwise, these two hums always prepare.
What always amazes is less the handiness of these steamers? considering the high weight it is at an average level ?? but the neutrality with which a K also takes tight corners. Everything is easy in the truest sense of the word, coupling is child’s play and ?? thanks to the brake booster ?? also vehement delay (see also box on page 26). Of course, the BMWs feel most comfortable on fast, well-developed routes when they can really flex their muscles. But even bumpy passes storm these chunks with ease. Signs that the K are well balanced. And that BMW has chosen a formidable initial tire: Bridgestone BT 020, in the special specification CC. So drive the two ?? for their heavyweight class ?? astonishingly accurate, even with forced braking in lean angles, they only stand up minimally. And repeatedly forced a big grin from their drivers.
A.Even if the concept of the BMW K 1200 has a bit graying temples, the two of them prove anew during the extensive test drive in France that they are far from being old. Like hardly any other motorcycle, they enable you to sweat miles quickly and comfortably. Stuttgart-Marseille non-stop, as a couple and with a lot of luggage, interrupted only by refueling stops? No problem at all on a K. Especially not when it comes to the GT. It skillfully plays its trump cards over long distances and proves to be the more consistent motorcycle. The comfort on the RS may still be above average. Thanks to the larger and infinitely adjustable windshield, the GT offers more wind protection for the upper body, but without creating an unpleasant suction, even at the highest levels. In addition, the background noise is more subtle than on the RS. Additional plus points: more seating comfort thanks to better placed handlebar halves and a higher seat bench, which enables a more comfortable knee angle. Another tip: if a GT, then with full equipment, i.e. with speed control, very pleasant on long stretches of the motorway ?? and the heating package. In addition to the almost legendary BMW heated grips, this also includes a bench seat reserved for the GT. May purists now shamefully turn away and mumble something about decadence or the downfall of the West. At temperatures below ten degrees, the seat heating is a real plus in terms of well-being and safety for both passengers.
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Top test BMW K 1200 RS / GT
5 star deluxe
That is new
Differences between GT and RS Higher and wider windshield, continuously electrically adjustable, additional hand protection, lower panel with a wider profile for better wind protection for the legs, higher, differently cranked handlebar halves, new comfort seat (seat height can be adjusted twice as before) luggage rack and case system (cover painted in vehicle color) standard equipment (K 1200 RS: special accessory) Accessories for the BMW K 1200 GT: Heating package for 275 euros (heated grips and seat heating for driver and front passenger), highly recommended. Speed control, 300 euros, recommended for long motorway stretches Both models: Changes to engine control, lambda probe and Catalyst coating to reduce emissions
This is how MOTORRAD tests – Update 2003
The 1000-point rating is modified every year, here the current changes.
Nobody is perfect. Which is why the sophisticated 1000-point rating can still be improved. After careful consideration, the following changes were adopted for 2003, which will take effect for the first time in this issue: The ABS / composite brake rating generally remains at a maximum of 30 points, but in future the function of ABS will also be rated. While up to now an ABS in combination with an integral brake automatically achieved the full number of points, it is now a few more or less depending on the function. According to the following scheme: 10 points are awarded for equipping with ABS or compound brakes, i.e. twenty for a machine that combines both. In the best case, another ten points can be awarded for the effectiveness of the ABS. In the case of the two top test BMWs, the following picture emerges: The partially integral ABS receives the twenty points mentioned for the presence of these safety-relevant features. The function of the ABS, which works well in principle, deserves an additional six points. There are slight deductions because if the front wheel is heavily relieved when braking over uneven slopes, the ABS completely reduces the brake pressure and wastes valuable braking distance. The feeling for the brake metering and the sensitivity of the control are also not yet optimal. If compound brake or ABS have a negative effect on deceleration or controllability, this is included in the corresponding criteria. The BMW semi-integral ABS, which has been criticized for some models because it takes some getting used to, works well on the test machines, but there are only 14 points due to the moderate ability to adjust during adaptive braking. The braking effect is good, in the test both motorcycles were from a speed of 100 km / h with an average deceleration of 9.2 m / s². This value can also be achieved by less experienced drivers in an emergency situation. Reassuring in view of the fact that in an emergency and fully loaded half a ton has to be brought to a standstill. Another modification of the scoring concerns the section on suitability for everyday use. In the future, handling will be rated more heavily, as weight plays an important role, for example when maneuvering. Instead of 10 there are now 20 points. In return, some points were deleted from the maintenance-friendliness criterion, which is now only rated with 10 instead of 20. This can result in slight shifts from the previous evaluation. But don’t worry, basically everything will stay the same: 1000 points will also be the theoretical maximum in the future.
Technical data – BMW K 1200 GT (K 1200 RS)
Engine: water-cooled four-cylinder four-stroke in-line engine, longitudinal crankshaft, a balance shaft, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, bucket tappets, wet sump lubrication, electronic intake manifold injection, Ø 38 mm, regulated catalytic converter, electric starter, three-phase alternator 840 W, battery 12 V / 19 Ah. Bore x stroke 70.5 x 75.0 mm Displacement 1171 cm³ Compression ratio 11.5: 1. Nominal output 96 kW (130 HP) at 8800 rpm Max. Torque 117 Nm (11.9 kpm) at 6800 rpm Pollutant values (homologation) CO 3.30 g / km, HC 0.29 g / km, NOx 0.05 g / km Power transmission: primary drive via gear wheels, hydraulically operated single-plate dry clutch, Six-speed gearbox, cardan shaft, secondary ratio 33:12. Chassis: Bridge frame made of cast aluminum, longitudinal control arm telescopic fork, suspension strut, two-joint single-sided swing arm made of cast aluminum, suspension strut, adjustable spring base and rebound damping, double disc brake at the front, Ø 320 mm, four-piston calipers, disc brake at the rear, Ø 285 mm, two-piston caliper partially integrated composite brake system with ABS and brake booster. Cast aluminum wheels 3.50 x 17; 5.50 x 17 tires 120/70 ZR 17; 180/55 ZR 17 tires tested Bridgestone BT 020 CC Chassis data: wheelbase 1555 mm, steering head angle 62.8 degrees, caster 124 mm, suspension travel f / h 115/150 mm. Service data Service intervals every 10 000 km, oil and filter change every 10 000 km / 3.75 l engine oil SAE 20 W 40 fork oil SAE 7.5 spark plugs Bosch XR 7 LDC, cardan oil SAE 90 capacity 230 cm³ change every 20 000 km idling speed 900 + 150 / min valve clearance inlet / outlet 0.15-0.20 / 0.25-0 , 30 mm Tire pressure Solo (with pillion passenger) front / rear 2.5 / 2.9 (2.5 / 2.9) barWarranty two years with unlimited mileageColors blue, gray-green (red, blue, blue / white, black) Power variants 72 kW ( 98 hp) Price including VAT 15,800 euros (14,950 euros) Additional costs 262 euros Test machine price 16,375 euros (15,762 euros)
MOTORCYCLE measurements – BMW K 1200 RS
MOTORCYCLE measurements Driving performance1 Top speed * Solo 245 km / h Acceleration Solo 0-100 km / h 3.3 (3.3) sec 0-140 km / h 5.5 (5.4) sec 0-200 km / h 12.7 (11, 7) sec pull-through (pillion passenger) Solo 60-100 km / h 4.7 (6.3) or 4.8 (6.7) sec 100-140 km / h 4.5 (6.6) or 4.5 (5.7) sec 140-180 km / h 5.8 (8.7) or 5.5 (8.5) sec tachometer deviation display / effective 50/50, 100/99 km / h fuel type super consumption in the test at 100 km / h 4.9 l / 100 km at 130 km / h 6.6 l / 100 km Country road 6.0 l / 100 km Theor. Range 342 kmDimensions and weightsL / W / H 2250/920/1340 (2250/850/1200) mmSeat height 820/785 mmTurning circle 6560 mmWeight fully fueled 300 (294) kg Permissible total weight * 500 kg Payload 200 (206) kg Wheel load distribution f / h 50/50 ( 51/49)% tank capacity / reserve * 20.5 / 4.0 liters1 Measurement conditions: temperature 5 degrees, light wind, measurement location Leipheim; * Manufacturer informationMOTORWHEEL measured valuesBraking and driving dynamicsBrake measurementsBraking distance from 100 km / h 41.8 m Average braking deceleration 9.2 m / s² Comments: Acceptable deceleration with little manual force. Pronounced control processes of the ABS and the high weight extend the braking distance. Dosability could be a little more sensitive. High braking stability thanks to Telelever fork. Handling course I Best lap time 22.3 secVmax at the measuring point 88.5 km / h Comments: Because of the high weight, both K 1200 models must be circled around the pylons with high steering forces, which results in the relatively low Vmax at the measuring point . Positive at the turning point: gently starting engine power, negative: the hard putting down of the main stand.
Both have a good chassis, semi-integral ABS and a sovereign four-cylinder; when it comes to price, they are also almost free when fully equipped, the driving characteristics are identical. Nevertheless: If K, then the GT, please. Because they have that famous little bit more comfort, wind protection and thus ?? figuratively ?? Quality of life.
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