Saw it up close and personal

The new BMW 1200 is looking really good in person.  I am not a huge fan of the boxer engine just because I think it makes the bike look chunky but BMW has made this bike look narrower and even lighter to the eye.  No GSA version yet but I am certain it will look about the same with different rims.

I added the KTM 1190 in this collage…Who will win the big bike sales? BMW? KTM? Triumph? Moto Guzzi? Ducati?  Any other?

Author: advgrrl

Avid ADV rider! This Blog is all about the adventure in adventure riding. Researching new bikes, routes, accessories, learning about other riders and hopefully a great place for others to comment and explore with me. PLUS, up and down's, wildlife, my dogs, my life!

22 thoughts on “Saw it up close and personal”

      1. We are enjoying the ESA on our F800’s. I play with it on and off road…pretty neat even though it’s only a slight adjustment you can still fell the difference.

  1. I’ll say BMW wins by sheer volume, then Yamaha, Triumph ,KTM and Moto Guzzi. Since it’s such a new type of motorcycle, it may take a couple years for the public to figure it all out. I’m still hoping for more 700cc-900cc twin cylinder options from then what out there now. 800cc, under 500 lbs with all the bells and whistles and 31″ seat stock would sell like hotcakes 😉

    1. I am short, you get used to riding with feet not on the ground. I have the regular height F800 and seem to be doing fine but I agree…less weight and seat height would be a bonus.

  2. Sat on the 1200 GSA at the London show, and thought it was a perfect fit for me, would love one, but to be honest I wouldn’t swap the Tiger 800XC for it, which means I won’t be getting one.

    1. I think as we get “older” we will be looking for a more touring bike and at the rate these big ADV bikes are heading they seemed to be geared to more on road but would still be able to handle the good old forest dirt road. Might be a good alternative than the big sport/touring bikes.

      1. I would have to agree with this. As far as a winner goes, not really into that. I find that each year there is a flavour favorite. As we get older we find ourselves getting more practical so who ever supplies the most bike that fits our needs, for the dollar spent will eventually be the long term winner.

  3. I had a chance to take out an R1200GS Touring Edition (fully optioned) yesterday for the first time for two hours. In the rain, at that… Wow what a machine. Compared to the F800GS it is loud and hugely more powerful. The engine is rougher at idle but slightly smoother when revving, and the hydraulic clutch is far lighter than the cable clutch on the F8. The boxer engine sounds bloody amazing and the cylinders don’t stick out much further than my legs so there wasn’t much difference squeezing between the cars. You sit far lower to the ground than on the F8 and whatever magic those crazy German engineers have done, they’ve masked the extra 25kg as the new R12 actually feels lighter than the F8 in low speed manoeuvres (the previous R12 was a lumbering beast). The throttle programmes feel tangibly different (I tried rain, road and dynamic) and the cruise control was flawless at 30mph (didn’t try it out on faster roads). The LED headlamps/daytime riding light is an amazing and practical piece of tech (LEDs being highly resistant to vibration). I seriously considered getting my F8 appraised for part exchange but I would never buy a 1st year bike (2nd year should be sufficient to work out the worst of the bugs).

    Interestingly, going back to my F800 after the test ride did not feel like a downgrade at all. It felt like ‘home’ so to speak… familiar and comfortable. Powerful but in a much more discreet way. As lovely as the new R12 is, the F8 stands up well and is definitely the more capable bike on the rough stuff. In retrospect, when my F8 is 3 or 4 years old I think the R12 will be my next bike, but it’s not time to exchange it yet 🙂

  4. My old BMW R100RS was a great basic tourer. The trouble with BMW’s like the 1200 is not so much the bike being chunky (which it is) but the fact that the adventure riders who own them just have to fit huge, chunky, inaccessible, aluminium boxes which when one falls off-road, which all off-roaders do at some point, traps a boot underneath them which can be very painful and there’s no way you can get out to lift the bike off you. Go light – how many experienced off-roaders have said this! Fully-waterproof soft luggage is the way to go. Sure, they get scuffed and look rough but they don’t get permanently dented, busted or broken into small pieces!

    1. still not convinced about using soft bags..perhaps one day but even the Giant loop ones while looking better are not 100% waterproof. Soft bags do not seem as easy to get in and out of as well. Just IMHO.

    2. I’m a bit mixed about hard vs soft panniers—in my experience it’s 50:50 luck of the draw when coming off the bike whether the panniers end up protecting the legs by preventing the bike itself from pinning you underneath, or whether they end up crushing legs themselves… It’s human nature to report the bad stuff so you hear about crushed legs more often on the forums… On the plus side an alu pannier makes a good chair, table, countertop, bike stand, etc and they lock up securely. On the minus side they leak once they’ve broken the bike’s fall a few too many times and they’re much heavier than soft bags… Guess it’s down to personal preference and what your needs are at the end of the day…

      1. I don’t know…I think even with the extra weight using hard bags seem like a better choice for us…we have dumped our bikes with the Jesse luggage and they were OK and still able to be waterproof. We bring extra dry bags for those just in case moments though.

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