BIKES | BMW launches the ‘rest’ of the R1250s

<i>Image: Rob Till</i>
<i>Image: Rob Till</i>
Rob Till

Following the launch of the R 1250 GS earlier this year, BMW Motorrad gave the media the opportunity to experience the new, bigger-capacity boxer mill in R (naked), RS (sport touring) and RT (tourer) guise during a launch event in Nelspruit, Mpumalanga late in October.

The venerable BMW horizontally-opposed engine traces its origins back to 1924 when it appeared in 494cm³ form in the R32 model. It has proven itself thoroughly and remained BMW Motorrad’s mainstay ever since.

Easy to compare

At the GS launch, the 1250 version impressed me with its increased power, and it seems even more at home in the sportier R and RS models.

READ | BMW Motorrad launches K 1600 'Bagger' in SA

Riding the three models back-to-back on a route that covered some of the best roads in the Nelspruit-Sabie-Hazyview area made it easy to compare. The R is nimble, responsive and downright sporty, while the RT feels more relaxed and stately.

BMW R1250

                                                                        Image: Rob Till

The pleasant surprise-of-the-day for me was the RS, which not only felt every bit as sporty as the R, but also considerably lighter and more manageable than its 1200 predecessor.

All three bikes were reassuringly surefooted on the winding roads, although the RT’s additional weight and bulk took a few turns to get used to.

Effective technology

"With the extensively further advanced boxer engine, the new R 1250 RT, R 1250 R, and R 1250 RS models not only achieve a whole new level of power and torque; it was also possible to significantly optimise refinement and running smoothness – especially within the lower engine speed range," says BMW.

"What is more, the new engine offers improved emission and fuel consumption levels as well as a particularly satisfying sound."

BMW R1250

                                                                            Image: Rob Till

BMW’s ShiftCam Technology enables variation of the valve timings and valve stroke on the intake side. In addition, the intake camshafts are designed for asynchronous opening of the two intake valves, resulting in more effective combustion. 

Other technical changes to the engine relate to the camshaft drive – now taken care of by a toothed chain rather than the previous roller chain– an optimised oil supply, twin-jet injection valves and a new exhaust system.

BMW R1250

                                                                       Image: Rob Till

There are two riding modes available as standard in, but "Riding Modes Pro" is now available as an optional equipment item, featuring two additional riding modes (Dynamic” and Dynamic Pro - configurable), as well as Dynamic Traction Control.

Top technology

The new Dynamic Brake Control provides additional safety when braking by avoiding unintentional accelerator activation – drive torque is reduced during braking to make full use of the braking power at the rear wheel.

BMW R1250

                                                                      Image: Rob Till

This keeps the bike stable and reduces the braking distance. The bikes also feature Automatic Stability Control and Hill Start Control which reduces roll-back during start-off on slopes, both as standard items.

Included in the standard feature list is the Connectivity feature. A 6.5-inch full-colour TFT screen on the R 1250 RS and R 1250 R models, and a 5.7-inch TFT colour screen on the R 1250 RT, work in conjunction with BMW’s Multi-Controller, to give the rider easy and convenient access to vehicle and connectivity functions. The R 1250 RT’s TFT colour screen is supplemented with an analogue speedometer and rev counter.

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