In the range of big roadsters from BMW, you have the S 1000 R for big buggers and watts to overheat the coffee maker. Not quite below, rather close, the R 1250 R plays in a more classic register, or classy according to the points of view. The arsouille, he leaves it to his younger brother. Young, yes, because if the streetfighter derived from hypersport was born in 2014, its twin-cylinder counterpart comes from a lineage dating back a quarter of a century..
Succeeding the 1200, this R perpetuates a philosophy of the versatile roadster, muscular but not violent, and powered by the eternal Boxer engine. An idea born in 1994 with the R 1100 R and its block with 4 valves per cylinder. Or even a little earlier with the R 100 R, powered by another generation.
That was before. After many developments, the most recent of which is the ShiftCam variable valve timing, the German engine has moved up to a higher level of power with no less than 136 horsepower. A very clear increase in value since the 1200, respectable and dynamic for a roadster of this caliber, and worthily below the firepower of pure combatants. The torque is much more impressive than the watts, with 14.5 mkg, of which more than 11.2 are available from 2000 to 8250 rpm. With the ShiftCam, allowing the intake ACT to switch to two different cam profiles, the Boxer is more available, more flexible, and faster than the mill of the previous generation..
Apart from the aspect of the cylinder head covers which evolve, it will be visually very difficult to differentiate this twin from that of yesterday … Just like the rest of the bike. If all the models in the R range gain the 1254 cm3 at the same time, some take the opportunity to review their facies a little bit (GSA and RS), others not at all (GS, RT). The R 1250 R is part of this contingent, evolving especially on the technique. The thruster of course, and also the electronics.
The Driving Modes are there, renewed, with an all-purpose “Road” and a “Rain” as standard for smoother driving. BMW being a specialist in optionality, it keeps the choice and the temptation two additional modes in a Dynamic pack. This add-on brings the “Pro Riding Modes” conditions, ie “Dynamic” and Dynamic Pro “, the latter being configurable by the user. That’s not all. Electronic management is much more complete because it is crowned with DTC traction control, DBC engine brake control, ABS Pro active in bends and Hill Start Control Pro. To complete the pack, note the presence of a sports screen, a Shifter, a daytime running light and LED indicators..
For information, know that the electronic endowment series is far from being abandoned. The “naked” R 1250 R has DTC traction control, Hill Start Control and ABS. The manufacturer offers you the cake on one side and the cream on the other.
Placed on the saddle, a single judge and a single source of pleasure parade in front of the driver: the road. That it in the visual field? Not quite. Digital colors, a display stuck in a large 165mm window, that’s the new TFT instrument panel. Named “Connectivity”, BM timidly offered it in mid-2017 on the GS … as an option. Now to impose it at the standard load step on its new models. Those who are allergic to digital will cough; technology and connectivity enthusiasts will appreciate it, especially since this small tablet allows much more interaction. Once acoquiné with a smartphone, the motorbike offers you the pleasure of riding and the possibility of making phone calls, listening and controlling your musical repertoire, and enjoying a simplified browser via a specific app. Let’s not forget to taste its very modern display, offering multiple actions and full of functions.
Extensively revised engine and electronics live in a chassis similar to the ex-1200. This one had already shaken up its front axle during the 2015 redesign, with an inverted 45 mm fork to replace the Telelever present since …. 1994. The R 1250 RS is thus built on a tubular steel structure in two parts resting on the engine, with in addition a fork inspired by the S 1000 R, the single-sided Paralever cardan shaft, radial Brembo brake calipers with 4 biting pistons. 320mm tracks, a rear brake consisting of a 276mm disc with a 2-piston caliper, a 15mm shorter wheelbase than the cousin RS, and the privilege of being the lightest in the family R with 239 kilos ready to ride. It’s 8 kilos more than before.
In exchange for an extension on the price, the suspensions can become semi-active with the ESA “Next Generation”. Like the ESA Dynamic, it adjusts the settings in real time according to the road, the driving and the chosen Modes; the novelty in the automatic adaptation according to the on-board load.
More powerful, even more technological, the R 1250 R manages to keep a good part of the bourgeois roadster spirit. Let’s relativize; a bourgeois who frequents trendy clubs more than tearooms. If sometimes you hesitate between the disco corner, the pop track or the Techno fever, the BMW will oppose you the same kind of choice with its multiple styles:
The Basic version, in addition to its Black Storm color, is distinguished above all by its black brake calipers and dark frame..
The Exclusive highlights its radiator scoops in metallic finish, gold-colored brake calipers and a gray frame.
The HP version exudes the most sporty aspect, with Motorsport colors for the trim, a frame painted in white, wheels in black, calipers in gold, metal scoops and a larger engine guard, in stainless steel.
Eyeing the catalog "Option 719", a more precious color and multiple customization accessories can give a completely different image of this roadster.
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R 1250 R 2019
Model marketed in
0 to 100: 3.40 s
medium: 4.75 l
about 200 km / h
The technical aspect
2020 BMW R 1250 R
- Tank: 18 liters
- Width: 880 mm
- Wheelbase: 1,515 mm
- Operating weight: 239 kg
- Train before
- secondary by cardan
- Rear axle
(102.5 x 76 mm)
at 7,750 rpm
at 6,250 rpm