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BMW R 80 G / S and BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S and BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S: the original mother of all two-cylinder enduros is at home on winding roads and in its element away from them.

It looks very robust.

Classic: soloist speedometer with red area and maximum switching points, square indicator lights, mini key.

Innovative: BMW’s first “Monolever” single-sided swing arm.

G / S insignia: white paint with BMW motorsport colors and red seat in line with the tank. Striking: high, triangular exhaust and black lamp mask.

BMW R nineT Urban G / S: A good and chic country road sweeper with charm and, by BMW standards, quite manageable equipment.

Back to the roots: central round instrument; with analog speedometer and liquid crystals for the mini on-board computer.

Much more modern: two-joint cardan swing arm with effective torque support.

Classic colors through to wonderfully brightly colored manifolds characterize the new G / S.

Size counts: The R 80 G / S does not wear the narrow 21-inch studded tire with its longer suspension travel as an ornament. The modern 19-inch tubeless front tire looks slim and wide.

Wider and beefier – the new one looks significantly larger when hiking on enduro.

BMW R 80 G / S and BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S.

BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S and BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S and BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S and BMW R nineT Urban G / S.

BMW R 80 G / S and R nineT Urban G / S

Great G / S and brisk granddaughter

BMW’s GS models are one of the best-selling motorcycle series of all time. The foundation stone for this was laid in 1980 with the R 80 G / S. Hundreds of thousands of machines later, BMW emphasizes its own tradition with the optically based R nineT Urban G / S. The (success) story is now repeating itself?

AT.Us Sheer driving pleasure: Guest driver Gabriel Winter smiles and grins and is enthusiastic about “how relaxed and easy” the BMW R 80 G / S drives. And then he’s drifting on, plowing the next dirt road. Gravel patters, pebbles fly. Well balanced, even trial passages with the 800 are an easy exercise. With a full tank of 196 kilograms, it pays homage to “terrain and road” at the same time, hence the type designation. In 1980 the R 80 G / S set the most important impulses: As an absolute two-cylinder enduro pioneer, it laid the foundation for a grandiose model evolution. A new era had begun and the motorcycle world was no longer the same. Gabriel moves rolling cultural assets and a piece of moving history.

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BMW R 80 G / S and R nineT Urban G / S
Great G / S and brisk granddaughter

Wire spoke wheels cost extra

Our 800 looks great and is also technically in top condition, completely original. BMW specialist Siebenrock has carefully restored its very early copy. Compliments and thanks! In terms of looks, the puristic duo of the grande dame BMW R 80 G / S and the researching granddaughter BMW R nineT Urban G / S have a lot in common: Bellows protect the stanchions of the telescopic forks, raised cross fenders look distinctive and important, and wire-spoke wheels are also important elastic and chic. They cost extra for the Urban G / S, series are clumsier light alloy cast wheels. In terms of exhaust technology, both BMWs have left-hand carriers and have to do without a rev counter as standard. What is not there will not break. So drive intuitively, by ear.

Because all R nineT models use the traditionally air-cooled boxer engine, the core of the BMW brand is very vital. This heart has been beating since 1923! Characteristically, cylinder pairs with a flow through from back to front are slightly offset from each other, as it should be. They protrude boldly to the left and right into the airstream and pass on their performance via single-disc dry clutches. An impressively simple construction principle. Even with the drive train on the right: the innovative cardan single-sided swing arm was an absolute novelty at the time. With this "original meter", it already became the trademark of all subsequent GS models. The rear wheel can be removed quickly after loosening only three screws (today there are five).

In 1980 the over-BMW R 80 G / S marked the largest and most powerful enduro of its time. The 800s had shifted borders with a stroke of hand, Africa was now closer, adventurers and long-distance travelers rejoined. You just had to drive off. Not hardcore, but travel enduro. The egg-laying woolly milk sow was born, one for all (s). Nevertheless, only 21,864 BMW R 80 G / S were built between 1980 and 1987. The later GS models, two-valve and four-valve models, only achieved huge success. In the large, smooth-surfaced engine block of the 800 series, the alternator and plate air filter are neatly tidy (today it is called “clean”) in a plastic box.

Elevator effect à la 1980

End of lunch break. Open the fuel tap again, yes. The electric starter, which cost extra for the first series, slips into the flywheel. Gabriel has to play with the choke on the handlebars and gas for the Bing carburetors during the warm-up phase. The boxer boxes back. Two valves each with rocker arms and adjusting screws tick happily in the finely ribbed 399 cubic cylinders. Honest mechanics. In a pinch, every village blacksmith can get the rustic technology of the bumper boxer with the camshaft below, which was still rooted in the 70s. After all: the light alloy cylinders on the R 80 G / S were the first BMW to be electroplated. It’s a great feeling when it patters equally on the left and right. The white Krauserkoffer on the right-hand side and the retrofitted, rounded valve cover look beautifully classic.

A characteristically bent, triangular silencer sits on top of the delicate front silencer on the lower ground floor. Elevated and black chrome-plated. This “stew in the rear” sounds discreetly resident-friendly. The historic flat twin hangs nice and soft on the gas. Accompanied by tiny vibrations, the oldie pushes. Gentle but firm, more good-natured than fiery. First beefy, then little. Power-to-weight ratio: four kilograms per hp. The strenght is to be found in serenity. The cable coupling is extremely easy to pull and to dose. Caution: uncomfortable gear changes. But otherwise everything looks gentle on the 800, works intuitively. With its ultra-compact 4.45 meter turning circle, the BMW R 80 G / S may not turn on the palm of your hand. But on every dirt road.

Behind the high, wide steel handlebars with cross braces and on the plush, soft seat, you get an enduro feeling right away. Upright and confident, a real delight. Except when stopping: you always have to get off and jack up – no side stand. Good for masculine aura, but annoying. The elevator effect is enormous, à la 1980: when you accelerate, the rear noticeably comes out of the spring, collapses when you take the accelerator away. A consequence of the short Monolever swing arm on the Monoshock.

Road tires stick like Pattex

Cannot happen on the BMW R nineT Urban G / S with its momentary support. You feel right at home on it, right from the start. The butted aluminum tube handlebar is great to hand. The wide tank with deep recesses offers ample knee support, but also enough space. Here people sit resolutely and combative. The fact that the bench is only half as thick as it used to be does not have a negative impact. The big boxer thuds almost aggressively, and thanks to the exhaust flap it wakes up with a full bark at the start. Whisper sound was earlier.

The modern engine gets more than twice as much power as torque from almost 50 percent more displacement (1170 cm3). And the gearbox is much better than it used to be. BMW, how have you changed. Larger pistons with a shorter stroke design and much greater compression (twelve instead of eight to one) beat the heartbeat, fed by a digitally controlled injection, ventilated by four radial valves per cylinder – controlled by double overhead camshafts and light rocker arms with fixed speed . An additional oil cooler takes care of the thermal household. The bright chrome-plated manifolds with torque-increasing interference tube shine wonderfully blue-gold-violet.

The air-cooled 110 hp buffalo hangs on the gas like a bear, is always there, full of pressure and temperament, even without turning it off. Progress can be experienced! Phew, that’s a powerful push: two kilos per horsepower. From nothing, comes nothing. Hydraulic clutch and transmission operate smoothly. Exit town, fifth gear on the BMW R 80 G / S, sixth on board the BMW R nineT Urban G / S: the Urban hurries away in no time. When the 800 just reached 100 km / h – after eight seconds – the "Öhrben" G / S was already running 140 km / h. Turning gas into fun. When things get too tough, the optional ASC stability control strikes in between. She does that quite often, in the cockpit it flashes wildly yellow. Left hook, right hook and then the straight line. When driving briskly, the 1200 is very trustworthy, rolls and waves splendidly. The pure road tires, Metzeler Tourance Next tubeless, stick like Pattex. Stollen is available on request at no extra charge. The faster, the better, is the motto. You can feel the tight steering damper at creep speed. On the ball: Even with gentle steering impulses, the BMW Urban G / S folds out seamlessly, almost wobbly. She drives stimulating and inspiring, circles true to the line around the curves, keeps the desired radius. Only at a higher speed does it look for wide radii. Then it’s time to grab – a tribute to the longer caster, flatter steering head and larger wheelbase.

Super bustling BMW R 80 G / S

Technically, the BMW Urban G / S is identical to the Scrambler presented in 2016, including the 19-inch and 17-inch 170 rear. And it made it to the final of the Alpine Masters. Compliment! The classic BMW R 80 G / S also deserves this. It is really fun on 21/18 inch wheels in the curve thicket. The 800 series rolls on-road with astonishing agility and lightness. All BMW boxers benefit from the manageable, lengthways crankshaft. Here are the narrow tires. The rear slack is as wide as the front tire is today, 120 millimeters each. The 21 incher is as narrow as a record. This is how leadership works offroad! The R 80 G / S drives the tightest of radii on spaghetti tires and needs less lean angle at the same speed.

The almost four hundredweight swing through the Winkelwerk wonderfully easy and relaxed. Gabriel calls it “super bustling”. Only in fast alternating curves does the large front wheel lock up a little, the load “stiffens”. Typically Enduro. Continental TKC 80 Twinduro, grandiose rubber studs, come to their edge late. And then the suspension travel: 200 millimeters at the front and 170 millimeters at the rear get you through everywhere. The classic floats over the scree, offers higher suspension comfort than the conventional 2017 chassis. The 800 series (front with Wirth springs) pokes deep potholes and bumps away without complaint. G / S definitely does not stand for “good roads”. Great: immense 218 millimeters of ground clearance.

BMW R nineT Urban G / S runs over 200 km / h

Just under 125 millimeters of spring travel at the front and 140 at the rear stamp the chic scrambler into a street fun bike. 60 pounds more weighs twice over off-road. The jagged footrests, like the oldies, don’t tear it out: on the BMW R nineT Urban G / S, cross-boots have a break. The BMW R 80 G / S sometimes commutes from 140 items. So what? Autobahn is not her cardinal virtue anyway. At 170 the speedometer (!) Reports the red area. "Sitting solo" in issue 22/1980, MOTORRAD measured a top speed of only 159 km / h in the fight against the airstream, while "lying down" 173 km / h.

If necessary, the BMW R nineT Urban G / S runs calmly over 200. Good to know: Your four-piston calipers bite relentlessly. Great stoppers. No wonder: Here eight pistons press together on two discs, not two on one. If pressure comes from the retrofit steel flex line, the thin fork of the 800 series twists under the braking forces acting on one side, despite the fork stabilizer. At least the rear drum still provides important support. ABS, G-Kat and the digital age were still in the distant future in 1980. No, everything wasn’t better in the past.

The filigree BMW R 80 G / S is a great off-road oldie with a strong nimbus! The rally version that won the Paris-Dakar became a legend. The bright red / white painted factory racers from Hubert Auriol and Gaston Rahier have burned themselves deep into the collective memory of motorcyclists. Inspired by the magic of the desert, the civil “Paris – Dakar” version appeared in 1984. In addition, G / S saved BMW’s motorcycle division over time until the premiere of the K models in 1983. There is still a magic in the character actor to this day. The BMW R nineT Urban G / S also has charm. But it is not a real successor to the original G / S, but a deep nod to perhaps the most important BMW model for 40 years.

MOTORCYCLE conclusion

The BMW R 80 G / S has long been a classic, and it was the first to create the two-cylinder touring enduro segment. The off-road oldie takes off-road trips more seriously and appears more consistent. The new BMW R nineT Urban G / S, on the other hand, is not a real enduro. It is a lively made up R nineT Scrambler, purely asphalt affine. The puristic Urban embodies a well-functioning driving machine, not just “lifestyle”. She successfully quotes the ancestor only visually. No more and no less.

Offers used BMW R 80 GS and R nineT Urban G / S

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The R nineT Urban G / S is available in abundance, the R 80 G / S is a rarity.

While the BMW R 80 GS has become a real rarity on the used market, the R nineT Urban G / S still has a very good chance of finding the perfect example. The availability of the new R nineT GS is very good, but the prices are still at a high level. Here is an overview of the current availability: used BMW R80GS and R nineT Urban GS in Germany.

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