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The current change of regent for the BMW R 1200 GS is rightly the most technically radical in the 33-year history of the model. Reason enough to compare the old and new models in the photo show.

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Model 2013: There are no cooling fins on the new GS. From this perspective, the optics are quite massive.

New: the vertical guidance of the gas flows.

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Model 2012: In the old model, the back of the cylinder still has cooling fins.

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Model 2013: Higher compression, modified valve timing and a larger intake cross-section ensure that the oval silencer of the new GS emits a much more aggressive sound.

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Model 2012: The GS silencer in its old form.

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Model 2013: Although the digital display increased in size, the analog speedometer and tachometer did not have to give in. Great: the windshield that can be easily adjusted using the handwheel (bottom right).

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Model 2012: The cockpit in the old version.

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Model 2012: Quota star: With the current model, which has been built since 2004, the GS also made its final breakthrough outside of Germany.

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Model 2013: Tradition committed. Despite completely new technology, the visual appearance of the new model remains true to the GS line.

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Body bolts with BMW logo: Where BMW is inside, BMW should also be on it. A tiny BMW lettering is stamped on the fastening screws of the plastic cladding – a nice stylistic element.

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When decelerating in the control range, the 2013 GS appears more stable, but the braking distances are a little longer.

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The water cooling of the new BMW R 1200 GS: Precision cooling is the name of the technical solution used by the Munich-based company for heat dissipation. This means that the areas that are less critical in terms of temperature continue to be cooled by the airstream and only the areas that are particularly thermally stressed are washed by coolant.

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The new BMW R 1200 GS.

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The new BMW R 1200 GS.

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Valve in the cast spoke: Valves integrated into the cast spokes have long been standard at BMW. Even if the majority of Boxer customers now order an electronic tire pressure monitor, a practical, detailed solution.

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Slidable pillion seat: Whether you want to adjust the seating position of the pillion or customize the support of the rider’s bottom when accelerating – the pillion seat, which can be slid by 30 mm, is a smart idea.

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The new GS is a revolution. Whether the lively engine, the semi-active frame or the many detail improvements – the new one beats its predecessor in almost every respect. The following photos show a lot more of the 2013 GS.

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Model 2012: The buttons and switches on the handle of the 2012 GS.

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Model 2013: Despite the large number of buttons, the operation of the various functions in the new model remains intuitive, even for those who don’t like electricians. Flashing is now conventional on the new GS.

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Model 2012: The cardan drive was still on the right side of the old model.

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Model 2013: The conceptually adopted drive was moved to the left side of the new model. By the way: The rear frame can now be unscrewed – just in case.

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Weird: The liveliness of the new BMW R 1200 GS literally encouraged a committed pace. But strolling is also possible – very well in fact.

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The new BMW R 1200 GS.

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The new BMW R 1200 GS.

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The new BMW R 1200 GS.

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The new BMW R 1200 GS.

BMW R 1200 GS in the top test

Model 2013 and 2012 in a comparison test

The BMW R 1200 GS once shook the scene. The GS series initiated a whole class of motorcycle and, with 170,000 units, is the best-selling travel enduro in the world. A new era is now dawning for the legendary BMW R 1200 GS with the new water-cooled boxer.

There is something epochal in the air than the new BMW R. 1200 GS swings up the pass road with her predecessor in tow. After all, the duo represents the top of a noble ancestral gallery. The GS: initiator of the large enduro segment, winner of countless MOTORCYCLE comparison tests, conceptual beacon and the world’s best-selling travel enduro with over 170,000 copies. Against this background, the succession in the ruling house becomes a highly regarded state act.

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BMW R 1200 GS in the top test
Model 2013 and 2012 in a comparison test

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The familiar gently combined with the new

A few hours earlier. The two roll out of the van in the hotel car park in southern France. As fundamentally as the technology of the new BMW R 1200 GS has changed, its visual appearance is based on its successful older sister. Above all, the cooling fins of the cylinders – which are technically necessary anyway – and the inconspicuous placement of the two coolers avoid the culture shock. And the first contact also gently combines the familiar with the new. It still takes a little momentum to lift the leg above the unchanged seat height of 850 millimeters (high bench setting: 870 mm).


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Tradition obliges: despite completely new technology, the visual appearance of the new model remains true to the GS line.

Nevertheless it is easier for the feet to find a reason. The slimmer cut of the front part of the saddle pleasantly reduces the step curve. As usual, the handlebars and levers are close at hand. Only the push of a button separates the duo, replacing the dull bubbling of the 2012 GS with the sharper, higher-frequency barking from the oval stainless steel silencer of the new BMW R 1200 GS. And while first gear on the previous GS clicks into place noiselessly even when the engine is cold, thanks to the dry clutch, the wet clutch on the front of the engine of the 2013 model is also reminiscent of acoustically.

Klonk – the first gear engages clearly audibly and noticeably. But before the longing for traditional technology arises, any suspicions are quickly appeased. The force of the index finger is enough to pull the hydraulically operated clutch, the gentle caressing of the fingertips to turn the smooth throttle grip. An entrance with which the BMW R 1200 GS 2013 reveals more of its character than the newcomer might suspect. Because after just a few meters it becomes clear: the previous boxer only has bore and stroke in common with the new one. So lively, as if he were still happy about the end of the world that has not materialized, the flat twin turns up, hangs so spontaneously and directly on the gas, as you would never have expected a boxer to do. Too good to strangle this freshness with the cautiously appealing Rain or Enduro mappings.


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Weird: The liveliness of the new BMW R 1200 GS literally encouraged a committed pace. But strolling is also possible – very well in fact.

Whether in the somewhat more spontaneous dynamic mode or what is probably the best compromise between agility and controllability in everyday practice, the road mode – if you leave the gears a little longer intuitively, you are always happy with how lively the engine of the new BMW is R 1200 GS goes to work. The lower flywheel mass, the reduced mechanical friction, the sensitive response when applying gas due to the e-gas, all of this adds up to a highly pronounced feeling of lightness.

No false fears: The BMW model planners have not assigned a sports engine to the new GS. The driving performance alone demonstrates that the new one, in its last, 110 hp expansion stage, is anything but staid previous boxer engine by a nose. But in direct comparison, the 2012 boxer turns powerful, but more sedate, and appears subjectively weaker despite the almost identical performance up to 6000 rpm. Only in the low rev range, in the range below 2500 rpm, does the old drive throw its flywheel into the scales and forgive – gently shaking itself – shifting lazy driving more than its younger brother, who does not run as brawny in this range. But immediately apologized for it. Because the new one purrs above this critical mark, allowing the driver to intuitively use a wider range of speeds thanks to the easy engine running. Nevertheless – and this is important – this characteristic does not diminish the qualities of the boxer in typical, tourist-oriented use, but ultimately adds a sporty note to its character. That he is now satisfied with a 95-octane Super (instead of the previous Super Plus) and consumes 4.8 liters (country road) and 5.9 liters (motorway) less than the BMW R 1200 GS 2012 (5.0 / 6.1 liters) on top of that.

The new gear is also a bit easier than its counterpart. However, under full acceleration, the clutch, which is equipped with servo and anti-hopping functions, works hard, grabs when changing gear quickly and, again in conjunction with the lively engine, induces unrest in the chassis. Speaking of the chassis. The chassis also reflects the new lightness of being in Bavarian motorcycle construction. Despite the identical weight of 246 kilograms (with a full tank) and hardly any changes in weight distribution (51/49 percent instead of 50/50 percent), the new GS feels subjectively lighter. Is it – once again – the lower rotating masses of the engine? Be that as it may, the fact is: the new BMW R 1200 GS can be swiveled noticeably more easily into any radius despite the wider 170 mm rear tire instead of the previously used 150 mm tire and holds the line more firmly than any GS before it.

Enduro


Positioning the BMW R 1200 GS


All against the new GS


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Enduro


BMW R 1200 GS in the test


PS tester rides the new wild cow


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Enduro


Travel enduros in comparison test part 1


Travel enduros with 19-inch front wheels tested


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Enduro


Comparison test of travel enduro bikes, part 2 – Sporty 17-inch fun bikes


Ducati Multistrada 1200 S Touring, Kawasaki Versys 1000, Triumph Tiger 1050 Sport


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Enduro


Megatest travel enduro 2012


The all-round motorcycles for travel, country roads and off-road


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Enduro


Eight large touring motorcycles in a comparison test


The variety has never been so great


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2013-GS ignites another stage of development

The latter is probably due to the fact that the new, short engine has lengthened the swing arm by 52 millimeters. The feedback from the front wheel, which has been generally weak since the introduction of the Telelever on the boxer models, is a huge boost for the Metzeler Tourance Next, which was developed together with the current BMW R 1200 GS, relegating the previous model to second place. Especially since the 2013 GS now ignites a further development stage in terms of chassis: the Dynamic ESA (surcharge in the touring package: 1420 euros). Here, an information pool consisting of two spring travel sensors and the data supplied by engine management, ABS and traction control records the current driving status and permanently adjusts the damping of the spring elements supplied by Sachs – according to the specifications of the stored maps.


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The back of the cylinder of the 2013 model no longer has cooling fins. From this perspective, the optics are quite massive. New: the vertical guidance of the gas flows.

As with the previous ESA, the driver can select the basic setup in three stages by simply pressing a button. The elaborate technology is convincing. Compared to the 2012 ESA, the Dynamic ESA not only offers a wider adjustment range, but also keeps the motorcycle noticeably more balanced, especially on bumpy country roads. The gain in comfort can be clearly felt in all modes. And: The trampling of the cardan in an inclined position, known from the BMW boxers on bad roads, has been significantly reduced. After this experience at the latest, the 2012 GS follows its successor, who has improved in so many criteria, almost meekly. Without complaint, accepts the more effective wind protection behind the windscreen, which can be easily adjusted by handwheel on the 2013 model of the BMW R 1200 GS, and the immensely improved light thanks to the LED technology. And because the new equipment adjusted hardly more expensive than its predecessor, the previous regent can pass on the responsibility with a clear conscience. The crown is in the best of hands.

Conclusion
After 33 years, the BMW R 1200 GS has ended the evolution of the boxer model series. With a revolution. Whether the lively engine, the semi-active chassis or the many detail improvements – the new one beats its predecessor in almost every respect.

Video: Soundcheck BMW R 1200 GS

The first boxer with water cooling


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The water cooling of the new BMW R 1200 GS.

Water cooling! With this development goal, which was decided by BMW at an early stage, the Bavarians not only equipped the new boxer engine for greater current thermal stability and created reserves for future performance-optimized variants of the new boxer, but also aroused the worst fears among fans of the brand. But the BMW executives spared their clientele the optical horror scenario of smooth cylinders and protruding radiators. 

Precision cooling is the name of the technical solution used by the Munich-based company for heat dissipation in the new BMW R 1200 GS. This means that the surfaces that are less critical in terms of temperature continue to be cooled by the airstream and only the areas that are particularly thermally stressed are surrounded by coolant. The schematic illustration on the right clearly shows that the cool water (blue) first flows from the coolers to the two outlet valves, the hottest parts of the combustion tract, in order from there to circulate around the piston ring zone in a ring before it enters through channels inside the housing the cooler flows back. In this way, 35 percent of the cooling capacity is provided by the water jacket, the rest is still handled by the wind whistling through the cooling fins. Luckily.

36 Pictures

Pictures: BMW R 1200 GS in the top test

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Technical specifications


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The new GS is a revolution.

BMW R 1200 GS old / new (values ​​in brackets: model 2012)

engine
Air / water-cooled [air / oil-cooled] two-cylinder four-stroke boxer engine, one balancer shaft, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, rocker arm, wet sump lubrication, injection Ø 52 [50] mm, regulated catalytic converter, alternator 620 [720] W, battery 12 V / 12 [14] Ah, hydraulically operated multi-disc oil bath clutch (anti-hopping) [hydraulically operated single-disc dry clutch], six-speed gearbox, cardan shaft, secondary ratio 32:11.

Bore x stroke: 101.0 x 73.0 mm
Displacement: 1170 cm³
Compression ratio: 12.5: 1 [12.0: 1]

rated capacity
92.0 kW (125 hp) at 7700 rpm
[81.0 kW (110 PS) at 7750 rpm]

Max. Torque
125 Nm at 6500 rpm
[120 Nm at 6000 rpm]

landing gear
Bridge frame made of tubular steel [load-bearing motor-gearbox assembly], telescopic fork, Ø 37 [41] mm, with ESA: adjustable rebound stage damping [with ESA: adjustable spring base and rebound stage damping], two-joint single-sided swing arm made of aluminum, central spring strut, directly hinged, with ESA: adjustable spring base and rebound damping, double disc brake at the front, Ø 305 mm, four-piston fixed calipers, disc brake at the rear, Ø 276 [265] mm, double-piston floating caliper, semi-integral brake system with ABS [slip control].

Cast aluminum wheels
3.00 x 19 [2.50 x 19];
4.50 x 17 [4.00 x 17]

tires
120/70 R 19 [110/80 R 19];
170/60 R 17 [150/70 R 17]

Tires in the test
Metzeler Tourance Next [Tourance EXP]

Dimensions + weights
Wheelbase 1507 mm, steering head angle 64.5 [64.3] degrees, caster 100 [101] mm, spring travel f / r 190/200 mm, permissible total weight 450 [440] kg, tank capacity 20.0 liters.

Data service
Service intervals: 10,000 km
Oil and filter change: every 10000 km / 4.0 l
Engine oil: SAE 5 W 40
Spark plugs: NGK LMAR8D-J [DCPR8EKC]
Idle speed: 1100 ± 50 / min
Tire pressure solo / with pillion front / rear: 2.5 / 2.9 bar
Warranty: two years
Colors: blue, gray, red, white [silver, blue]
Price: 14,100 [14,390] ​​euros; Test motorcycle * 16410 [15665] euros
Additional costs: around 380 euros

* 2013 model: including Touring package (1420 euros), consisting of ESA, case holder, chrome-plated exhaust system, heated grips, on-board computer, preparation for navigation device, LED indicators and hand protection; Active package (890 euros), consisting of ASC, daytime running lights and cruise control; Model 2012: including touring package (1275 euros), consisting of ESA, case holder, chrome-plated exhaust system, heated grips, on-board computer, LED indicators and hand protection

17th Pictures

Pictures: BMW R 1200 GS in the top test

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MOTORCYCLE measurements


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When decelerating in the control range, the 2013 GS appears more stable, but the braking distances are a little longer

Radially bolted monoblock calipers from Brembo and a rear brake disc enlarged from 265 to 278 millimeters in diameter – these are the changes that the new GS received in terms of the braking system. The partially integral function of the braking system has remained. When the hand brake lever is actuated, the rear brake is also applied, while the foot brake lever only activates the rear brake.


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Braking distance of the BMW R 1200 GS.

What is completely new, however, is that the sensitivity of the ABS intervention is different in the individual driving modes. The GS, however, combines the four riding modes with only two ABS settings: the set-up in Rain, Road and Dynamic mode, which is focused on road use, and a more rigid ABS in Enduro riding mode. The fifth driving mode (Enduro Pro), reserved for tough off-road use, can only be activated with a coding plug, which was not yet available on the test machine that was delivered early. On the two test tracks, the hand force required and the pulsation in the hand lever for extreme braking on the 2013 GS were lower, but the new model did not match the values ​​of its predecessor in terms of objectively measurable braking performance. Only in the more rigid Enduro mode, which lets the front wheel feel noticeably closer to the slip limit, does the new GS come close to the old one.


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The engine performance of the old and new BMW R 1200 GS in comparison.

MOTORCYCLE measurements (values ​​in brackets: 2012 model)

Performance
Top speed *:
219 [215] km / h

acceleration
0-100 km / h: 3.6 [3.7] sec
0-140 km / h: 5.8 [6.1] sec
0-200 km / h: 14.4 [16.3] sec

Draft
60-100 km / h: 3.4 [3.8] sec
100-140 km / h: 3.8 [4.2] sec
140-180 km / h: 5.2 [5.8] sec

Speedometer deviation
effective (display 50/100): 47/96 km / h

Tachometer deviation
Display red area: 9200 [8600] / min
effective: 9000 [8400] / min


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BMW R 1200 GS gearbox performance diagram old versus new.

consumption
Country road: 4.8 [5.0] l / 100 km
at 130 km / h: 5.9 [6.1] l / 100 km
theoretical range of highway: 417 [400] km

Dimensions + weights
L / W / H: 2200 [2290] / 950/1430
Seat height: 850-870 mm
Handlebar height: 1160 [1150] mm
Turning circle: 5000 [4850] mm
Weight with a full tank: 246 [246] kg
Payload: 204 [194] kg
Wheel load distribution f / h: 51/49 [50/50]%

Even if the two performance curves up to 6000 rpm are pretty close to each other, the 2013 GS feels more powerful thanks to its significantly livelier engine. The increased performance of the new GS only has an effect in the higher speed range (see mileage). Amazing: After the major changes, the total weight of the new model remains identical to its predecessor, down to the kilo.

Current offers for used BMW R 1200 GS in Germany


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The selection of used R1200GS is large in Germany.

BMW’s long-running R1200GS is also a popular guest on the used market. Many models are already equipped with the most important accessories and can be purchased for a fair price. Here is an overview of used BMW R 1200 GS in Germany: used BMW R1200GS in Germany.

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