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Endurance test interim result: BMW S 1000 RR

Endurance test of the BMW super sports car

On the one hand, the BMW S 1000 RR is an almost unreasonably powerful piece of sports equipment. On the other hand, a lamb-like companion in everyday life. On the one hand extremely reliable, on the other hand … Oh, read for yourself.

Two views clashed when the BMW S 1000 RR started work in the MOTORRAD editorial team. There were those who were rubbing their hands because they could hardly wait to finally take this high-power express under their bums themselves. And there were those who rubbed their hands because they were sure that a motorcycle with 200 hp liter output, and a first-time model, would never ever make it over the test distance.

Unimpressed by all this, the BMW went into service on May 27, 2010. From then on she did what she does best: drive. Fast, confident, convincing. Everyone wanted to get their hands on it, try this volcano once. The BMW never came to rest and was constantly on the move. Barely four weeks there, it was already time for the Alpine Masters.

GThe BMW was never spared, and there was a shortage of breaks. ABS and traction control comparison in the Contidrom, concept comparison on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife, autumn exit. And in between the daily trips to the office, weekend trips, vacation or just a short evening in the Black Forest. Oh yes, the BMW was a popular leisure companion. Apparently, many succumbed to the overwhelming charm of their enormous power, which goes hand in hand with unexpected suitability for everyday use. “Wow, what a fast-forward tourer”, service guru Jörg Lohse was amazed after a short trip to the IJsselmeer. And colleague Eirich noted: "As uncomplicated as a ole CBR 600 – only twice as powerful".

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Endurance test interim result: BMW S 1000 RR
Endurance test of the BMW super sports car


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Autumn trip in the snow, neither ABS nor TC helps.

The short, powerful rattling after a cold start, until the timing chain tensioner got full oil pressure, had meanwhile gotten used to. But now there was also a ticking from the valve train, which quickly increased in intensity. So when the kilometer reading was 25 616, it was urgently recommended to go to the workshop.

A defective intake camshaft came to light. One cam was heavily worn, other cams were beginning to wear. According to BMW, a defect that was based on excessively high tolerances in the surface roughness and only affected a few copies of the first series. On this occasion, the somewhat creaky throttle cables were exchanged – for the second time. The replacement of the camshafts was done on goodwill, and Ralf Schneider said: "After the repair, the motorcycle runs very nicely and relatively smoothly again. "

A little later the chain sentence had finally reached the limit of its ability to suffer. After all, he had defied the enormous power for 27,832 kilometers. A respectable result. On this occasion, she was also given a solid lubricating element from CarbonForBikes, which should make greasing the chain superfluous. And off we went to another comparison test on the Nordschleife. After their return, the BMW was ready for the 30,000 customer service. On the occasion, the worn rear brake disc was due.

But only 1,800 kilometers later it was necessary to go to the workshop again. To reduce the rattling of the engine after a cold start, the branch replaced the cap of the timing chain tensioner. In addition, the front brake had attracted more and more attention through vibrations. New brake disks brought no improvement, and so the front wheel was exposed as a culprit because of too much lateral runout. A new one was needed. But that was far from calm in the box.

At kilometer 32,860, MOTORRAD action team tour guide Dani Lengwenus noted on a tour of Switzerland: “The engine accelerates between 6000 and 8000 rpm, sometimes with a delay, uncomfortable.” However, had to admit in the same breath: “I’m not a fan of the stooped position but the chassis is fantastic. And then this engine, WOW. Conclusion: It was a pleasure for me, gladly again, but no longer in Switzerland, please. "

This is one of her great strengths: that apart from her abnormal strength, her other qualities mean that she can win over even drivers who otherwise prefer upright driving. As graphic designer Katrin Sdun, who praised the “exemplary handling and stability”, reprimanded the clear vibrations, but otherwise said after driving in the rain: “I really like it.” Then the endurance test took the BMW over three and a half thousand trouble-free kilometers to Croatia.

Other power bikes in the test: BMW S 1000 RR, Kawasaki ZZR 1400 and Yamaha Vmax


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Although not a world champion in hauling luggage, it was a welcome companion we tours.

But the untroubled pleasure did not last long. Because hardly again in home regions, jerking in the partial load range and poor throttle response appeared again. Swapping ignition coils and candles should help, but it didn’t do it for good. During the subsequent vacation trip from colleague Silke Röber to France, the BMW bitched again, reluctantly took gas when it was warm, whereupon not only both lambda sensors but also the entire exhaust system up to the front silencer were replaced after their return to the workshop.

The reason: The mounting of the valve on the interference pipe of the manifold had failed. And since these form a single part with the front silencer, they have to be completely replaced. An absurdity! Since this operation, the engine has been running again without complaint, rattles happily with its timing chain after a cold start and delights its pilots. After that, the S 1000 RR only had to go to the workshop once, where it has probably now been given its own lifting platform. The steering head bearing showed some wear with a slight detent in the middle position and was replaced when the kilometer reading was 41 286. In order to save the honor of the BMW, it must be said that after this mileage a replacement of the steering head bearing can be possible.

Nevertheless, after the completely problem-free first 25,000 kilometers, the subsequent accumulation of defects is surprising. But ultimately, the pilots have been lenient so far, not a thumb has been lowered. So far it has been too much fun for that.

You can read the complete final report on the endurance test of the BMW S 1000 RR in MOTORRAD issue 04/2012 (in stores from February 3rd).


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Defects in the test


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A worn-in intake camshaft on the BMW.

Front wheel bearings
Mileage 19,978: during the first 25,000 kilometers the first notable defect on the BMW, which until then had done its duty very unobtrusively and without complaint. The wheel bearings were changed during the 20,000 inspection.

camshaft
Mileage 25,616: Mechanical noises have become part of everyday life with the BMW, but after they had increased in intensity and a noticeable rattling came from the valve train, the workshop uncovered a broken-in intake camshaft. According to BMW, a hardening error that is said to have affected only a few vehicles and was handled in an accommodating manner.

Timing chain tensioner
Mileage 31 830: After the well-known rattle after a cold start, until the chain tensioner gets full oil pressure, got louder and louder, BMW used the modified cap with a longer collar, which pretensions the auxiliary spring more. The rattling was then quieter, but not gone.

Front wheel
Together with the timing chain tensioner, BMW also took care of the rubbing brake discs. First the panes were changed. The workshop found that the seats of the discs on the rim were not exactly dimensionally accurate, which caused the brake discs to wobble. Therefore, the entire front wheel was replaced.

Exhaust flap sweaters
Not only did the throttle cables have to be replaced twice, the exhaust flap cables behind the collector also interfered negatively in the action. When the BMW was noticed at mileage 37,321 due to irregular idling and poor throttle response, the cables of the exhaust flap, which were bent at the thread, were exposed as culprits.

Spark plugs, plugs with ignition coils
Mileage 38 699: Dropouts and jerking in the partial load range, plus poor throttle response, and that depends on the engine temperature. As a result, the spark plug caps with integrated ignition coils and the spark plugs were replaced. That brought brief improvement.

Exhaust
Mileage 41,215: Deflated bearings in the exhaust flap in the interference tube caused jerking and background noises. The complete, one-piece manifold system with front silencer must be replaced. Non-warranty costs: 2100 euros.

Steering head bearings
Mileage 41 286: After a slight central detent of the steering became apparent, the steering head bearing was replaced in connection with the exhaust system (see above).

Paint damage
That shouldn’t really happen: Stickers attached during a track day peeled off the top layer of paint on the side panel when they were removed.

Tire recommendation


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Bridgestone BT 016 Pro.

Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa
If you are looking for an alternative to standard tires for a sporty pace, please: The Pirelli delivers a great performance both on country roads and for short trips on the racetrack. Grip, steering precision and stability are at a very high level. With so much sporting spirit, it almost inevitably follows that his talents are rather limited in the rain. But those are those of the original tires too.

Metzeler Sportec M5 Interact
In terms of handiness and steering precision, it is not among the absolute best, but the enormously balanced Metzeler pleases with excellent feedback and very good self-damping. The fact that even wet conditions cannot seriously embarrass him rounds off the good performance of the balanced all-rounder.

Dunlop Sportsmart
Not quite as agile as the Conti, the Dunlop is still convincing. It needs a short warm-up phase, then it shines with great feedback and first-class stability. He knows how to convince even in the rain. Its wet grip does not quite reach the high level of the Bridgestone, but it is on par with the much-praised Michelin rubbers in this regard and thus well above average.

Continental Sport Attack
The name is program. The north German rubber is an agile companion for the sporty ride on the home route. There it shines with fine feedback and precise turning. But he is also not averse to a short detour on closed pistes, although his brother Race Attack offers more grip there. In the rain it only delivers average grip, thanks to its great precision and good handiness it is still a solid performance.

Bridgestone BT 016 Pro
The successor to the rather hapless BT 016 presents itself as a balanced rubber for every day. Where the BT 016 still had its weaknesses, the Pro really trumps: In cold and especially wet conditions, the Bridgestone proves to be a first-class companion. And because it also manages a good balancing act between brisk country road chasing and the occasional detour to the racetrack, it is just as versatile as the BMW.

Accessories put to the test


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Suspension struts for the BMW S 1000 RR.

Footrest systems
All systems are well made. Lucas (360 euros, www.trwmoto.com) offers a comfortable position and non-slip, but narrow notches as well as short, precise shifting travel. Even more grippy, slightly longer and sportier positioned notches, more precise, crisp shifting travel LSL (419 euros) despite the short gear lever. The very high and far back Gil-les-notches (309 euros, www.metisse.de) also provide a very secure hold and precise gear changes.

Carbon lid
Anyone who has ever lay in the gravel bed or in a ditch knows it: jerk, jerk, bad scratches adorn the frame, swing arm and motor. Carbon covers protect against this. The parts from Ilm-berger (www.ilmberger-carbon.de) not only offer a great fit, but also great surface quality.

Struts
Basically, you can live well with the series shock absorber. Even better: Öhlins (www.ohlins.eu, 1395 euros), Wilbers (www.wilbers.de, 1147 euros) and Mupo (www.zupin.de, 1169 euros), all with hydraulic spring preload and height adjustment. We liked the well-made Öhlins with its easy installation and firm, stable damping, the Wilbers with a creamy, comfortable response, but assembly a bit fiddly, the brake fluid reservoir has to be relocated, not all adjustment screws are easily accessible. All three are recommended, whereby the Mupo AB1 Evo is slightly ahead with its good comfort and superior damping.

Handlebars
Higher handlebar stubs like the Sport Match from LSL (399 euros) take the strain off the wrists, although the position of the handlebars was not for everyone. Individually adjustable handlebars are available, for example, from ABM (www.ab-m.de) or from BKG (www.bkg-bikeparts.de).

Steering damper
The original part (left) works very tough, especially around the middle position, which makes sensitive steering difficult. An adjustable steering damper such as from LSL, Wilbers or Öhlins (365 euros, bottom right) brings improvement.

Fall pads
Small slip-ups quickly leave irreversible scratches on the ends of the swingarm and fork. Crashballs such as those from LSL offer good protection (39.95 euros per axle, www.lsl-motorradtechnik.de).

disc
The sports disc from MRA (www.mra.de, 79.90 euros) appealed to drivers of all sizes. After all, it provided a significantly improved wind protection. A worthwhile investment for frequent drivers.

Chain lubrication system
CarbonForBikes offers a solid chain lubrication system (159.90 euros) in which the chain runs over a graphite-based block and thereby lubricates itself. Except for slight rust on the outside of the tabs, this has so far worked without additional lubrication.

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