Endurance test BMW S 1000 RR: 50,000 km with the BMW super sports car


24 Pictures


S 1000 RR 2012: BMW has given its super sports bike new colors and some technical updates for the coming season. You can read the driving report for the revised S 1000 RR in MOTORRAD 23/2011 (in stores from October 28th).


BMW S 1000 RR 2012 in "Racing red uni / alpine white".


BMW S 1000 RR 2012 in "Bluefire uni".


BMW S 1000 RR 2012 in "Sapphire black metallic".


The S 1000 RR 2012 in the BMW Motorrad motorsport colors.


The rear of the BMW S 1000 RR has been slightly redesigned.


BMW S 1000 RR 2012


BMW S 1000 RR 2012: The rear has two air outlets.


BMW S 1000 RR 2012: The asymmetrical side panels have been subtly revised, the airbox center cover has been provided with side opening grids.


BMW S 1000 RR 2012: A distinctive feature of the 2012 version are the so-called "Winglets". They are supposed to ensure improved aerodynamics.


BMW S 1000 RR 2012: The engine (rated output 193 hp) and weight (204 kg / 206.5 kg with Race ABS) of the super sports car remain unchanged.


Bmw claims to have improved the drivability of the S 1000 RR by adjusting the torque curve. You can read whether this is true in the first driving report in MOTORRAD 23/2011 (in stores from October 28th).


BMW S 1000 RR 2012: Adapted driving position and chassis geometry through newly defined values ​​for steering head angle, offset, position of the pivot point of the swing arm, fork protrusion and strut length.


BMW S 1000 RR 2012: New heel plates and slimmer extension arms for passenger footrests.


BMW S 1000 RR 2012: The design of the cockpit has been refreshed, the LCD display can be dimmed in five steps and offers more information if required.


BMW wants the Race ABS and the traction control (DTC) of the S 1000 RR to be fine-tuned for 2012.


From 2012, the BMW S 1000 RR will be supplied with a short-stroke throttle twist grip as standard, which should also require less manual force.


BMW S 1000 RR 2012: Revised spring elements should ensure a further spread of the damping forces.


The 2012 BMW S 1000 RR has a shorter secondary gear ratio for increased pulling power.


In 2012, the BMW S 1000 RR received a new mechanical steering damper that can be adjusted in ten stages. You can read the driving report for the revised S 1000 RR in MOTORRAD 23/2011 (in stores from October 28th).


BMW S 1000 RR 2012


BMW S 1000 RR 2012


BMW S 1000 RR 2012


BMW S 1000 RR 2012

The super sports car from BMW after 50,000 km

Endurance test final balance: BMW S 1000 RR

With the S 1000 RR, BMW immediately took the lead in the wolf pack of 1000 superbikes. And received a lot of good grades in tests so far. But can she get a good certificate even after the tough MOTORRAD endurance test??

Aerodynamics are for people who cannot build engines, ”Enzo Ferrari is said to have said in the 1960s. From this point of view, BMW could actually have approached the aerodynamics issue with the S 1000 RR in a relaxed manner. At least based on “Il Commendatore” Ferrari. Because the Bavarian four-cylinder advanced in previously unimagined performance regions. For its sheer, brutal power, which goes hand in hand with impeccable drivability, the BMW earned undivided praise whenever and wherever it went to a test. Which brought her a large fan base. But also called the skeptics on the scene. After all, there hadn’t been anything like this in series machine construction before. Empirical values? Nothing. So could that be stable? That was the exciting question when the BMW started the long-term test. According to the interim report (issue 26/2011), however, both camps were not really smarter. What had happened up to then?

Nothing at all for the first 25,000 kilometers. The BMW just reeled off kilometers, got a new light switch and a set of front wheel bearings, otherwise nothing except expenses.

D.Then the niggles went off. It all started with the intake camshaft, in which one cam and the associated rocker arm were heavily planed and other cams were already showing signs of wear. The diagnosis came quickly and clearly: too high tolerances for the surface roughness in production, according to BMW. Only a few machines of the first series are said to have been affected by this. This was followed by throttle cables, spark plug connectors, lambda probe, a front wheel, the steering head bearing. And last but not least, the complete manifold system with front silencer had to be replaced because of a knocked out exhaust flap in the interference pipe. Which is pretty tough, because the spare part alone, at around 2100 euros, blows a formidable hole in the budget. But this flap, according to BMW, is essential for the performance curve. So the BMW caused a lot of fun driving from the first to the last kilometer, even for drivers of the most varied natures. The repetitively necessary workshop visits – seven in total – clouded the balance noticeably towards the end.

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The super sports car from BMW after 50,000 km
Endurance test final balance: BMW S 1000 RR

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With an average of 6.4 liters per 100 kilometers, the consumption was well within reasonable limits. She was absolutely stingy with the lubricant. Virtually no engine oil had to be topped up between the inspection intervals. And in terms of inspection costs, it even clearly undercut the Yamaha XT 1200 Z Super Ténéré (long-term test in issue 3/2011), which at 7.9 cents / km is one of the absolute bargain hunters. The fact that the cost balance of the BMW with 11.9 cents / km (in each case without loss of value) “only” ranks in the middle is mainly due to the high level of tire wear. But it is in the nature of things that hardly any tire can withstand a 200-horsepower cracker for long. After 5000 kilometers at the latest, the rubber usually finished work. In return, the BMW only wore two drive chains. So there were no dark clouds from the cost front until the end of the endurance test. However, at the end of the test, the idle turned out to be increasingly unruly. In addition, 50,000 kilometers with an automatic gearshift, can that pass the transmission without a trace? Should a defect be announced after all? The day the wrenches were to be used was eagerly awaited. That was November 22nd, 2011, exactly one and a half years after she started work. A brisk pace for a super athlete.

Shortly before, tester Karsten Schwers had gone out again with her. She was allowed to flex her muscles one last time for the final measurements. And she was as fresh as on the first day. Put the same readings in sprint and pull-through as at the start of the test. That suggested good things for the dismantling. However, opening the engine caused surprised faces at first.

For example, metal chips were found on the magnet of the oil drain plug, which probably came from the defective camshaft. Contrary to expectations, however, they did not leave any noteworthy marks on the bearings or the oil pump.


Except for the slightly enlarged seats of the exhaust valves, the combustion chambers and valves were in excellent condition.

The inlet ducts of the cylinder head are sparkling clean, and only small amounts of combustion residue spoil the exhaust ducts, valve plates and combustion chambers. Only one outlet and two inlet valves are somewhat leaky, the seats of some of the exhaust valves are slightly wider and some of the exhaust valve guides are slightly widened. In view of the mileage, however, completely within limits. Especially since the compression values ​​of all cylinders are at the level of the initial measurement. Except for a few slight scoring, they, like the piston rings, survived the test almost unscathed. The contact pattern of the pistons is also flawless, although the running clearance is slowly approaching the wear limit.

In addition, the bearings and the profiles of the camshafts show hardly any signs of wear. Likewise the 16 rocker arms. The all-clear can also be given from deep down in the engine room. The narrow main bearings, which are designed for the lowest possible friction, have a somewhat uneven contact pattern, but the slightly increased bearing play is still within the tolerance.

The connecting rod bearings and the piston pin have not been damaged. And the power transmission? Like the entire engine, the transmission is built almost filigree. Nevertheless, the gears of the power held up unimpressed. Only two shift forks show clear signs of wear and should be replaced. The delicate shift drum, on the other hand, is practically new. And the clutch is also quite unimpressed by the test marathon. The clearly discolored and partly warped steel disks are evidence of enormous stress, but they did not affect the function. And, according to BMW, friction disks, cage and hub could be reinstalled smoothly. That can basically be said of the rest of the chassis. The steering head bearing was ready for scrap shortly before the end of the test, but otherwise the bearings, rocker arm and spring elements are in good condition. Which is not surprising, however, because in the end the BMW still felt in top shape while driving and not worn out.


Two shift forks show clear tracks; where the engine is already open, they would be exchanged.

So has she now done with flying colors or earned a slap? With regard to the add-on parts and the engine peripherals, some damage clouded the balance sheet, especially since these were usually associated with visits to the workshop and would have had a significant impact on the account outside the warranty period. More than 20th place in the MOTORRAD endurance test rating is not possible. Even if the accumulation of these defects in the long-term test copy seems to be an outlier, BMW should keep an eye on quality here, especially in view of the high purchase price. With the centerpiece, the magnificent engine, this has apparently been done successfully.

Because if we assume that the camshaft damage only affected the first series and is no longer an issue in ongoing production, the engine mechanics can indeed be certified to be quite robust. At least that would have pleased the commendatore.

Balance after 50,000 kilometers


The gearbox, which is by no means oversized, is in pristine condition and can therefore go straight back into the engine.


Cylinder head:
One exhaust valve and two intake valves are leaking, the exhaust valve guides are slightly widened conically, and the exhaust valve seats are unevenly widened. Inlet valve guides and seats are fine. Camshaft bearings and cam profiles show hardly any wear.

Cylinder / piston:
The cylinders have some harmless grooves, the piston play is approaching the wear limit. The piston wear pattern is good, the piston rings are OK.

Crank drive:
The crankshaft bearing play is slightly increased, the contact pattern of the bearings is somewhat uneven. Connecting rod bearings and piston pins show no abnormalities.

Power transmission:
The steel disks of the clutch are heavily discolored and z. T. warped. The gears are in very good condition. Two shift forks have clear signs of wear.

Frame / chassis:
Frame, paintwork and add-on parts in good condition, paint peeled off on the fairing keel due to sticker removal. Chain guide of the oil pump and a timing chain rail with clear signs of wear.


Initial / final measurement    1,177 km  49,830 km acceleration      
0-100 km / h  dry  3.1  3.1
0-140 km / h  dry  4.4  4.4
0-200 km / h  dry  6.9  7.1
60-100 km / h  dry  3.4  3.3
100-140 km / h  dry  3.3  3.3
140-180 km / h  dry  3.4  3.3
Average consumption over 50,000 km      
Fuel (super)  l / 100 km    6.4
Engine oil  l / 1000 km    –

Costs and maintenance


Even after 50,000 km it still works like the first day.


Operating costs over 50,000 kilometers
17.5 liters of oil at 19.10 euros: 334.25 euros
5 oil filters at 13.46 euros: 67.30 euros
4 air filters at 32.79 euros: 131.16 euros
4 spark plugs at 13.51 euros each: 54.04 euros
4 sets of front brake pads at 69.50 euros: 278.00 euros
1 chain set: 214.20 euros
Brake fluid: 3.95 euros
Small parts, lubricants: 49.74 euros
Seals: 8.14 euros
Inspections and repairs: 1085.27 euros
Tires (including assembly, balancing and disposal): 3,486.07 euros
Fuel: 5029.06 euros
Total cost: 10,741.19 euros
Acquisition cost: 17,286.00 euros
Loss of value: 7086.00 euros
Estimated price (dealer selling price): 10,200.00 euros
Cost per kilometer (without depreciation): 21.5 cents
Cost per kilometer (with depreciation): 35.7 cents
Cost per kilometer (excluding gasoline): 11.4 cents
Depreciation: 41.0%

Maintenance and repairs (according to the indicated mileage)

Front and rear tires renewed, Conti Sport Attack: 4715
Front brake pads renewed, paint peeled off on fairing keel after sticker removal: 9522
Front and rear tires renewed, Conti Sport Attack: 9587
High beam switch renewed (guarantee): 14 442
Front and rear tires, Metzeler Sporttec K3, rear brake pads renewed: 15 183
Throttle cables renewed due to sluggishness (guarantee): 16 937
Rear tire replaced after flat tire, Metzeler Sporttec K3: 18 432
Front wheel bearing and headlight bulb renewed: 19 987
Front and rear tires renewed, Michelin Power One: 21,471
Front brake pads renewed: 21 623
Front and rear tires renewed, Metzeler Sporttec K3: 23 904
Inlet camshaft, rocker arms, throttle cables new (guarantee): 25 616
Tires v./h., Metzeler Racetec K3 Interact, chain set renewed: 27 832
Rear brake disc and pads renewed (guarantee): 30 549
Wheel with brake discs and pads in front, timing chain tensioner renewed (guarantee): 31 830
Front and rear tires renewed, Dunlop Sportsmart: 33,040
Cables exhaust flap renewed (guarantee): 37 321
Spark plugs and coils / plugs, rear tires renewed, Dunlop Sportsmart: 38 699
Lambda sensors and exhaust system renewed (guarantee): 40 730
Steering head bearing renewed (guarantee): 41 383
Front and rear tires renewed, Metzeler Roadtec Z8: 42 474

BMW comments


The BMW can of course also be slow, but it’s most fun on the racetrack.

BMW comments …

… to the piston clearance, which is at the wear limit.
Similar to the combustion chambers, the pistons are in very good condition after the endurance test. With regard to the piston play, the pistons are at their wear limit, but the engine could have continued to function functionally.

… to the inlet camshaft that was defective at half time.
The cause was too high a surface roughness. In vehicles from the early production period, there were still variations in the tolerances in the fine machining of the camshaft surface. For this reason, we have further limited the manufacturing tolerance. BMW takes good care of any damage due to wear and tear on the intake camshaft.

… the tracks on crankshaft and connecting rod bearings.
The condition of the crankshaft and connecting rod bearings is harmless, the engine could continue to operate.

… to the defective exhaust flap.
The exhaust system of the S 1000 RR is operated in extreme temperature and acceleration ranges in sporty conditions. The reason for the rattling noises after starting the engine in the warm-up phase was an increased play in the mounting of the flap in the interference tube. The function of the flap while driving was not affected.

… to the partially widened valve seats and slightly conical valve guides.
The condition of the combustion chambers is free of deposits and corresponds to the target condition. The compression values ​​are uniform across all four cylinders and reach the measured values ​​before the start of the endurance test. The engine could have continued to operate in this state.

… for rubbing the brakes.
The brake judder can be traced back to a lateral runout of the brake discs. The cause of the lateral runout, which was 0.2 mm outside the permissible tolerance, is due to dimensional deviations of the connection domes on the front wheel outside of the specification. It is not a question of a delay that occurred during the endurance test. With increasing mileage, the brake disc was damaged by the lateral runout, which led to brake judder.

… to the accumulation of defects in the second half of the test .
An accumulation of defects cannot be determined from our tests and our experience in customer operations. After two years, our field experience shows that we have no special weak points and that the motorcycle is very stable. The very good overall condition that you attested after the heavy use in long-term test operation also confirms this in our opinion.

Reading experiences


Andreas Riederer can still ride the BMW comfortably at 1.89 m.

I bought the S 1000 RR as a new motorcycle in March 2011 after intensive test drives on the racetrack and country road. The condition was that I (1.89 m) could withstand a day on country roads on the S 1000 RR – or my wrists. In contrast to other test-driven super athletes, it fulfills these requirements. For me, the sitting position is ideal, the view from the mirror is almost unobstructed, and the controls are perfect. At the moment I have unwound about 4500 km, about 1/3 each motorway, country road, city. The fuel consumption fluctuates around 6.5 liters, which is okay for the performance offered. So far I had a warranty claim after the drive-in inspection. From 7000 rpm, oil leaked from the engine. At higher speeds, a rubber hose that had already been torn at the factory allowed oil to escape. Fixed under warranty. I am still very satisfied with the S 1000 RR (ABS and traction control are essential for me), even if my wife no longer rides – according to her own statements, she is not a baggage thrower. The motorcycle is my preferred alternative to the Japanese and Italians.
Andreas Riederer

My S 1000 RR is one of the first. Delivery 12/21/09. To date I have unwound almost 34,000 km. In the course of the 20,000 km inspection, the exhaust system was replaced (exhaust flap in the interference pipe). Shortly after the 30,000 km inspection, it jerked below 7,000 rpm. Error found quickly: left lambda probe. Otherwise only driving, refueling and cleaning. I only use the bike for “street surfing”, not a race track. I am still totally enthusiastic about the BMW. For me the greatest since the invention of pre-cut toast bread. The power and sovereignty is simply gigantic. Of course, this also includes a competent workshop. I’m lucky that both bosses race themselves.
Karl-Heinz (Max) Harter

Got just over 10,700 km on the clock. When I looked at it, I noticed that various trim parts were badly painted on the corners and edges. So far, a screw on the tank cover has loosened (which is no longer wild), the oil filter has come loose (after approx. 2500 km) and oil has leaked (which could have been wild), the fork did not work properly (supposedly 60 ml of oil / handlebar missing – evaporated ???), the heel guard (because it wasn’t properly deburred) cut up a new Daytona boot for me within a day. Schaltassi was readjusted because the 5th and 6th gear no longer worked when the engine was warm, and finally the manifold was replaced because it was torn and something "rang" (probably the flaps). Otherwise I had no problems (with my R1 I had nothing at all for 50,000 km). Above all, I was a little annoyed with the service at BMW, as everything always took until someone wanted to take care of it. By “sheer driving pleasure” I mean something else… O. K., complained enough. The chassis is otherwise quite good for an original and the engine is a dream because it goes like the devil. The Metzeler K3 works best on country roads in warm, dry weather and is also suitable for occasional use on the racetrack, it is down after less than 2000 km. A higher windshield from Puig is better for wind protection, and the BOS muffler produces a slightly better sound.
Marco, by email

In August of last year I switched from the Honda CBR 600 RR to the BMW. After intensive processing by my husband, I gave it a test drive. And immediately felt at home. I haven’t regretted it a meter so far. Although I’m not very tall at 1.55 m, I feel very comfortable on this machine. ABS, traction control and an automatic gearshift are the ideal helpers. It is not the top speed that matters to me, but the handling and driving behavior of this machine is a delight. I not only ride her on racetrack training, but also on ADAC curve training, hanging-off courses and normal motorcycle tours. Whether in the upper or lower speed range, it doesn’t matter, it always pulls through very well. There were actually no problems. Only at the beginning a defective ABS sensor. It was exchanged and it was good. I even received a replacement S-1000-RR from the workshop for a full weekend. Unfortunately, I don’t know that from Honda. Well, nothing more can be said. So this motorcycle has everything, from sheer good-naturedness to brutal malevolence. What more do you want?
Gabriele Müller, Mönchengladbach

I bought my BMW S 1000 RR, first registered in March 2010, in March 2011 as a used car with 600 km on the clock at the Stuttgart branch. After a year in which I unwound 10,000 km and three sets of Metzeler K3, I am still enthusiastic about the machine. I had technical problems right from the start at km 2000 with the well-known rattling that could be heard after the start and sometimes while driving. First the timing chain tensioner was replaced. The only remedy was to replace the exhaust manifold with the flap installed in it, which sometimes tilted and thus caused the rattle. At the same time, the socket of the parking light bulb was exchanged, as it had to struggle with contact problems from time to time. All repairs were made very quickly and without fuss on goodwill. The remaining 8000 km were a pleasure at its finest. A great motor that is gentle at lower speeds, but never powerless and unpacks the hammer at the top, but remains easy to control. The whole thing in a great chassis. I would buy the machine again at any time and am already looking forward to the 2012 season and the Alpine tour in June.
Orlando stoeckl

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