CleanMPG Reviews the 2010 R 1200 GS and GS Adventure

Discussion in 'Reviews' started by xcel, Sep 14, 2010.

  1. xcel

    xcel Guest

    [​IMG] The 2010 BMW 1200 GS and GS Adventure will see you to your destination whether around the corner or across the Globe. And unpaved roads will only add flavor to the journey!

    [​IMG]Wayne Gerdes and Harry Clark - CleanMPG - Sept. 14, 2010

    2010 BMW 1200 GS and GS Adventure at BMW’s Zentrum Museum in Greer, SC - $14,950 and $17,000 respectively and fuel efficient beyond expectations.

    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure - Lead up

    While planning review road trip to NY, why not also take a lengthy ride on a pair of BMW's best Adventure Touring bikes? A number of emails and phone calls put me in touch with the BMW Motorrad Press Group. Having previously enjoyed a number of short rides on the 1200 GS’ during the BMW Rider Training and Branding Event, I knew the GS’ had something very special to offer and looked forward to more than just a quick jaunt through the woods while straddling one.

    Our purpose was to test the two of the most famous bikes on the face of the planet. Namely, the R 1200 GS and the R 1200 GS Adventure while discovering their capabilities as long-distance touring bikes. Rather than flogging them on an on/off-road enduro course, we would subject them to the real-world challenges of Adventure Touring, on a real tour, a long one, just to see how they would perform... And hopefully enjoy the journey along the way :)

    With the opportunity to ride into and through the deep inner city, over vast distances of US Interstate, across miles off scenic country road and of course taking on the challenging but extremely fun to ride “Dragon” itself, the GS’ would be put through their paces in what would prove to be anything but a conventional review ride. Not to give away all the details, what we found was the GS’ are bikes you can pick up from your local dealership today and begin an around the world ride tomorrow if that is your calling.

    [​IMG]1980 R80 G/S -- 30-Years of GS? No wonder the latest GS bikes are so darn good!

    Let us begin by taking a look back. To September of 1980 to be exact when BMW took a risk by launching a go anywhere, do anything on/off- road bike with both power and range never before considered for a Motorcycle with this kind of capability. At the time, off-road capable bikes rarely had over 500 cc of displacement and did not have the ability to ride the pavement with the same degree of confidence. The same could be said for on-road bikes of that era taken off-road as it would create a recipe for disaster.

    Enter the first true Adventure bike in the form of the 1980 R 80 G/S. BMW was thinking well ahead of its time with a bike that could tackle anything. From inner city stop light to stop light runs, long-distance Interstate rides and immediately traverse to off-road single track without skipping a beat.

    And three decades later, the mighty GS is still known as one of the best bikes no matter the terrain encountered while at the same time, creating one of the most popular segments in the motorcycle world, the all-inclusive Adventure bike.

    For a much deeper and detailed look into the history of the mighty “GS”, BMW’s 30 Years of GS… From the Beginning is a must read.

    For 2010 and the 30th anniversary of the GS, BMW has released their best 1200 GS Adventure Touring bikes yet. The new 2010 BMW R 1200 GS and R 1200 GS Adventure, already considered the de facto Adventure Touring standard, has been taken to an even higher level.

    The 1,170-cc Boxer engine now achieves 110 HP, 5 more than the previous iteration and does so while offering even more efficiency. Namely, all-new DOHC cylinder heads, lightweight rocker arms, very compact combustion chambers, new larger diameter valves (1.42” to 1.54” on the intake and 1.22” to 1.30” on the exhaust side) and upgraded intake featuring 50 mm intakes vs. the former 1200 GS Boxer’s 47 mm intakes and an air filter element with a higher air flow rate.

    Why the GS models? This being the 30th anniversary of the BMW GS line of motorcycles, it was a natural choice. Here is your chance to meet the 2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure.

    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure – Instrumentation and Specifications

    The modern analog and digital instrument package with the Onboard Computer option includes two trip meters, odometer, speedometer, tach, oil temperature, clock, ambient temperature,
    fuel level, Gear indicator, aFCD, Ice Warning (37 degrees), average speed and a DTE display. Pic taken during the R 1200 GS’ best segment at 63.5 mpg displayed over 304.5 miles.​

    The 2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure’s full spec’s can be viewed at the following:

    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure - First Impressions

    Rolling out of the BMW North American HQ parking garage…

    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure - The Ride
    [​IMG]We rolled across New Jersey towards Manhattan and Long Island, following our guide Chris in his car, and trusting him to lead us to his place on Long Island for the night.

    R 1200 GS Adventure windshield with vee-shaped groove to manage airflow.

    The benefits of a high-tech, adjustable windshield quickly became clear. Chris had noticed the distinctive shape of the GS Adventure’s the evening before and commented on the kind of vee-shaped groove that he thought would move the air efficiently around the windscreen. This was exactly the case, with no buffeting up to 70 mph while a minimum amount of air was flowing over the top. The 1200 GS wind screen while good did not offer quite the same level of protection although both kept the air pressure off the chest which allowed for a more relaxed and less fatiguing ride.

    Both windshields are adjustable by means of a pair of hand screws.

    Remember the early impressions about a light clutch pull? We found out how well both bikes hydraulically operated clutches worked in the worst of the jam. Neither of us received any undue stress to the left forearm as occurs on most large displacement bikes during similar traffic tie-ups. Thank you BMW!

    Heat from the engines was not objectionable with the temperature gauges never rising above the mid-level mark, despite ambient temperatures in the high 80’s and being stuck in very heavy, afternoon NY City rush hour traffic. The first leg of our Adventure through New Jersey and the NYC metropolitan area was complete with everything still attached and the bikes proving that they indeed were ready for anything a deep inner city urban environment had to throw at them.

    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure - Day 2

    The next morning, we were told to sit tight and wait out the massive gridlock of a typical Long Island/NYC morning rush hour .We watched the action unfold on numerous online traffic cams showing long lines of bumper-to-bumper traffic traveling at bicycle speeds on every road leading into the city. Unfortunately our only way South had us headed through New York.

    [​IMG]9:30 AM it was time to roll. Absolutely loaded with gear and in staggered formation, we were off…

    The on ramp from Old Country Road to the Wantagh Parkway is easily the tightest anywhere and if you wandered wide, you would become a SUV hood ornament as they whiz by at 70 mph. Thanks to our guide Chris, we were prepared. Both GS bikes have ground clearance in spades which was just the thing for a decreasing radius onramp and the need to accelerate briskly. With plenty of horsepower and torque available, our first experience at cracking the throttle and allowing the GS’s to run proved to be a non-event as we negotiated the first merge and many more like them easily and safely with the mornings heavy, fast-moving traffic.

    The run down the New Jersey Turnpike went well, with the onboard computers indicating 50.0 mpg (GS Adventure) and 53.4 mpg (GS) with speeds approaching 65 mph, both excellent numbers.

    The GS and GS Adventures mirrors work very well, even with both bikes fully loaded. Duffle bags tend to restrict rear view while on the R 1150 and 1200 RT’s when touring, but an unrestricted view from both GS bikes mirrors was a welcome addition.
    Riding a GS Means Instant Respect -- At our first rest stop at a rest area on the New Jersey Turnpike, we met two Harley riders heading back to Miami after a trip to Laconia Bike Week, in New Hampshire. There is always instant rapport among long-distance riders on the road, and this chance meeting was no exception. With a few minutes of discussion about our travels to the Dragon, one of them commented, “You guys are on the right bikes for that!” You have to give credit to guys riding from southern Florida to New Hampshire on bikes and they were the genuine article. We wished each other a safe and enjoyable journey.

    Bikes serve as instant ice-breakers when meeting people in rest areas, restaurants, or anywhere. Most people recognize the adventure of a bike trip and are more inclined to say hello and strike up a conversation.

    At our next stop, we encountered a pair of older gals who were interested in our adventure and provided us with some interesting stories about their younger days on bikes. We jokingly offered them a ride, but of course with all the gear there was no room, and no spare helmets, so we bid them farewell and headed on our way.

    Just one of the many… Whenever and wherever we stopped, the 1200 GS and GS Adventure
    attracted former, current or future rider’s conversation from all walks of life.​

    Our choice of route, down the Delmarva peninsula turned out not to be ideal due to a series of towns with stop lights, heavy traffic and hot weather. Our goal was to try to avoid Washington, D.C. traffic, which is known to be bad, and to also ride the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnel. The best route south is to steer clear of DC and avoid that traffic mess down the Delaware/Maryland/Virginia corridor. At least on a Friday :rolleyes:

    A Flat Tire and the Real Adventure Begins: They say the adventure starts when plans go awry and this was setting up to be quite an adventure.
    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure - Day 3

    The next morning involved another late start as Wayne and the GS was still at BMW Dealer North of Philadelphia awaiting a tire repair. An all out run down I-95 in an attempt to catch up was all that could be planned while comms were setup for regularly scheduled phone calls.

    At least the GS Adventure is making progress: Back on the road on yet another hot and sunny day, the GS Adventure was pointed South and set at the limit in observance of at least a modicum of hypermiling.
    The Chesapeake Bay Bridge may not have been worth the effort because of the heavy traffic along the way, but it was an enjoyable, scenic ride on the Big GS Adventure none the less. There were numerous fishermen in small boats bobbing around in the not-too-calm waters surrounding the bridge and I for one was glad on was on the bike rather than in one of those small boats.

    The R 1200 GS Adventure at a scenic overlook at north end of Chesapeake Bay Bridge.​
    Crossing over to Norfolk, Virginia put me back in traffic and sweltering Southern heat. After several hours, the GS Adventure and I were on I-95 headed south and it never missed a beat. While accelerating hard is anathema to hypermiling, the newest GS bikes now have all of 110 horsepower and 88 lb-ft of torque to work with so merging onto Interstates or accelerating out of tricky situations is quite simply effortless. One reason people ride motorcycles is for the outstanding performance, combined with good fuel economy, a combination that is impossible to achieve in a car.

    Mild hypermiling a vehicle with excellent EPA fuel economy ratings yields better results than advanced hypermiling techniques in a gas-hog. No matter how you ride a motorcycle, you’ll use only a fraction of the fuel of someone in an SUV.

    The GS back on the road… With just 3-hours of sleep the day before and the GS’ front tire replaced, the mighty GS had some catching up to do.

    An employee of Montogomeryville Cycle in Hatsfield, PA inspecting the 2010 R 1200 GS
    just minutes before a hellishly long ride in the heat was about to commence.​

    With temps between 95 and 101 degrees F and 600 miles of slab ahead, there was just one thing to do. Point her south and ride. Being so far behind the GS Adventure, forget a meet but simply head to Irmo, SC, our near final destination. Riding south down I-95 means shooting through the heart of Washington DC’s Beltway. With temps over 100 degrees F and a 10-mile long stop and crawl accident backup ahead, the 1200 GS was going to be put through a torture test. With the appropriate use of shutting down when completely stopped and opening up huge buffers in order to keep moving amongst the sea of brake lights when things moved back to a crawl, the 1200 GS only saw its fan kick on three times that I can recall. While this was not the Mojave Desert with temps above 120 degrees, the 1200 GS proved impressive in the oppressive 100 + degree temps on the Super Slab and once the traffic mess was cleared, it was back to the PSL for as long as I could continue.

    The GS Adventure blows through VA, crosses NC and heading toward the home of the “Fighting Gamecocks” - The key to doing big miles on a bike is to get rolling early and make plenty of short duration rest stops. With a RAM mount and Garmin attached to the R 1200 GS Adventure, the long afternoon ride continued into the evening and then into the night before arriving in Irmo, SC.
    The 1200 GS would travel much of the night with a strategic stop at a Rest area where the Air mattress was broken out and a picnic table became an impromptu bunk.
    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure - Day 4 To Rest and Day 5, Back on the Road

    With the two bikes packed up and back together again, we headed out. After about an hour’s ride, it was time for a breakfast stop. Everywhere we went in South Carolina we met friendly people who were sociable, fun to meet and great to talk to. This local diner was no exception. Southern hospitality is alive and well and the people are as warm as the weather, even in these difficult economic times.
    To get to the Dragon, a very curvy section of US 129 from North Carolina into Tennessee, a route was chosen. Since we were so close, a stop at the BMW Zentrum Center, part of BMW’s Spartanburg manufacturing complex (Zentrum BMW Museum) was a great respite. With a loosely planned trip, we could afford ourselves some recovery time at the BMW facilities where we viewed an excellent collection of BMW cars and motorcycles with a light lunch to recharge our batteries.

    Harry with the 1200 GS and GS Adventure at BMW’s “Zentrum” visitor center in Greer, SC.​

    While heading up US 276 towards the vicinity of the Dragon and after many miles of hot riding, we found ourselves on a very curvy, very demanding mountain road. This was our first taste of the Great Smoky Mountains. Both the bikes and riders survived the first exposure to this type of riding. While both of us have riding experience, when you first encounter sharply curved mountain roads with switchbacks in quick succession and very limited sight distance, it can be quite a challenge to “flatlanders” not accustomed to that type of roadway. The GS bikes helped us quickly become comfortable with the twisties, with excellent brakes, plenty of torque and horsepower, and lean angles far greater than on some of the popular touring bikes. The bikes provided a reassuring reserve in cornering ability, even when fully loaded.

    An enthusiastic run up the mountain presented us with a rest area in the Caesars Head State Park, at the top of the mountain. With an elevation of over 3,300 feet, we found pleasantly cool temperatures, a welcome relief from the heat at lower elevations, and nice views of the Smoky Mountains, including a glimpse of some of the switchbacks we had just negotiated.

    At least a 30-mile view from the scenic overlook at Caesars Head State Park and
    Looking Glass Falls, a scenic waterfall, complete with people swimming beneath it.​

    Our general goal was to locate a campground at as high an elevation as possible allowing cooler sleeping weather. After Brevard, NC, the GS’s were forced to endure the absolutely most endearing ride through the thick woods of the Pisgah National Forest. Along with the curvy roads, we were mostly in shade and high enough elevations to provide us with excellent riding temperatures and even better scenery!

    Shortly after the Blue Ridge Parkway, US 276 dove down in a series of steep downgrades and very tight decreasing radius turns. This was the equivalent of taking the GS’s on a slalom skiing run but the penalty for running off the course was a bit more severe. The emphasis was on braking and managing entry speeds into the curves. The pavement had seen better days, which added to the technical difficulty. It was a fun ride, but disciplined fun where proper caution was necessary. It helped that there was little traffic. And as had been the case in the previous days travels, both GS’ proved once again their prowess in the twisties when the road is anything but a wide and flat slab of Interstate with the only thing to concern yourself with is if you want to get a bite to eat at an exit 10-miles straight ahead.

    A few miles later, we came up on the “Blue Ridge Motorcycle Only” campground which became our home away from home for the next two days.

    Camping with the BMW R 1200 GS's

    A Nomad Tenure was the home of the 1200 GS for the next two nights.​

    Besides the more than adequate facilities, including showers, laundry room, coffee and snacks, one of the nicest things was that you crossed a river to enter the campground. The sound of running water at night was an ideal backdrop for a long and very deep sleep.

    With our tents set up, we took the bikes out for a great rib dinner at a local diner. We also were greeted by a group of motorcyclists out of the Ocala, Florida area. I was immediately offered a generous portion of whiskey as an après-road libation and boy was that smooth. These guys had been a club of BMW "Airhead" riders who had gradually morphed into a loose collection of riders of any brand of bike with quite literally no rules and no officers. They liked to travel and meet up at campsites just like this one. They were quite a collection of characters, free souls, who liked to ride and enjoy life.
    Besides lots of jokes and kidding around, I also received some advice on riding the Dragon, our goal for the following day.

    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure - Day 6, The Dragon Awaits

    We decided the next morning to stay another night based on our positive experience. This would also allow us to do the Dragon without the bikes loaded down with gear, and not have to worry about finding another campground, or spend a lot of time breaking camp and then setting up again at another location later on that day.
    A run into Waynesville, NC for breakfast and a course was plotted to the Dragon. We took US 74 west out of Waynesville, a four-lane divided highway, and then NC 28. At the junction with NC 28, we were reassured we were on the correct route by streams of motorcyclists. They were headed to the Dragon, and we quickly joined them.

    NC 28 provided plenty of twisty roads itself and I remember thinking when we got to the end of it that the ride on NC 28 was plenty good enough and that the Dragon would be just an added bonus.

    The Tail of the Dragon -- A little background. During our visit, there was a rock slide which caused the closing of US 129 at the north end of the Dragon, in Tennessee. This was actually a benefit to us as there would be no through traffic heading south on US 129 other than riders coming back from the trek.

    The road is posted at 30 mph in an attempt to reduce the accident rate. It is also patrolled heavily by Tennessee State Police. While this may cause consternation among all-out sport bike riders, we really did not mind as anything over 40 mph and some would find themselves in a lot of trouble really quick. Having never ridden the Dragon, we welcomed the efforts at enhancing safety and there was no way we would try to set a new elapsed time on a road we had never ridden!

    One of the biggest hazards on the Dragon is meeting an oncoming biker on your side of the road. Getting too rambunctious and winding up on the wrong side of the road is bad form, hurting another biker is even worse. In other words, it was an obligation to be on our best behavior which proved to be a very wise choice.

    After soaking up some cold water at Dragon HQ, it was time for us to test the GS’ on the Dragon while under the watchful eyes of the Tennessee Highway Patrol. We heard some scoop about the police having pulled over a group of speeding bikers just as we were about to leave and there was no way we would receive tickets for speeding as that just would not be right :)

    Heading out from the Deal’s Gap parking lot, we negotiated a fairly steep uphill right turn onto the beginning of the Dragon. For the most part, the Dragon is a two-lane highway with no shoulders, and unforgiving drop-offs lined with sturdy trees and other hazardous obstacles. It is a very fun ride with curve after curve of exhilarating motorcycling as long as you keep it sane, keep the shiny side up, and keep it within the painted lines. It also offers pleasant scenery to glance at, briefly, and for the most part no intersecting roads or driveways. Combine all those ingredients with a healthy dash of caution and you have the recipe for a fantastic ride.

    The road itself is a conundrum. Harry being a highway engineer is well aware of the geometric standards that are normally applied to the design and layout of highways. Especially US routes like the Dragon, US 129. The Dragon meets no standards whatsoever, which of course is what makes it such a joy to motorcyclists. If this road were designed to modern standards, the sharp curves would be replaced by huge cuts and fills and nothing but long, gradual curves and a boring road would result.

    Soon after entering the Dragon, we encountered the first sharp curves. While concentrating on looking ahead through the curves, selecting good entry speeds, good lines and setting up for the next curve or curves is a must. With a good rhythm started, the GS’ proved to be every bit as fun as they became one with the most twisty road possibly in America.

    The GS chasing the GS Adventure on the Dragon with Hero Cam attached.​

    We soon entered Tennessee, and numerous signs announcing “Limited Emergency Medical Services,” an ominous reminder of the very real hazards involved. And of course the tragic past results of riders who had pressed the limits beyond theirs and their bikes abilities, or who had the misfortune of tangling with someone else who had exceeded theirs.

    With a speed limit of 30 mph, we were traveling at no more than 40 mph on some of the straighter sections, so there was no need for anything too radical. Keeping it sane and fun, the idea was to slay the Dragon with the best lines possible, and avoid scaring anyone else or ourselves in the process. We succeeded in that, and left the Dragon with a sense of satisfaction for doing well. We departed on the return ride to our campground. Interestingly, NC 28 did not seem anywhere near as curvy as it did on the ride to the Dragon for some reason?

    End of our north – south run of the Dragon, at Dragon HQ, US 129 and NC 28.​
    Just minutes after slaying the dragon, the R 1200 GS and GS Adventure.
    Two amazingly agile bikes given their size and purpose take a breather.​

    After dinner and a Wi-Fi break to catch up on our Trip report, we returned to the campground after dark where one of our new friends from the Ocala group expressed his concerns over our well-being. We assured him that our Dragon outing had gone well and we had just run late getting back.

    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure - Day 7 and 8, Heading Home

    The next morning we broke camp and began the long journey back. Breakfast Waynesville, east on US 74 to Asheville, NC, north to Johnson City, and then I-81 as far as we could get that first day, which turned out to be Winchester, VA, a little over 450 miles.

    As usual, the next day was hot and muggy as we dodged the worst of a nearby thunderstorm. Rain is okay on a motorcycle, but lightening can pose a real hazard. We encountered a couple of hours of light rain crossing Pennsylvania which the GS’ took it in stride. They actually do not feel a thing but it is nice to think that they did.

    After the usual ordeal of negotiating the Garden State Parkway, BMW headquarters in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey was where one R 1200 GS Adventure in excellent condition had its keys were dropped off.

    The BMW R 1200 GS Heads to Times Square and back to BMW the following day

    [​IMG][/URL]The 1200 GS nearing Times Square

    In an attempt to take some pics of the 1200 GS in Times Square, the GS was called upon to perform one more deep inner city ride. About a block before my intended destination, I asked a friendly NY City Police Officer if he would snap a pic while I was waiting at a light. He obliged and I thanked him greatly!

    Temps on the pavement ranged from 96 to 98 degrees F with 102 degrees displayed on the BMW’s Trip Computer when riding through the Lincoln Tunnel! It was hot and anytime traffic stopped (it took over an hour to get from the Lincoln Tunnel across town to the Queens Midtown Tunnel), it was scorching.

    When I attempted to stop for pics while crossing 42nd and whatever the cross street Times Square was on, the local police presence forcefully waved me forward…

    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure - Fuel Economy Results

    R 1200 GS FE Data
    • Topped Off in New Castle, DE.

    • First fill in Fredericksburg, VA: 261.2 miles on 4.789 gallons for 54.542 mpg. aFCD displayed 56.0 mpg (bike computer indicated average fuel economy). Distance to empty per computer was + 7 miles.

    • Second fill in Oxford, NC: 270.8 miles on 4.860 gallons, for 55.72 mpg. aFCD displayed 57.3 mpg. Distance to empty was + 4 miles. Flat tire in DE, 100 + mile tow truck ride north and the trek began anew…

    • Third fill, Roebuck, SC: 248.4 miles on 4.779 gallons for 51.977 mpg. aFCD displayed 54.7 mpg. Distance to empty was + 1 mile.

    • Fourth fill, Bryson City, NC: 304.5 miles on 4.987 gallons for 61.059 mpg. aFCD displayed 63.5 mpg. Distance to empty was -10 miles.

    • Fifth fill, Draper, VA: 278.7 miles on 4.894 gallons for 56.947 mpg. aFCD displayed 58.8 mpg. Distance to empty was + 2 miles.

    • Sixth Fill, Chambersburg, PA: 289.8 miles on 5.006 gallons for 57.891 mpg. aFCD displayed 58.8 mpg. Distance to empty was -4 miles.
    FE Rating OriginEPA RatingCleanMPG Observed FE
    US48 mpgUS56.4 mpgUS
    British Imperial57.6 mpgIMP67.7 mpgIMP
    European Metric4.9 L/100 k4.17 L/100 km

    Review MPG data: 1653.4 miles on 29.315 gallons = 56.401 mpgUS.


    R 1200 GS Adventure FE Data
    • Topped Off in New Castle, DE.
    • First Fill - Courtland, VA: 6.242 gallons
    • Second Fill - Dillion, SC: 5.815 gallons
    • Third Fill – Roebuck, SC: 4.755 gallons
    • Fourth Fill - Bryson, SC: 6.403 gallons
    • Fifth Fill – Draper, VA: 5.433 gallons
    • Sixth Fill – Chambersburg, PA: 5.244 gallons
    Final Fill ODO (2302 miles) - Initial fill ODO (702 miles) = Total Distance (1,600 miles)
    Total gallons Consumed: 33.892 gallons

    FE Rating OriginEPA RatingCleanMPG Observed FE
    US45 mpgUS47.2 mpgUS
    British Imperial54 mpgIMP56.6 mpgIMP
    European Metric5.23 L/100 k4.98 L/100 km

    Review MPG data: 1600 miles on 33.892 gallons = 47.209 mpgUS.


    2010 BMW R 1200 GS and GS Adventure - Conclusions
    Besides offering very good fuel economy, these are high performance motorcycles. It used to be any motorcycle that could do 0-60 mph in less than 4.0 seconds was considered extremely fast and both GS models ridden are rated with sub-4.0-second times. This is another reason for saying that while the primary purpose of the GS models may not be racing, they can certainly give a good account of themselves, especially on the curviest mountain roads. Add to that a heritage of Paris-Dakar off-road victories, and you have a choice of motorcycle that posts impressive credentials. Add to that the fact that these newest models are the result of 30 years of improvements, resulting in supremely capable touring machines that are lighter weight, provide increased power and torque while offering a wider variety of available options than ever before.

    All that performance in a pair of machines that returned 47 and 56 + mpg respectively, and you have machines that you can feel good about touring the country on.

    Individual behind the scenes

    Sean (rarely will you catch him smiling for the camera ;)) Lobosco behind the “Unstoppable” R 1200 GS Adventure.​

    We want to thank both Roy Oliemuller and Sean Lobosco of BMW North America Motorrad for entrusting their latest 2010 R 1200 GS models to CleanMPG for a fantastic week of discovery. It should be noted that these bikes are the very latest versions and it was an honor to check them out. Neither of us was disappointed by any means.

    Wayne and Harry
  2. Earthling

    Earthling Trying to be kind to Mother Earth

    Wayne, nice write-up.

    I'd give the "value" rating of these bikes a "4" rather than your "2." Compare the prices of these two bikes with Harleys or Goldwings, and you'll see what I mean. These bikes will out-handle and out-brake most Harleys, and will do better than Goldwings in the twisties and at the gas pump, and for $ thousands less.

  3. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Harry:

    We'll split the difference and say 3. $20K + as equipped is a lot of $'s to go back and forth to work and maybe a single touring vacation/year for those that would use them as intended. I am simply getting way to comfortable with brand new, reasonably reliable and ultra inexpensive $3,500 Kawasaki KLX250's and $5,500 Yamaha WR250X's to consider anything up in the $20K range a better than average value.

    And this write-up would not even be half of what it is without your draft of the day to day goings on with the GS Adventure while I was awaiting the eventual tire replacement. You deserve more of the credit for the above than I do in fact!

    In any case, I am still wondering what the 800 GS would have been like if it had the 1200 GS’ seat and cases? Even the G 650 GS (the 650 cc variant) with a much taller seat to pegs distance would suit me but I guess I am still wishing for something like the G 450X with all the GS’ features and amenities included. 80 + mpg and the ability to do anything and go anywhere. At maybe $10K to start, it would instantly be one of my dream bikes! As long as I am dreaming… Or of course if BMW decided to incorporate a 450 to 650 cc diesel in a 1200 GS’ chassis! Take the European 320d’s engine, chop 3 cylinder’s off and stuff that into a GS should just about do it :D

    What the heck are we going to ride next year to top the top of the line 1200 GS’ we just reviewed??? I would not mind taking the K 1300 GT for a spin and you can ride the upcoming K1600 GTL if Sean and Roy would allow us!

  4. MarkS

    MarkS New Member

    Great job, really nice review with a lot of cool photos, Individual behind the scenes bike photo looks freaking awesome, i would love to had that bike at my home lol.
  5. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Mark:

    Thanks for the reply and feedback. And welcome to CleanMPG :)


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