Now Reading
BMW K1200S

BMW K1200S

by hybrid_auto_8172August 12, 2017

BMW K1200S

There’s no doubt that the K1200S is the most eagerly
anticipated new model from BMW in more than a decade.
When the news surfaced last year that 82-year-old BMW would be going
head-to-head with the Japanese manufacturers in the open-sportbike class, it was
nothing short of shocking.
After all, this is a motorcycle manufacturer with a reputation for going its own
way. So a 1,200cc four-cylinder engine, mounted across the frame, just like
Honda’s CBR1100XX, Kawasaki’s ZX-12R and Suzuki’s Hayabusa, was, to put it
mildly, out of character.

BMW K1200S’s Features

Make Model.

BMW K 1200S


2007 – 08


Four stroke, transverse four
cylinder, DOHC, 4 valves per cylinder


1157 cc / 70.6 cu in

Bore x Stroke
79 X 59 mm

Compression Ratio

oling System
Liquid cooled







Max Power

124.5 kW / 167 hp @ 10250 rpm

Max Torque

129 Nm / 13.2 kgf-m / 95.4 lb-ft @ 8250 rpm


6 Speed


Frame Bridging frame, die-cast aluminium, load
bearing engine

Front Suspension

BMW Motorrad Duolever; central spring strut

Wheel Travel

115 mm / 4.5 in.

Rear Suspension

BMW Paralever with progressive damping single shock
absorber, remotely adjustable for preload and rebound

Wheel Travel

135 mm / 5.3 in.

Front Brakes

2 x ∅320mm discs, 4 piston calipers

Rear Brakes

Single ∅265mm disc, 2 piston caliper

Front Tyre


Rear Tyre

Seat Height
820 mm / 32.3 in.

Dry Weight

248 kg / 547 lbs

Fuel Capacity 

19 L / 5.0 US gal

Consumption  average

6.7 L/100 km / 15 km/l /
35.3 US mpg

Standing 0 -100 km/h

3.0 sec

Standing 0 -150 km/h

5.1 sec

Standing 0 -200 km/h

8.4 sec

¼ Mile  

11.7 sec / 209 km/h / 130 mph

Top Speed

286 km/h / 178 mph

MCN part 1 –

part 2

part 3




BMW K1200S
Then there were, uh, “issues:” In an initial press intro last summer, there were
reports of fuel-injection surging of the kind that, until recently, had plagued
some of the company’s R-model twins. Plus, a batch of camshafts came up faulty,
meaning that production had to be halted, and bikes called back.
So when a group of U.S. motojournalists gathered in California to finally climb
aboard the production version of the newest Beemer, there was a lot of

BMW K1200S

How does the new K1200S fulfill the expectations that have been building since
last July? Here are some quick, one-day impressions.
The seating position is surprisingly relaxed for a sportbike. The footpegs don’t
require leg contortions, even for taller riders, and the flat bars don’t put a
lot of weight on your wrists, even sitting still. Fire up the 1,157cc engine,
though, and there’s a tendency to rev quickly when you blip the throttle that
tells you this isn’t like previous BMWs.

Get under way, and you discover that the time spent sorting out the fuel
injection has been well-spent. The new K pulls smoothly, even at light throttle

The powerband is touring-bike soft at the bottom, but when you pass through
4,000 to 6,000 rpm, there’s a tingle that tells you the engine is waking up.
Wind up from there, and there’s serious power available. BMW claims the motor
makes 167 horsepower at 10,250 rpm on the way to an 11,000-rpm redline, which
would put it in the hunt with the competition from Japan. Only a run on an
independent dyno will verify those claims, but based on feel, it doesn’t seems
impossible that the new K does make almost double the power of some recent
Beemer twins.

BMW lists the dry weight of the new machine at 499 pounds (we suspect there was
some pressure from the marketing side to come up with a number that started with
a “4”), and the wheelbase at a whopping 61.8 inches, which would make the K
longer than, say, a Harley-Davidson Sportster or a Honda ST1300.

 Don’t believe those numbers, though. In motion, the K1200S feels like a much
smaller machine. The trick to making the bike feel lighter and shorter has to do
with the new Duolever front suspension, the latest result of BMW’s experiments
with alternative front-end design over the past decade.

Like the Telelever front end it replaces, the Duolever uses a single front shock
mounted between two arms that control up and down movement of the wheel. The
idea behind that design is to separate steering forces from braking and
acceleration forces affecting the front wheel. The Telelever has succeeded on
that front for years, but at a price.

As a traditional fork compresses under braking into a corner, it steepens the
steering-head angle, making the bike turn in quickly. Since the Telelever gets
rid of that change in steering-head angle, some Telelever-equipped Beemers have
been a bit slow to initiate a turn. But the Duolever system on the K1200S
appears to eliminate that lazy response. At parking-lot speeds the bike feels a
bit massive, but once you get rolling, the steering response is light and quick.

BMW K1200S

Plus, the Duolever means that nothing you do with the throttle or brake
will upset the handling in a corner. You can roll off the throttle or brake in
mid-corner without throwing the bike off its line. Better yet, screwing on the
throttle early in a corner doesn’t cause the bike to run wide.

As a result, even an ordinary rider can feel like a Superbike hero driving the
new K hard out of a corner onto the next straight. We got to test all those
abilities in a 250-mile ride that included some of northern California’s most
scenic, and twistiest, stretches of pavement. And at the end of the day, there
were a lot of smiles from all involved.

It my have taken BMW 82 years to produce its first true sportbike, but the
result is very impressive.

The K1200S is in dealerships now, at a base price of $15,750. Anti-lock brakes,
BMW’s new Electronic Suspension Adjustment system, and two-tone paint are
extra-cost options.

Leave a Response