BMW R1200GS ADVENTURE (2010-2013) Review

Published: 02 February 2010

"World's biggest monster traillie is a ridiculous concept that shouldn't work at all. But in reality it's one of the best mile-eating bikes money can buy"

BMW R1200GS Adventure

"World's biggest monster traillie is a ridiculous concept that shouldn't work at all. But in reality it's one of the best mile-eating bikes money can buy"

  • At a glance
  • 1170cc  -  110 bhp
  • 41 mpg  -  300 miles range
  • High seat height (890mm)

Overall Rating 5 out of 5

The world’s biggest monster traillie is a ridiculous concept that on paper at least shouldn’t work at all. It weighs 223kg, the suspension is three inches taller than the standard R1200GS and with a 33-litre tank full of fuel you need to be Britain’s strongest man to lift it off the sidestand. But in reality it’s one of the best mile-eating bikes money can buy and one of the quirkiest, most interesting bikes on the road today. In fact we absolutely love it. For 2010 the BMW R1200 GS Adventure gets even better with a touch more torque at 88ftlb, a new twin cam 110bhp motor and the addition of the updated BMW ESA II suspension system and a clever exhaust valve which passes noise tests but opens up as revs increase, the bike is even better for 2010.

Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5

Like the RT it also gets the ESA2 electronically adjustable suspension which blesses it with beautiful ride quality and comes with sport, comfort, normal and two off-road modes which also adjust the amount of traction control you have. Off road the bike allows you to have some slides without the aggressive traction cutting in. But it’s on the road where the bike will be ridden mostly and a well ridden GS Adventure can handle twisty backroads once you learn to trust the feeling of the suspension and tyres. And on motorways you can lord it looking into lorry windows while wafting along.

Engine 4 out of 5

Where it lacked power now it has it, drive it on and there’s still that annoying hole for emissions around 4500rpm (they all do that mister), but it barks after that. The exhaust definitely sounds more aftermarket than manufacturer standard but is in no way offensive. And on the gas the whole experience revs quicker, cleaner and it’s faster at the top-end yet it still retains that incredible 400-mile tank range.
And where the older single cam model used to feel like it was hitting a brick wall under acceleration after 80mph, the new one pushes its heft through that aerodynamic barrier with a little extra shove. 

Build Quality & Reliability 4 out of 5

They’re well built but many owners complain of the bike’s using oil and there have been some problems with generators in the past. But this is a new engine so all that should be in the past and BMW have made massive steps to up their build quality and reliabilitiy. We’ve ran three bikes in the last three years and have never had a problem with any of them over 28,000 miles.

Value & Running Costs 4 out of 5

At the basic price this is a hell of a lot of bike for the cash. It is one of the greatest mile eaters that money can buy and if you approve of the looks then we reckon its one of the coolest motorcycles on the road today. But are you man enough? Find a BMW R1200GS Adventure for sale.

Insurance group: 14 of 17 – compare motorcycle insurance quotes now.

Equipment 4 out of 5

The new ESAII suspension is a big improvement over the old system and the bike also comes with a height adjustable seat. You can spec the bike up with tyre pressure monitors, heated grips, smaller indicators, LED spot lights, panniers and a sports exhaust. BMW dealers we’ve spoken to say that most bikes bought are fully specced up with every option box ticked. Compare and buy parts for the R1200GS Adventure in the MCN Shop

Owners' Reviews

4 owners have reviewed their BMW R1200GS ADVENTURE (2010-2013) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

We’re currently improving the way this section works, which means we’ve had to suspend the submission of new owners’ reviews for a short period. Please check back soon.

Summary of Owners' Reviews
Overall Rating 4.3 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4.3 out of 5
Engine 4.3 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 4.3 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 3.5 out of 5
Equipment 4.8 out of 5
4 out of 5

Ride one be hooked!!

27 November 2010 by Anonymous

Test rode my mates GS 1200, and rode another from shop, now got my own 2010 model. Not run in yet rides handles fantastically, expensive to buy yes, but you do get what you pay for. Read more

Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 4 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 4 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 4 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5
4 out of 5

12000 reasons to be happier.

07 October 2010 by Chonky

What a bike, after all the sports bikes, street bikes, we decided to go sensible with a bit of naughtiness. We certainly got everything we wanted apart from service and parts. If a simple part breaks on a new bike, it shouldn't take 3 weeks to get a... Read more switch, and it shouldn't be my fault i can't get in to have it fitted. So, I have 12000 reasons I should be happier and they are all the £12000 I paid for a fully loaded bike, luggage + The gear and new helmets. A great bike, let down by little annoying things, dealers and the manufacturer. What a shame.

Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 3 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 2 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
5 out of 5

GS still king.

02 April 2010 by gs12

Buying the GS 1200 adventure 18 months ago has been the best biking decision of my life. Having owned 42 bikes over the years mostly (sports bikes) i did wonder if i had made a rash decision "NOT". Because if you attack bends & trust the bike it... Read more can be ridden just as fast if not faster than most on twisty roads. You also find your having fun at not so illegal speeds and able to explore tight back roads, riding has never been so much fun! I thank the GS & BMW for rejuvinating my biking enthusiasm again. Touring is my new passion now along with 2up bliss! Enough said as i shall get carried away. Im going to get the keys out now even though its raining. See what it does to you owning a GS!!!!!

Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
4 out of 5

specs wrong

17 March 2010 by charlieharry

I am not sure that the new GS1200 has ESA11 as an option, also wheel sizes quoted on your spec's are wrong. Read more

Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 3 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 3 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
Read all 4 owners' reviews in full

Facts & Figures

Model info
Year introduced 2010
Year discontinued 2013
Original price £11,600
Warranty term (when new) Two year unlimited mileage
Running costs
Insurance group 14 of 17
Annual road tax £80
Annual service cost -
Performance
Max power 110 bhp
Max torque 88 ft-lb
Top speed 130 mph
1/4-mile acceleration -
Average fuel consumption 41 mpg
Tank range 300 miles
Specification
Engine size 1170cc
Engine type 8v Boxer twin, 6 gears
Frame type Tubular steel trellis
Fuel capacity 33 litres
Seat height 890mm
Bike weight 223kg
Front suspension Preload
Rear suspension Preload, rebound
Front brake Twin 300mm discs
Rear brake Single Disc, ABS Optional
Front tyre size 120/70 x 17
Rear tyre size 180/55 x 17

History & Versions

Model history

BMW 1150GS Adventure (2002-2005)
BMW 1200GS Adventure (2006-2009)

Other versions

BMW R1200GS

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