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BMW R1200R (2015-on) Review

Published: 15 December 2014

Updated: 15 December 2014

A classic roadster with a 21st century twist

BMW R1200R  (2015-on)

A classic roadster with a 21st century twist

Overall Rating 4 out of 5

With its silky, new-generation boxer engine, telescopic upside down forks and a host of standard and optional electronic rider aids the 2015 BMW R1200R enters the modern motorcycling age.

Fully-loaded, it’s as techno-packed as any sportsbike, with all the safety and performance advantages that brings, but it’s still simple and friendly to ride. It’s a classic roadster with a 21st century twist.

Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5

It’s friendly, easy to manage and supremely comfortable, although being a roadster, wind protection isn’t great at high speeds.

Conventional 45mm non-adjustable upside forks replace the Televeler system from the previous model, giving the R1200R more feel going into corners, especially in the wet and at the limit in the dry.

The rear end’s ‘EVO Paralever’ offers decent feel and stability, but still rises slightly on and off the power, but on the plus side, you’ll never need to clean or adjust your chain again. Wet and dry grip from the Metzeler Z8 Roadtec tyres are superb and the ABS-assisted radial front calipers never lack bite or power.

Dynamic ESA (Electronic Suspension Adjustment) gives the R1200R semi-active suspension, like the DDC-equipped HP4, but has electronically-adjustable preload as well. It adds an extra layer and plushness to an already sweet-handling chassis.

Engine 4 out of 5

The R’s old 109bhp old air/oil-cooled engine makes way for the same 1170cc, 125bhp air/liquid-cooled DOHC flat-twin unit that powers the ‘13 R1200GS, ’14 R1200GS Adventure and R1200RT, but with a revised airbox and exhaust design.

The ride-by-wire-controlled engine has a beautifully-smooth power delivery, a snatch-free throttle, lots of usable torque and a decent kick at the top end. Although more refined than ever, the boxer motor still has bags of character.

Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5

It’s built like a Tonka toy, has a deep paint finish and all the controls work smoothly and easily. The previous model has nothing but rave reviews on our website’s owners’ reviews section.

Insurance, running costs & value 4 out of 5

Ten grand is a lot to pay for a basic roadster, but load it up with the optional electronics extras and suddenly the R1200R becomes excellent value for money and it will hold its value more when it’s time to sell.

Insurance group: 12 of 17 – compare motorcycle insurance quotes now.

Equipment 3 out of 5

BMW are a bit mean with their toys as standard, but the R does come with two riding modes, a basic traction control system and ABS.

But there are some incredible electronics available as options, such as: two extra riding modes, full Dynamic Traction Control (DTC), semi-active suspension, a quickshifter/auto-blipper, cruise control, heated grips, keyless ignition and on-board computer.

Then, there’s an almost endless selection of performance, design and touring goodies to choose from BMW’s vast parts and accessory catalogue.

Facts & Figures

Model info
Year introduced 2015
Year discontinued -
New price £10,250
Used price £6,500 to £11,300
Warranty term Two years
Running costs
Insurance group 12 of 17
Annual road tax £91
Annual service cost £140
Performance
Max power 125 bhp
Max torque 92 ft-lb
Top speed 145 mph
1/4-mile acceleration -
Average fuel consumption 45 mpg
Tank range 178 miles
Specification
Engine size 1170cc
Engine type 8v, flat twin
Frame type Steel tubular bridge frame
Fuel capacity 18 litres
Seat height 790mm
Bike weight 231kg
Front suspension 45mm non-adjustable Sachs forks (Dynamic ESA optional)
Rear suspension Preload adjustable rear shock (Dynamic ESA optional)
Front brake 2 x 320mm discs with four-piston radial calipers.
Rear brake 276mm single disc with twin-piston caliper.
Front tyre size 120/70 x 17
Rear tyre size 180/55 x 17

History & Versions

Model history

2006 – R1200R takes over from R1150R

Other versions

None.

Owners' Reviews

3 owners have reviewed their BMW R1200R (2015-on) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

Review your BMW R1200R (2015-on)
Summary of Owners' Reviews
Overall Rating 4.3 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4.3 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 4.3 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 4.3 out of 5
Equipment 4.7 out of 5
4 out of 5

The bike that 80 percent of GS riders would be better suited to.

28 October 2019 by christopher scott

Great all rounder, carries pillion and luggage for the european tours that other grunty roadster twins fail to do. Ticked all the boxes and bought pre registered, so far no issues with 3 spanish tours under the belt. Bike has been nowhere near a dealer so costs in use are low. Routine maintenance is a doddle. Covered 11.5k miles. Good fun solo and handles really well. Massive improvement over the telelever shod BMW`s old and new. I reckon if you are under 6ft tall and do not want to ride off road this is the boxer for you. Better handling than the GS loads more character than the SXR. If you are pushing on and have a full days riding ahead of you then you will feel the effects of the smaller screen. Can not see me chopping it in for the Shift cam any time soon.

Ride Quality & Brakes
5 out of 5
Back brake is very good, great engine braking, quick shift works a treat when you get used to it, especially the down shifts. The front headlight is not much cop in the dark. Lovely two up bike . We ride in general from a full tank till the fuel light comes on. 2hrs and we are ready for a break. Bike has a centre stand which is great for tyre changing and servicing but can be a bit disconcerting for the missus when it starts to scrape. It really is a great looking bike with muscle presence, retro appeal and a lovely soundtrack even with the standard exhaust. Why anyone would change it is beyond me.
Engine
5 out of 5
I dislike nothing about the engine. Great acceleration, well mannered in all gears.
Build Quality & Reliability
4 out of 5
Still looks like new. Never been near a salted road though. It really does have a premium bike feel. Everything works as it should. Bought a grp hugger for it to protect the fancy esa shock, a fenda extenda and inexpensive chinese lower front casing and zorst crossover protector. The paint system on the rims is a bit shallow. So extra care needed when changing tyres.
Value & Running Costs
5 out of 5
I am a diy enthusiast so in the main, lubricants, coolant, hydraulics filters, plugs,pads and valve clearances only cost me the materials. A Haynes or Clymer is a must.
Equipment
5 out of 5
sat nav 5 , wonder wheel, esa, quick shift pro, auto lights, brembo`s, cornering abs, dash, riding modes all work well, tyre pressure sensors work, even tell you pressure. I swear by Maxxis tyres, and try not to dick about with expensive after market tat other than bits previously mentioned. The bike is great from the factory and the after market crap that gets fitted might not be the next would be owners choice.
Buying experience

Dealer purchased. Pre Reg. Xmas time 2016. Got a good deal , bought full BMW luggage. Forgot what i paid for it. I do not entertain PCP cos I like to own not rent my vehicles.

5 out of 5

Great All-rounder!

09 March 2016 by PaulH

Grunt is the one word I'd use to sum this bike up! It really pulls from any gear, in fact in normal everyday use I'd say it's quicker 'point to point' than my S1000R was. Not only that but it does it with such ease, comfort and sweet handling.

Ride Quality & Brakes
4 out of 5
Breaks are very strong although they don't bite immediately and take a small amount of lever travel before they engage. But once there... they are very strong. Ride quality is very smooth and comfortable. Wind protection is not good as would be expected from a naked bike so an after market screen (BMW touring screen) was necessary and has made it much more bearable in the winter.
Engine
5 out of 5
Ballistic... what a peach of an engine. Grab a test ride to experience it for yourself.
Build Quality & Reliability
5 out of 5
So far perfect. The bike is beautifully put together with quality components and switch gear. I know the servicing will be a bit pricey... but it's a BMW after all.
Value & Running Costs
5 out of 5
I'm getting 50 mpg pretty consistently. Hooligan mode riding will reduce it to 45 mpg but motorway riding will see 55+ mpg. I bought mine as an ex-demo bike with 1500 miles and saved about £1500 from the retail price. At that level it was great value.
Equipment
4 out of 5
BMW are never terribly generous with spec and you have to pay for it. That said you do get ABS and two riding modes as standard and the bike is very comfy straight out of the box. Personally I don't think the dynamic suspension is worth paying for unless you're going to do lots of two-up riding. The one must-have item which is not fitted by BMW is a rear hugger or 'mudsling'. The rear wheel does throw a lot of water onto the back of the riders legs, so this (for most) will need to be an immediate fit.
Buying experience

Professional and hassle free.

4 out of 5

BMW R1200R 2015, Amazing piece of kit

22 January 2016 by BigAl

Great comfort and speed, the riding modes are great and the settings for the pillion/luggage has helped loads. Very heavy when not moving or stopping on a hill/slope, can be very worrying at time.

Ride Quality & Brakes
4 out of 5
Brakes: are great but take their time to kick in, on my last bike the bite was straight away and it stopped on the stop, but with this big, they take longer to engage and it seems to like stopping over a longer distance, should be ok, but have had a couple of hairy moments. Pillion: Happy to ride for a couple of hours in the saddle, very enjoyable, no issues with the suspension and set up. You pillion will get very wet from the spray from the back wheel.
Engine
5 out of 5
Amazing motor, pulls like a truck on steroids. Love leaving it in a high gear and then giving it some beans, and hearing the noise from the Remus can I had installed. Just love not having to worry about being in the right gear or the speed, as with the 800cc BMW's. Engine modes are very good, have loved using the rain mode to help in the wet and when by myself, putting it in User and seeing what the bike can do.
Build Quality & Reliability
4 out of 5
Rear or the bike has small scratches on it already from pillions getting on and off. Everything else is amazing, starts every time and no issues with double starts.
Value & Running Costs
3 out of 5
Only had it for a month so far, so hoping this doesn't run into millions, but so far the bike seems no more expensive than my triumph street triple R. Not looking forward to the 12,000 miles service, as I have been told it going to be an average of £400.00.
Equipment
5 out of 5
Made sure I got the sports version (red and white) and it had every single option added to it. The bike is the most advanced thing I have every owned and I love playing with the toys on it. The blipper and gear assist are not important and you can do without, but are fun when used. The modes and setting are worth the money and having the day running light is a good option too. I also brought the side luggage and SatNav 5, as I have decided to be a weekend tourer, both are a good buy, but the SatNav 5 is bloody amazing (expensive) just easy to use and gives you some much information about your journeys and the bike stats.
Buying experience

Brough from a dealer, the price was £11,495.00 with all the extra bits on so it would have cost £14,080.00 (ex Demo) but after adding the boxes, Remus and SatNav it came to about £13,200.00. The experience so far hasn't been the best as I waited an extra 2 weeks for the bike and it was still dirty when picked up, bolt missing from under the rear pillion seat and no tool kit under the seat. Have discussed problems with dealer and hoping to get sorted soon.

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