It’s the Flying Dutchman: Nico Bakker gives BMW K1600GT the GS treatment

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This 1600cc, 160bhp beast has to be the maddest ‘GS’ ever. When Willem Heijboer started grinding out the engine cases of his BMW K1600GT he realised that he needed help. That help came from Dutch bike builder Nico Bakker.

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Heijboer told Bakker he wanted the handling, litheness and looks of a GS, but with the turbine-like power of the inline-six K1600 engine.

Bakker used the K1600GT as the base and retained the engine, shaft drive, the trio of 320mm brake discs with Brembo calipers/Bosch ABS, and the electrics, including the ESA function and the shock to go with it.

He then custom built the frame using chrome-moly steel tubing so that he could create the stiffness required for such a hefty bike and lengthened the wheelbase to 1635mm (from 1618mm), but sharpened the steering geometry. Bakker also ditched the Telelever front in favour of fully-adjustable 48mm WP set-up.

BMW K1600GS Mammoth on the road

To adapt the R1200GS design ethos to the K16, Bakker opted for a 19in front wheel matched to a 17in rear and went for wire spokes.

Despite a huge 39-litre tank, the aptly-named K1600GS Mammoth only weighs 310kg fully fuelled, which is about 20kg less than the stock machine with a measly 24-litre tank. “I don’t like to stop on a long journey if I don’t have to,” explained Dutchman Heijboer.

The stainless Akrapovič six-into-two exhaust with twin carbon-wrap silencers was custom built and sounds great according to the bike’s owner.

Heijboer has already used the custom machine for long-distance trips and said: “Although it’s a heavy bike, it’s smooth and easy to ride. I also took it to a trackday at Assen and was amazed at how well it handles. And I don’t touch the engine down any more – just the footrests!”

Alan Cathcart

By Alan Cathcart