2023 Author: Eric Donovan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-08-25 09:36
When the BMW F 800 GS came onto the market in 2007, it was an unmistakable exclamation mark. Within a very short time, the motorcycle became a symbol of the mid-range travel enduro.
At that time the market in this segment was of course still comparatively undeveloped; the Triumph Tiger 800 did not yet exist, fans of the faded Honda Africa Twin waited (in vain until 2016) for a successor model.
Now, at the beginning of 2018, everything is different: The new Honda Africa Twin has established itself in the thousands on the market and sells like "sliced bread", the Tiger 800, which also has 95 hp, has already undergone the second revision. There is also the now handsome Suzuki V-Strom 1000 XT. So it's high time for BMW to bring a new edition of the F 800 GS so as not to lose hopeless ground.
In May 2018 the time has finally come: The F 850 GS rolls to the dealers and, with its option of fully electronic equipment, shows that BMW does not want to surrender the ground gained a few years ago to the competition without a fight.
Everything is new with the BMW F 800 GS
"With the exception of a few screws, everything on the F 850 GS is really new," assures project manager Florian Schmidt during the driving presentation in the soaked Andalusian city of Malaga. The two-cylinder in-line engine has been completely redeveloped, as have the frame, wheel suspensions, brakes and electronics. The engine is an in-line two-cylinder with a crank pin offset, which makes the engine appear as if it were a V2. The maximum output of 95 PS / 70 KW is at a moderate 8200 rpm. achieved, the maximum torque of an impressive 92 Newton meters is already at 6200 rpm. at.
The engine is at the same time powerful, willing to turn and also smooth-running. With 4.1 liters of petrol per 100 kilometers according to the new WMTC consumption cycle, fuel consumption is also very low; it should be easy to implement in mixed operation. In the F 850 GS, the remarkable revving of the engine contributes significantly to the great driving pleasure of the eighty fifties; It storms out of bends in almost the same manner as a 1200 GS.
Additional weight of twelve kilos
The additional weight of twelve kilograms compared to the last built version of the F 800 GS is due to the developers not only due to the Euro 4-compliant exhaust system, but can also be found on the steel frame. "The motorcycle is more powerfully motorized and therefore faster and therefore places higher demands on driving stability," says Florian Schmidt as a reason.
The assembly of the noble cross-spoke wheels, which now allow the use of tubeless tires, is reflected on the scales, which now show an empty weight of 229 kilograms. The payload is an impressive 216 kilograms. The agility of the F 850 GS does not noticeably suffer from the extra pounds: the developers consistently paid attention to a low center of gravity and a balanced weight distribution between the front and rear wheels; therefore, for example, the tank moved back to its original location.
The eighty-fifties with its 21-inch front wheel and more than 20 centimeters of suspension travel is also exemplary off-road; in the group of competitors we see them absolutely in the top group
Base with anti-slip control
This applies even more to the electronics equipment. However, only a part of the possible is supplied as standard, and much is only available as optional equipment. In addition to a slipper clutch and the Rain, Road and Enduro driving modes, the basic equipment also includes an anti-slip control. "Pro driving modes" (including the Dynamic driving mode and the special Enduro Pro mode, dynamic traction control, ABS-Pro with cornering braking function and flickering brake light for emergency situations) and the well-functioning two-way quickshifter for clutchless upshifting and downshifting are subject to a charge, the LED light and also the new TFT color display.
In terms of readability, in our opinion, it represents the current non plus ultra on the market: readability is perfect even in direct sunlight and when driving while standing. We find the clear structure of the display as well as the control of the on-board computer functions to be one hundred percent successful, with the multi-controller mounted on the left of the handlebar playing an essential role.
Of course, the connectivity functions that seem essential nowadays are integrated into the display. The semi-active control of the central spring strut including the automatic adjustment of the spring preload is also subject to a surcharge. The function of the elements mentioned is good; Florian Schmidt's “price considerations” justified the waiver of a semi-active front wheel control on the 4.3 cm USD fork, which does not have a negative effect in practice.
Good ergonomics of the travel enduro
Because the ergonomics of the BMW F 850 GS are very sophisticated, both on and off-road when driving while standing, there is no avoiding certifying that BMW's formal mid-range GS, at least when fully equipped, is top-class; A top speed of 217 km / h and an acceleration from zero to 100 km / h in under four seconds do not reach the level of the 160 hp cars from Mattighofen and Bologna, but the weight, handiness and agility are on a very pleasing level.
It is not yet clear whether this will also apply to the price of the F 850 GS, as BMW has not yet published any prices. You only know that there will be three colors or equipment lines: Red, Rallye (white / red / blue) and Exclusive (matt gray metallic). The cards in the travel enduro middle class (just under 100 hp) will be shuffled again. For those who do not have any off-road ambitions, the new BMW F 750 GS must also be taken into account; With its front wheel measuring just 19 inches, it should even be slightly ahead in terms of handiness on asphalt. (SP-X)
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