BMW R1250GS Adventure Road Test Review

30 July 2019, 08:02 AM Pratheek Kunder

Introduction

This is the R1250GS –a brand new adventure motorcycle from BMW. This GS is known for two things – its rich heritage and the ability to traverse through continents with ease. All these have resulted in it becoming the highest selling big adventure bike in the world. 

The bike we have here is the top-spec version of the GS. This means, it is the most expensive variant and is loaded with tech that isn’t seen on many expensive cars. This BMW is big, burly and can easily intimidate anyone. But is this why you should shy away from buying one? Well, then you have to read the full review. 

Quality

The most expensive adventure touring motorcycle from a brand like BMW needs to have top-class quality, right? Well, it does. In fact, it goes a step ahead. The level of detailing is outstanding. Starting from the tip of the mudguard beak, and all the way to the tail section – the workmanship is top-notch. The plastics too, have tonnes of premiumness attached to it. The dials and the toggle switches are nice to use. 

A close look at the chassis reveals the great work that the engineers have put. The frame welds are as accurate as can be. The paint quality too, is almost like that of a BMW sedans. Even the smallest detail, like the rubber on the grip, has been well thought out. In short, a lot of enthusiasm and finesse has gone into making this motorcycle. 

Comfort

Like we mentioned in the introduction, the R1250GSA is intimidating as hell. But as soon as you swing your leg over it, which by the way is easy, thanks to the 890mm seat height, you are bound to feel at home. Yes, the large plastic panels around the fuel tank might make you feel as if you are sitting on a tank, but the upright handlebar, large seat and slightly rear-set footpegs will make you feel at home right away. And it’s the same story once the bike gets moving. 

BMW R 1250 GS Adventure [2019]

BMW R 1250 GS Adventure [2019]

  • Displacement1,254 cc
  • Max Power(bhp)132.1 bhp
  • Kerb Weight249 kg
  • ;

Ex-showroom, Mumbai

 18,25,000

The handlebar is neatly placed, and even for taller riders like me, it’s not going to be a problem. It’s nice and wide, and easy to leverage. Plus, when you want to stand up and ride, this bar placement is friendly and fun. The seat cushioning is fantastic. In fact, after spending long hours on it, you might find the need to upgrade the sofa set at home. 

Performance

The 1254cc boxer engine is no joke. This one produces 136bhp and 143Nm, and is responsible for moving this 268kg motorcycle. Use that electric start, and a deep exhaust note welcomes you. Twist that throttle, and you’ll instantly realise that this motor is all about really strong, low and mid-range. 

On the road, the R1250GSA feels at home. The throttle response is crisp and lively. The acceleration is seamless. In fact, post 3000rpm, the bike feels amazingly quick, which is quite surprising, given those huge panels that encase it. In case that throttle tempts you, the bike will take care of you even when the speedometer crosses 150kmph. The flat torque curve makes things quite easy on the highways too. You can sit at 150kmph all day long. There’s no vibrations, no engine stress. In fact, the cruise control lets you be there for lengthy durations, and that is bound to reduce the body fatigue. This motor redlines at 9000rpm, and hitting the limiter feels addictive, and there’s lots of power to play with until you hit the limiter. 

In traffic, the R1250GS is mind-boggling. Firstly, it doesn’t heat up at all. Countless hours in the Mumbai traffic, and this engine refuses to warm the legs around.  Secondly, due to its torquey nature, you don’t have to change the gears often. And even if you had to do, the supremely light clutch makes things easy. The ride quality is plush, and can be changed electronically according to the needs. Even with a pillion aboard, there isn’t much change in the overall dynamics. 

Take this bike off-road, and you will be amazed by the various aspects it possess. With that low centre of gravity, the R1250GS is easy to be manhandled on forest trails. The stand-up ergonomics are approachable, and that leads to some easy jumps and slides. Switch to Enduro mode, and things do get a bit exciting. The standard Bridgestone tyres tend to lose grip, but you have the smart electronics that keeps everything under control. The only issue I had with this bike is to move it around in tight trails with my legs. But this has to do with my poor fitness, and not the motorcycle. 

Technology

The features and technologies are loaded to the brim. This BMW is equipped with multiple riding modes, dynamics traction control system, cruise control and LED lights through-out. The Pro variant, which we tested, is loaded with electronic suspension which can be changed through toggle switches. Things don’t just stop here. 

The R1250GSA gets an adjustable brake and clutch lever. Even the foot-brake lever is adjustable to make it off-road friendly. But the most exclusive feature of this bike is the Hill Control System – a feature that will allow you to put both the feet on the ground in uphill or downhill situations when the engine is running and is on neutral. The full colour instrumentation is top-class. It throws up lots of information and in detail. 

Fuel Efficiency

The R1250GS has a humongous 30 litres fuel tank. And with a fuel efficiency of 15kmpl, you are looking at approximately 450kms of riding range in one full tank, and honestly, that’s a very good figure. 

Fitness of Purpose

ADV machines have just two things to do – long distance riding and do all that with ease. The new R1250GSA does both of these fantastically. The bike is just brilliant on the road. Take it off-road, and it can conquer any terrain you throw at it. Plus, I don’t remember the last time I rode a big bike, and didn’t swear due to the engine heat. This BMW works brilliantly there. In fact, it works brilliantly everywhere. 

Our Take

This BMW costs a whopping Rs 27.5 lakhs. At this price, you can easily get an SUV and that’s the reasoning your wife will give the moment you enter the BMW Motorrad showroom. But think this, with the R1250GS, you could go places that is not just difficult to access but next to impossible to reach. It can eat up countless miles with luxury and you still won’t feel the fatigue. Plus, there’s a certain joy and exclusivity of owning a bike like the R1250GSA, right? 

Photography by Kapil Angane

Gallery

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