While the current crop of BMW R1200GS model motorcycles are being recalled for issues with their front suspension, the future of the venerable GS line continues to evolve, as Motorrad Magazine is reporting that the boxer-twin engine that powers the R-series will be getting variable valve timing (VVT). Motorrad is also reporting that the engine displacement will also see a bump, up from 1,170cc to 1,250cc for the next-generation of R-series machines, which should mean that the water-cooled motor should get a healthy (and much needed) bump in power, to help compete in this hotly contested segment. This announcement also means that BMW is the second manufacturer to bring VVT technology to its ADV bike offering, hoping to balance low-end and mid-range torque with peak horsepower.
Not to let Ducati have all the half-year fun, BMW Motorrad too is posting impressive sales figures for the first half of the year, with the German marque reporting a 10.5% sales increase in the first six month of 2015, compared to the equivalent time period last year. BMW has sold 78,418 motorcycles and maxi-scooters, from January to June, with sales up 31% in June alone (15,490 units) — another record month for BMW Motorrad. With last year being the best ever for BMW Motorrad, this news of course means that the German company is on-track to have another record-setting year of sales. BMW attributes this growth to economic conditions in Europe, with gains made in Italy, France, UK, Spain, and Germany.
There seems to be no stopping the momentum that BMW Motorrad contains, as the German marque is reporting yet another record-breaking sales quarter.
Selling 31,370 units in Q1 2015, BMW Motorrad is up 9.2% over last year’s sales figures. That record was helped considerably by a strong March, with zie Germans selling 15,912 two-wheelers worldwide (up 4.8% over March 2014).
We already know that BMW Motorrad broke last year’s sales record…in November, so it is no surprise then that we report that 2014 was another sales record for the Bavarian brand. Selling 123,495 units last year in total, this means that BMW Motorrad is up another 7.2% in sales — strong and steady growth for the German company, with December selling 7,032 units (+10.9%). Germany continues to be BMW’s strongest market, with roughly one sixth of the company’s total inventory (21,714 units) selling to the home crowd. BMW Motorrad is also Germany’s market leader, owning 25% of the Germanic motorcycle market. In the 500cc+ category, BMW Motorrad was the market leader not only in Germany, but in Spain and Italy as well.
BMW Motorrad USA has finished the books on 2014, and the American subsidiary is able to report one of its best sales years in the past decade. Up 5.4% over 2013’s sales figures, BMW Motorrad USA saw strong sales from is S-Series of bikes (S1000RR and S1000R), which were up 80% with 254 units.
The R-Series was another strong performer, up 17% with 477 units sold. The 2014 BMW R1200RT was BMW Motorrad USA’s best-selling motorcycle as well, despite the tourer’s suspension issues, which kept the bikes sidelined for several months.
It was only a few months ago, June 6th to be precise, that BMW Motorrad advised owners of the new liquid-cooled BMW R1200RT, who had the optional Dynamic ESA suspension package equipped, to stop riding their motorcycles until a solution to a collapsing rear shock defect could be found. Ultimately, BMW and its parts supplier decided to replace the rear shock entirely, recalling all the 8,000 units worldwide (950 of which are in the United States). For those R1200RT that elected not to have BMW Motorrad buyback their machines, riding should commence sometime this month. BMW Motorcycle Magazine is reporting that BMW Motorcycle dealers should have replacement shock absorbers in two weeks’ time, and thus be able to begin fixing affected machines.
Despite having rough sales in June (-5.7%), BMW Motorrad says it had its best six-month spread every during the first half of 2014, with the German motorcycle maker selling 70,978 motorcycles and maxi-scooters so far this year. Up 9.3% over the same time period last year (64,941 units), BMW Motorrad continues to show solid growth each quarter, and each sales year.
“We have achieved an all-time six-month high in the first half of this year. Never before have we sold this many vehicles in the first six months of a year,” said Heiner Faust, BMW Motorrad Head of Sales and Marketing. “With an increase of 9.3 % in the first half of 2014, we remain on course to achieve an all-time sales high for the year as a whole.”
After advising owners of the 2014 BMW R1200RT to stop riding their motorcycles if they were equipped with the company’s Dynamic ESA suspension, BMW Motorrad has now begun an official recall with the NHTSA for the faulty rear shock piston rod on the R1200RT.
In its NHTSA filing, BMW of North America says that the piston rod within the rear shock absorber can break without warning, which can cause a loss of stability that in-turn could result in a crash. The issue only affects motorcycles manufactured between November 27th, 2013, to May 5th, 2014, for a total of 950 potentially affected machines in the USA.
A reports by BMW Motorcycle Magazine has described what BMW Motorrad USA is offering owners who were affected by the “Do Not Ride” order regarding the BMW R1200RT. BMW Motorrad issued a worldwide statement regarding the 2014 BMW R1200RT, saying that models of the touring bike that were equipped with the Dynamic ESA suspension should not be ridden because of a possible catastrophic failure. BMW Motorrad hasn’t intimated when a solution could be coming for the affected R1200RT owners, though rumors are a date in August or September. To compensate American riders for this downtime, BMW Motorrad USA has put together three options for RT owners.
BMW Motorrad has released a worldwide notification about a potentially dangerous suspension situation, which affects the 2014 BMW R1200RT. Concerned about the safety regarding the Dynamic ESA electronic suspension package, BMW Motorrad says that there is a potential defect with the system’s rear spring strut. Since the German motorcycle manufacturer cannot rule that the piston rod could potentially break, BMW Motorrad is advising 2014 R1200RT owners not to ride their motorcycles until further notice. BMW Motorrad insists that this is a precautionary measure, which the comopany is making in the interests of customer safety, and based on a supplier report.
News that BMW will be coming out with a water-cooled replacement of its current R1200RT is really nothing new. Since the debut of the new BMW R1200GS, and its precision water-cooled motor, it has seemed like only a matter of time before the BMW’s next-generation boxer engine made its way into the German company’s other models. We have already seen the 2014 BMW R1200RT strutting its stuff in camouflage before, but those photos were small and blurry — really just enough to give us an idea of what we were looking at, and nothing more. This is not the case today however, as a German blogger has been fortunate enough to catch what he calls the BMW R1200GTt out in the wild, and has included a 1080p walk-around to prove it.