One such ride would be the S 1000 XR, called BMW Motorrad's first adventure sports bike and nicknamed ‘adventure sports perfection’.
Following on from the S 1000 RR and HP4 superbikes as well as the S 1000 R roadster, BMW Motorrad considers the S 1000 XR the fourth member in its line-up of high-power motorcycles with straight-four-cylinder engines and a distinctly sporty bias.
This is clearly mirrored in every design element and combines with what’s being called ‘flawless ergonomics, ingenious wind and weather protection’ as well as the 20 – 30 mm increase in spring travel and greater ground clearance, all of which make an impressive statement to the efforts behind this new ride.
This addition to its line-up fuses the characters and strengths of the BMW Motorrad GS, Touring and Sport models on a visual level as well to create a new breed of motorcycle tagged “adventure sport”. The tagline encompasses dynamic touring qualities, sporty performance and high levels of comfort as well as outstanding everyday usability. In short, the new S 1000 XR serves up its own individual mix of sporting and touring flair at the same time as injecting a generous dose of emotion.
Source: BMW Motorrad
The motorcycle promises the dynamic performance of a racer, the upright seat position of an adventure machine and the endurance of a tourer. BMW’s target market is anyone who wants performance and comfort in one machine.
To put it in simpler market terms, the S 1000 XR is aimed directly at the highly successful Ducati Multistrada, which has been widely considered the best all-round motorcycle.
BMW’s S 1000 XR certainly starts on the right motorcycle foot with a straight-four-cylinder engine derived from the S 1000 R roadster. It has an output of 118 kW (160 hp) at 11,000 rpm and generates maximum torque of 112 Nm (83 lb-ft) at 9,250 rpm. This power unit produces torque in abundance, making it ideal for providing the punchy response at low and medium revs that riders seek when powering along country roads or carrying a passenger.
The straight-four-cylinder unit combines tremendous pulling power and exhilarating acceleration with a high peak output, while offering the rider a usable rev range that spans over 10,000 rpm. This makes it just as adept at highly pleasurable touring as it is at sporty rides down winding country roads or holiday trips complete with passenger and luggage.
Reportedly, the S 1000 XR can go head to head with other sportsbikes on the legal roads, but comes with the advantage of not only comfortable riding but a user-friendly performance. Obviously the motorcycle has been built as a tourer and has riders comfort in mind, but what about a rider’s mental comfort?
The XR’s spread of torque has been described as ‘large and thick’ allowing for a biker to settle down in one gear and enjoy the ride. Add the option of Gear Shift Assist Pro and riders can have fun playing with performance not normally seen on a touring motorcycle.
But it's more than just the sporty thrills that the German motorcycle manufacturer feels will impress riders. To enable the riding characteristics to be adapted to the prevailing road conditions as effectively as possible, the new S 1000 XR already comes with the “Rain” and “Road” riding modes as standard. The standard-fit Automatic Stability Control (ASC) ensures a high standard of riding safety by optimizing traction.
The chassis of the new S 1000 XR adventure sport bike is every bit as impressive as the ferocious power delivery of the four-in-line engine. Based on this model series’ existing design, it employs an aluminum-alloy perimeter frame in which the engine forms part of the load-bearing structure. Wheel suspension at the front and rear is handled by an adjustable upside-down fork and a double-sided swing arm with adjustable central spring strut respectively.
As if to show BMW Motorrad built this motorcycle for purpose and not from what was necessarily lying around, the chassis geometry has been completely redefined in order to cater to the specific requirements of the XR.
The S 1000 XR can be equipped ex-works with the Pro riding modes option, which includes the additional riding modes “Dynamic” and “Dynamic Pro” along with Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) and ABS Pro.
Source: BMW Motorrad
Speaking of additional options, ABS goes a step further with ABS Pro. The features goal is to make braking while cornering safer as well by enabling ABS-assisted braking in a banked position. In such situations, ABS Pro prevents the wheels from locking up even when the brakes are applied sharply. This reduces abrupt changes in steering force, especially in response to panic braking, and consequently limits any undesirable righting of the bike.
ABS Pro offers riders the benefit of increased braking and riding stability combined with optimum stopping power, even in corners.
Models such as BMW’s ‘adventure sports bike’ are enjoying a lot of attention from riders wanting the ability to tackle a range of riding conditions. As mentioned earlier, Ducati’s Multistrada was the best choice for those who essentially wanted it all. With this newest model from BMW Motorrad, that’s not the case anymore.
As the motorcycle industry continues to move back through the gears of success, it will be interesting to see not only how this battle between two bikes plays out, but also this riding option's popularity. With the S 1000 XR enjoying a starting MSRP of $16,350 with ABS, its certainly an affordable choice.