I got a text message earlier today… “bring your camera!” it said. I was involved in so many calls and conversations today, it was hard to wait until I could find the time to get to the European Motorcycles of Western Oregon to check this thing out in person.
I had seen one of these bikes for the first time in February at the One Moto show in Portland. But this time I could see and touch it as well.
I don’t know what angle is the best angle to photograph this machine. They are all nice angles o this bike.
It doesn’t have the nice front forks of the R NineT roadster. Nor the aluminum tank. And a few other items here and there, showing BMW wanted to make sure this bike started at a lower price point than the R NineT Roadster.
However, you can build your own by selecting options or getting BMW accessories for this bike, and almost bringing it all the way to the roadster level. ABS is standard. As options you can get traction control, heated grips, cross-spoke wheels and off road tires, for example. As accessories, there is a long list. As examples, you can get a headlight protector, a short seat and the aluminum hand brushed tank.
The cast wheels are okay. The cross spoke wheels are better looking in my opinion. My one complaint about this bike? The one-clock. Really? One clock is okay, but why not make it an analog tachometer? Speed shows so well in digital form. I guess that is an issue of preference. Not my preference, in this case. During the preliminary videos released by BMW, they do talk about a two-clock option. But I haven’t seen that on any of the official materials available so far.
On the other hand, I like the Metzeler Karoo 3 tires.
It comes only on this matte gray color, called… Monolith Metallic Matt. Despite the name, I like this color a lot. I actually prefer it to the original black or the hand brushed aluminum tank version. The matte gray works well with the orange tones of the seat.
By the way the seat is not leather. It looks like leather, it almost feels like leather, they did a great job at it, even with the stitches in some strategic areas, giving a more realistic look of leather. I like the color of the seat as well.
I had a chance to check the ergos. It is taller than the roadster, but I still can flat foot it (my inseam is between 30 and 31) with both feet. The handlebars are taller than on the roadster. It checks all the boxes on the ergos.
I can see riding this machine around the world. Or just around the block. I would take it many times around the block… It looks like the perfect machine, the essence of what riding is all about. It is unassuming, a good mix of old school but modern, a classic motor, but with great performance. Based on my test rides on the R NineT roadster, it is powerful and a lot of fun to ride. One of the best machines I’ve ever ridden.
If you want to see one of these bikes in person, contact your local BMW shop, they should have one ready. If you are in the general proximity of Eugene, check with Mickey at the European Motorcycles of Western Oregon. Who knows till when they will have this bike available… I bet not too long.
Thank you for reading.