1945-ish Boeing C-97G Stratofreighter, meet 2023 BMW 1250 RS. (Anders T. Carlson/)
Really or Rather Sporty?
BMW’s RS concept has existed for more than 40 years. Beginning with Hans Muth’s legendary RS100 RS of 1976, the RS has been shorthand for boxer-powered sport touring, as opposed to the more refined RT (Reise Touring) concept. The RS certainly didn’t invent a new riding genre, but it was a groundbreaking improvement for the nascent sport-touring community. Muth’s beautiful (and effective) fairing was fixed to frame with a 980cc boxer helping push both envelope and airspace.
Editor’s note: we test rode the ‘20 version during the 2020 BMW R 1250 RS MC Commute Review article and video.
Joining the 1975 Honda Gold Wing, the RS pushed the envelope of luxurious and sporty touring. Currently, the Kawasaki Concours 14 ABS and H2 SX SE, Suzuki GSX-S1000GT+, Yamaha FJR1300ES and Tracer 9, and the KTM 1290 Super Duke GT are all valid alternatives. But arguably, they exist because of BMW’s Sport Touring concept from way back when. The RS is the OG, so to speak.
The R 1250 RS, sandwiched between an R 50/5 and R 80/7. Note the glaring lack of similarities. (Anders T. Carlson/)
The 6.5-inch TFT, minus integrated Navigator GPS mount. (BMW/)
German grammar rules aside, BMW’s site plainly states that the R 1250 RS is a “Sport Tourer,” or “Reise Sport.” Travel Touring motorcycles are in the “Tour” section, but the RS gets a spot in the “Sport” section, alongside the S 1000 RR. The only boxer among BMW’s stable of sporting 1,000cc inline-fours, the RS runs with fast company. Is it legit or just a marathoner sneaking into the sprints? Look past the fairings and you’ll see a humanely tall handlebar, sensibly placed winglets, and an adjustable windshield that make for pleasurable 400-mile days. Slimmer fairings, an extra 1.6 inches in the wheelbase, and 79 fewer pounds turn the RT into an RS.
But does it do all the “sporting” well? That’s a really dumb question. It’s obviously one of the best ways to employ triple digits in service of two-wheeled vacationing. But Motorcyclist earned the only North American test ride for the 2023 R 1250 RS. So we smartly said yes to answering a stupid question over two weeks and 700 miles of Wisconsin countryside.
The Milwaukee Art Museum and BMW R 1250 RS offering a visual clinic on visual synergy. (Anders T. Carlson/)
Specs and Specifics
The oil-and-liquid-cooled 1,254cc opposed-twin motor is the spiritual heir to the beloved air-cooled /5 and /6 twins of the 1970s. “Spiritual” is shorthand for little shared DNA. But hit the starter, and you get that tractorlike wobble that defines boxer love. The counterbalance shaft means you get approximately 1,500 rpm’s worth of idling nostalgia before ShiftCam variable intake camshaft control ensures silky-smooth torque all the way up to 6,000 rpm and beyond.
The example kindly provided has the 29.9-inch low seat, which works great for riders 5 feet, 8 inches and shorter. Not so much for those of us with 5-foot-10 frames. This made for very cramped touring. It also turned various reproductive organs into load-bearing stressed members. But using imagination and creative writing, we’ll simulate a ride review with the standard 32.3-inch seat. While we’re at it, we’ll fake-review the 33.0-inch sport seat and optional tubular handlebars, which are wider and a tad higher. They’re also way easier to attach farkles to.
By: Anders T. Carlson
Title: 2023 BMW R 1250 RS Review
Sourced From: www.motorcyclistonline.com/reviews/bmw-r-1250-rs-review-2023/
Published Date: Sun, 04 Jun 2023 10:00:00 +0000
2024 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP First Look Preview
Honda is leaving well enough alone with regard to its top-tier superbike this year, keeping its CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP in the new motorcycle lineup unchanged in 2024. The track weapon is now available starting at $28,900 in a Pearl White color scheme.
Editor’s note: We test rode this vehicle during the 2021 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP First Ride Review and 2021 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP MC Commute Review articles and videos.
The 2024 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP starts at $28,900. (Honda/)
The SP is designed for on-track performance, first coming to the States in its current trim as a 2021 model. That major update resulted in a sportbike with a compact 999cc inline-four with numerous elements derived from MotoGP machines. The frame was revised to accommodate the new engine size and improve handling characteristics. Those changes coupled with improved tech and Öhlins semi-active electronic suspension resulted in a much-improved motorcycle during our first outing on track back in late 2020.
Other highlights of note include a much better-performing ride-by-wire system and quickshifter, taller rev range, and an improved braking package. The update brought the bike much more in line with literbike offerings from other manufacturers and left our testers feeling that this was a “superbike like we’ve never seen from Big Red.”
Related: The Best Superbikes of 2023
No major changes this year, but rumor has it big things may be on the way in 2024. (Honda/)
As a homologation platform, though, the bike also needs to perform in competition and in the years since its release the results haven’t been great in World Superbike. We’ll have to keep our eyes peeled for the 2024 edition, which if the rumors that have been circling prove to be true, will mark another notable update to the platform. Possibly with a better aerodynamics package to help the platform reach the top step. Only time will tell.
2024 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP Technical Specifications and Price
Price:$28,900Engine:999cc, DOHC, liquid-cooled inline-four; 4 valves/cyl.Bore x Stroke:81.0 x 48.5mmCompression Ratio:13.4:1Fuel Delivery:EFI w/ 52mm throttle bodies; ride-by-wireClutch:Wet, multiplate w/ quickshifterTransmission/Final Drive:6-speed/chainFrame:Twin-spar aluminumFront Suspension:43mm Öhlins NPX electronically controlled fork, fully adjustable; 4.9 in. travelRear Suspension:Pro-Link single Öhlins electronically controlled shock, fully adjustable; 5.6 in. travelFront Brake:Brembo Stylema 4-piston calipers, 330mm discsRear Brake:1-piston caliper, 220mm discWheels, Front/Rear:Aluminum; 17 x 3.5 in. / 17 x 6.0 in.Tires, Front/Rear:120/70-17 / 200/55-17Rake/Trail:24.0°/4.0 in.Wheelbase:57.4 in.Seat Height:32.7 in.Fuel Capacity:4.3 gal.Claimed Curb Weight:445 lb.Warranty:12-month unlimited-mileage, limited, transferableAvailable:September 2023Contact:powersports.honda.com
By: Byron Wilson
Title: 2024 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP First Look Preview
Sourced From: www.motorcyclistonline.com/news/honda-cbr1000rr-r-fireblade-sp-first-look-preview/
Published Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2023 10:00:00 +0000
Family Wagon: A four-up Moto Guzzi V7 sidecar rig from Madrid
The Moto Guzzi V7 platform is well-known to us here at Bike EXIF. Since its re-release in 2008, the practical modern classic has graced the garages of multiple Bike EXIF writers, including our founder, Chris Hunter. But despite its popularity, we don’t see that many truly wild Moto Guzzi V7 customs.
That’s because the Moto Guzzi V7 looks good enough when it leaves the Mandello del Lario factory that most owners only make minor adjustments over time. But when Efraon Triana at UFO Garage in Madrid, Spain, was tasked with building a family-friendly Moto Guzzi V7 sidecar rig, he knew that he and his team would have to go all out.
The customer, Mike, already owned one UFO Garage bike and wanted another to enjoy the Swiss countryside with. But there was a catch—Mike has two daughters and a wife who all want to be part of the fun. So not only did UFO Garage have to add a sidecar to the Guzzi, but they had to build it with two seats.
Efraon and his crew started by building the sidecar’s tubular steel frame by hand, adding an 18” wheel to match the V7. The wheel uses an aluminum rim on a CNC-machined hub—and if you peek through the spokes, you’ll spot the sidecar’s suspension system.
By: Ben Pilatti
Title: Family Wagon: A four-up Moto Guzzi V7 sidecar rig from Madrid
Sourced From: www.bikeexif.com/moto-guzzi-v7-sidecar
Published Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2023 16:59:29 +0000
2023 KTM 890 Adventure and Adventure R
2023 KTM 890 Adventure R (KTM/)
Low-slung fuel tank gives a low center of gravity that makes it easier for riders of every skill level to find their limit off-roadTop-end rider aids are simple to use and incredibly effectiveCompact LC8c engine is tractable, laugh-out-loud fun, and refined enough for touring comfort
At start-up the engine sounds like a toolbox falling down a flight of stairsAvailable in any color you want as long as it’s orangeBrakes aren’t as high-spec as what can be found on some of the competition
The benchmarks of the middleweight adventure category, the 890 Adventure and Adventure R shatter preconceptions of adventure-touring performance. Anything but top-heavy or cumbersome, these middleweights impress with killer rider aids, a responsive chassis, and a rowdy engine.
2023 KTM 890 Adventure (KTM/)
Adventure bikes, by nature, are the most compromised motorcycles on the market. They’re the proverbial jacks of all trades, but masters of none. There’s no perfect intersection of touring comfort, sport-riding exhilaration, around-town usability, and off-road capability that satisfies riders who want their machine to excel in every area. However, if those required traits were displayed on a Venn diagram, KTM’s 890 Adventure and Adventure R would increase the overlap between each circle.
When KTM unveiled the LC8c-powered 790 Adventure and Adventure R in 2019, we said: “It set a new standard in the adventure segment for dirt-worthiness,” and that “it nearly makes open-class machines irrelevant.” In other words, it was a game-changer.
Since that time, the middleweight class has become arguably the hottest segment in motorcycling as OEMs have attempted to wrest the middleweight crown from the rally-worn hands of the madmen from Mattighofen. Never one to rest on its laurels, KTM upped the ante in 2021, introducing the 890 Adventure and Adventure R, with a revised, larger-displacement 889cc engine with a higher compression ratio, larger intake and exhaust valves, an updated camshaft, and lighter pistons. In 2023, KTM revised the platform yet again.
One of the qualities that sets the 890 Adventure R apart is its low center of gravity. With most of its fuel sitting in front of the rider’s shins rather than on top of the machine, the 890 feels like a smaller, more nimble machine than its competition, inspiring riders to reevaluate what they thought they were capable of tackling on an ADV bike—both on and off-road. Coupled with a supereffective parallel-twin engine, impressive rider aids, great ergos, and unbelievable suspension—particularly on the R model—the 890 puts all other ADV bikes on their heels in the dirt. Even the base-model 890 Adventure, which uses less expensive, less off-road-biased suspension, is still an effective tool off-road while being more manageable for shorter riders and more aerodynamically efficient on the street.
It’s not like the 790/890 Adventure lineup were the first middleweight adventure bikes in the world, but they certainly opened a lot of people’s eyes and made good on the promise that yes, adventure motorcycles can go off-road, and yes, you should definitely get them as dirty as possible. The 890 Adventure series is what happens when you give a dirt bike manufacturer the keys to daddy’s adventure-tourer.
The 2023 KTM 890 Adventure R in the hands of someone with more skill than most of us. The aspirational R model has 10.4 inches of ground clearance, so you know it’s serious. (KTM/)
Updates for 2023
For 2023, the 890 Adventure series was further refined with a host of changes. Redesigned rally-inspired bodywork is intended to improve aerodynamics and ergonomics, as well as to provide more support for large navigation units. Both the base model and R receive their own windshields and both have aluminum covers that extend past the skid plate to add greater protection to the engine and tank.
Both the base model and R receive a 9.3 MP ABS unit
By: Cycle World Staff
Title: 2023 KTM 890 Adventure and Adventure R
Sourced From: www.motorcyclistonline.com/ktm/890-adventure-r/
Published Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2023 10:30:00 +0000
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