BMW Test Rides
Jess & I took out a couple of BMW bikes for test rides on Saturday. I rode the K1300GT & R1200RT tourers, while Jess chose to ride the K1300S & K1300R.
I really enjoyed riding this bike. The riding position was comfortable and I particulary liked the mirrors – I could actually see behind me. (Unlike on my Bandit where I have to jiggle about in the seat to see behind – even with mirror extenders) The engine felt lively and responsive and overtaking was a breeze. The handlebars felt like they could do with being pulled back a degree or so and I wasn’t quite sure what to do with my heels (I like to ride with the balls of my feet on the pegs) as they felt pushed out a bit. The screen wasn’t much good either, I left it set in the lowest position with the wind in my chest as the high setting made the wind buffet around my helmet and gave me a headache.
This was my first time with BMW’s boxer engine and I have to say that I didn’t particularly enjoy it. The position of the handlebars was better than the GT as was the screen (it had a taller screen fitted) but the engine felt quite clunky and I could feel the vibrations through the handle bars. The gearbox was feather light but I found the throttle response underwhelming and acceleration seemed sluggish. Maybe it was just the way I was riding it but I was a little disappointed, to be honest. Maybe I was expecting too much? I didn’t like the position of the mirrors either, they hang under the handlebars like a Cape Buffalo’s ears and I had to keep looking for them, although you would no doubt get used to them.
Overall impressions? I’d have the GT anyday. Now, if I can just find £14000 somewhere!
I know that Jess preferred the K1300S but I’ll see if I can convince her to write a few words about them.