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2011 BMW R 1200 RT

2011 BMW R 1200 RTBMW R 1200 RTR 1200 RT

Overview of the main features of the new R 1200 RT:

  • New, even more dynamic engine with two overhead camshafts per cylinder.
  • Maximum torque increased to 120 Nm (88 lb-ft) at 6,000 rpm, maximum output remaining at 81 kW (110 hp) at 7,750 rpm.
  • Increase in maximum engine speed from 8,000 to 8,500 rpm, with an even broader useful range of engine speed.
  • Significantly improved torque, traction, pulling force, and acceleration.
  • Even more spontaneous and direct response with optimum dosage of power and significantly improved load change behaviour.
  • Torque curve even smoother and more homogeneous.
  • Cylinder head covers now with two instead of four fastening bolts and in new, even more dynamic design.
  • Electronically controlled exhaust flap for superior and powerful sound.
  • ESA II Electronic Suspension Adjustment with damping, spring base and now also spring rate adjustable at the touch of a button.
  • BMW Motorrad Integral ABS featured as standard in the partly integrated version.
  • Fairing in new design with protection from wind and weather improved once again.
  • Re-designed cockpit with visor.
  • New control units and hydraulic reservoir.
  • Electronically controlled windshield with optimised aeroacoustics and improved transparency with controllable interface for a USB/MP3 and iPod, operated through the Multi-Controller.
  • Adjustable footshift lever.
  • Hard-shell cases (each with a capacity of 32 litres) featured as standard, with accurately fi tting four-point lock system and cover fi nished in body colour.
  • Tank railing for conveniently fastening accessories.
  • New colours for the R 1200 RT: Polar metallic, Ostra Grey metallic matt, Thunder Grey metallic, multi-colour paintwork in conjunction with Thunder Grey metallic base colour.
  • Extended range of optional extras and special equipment tailored to the R 1200 RT, naturally in top BMW quality.

New boxer engine with much more torque for an even more dynamic and comfortable touring experience.

The BMW R 1200 RT has always been acknowledged as the epitome of comfortable and dynamic motorcycle touring in classic style. And now the latest version of this very special active tourer with its signifi cant innovations offers even more superior enduro qualities and dynamic benefi ts thanks to its new

In its configuration and basic structure, the new fl at-twin power unit is the same as the DOHC engine featured in the BMW HP2 Sport. It has however been further upgraded and optimised for the BMW R 1200 RT to meet the specific requirements of such an outstanding tourer.

With the 1,170-cc boxer engine on the former model already offering superior drive power under all conditions and in all situations, the new R 1200 RT has even more to offer. First, the new engine comes with an increase in maximum torque from 115 to 120 Nm (85 - 88 lb-ft) at an unchanged 6,000 rpm, for even
more pulling force and traction. Second, the range of useful engine speed is now 500 rpm broader, going up all the way to 8,500 rpm. The third improvement is a significant increase in torque where it really counts at low and medium engine speeds, with an absolutely smooth and homogeneous torque curve. Maximum output, as before, is 81 kW (110 hp), now at 7,750 rpm (previously 7,500 rpm).

New DOHC cylinder heads for an even more efficient cylinder charge.

Designed and built for even higher engine speeds, the new boxer engine of the R 1200 RT, like the power unit featured on the BMW HP2 Sport, comes with two overhead chain-driven camshafts (DOHC) per cylinder. Valves are operated by very light rocker arms able to cope easily with high engine speeds. Radial
arrangement of the four valves gives the combustion chamber very compact configurations, and like on the former models the fuel/air mixture is ignited by two spark plugs (HP2 Sport: one spark plug). The compression ratio of 12.0:1 remains unchanged.

Knock control allows the engine to run on 95-98 RON premium (plus) fuel. Under certain conditions the rider may experience a very small drop in torque and a slight increase in fuel consumption whenever knock control cuts in. Horizontal arrangement of the camshafts in the direction of travel calls for two special technical features on the new flat-twin power unit: Each camshaft controls one intake and one exhaust valve, and the cams are finished in conical shape due to the radial arrangement of the valves. Particularly in the interest of power and performance at low and medium engine speeds, and to provide even better free-revving riding characteristics, the intake and exhaust valve timing on both camshafts has been further optimised. Compared with the former models, the valve plates are up in diameter from 36 to 39 millimetres (1.41 – 1.54“) on the intake side and 31 to 33 millimetres (1.22 – 1.30”) on the exhaust side.

Valve clearance is adjusted by light semi-hemispherical shims. To provide a greater free-valve cross-section, valve lift is up from 10.54 mm (0.415“) on the intake and 9.26 mm (0.365”) on the exhaust side to 10.8 mm (0.425”) on both sides.

Significantly more torque throughout the entire speed range.

The existing ratio of bore:stroke remains the same at 101:73 mm (3.98:2.87”), giving the engine the same capacity as before of 1,170 cc. Other features likewise taken over from the former engine are the crankshaft and the connecting rods as well as their bearings, while the two pistons made of cast aluminium have been re-designed to match the modifi ed dimensions of the combustion chamber.

Interacting with the upgraded intake system, throttle butterfly manifolds now offering 50 mm (1.97“) instead of the former 47 mm (1.85”) (HP2 Sport: 52 mm/2.05”) opening clearance, newly designed intake air funnels and an air filter element with even higher throughput, the power unit, as in the past, develops maximum output of 81 kW/110 hp, now at 7,750 rpm. The biggest improvement, however, is the increase in maximum torque to 120 Nm/88 lb-ft at 6,000 rpm.

An oil cooler ensures a stable thermal balance even under extreme running conditions.

A further feature on the new model is the use of cylinder head covers with two instead of formerly four fastening bolts in new, even more dynamic design. A valve cover guard made either of aluminium or plastic as well as chrome-plated aluminium cylinder covers are available as special equipment.

Electronically controlled exhaust flap for superior and muscular sound.

On the exhaust system the two manifolds come in the same design, length and diameter as on the former model, while the interference pipe has been modified to take the different vibration conditions on the exhaust manifold into account.

Featuring an exhaust fl ap controlled via an electric motor and opening/closing cables, the new BMW R 1200 RT offers a particularly powerful boxer sound nevertheless in full compliance with all legal standards. To reduce ram pressure and improve the sound of the engine, the rear silencer unchanged in its exterior
design versus the former models comes with a modifi ed interior structure.

Ideal transmission of power thanks to six-speed gearbox and drive shaft.

As in the past, power is transmitted through the six-speed gearbox already upgraded in the 2008 model year, with larger bearing diameters and a modified gap between shafts. The maintenance-free drive shaft to the rear wheel is the same as before.

Running gear with Telelever and Paralever following a proven principle at BMW.

The proven, two-piece main/rear frame sections made of weight-saving steel tubes incorporating the engine as a load-bearing element offer maximum strength and stiffness under all running conditions. The front and rear frame are fi rmly bolted to the engine/gearbox unit, interacting with the engine and gearbox to form a load-bearing structure. The longitudinal arm on the front Telelever suspension is mounted as before on the engine block, the Paralever swing arm is fitted on the rear frame.

With its fixed tube measuring 35 millimetres/1.38” in diameter, the Telelever is the optimum solution for the rider using his machine exclusively on the road and focusing in particular on superior comfort. This is ensured by the good balance of sporting and comfort-oriented suspension behaviour, the maintenance-free
system once again designed to reduce brake dive to almost zero, which again helps to provide greater stability when applying the brakes when leaning over at an angle.

As in the past the Paralelver swing arm in the rear central spring strut comes with travel-dependent damping or TDD for short, with the damping effect increasing progressively as a function of spring travel. This keeps the suspension smooth, sensitive and comfortable in absorbing even the smallest bumps, while at the same time offering generous reserves on bad roads and tracks with grooves or big bumps and pitholes.

As in the past, spring travel is 120 millimetres/4.72“ up front and 135 millimetres/ 5.31” at the rear. In standard trim, the rear spring strut offers infinitely variable adjustment on the outbound stroke as well as a hand-wheel for infi nitely adjusting the spring base by 10 millimetres or 0.39”, in order to adjust the rear
end to varying load requirements.

Like its predecessor, the new R 1200 RT comes on light, almost filigree cast aluminium wheels in fi ve-spoke design, combining an attractive look with an easy-to-clean surface and a high standard of stiffness. The front wheel measures 3.5 x 17“, the rear wheel 5.5 x 17”, running on a 120/70 ZR17 tyre up front and a 180/55 ZR17 tyre at the rear.

ESA II Electronic Suspension Adjustment, adjustable damping, spring base and now also spring rate.

The BMW R 1200 RT is available with ESA II (Electronic Suspension Adjustment II) already well-known from the K series as an option at extra cost. Benefiting from this system quite unique in the world motorcycle market, the rider is able to adjust not only the damping on the outbound stroke of the front and rear spring strut, but also the spring base (spring pre-tension) on the front spring strut and the spring rate – all this at the simple touch of a button.

This second-generation Electronic Suspension Adjustment or ESA II for short provides the option to set the suspension for maximum comfort and, with greater precision than ever before, for optimum riding and load conditions, thus ensuring a new dimension of riding stability combined with absolutely excellent response.

To control the Electronic Suspension Adjustment as easily as possible and to prevent any unwanted settings, the rider initially enters the motorcycle’s current load condition (solo, solo with luggage, rider with passenger and luggage). The appropriate spring base and spring rate is then set automatically, with the system coordinating these two parameters to one another. Depending on the style of riding he wishes to enjoy, the rider must also choose among the Comfort, Normal or Sport mode, giving the suspension the desired
qualities. So applying the optimum parameters kept available in the Central Vehicle Electronics, the electronic “brain” calculates the appropriate damper rates and sets them accordingly. As a result, the new R 1200 RT benefi ts from a total of no less than nine different set-up options.

With additional adjustment of the spring rate, ride height can be set perfectly to various load conditions, ensuring an even higher standard of riding stability, handling and comfort. Even when carrying high loads with a passenger and lots of luggage, the R 1200 RT maintains all of its riding qualities also when leaning
over to a low angle in bends, for a truly sporting style of riding at all times.

A further advantage is that adjustment of the spring rate dramatically reduces the risk of the suspension suddenly sagging under extreme load. The rider is able to change the damper setting (Normal, Sport, Comfort) simply by pressing a button also while riding, while for function and safety reasons the spring base may be changed only at a standstill. The spring rate is adjusted by an electric motor complete with its own transmission, while the damping rate is modifi ed by small step motors on the dampers.

Adjustment of the spring rate is controlled by two springs connected in series, one behind the other. An elastomer unit (Cellasto) in combination with a conventional coil spring further down takes up forces under spring pressure, radial expansion of the Cellasto element to the outside being restricted by a steel sleeve. On the inside the Cellasto element moves an aluminium sleeve by means of electrohydraulic connection, the position of this inner sleeve infl uencing the expansion behaviour of the Cellasto element to the inside and, therefore, its spring rate.

In all, this interaction of the various units has the same effect as a combination of two springs varying in strength. Whenever the inner sleeve is resting on the steel spring, the Cellasto unit is not in use and only the steel spring provides the desired suspension effect. Once the inner sleeve is moved further, the spring
base on the steel spring – and therefore the spring pre-tension – is also varied accordingly.

This configuration signifi cantly improves the normal static position of the motorcycle and riding geometry under all load conditions, without any of the disadvantages encountered with conventional suspension. Benefi ting from this self-levelling, the R 1200 RT is just as stable when riding under full load as it is when carrying only the rider without any luggage.

Additional adjustment of the spring rate over the wide range from 160 – 260 N/ mm allows far greater variation of the Sport, Normal and Comfort settings on ESA II than on ESA I, with each set-up providing a far greater choice of specific characteristics. In other words, the R 1200 RT is even more dynamic and
precise in the Sport mode, and very comfortable indeed in the Comfort mode, while maintaining an excellent standard of stability. In all, ESA II offers the following significant benefits:

  • Much wider range of settings and suspension options with the Sport/Normal and Comfort modes.
  • Far better maintenance of the machine’s static, normal position and riding geometry with all settings.
  • Optimum adjustment of the damping and spring rate / spring base in all settings.
  • Significant change of the motorcycle’s character through adjustment of the dampers.
  • Excellent adjustment to all load conditions through the adjustment of the spring rate / spring base.
  • Significant enhancement of safety when braking and in general riding stability, free side angle in bends and firm suspension without sagging.

Brake system featuring partly integral ABS as standard for safe stopping power. The proven brake system with BMW Motorrad Integral ABS in its partly integral version featured as standard offers supreme safety at all times. Maximum and controllable stopping power requiring minimum effort on the part of the rider
guarantees additional safety particularly when braking in an emergency. The front brake discs measure 320 millimetres or 12.6“ in diameter, the rear brake disc 265 millimetres/10.4”