Xr? There was something? Exactly, the 165 hp S 1000 XR from BMW, which looks like an adventure bike, but similar to the Ducati Multistrada is basically a disguised superbike. Does the new F 900 XR hang out of the window just as far out of the window? The test clarifies it.
THE new middle class from BMW is supposed to reconnect the fans with the brand, after the Bavarians were comparatively inactive here for a long time. For this purpose, the developers took up the Chinese-built engine of the F 850 GS, drilled the two-cylinder in-line engine to 895 cubic meters and thus achieved 105 hp. Optionally, this is available with only 95 hp, which can be throttled in a second round to A2-compatible 46 hp. Here for the test, the full fat stage of the 900s is in front of us, and one may briefly review the technical data. Of course, the 105 hp generate a certain anticipation at the weight of 220 kilos, but for everyday life it could be more important that between 4500 and 8500 tours are always at least 87 newton meters available.
Unique to the BMW is another feature (and we don't mean the ultra-cool gold color that the test engine wears), namely its enormous variability in seat height. Are you rather small or particularly long? No problem, normally the seat height of 825 millimeters can be adjusted between 775 and 870 millimeters thanks to optional benches. Still too high? Still no problem, BMW offers an additional lowering.
You can't write a test about a BMW without going into the costs. Quality has its price, of course. Naked, the F 900 XR costs 11,400 euros, which is okay. Most BMW buyers prefer fully equipped machines, which BMW likes to combine in packages – in the case of the XR, there are four of them – and thus put equipped for 15,025 euros on the dealer's yard. Which is certainly the northernmost border of the middle class in terms of price. To the extras more, but one circumstance is particularly surprising: The BMW F 900 XR has a technically almost identical (frame, chassis, engine) sister model, the Naked-Bike F 900 R. And that stands for from 8,800 at the dealership. 2,600 Euro surcharge for another cladding of the identical technology?
The basic equipment of the F 900 XR is not quite as sparse as it used to be. The excellently readable TFT display, for example, is series. Curve light also, two driving modes are available for free. What is annoying is that extra pay has to be paid for security-related matters. These include upgrading the ABS to the curve ABS or the dynamic traction control DTC, which works with gyro sensors and therefore incorporates the inclination, yaw and nick rates into the calculation.
Enough of the theory - then let's go.
Thanks to the adjustable seat height and the comfortable bench, the first contact is positive. Also the sitting position is pleasantly upright, a little sporty, but not too much, the knee angle also fits.
In principle, the operation is also very catchy and logical with the easy-to-understand switches. Only: If you have distributed many crosses in the surcharge list, you have to set a lot. A complete explanation would go beyond the scope here, but it should be assured that after a short period of acclimatization with the BMW system, one gets along well.
Button pressed, motor started and it's off. And how – of course, 105 hp used to have only purebred racing bikes, today we find this appropriate in the middle class. To sum it up, the BMW is making good progress. Up to the limiter at 9,000, it's a cheering and a demonstration of the joy of shooting. The revision has done the engine really well. Honestly? No one needs more steam.
At 220 kilos, the BMW F 900 XR is still light enough not to want to go through the curves. That's how it swings, you swing yourself at the same beat. Thanks to the suitcase set (chargeable), good wind protection and comfortable chassis, it is so suitable for travel that you actually want to get started right away.
By the way, the ESA electronic chassis, which is also subject to a surcharge (of course!), only affects the rear axle. Nothing is adjustable at the front, not even manually. But that doesn't matter: Since the setup is basically very good, the rear adjustment is sufficient for loading and ride modes.
It is no surprise that the Brembo stoppers also work perfectly. Normally easy to use and dose, they can be different in case of emergency and bite powerfully too. The road tyres contribute to their good performance, which are noticeably better on asphalt than stolly enduro tyres. Compliments to BMW that the XR doesn't fake anything in terms of "travel enduro" that it isn't: it doesn't see any country off-road.
All in all, the same-parts adventure was all about. She comes around the corner with this trusting attitude, which does not substride even when they get closer. You just have to want to afford it and, above all, you have to be able to do it. If that is the case, it will lead the way in the middle class.The test bike was provided to us by Bergmann and Söhne in Pinneberg.