R 1200 RT Test Mule
Das Motorrad: Issue 6, February
Written by: Waldemar Schwarz
Summary: Spy photos of an R 1200 RT Test Mule. These photos are not of the finished product, but give some advance indication of the direction BMW is planning to take. The speculation is that of Motorrad.
Uncovered: The ghost of the BMW R 1200 RT.
Translated by: Kari Prager (for customer information)
Lots of Germans flee the freezing weather of Northern Europe for the sunny Southland, looking for the first signs of spring, while other, more hard-working Germans stay home and put all their efforts
into new products better fitted for the daily life, as, for example, the hard-working Bavarians of the BMW Motorrad test and development department. These people have already graduated to the road- and endurance testing on the Island of Teneriffa, in the Canary Islands. And so it happened that a vacationing Motorrad staffer caught the trace of a mysterious RT in his camera lens.
It is easy to identify it as a new BMW version, by the broad expanse of touring fairing, the characteristic BMW kidney grille under the headlight and the new 1200cc motor, probably a test mule for the new R 1200 RT. The capacious fairing with integrated rearview mirrors and turnsignals, as well as the adjustable windshield appear to be designed and tested in an acoustic wind canal. They should not only offer an even higher level of wind protection than the earlier model, but also a lower level of cockpit noise.
A refined rotational responsiveness and higher horsepower capability have been added to the new boxer motor's side of the equation with a home-grown balance shaft . Next to the insurance-friendly 98 horsepower version there is also likely to be a higher outout version with more than 100
horsepower (Export version to the USA?) For increased touring comfort there is a new 6-speed transmission with an overdrive 6th gear. The drivetrain and chassis is descended from the R 1200 GS. The tubular steel frame and and the single-sided enduro swingarm are also from the big Enduro. There are big differences with the brakes of the GS, however. The RT will have a new version of the fully-integrated, ABS brake system as standard equipment.
As series equipment the RT purchaser will receive saddlebags with an integrated luggage rack, a rear shock with hydraulically adjustable preload, and a height-adjustable seat. For those with a taste for more accessories, there is plenty to choose, from electric grips to GPS navigation system or a stereo sound system.
The exciting question remains: Did the RT take the diet cure that cut 30 kilos off its sister-model, the GS? If so, then the new RT will set the standard for handling in the full-size tourer market and put the current touring boxer on the trailer in a power comparision.