BMW have pulled the covers off an all-new big daddy GS for 2024 and it turns out that instead of being a simple evolution this is more a revolution for what is BMW’s most important model.
The new R 1300 GS is expected to arrive in the first half of 2024 and will be priced from $26,000 inclusive of GST but plus on road costs for the base model.
Rising to $28,990 +ORC for the Pure complete with new and improved Dynamic Suspension Adjustment, quick-shift, Riding Modes pro and black cross-spoke rims.
The Trophy and Triple Black models step things up in specification much further and raises the price to around 34k, while the Option 719 range topper in Aurelius Green Metallic will retail for $36,690 +ORC.
One of the big surprises for me is the wholesale change to the drivetrain with the gearbox now being moved from behind the engine to underneath the crankcase. This is surprising for a bunch of reasons, chiefly amongst them the relation between ground clearance and seat height that a taller engine would potentially pose challenges for. However, BMW have managed to retain an 850 mm seat height for the new model via wholesale changes throughout the chassis, and the suspension travel is also the same as before, 190 mm at the front and 200 mm at the rear.
While BMW have improved the shift action of the Boxer with every generational change to the model in conjunction with ever improving quick-shifters, it has not quite matched the engine’s fluidity and grace, hopefully this new box is worthy of superlatives.
The capacity increase from 1254 cc to a full 1300 is realised via a 4 mm increase in bore, however the stroke is now 3 mm shorter. Power is up from 136 horsepower at 7750 rpm to 145 horsepower at the same revs. Torque is up from 143 Nm at 6250 rpm to 149 Nm at 6500 rpm. That is only 7 Nm shy of the output achieved by the 1802 cc ‘Big Boxer’ used in the R 18 range. ShiftCam is retained but the camshaft is now driven differently and the rev ceiling is raised to 9000 rpm.
The compression ratio is increased from 12.5:1 to 13.3:1 with a new knock sensor system employed. The intake valves are up from 40 to 44 mm and the exhaust valves have grown from 34 to 35.6 mm.
BMW’s claim for the 0-100 km/h sprint drops from 3.6 seconds to 3.39 seconds.
Visually, the new GS, in these images at least, looks much more spritely than its predecessor. It looks drastically smaller and less intimidating. This has been achieved largely via a much flatter profile on what is a new aluminium fuel tank that at 19 litres now holds one less litre than before. The difference in the look is stark, with that new headlight punching you right between the eyes and saying ‘I’m new!’
It just doesn’t look smaller, it is a massive 12 kg lighter than its most immediate predecessor, with more than half of that saving achieved via the new powertrain. That is a huge improvement with the GS dropping from 249 kg with a full tank of juice down to 237 kg. Still no lightweight, but that is a considerable improvement that makes it a few kilos lighter than Ducati’s Multistrada V4.
The new bike is fractionally longer (+5 mm) and also runs a longer wheelbase (+4 mm). The steering head angle is now slightly shallower having gone from 64.3° to 63.8°.
With the new Evo Telelever, BMW Motorrad now combines the strengths of the two previously used Telelever variants. Clamped tightly to the fork tubes – as previously in the sporty design on the HP2 Sport and R 1200 S – the upper fork construction incorporates a handlebar decoupling system that prevents any detrimental tilting movement and only transmits steering forces. The tubular handlebar is clamped in a handlebar bridge via two clamps. The connection from the handlebar bridge to the upper fork bridge is the core element of this construction: a stainless steel plate – the so-called flex element.
The actual upper fork bridge is pivotally and rotatably connected via a radial swivel bearing to a sturdy steering shaft tube, which in turn is guided in the main frame via a cylindrical roller bearing at the top and a deep groove ball bearing at the bottom. BMW claim that this sophisticated construction creates significantly greater rigidity and noticeably increased ride stability. The simultaneous addition of an extra roller bearing for the ball joint in the lower fork bridge is also claimed to ensure excellent steering precision due to the lower bearing friction. The diameter of the new lighter quick-release axle has been increased by 5 mm to 25 mm, thereby further increasing the stiffness of the front wheel guide.
The hallmark of the revised Evo Paralever at the rear is a significantly stiffer connection via the suspension in the frame, which has been extended for greater traction. The cardan shaft now has larger universal joints, a reduced deflection angle also reduces the non-uniformity of the rotational transmission that is inherent in cardan shaft joints. The rear axle transmission has been redesigned and now has a longer wheel axle stub for even easier mounting and dismounting of the rear wheel.
The new electronic Dynamic Suspension Adjustment (DSA) now goes one step further than before, combining the dynamic adjustment of the front and rear damping with a corresponding adjustment of the spring rate – depending on the selected riding mode, terrain and riding attitude. The automatic adjustment of the spring rest ensures load compensation.
Exclusively in conjunction with DSA as optional equipment ex works, two further items are optionally available for the suspension of the new R 1300 GS: the new adaptive vehicle height control and the sports suspension.
With adaptive vehicle height control, the new R 1300 GS offers fully automatic adjustment of the vehicle height depending on the operating condition and the seat height is reduced from 850 mm to 820 mm at standstill and during slow travel. Unlike the various previous systems of this kind, BMW claim that the lowering or raising happens quickly and almost imperceptibly for the rider – and only when it truly makes sense. In addition, the adaptive vehicle height control can be customised, and the rider can choose between automatic or permanent lowering and the permanent high setting.
With the sports suspension available as optional equipment ex works, the new R 1300 GS gains even more in terms of off-road competence. With 20 mm more spring travel at the front and rear and an athletically firm set-up specially developed for the GS, off-road riders are promised to be well catered for here.
A total of three different wheel sets are available for the new R 1300 GS in the dimensions 3.0 x 19” at the front and 4.5 x 17” at the rear. The basic model and the Triple Black model variant have newly developed and very light cast aluminium wheels, while the Trophy and Option 719 Tramuntana model variants come with newly developed cross-spoke wheels featuring aluminium rim rings for dedicated off-road use. In addition to the new cross-spoke wheels, newly developed Enduro forged wheels are now available as optional equipment ex works. They are also intended for off-road use and offer a weight advantage of approx. 1.8 kg compared to the somewhat more robust cross-spoke wheels.
Other options, which are included in some model variants as standard, include radar assisted active cruise control, a frontal collision and lane change warning system.
This is the biggest change to the GS for a long time, and I have little doubt that the first Aussie shipments will be spoken for in no time. BMW Motorrad Australia’s great five-year warranty is certainly an ace up their sleeve that might lure many buyers considering other options currently in the market.
BMW R 1300 GS Specifications
1,300cc 2-cylinder boxer engine with ShiftCam, 13.3:1 compression, EU5, 107kW (145hp) @ 7,750rpm, 149Nm at 6,500rpm
Cast aluminium wheels
BMW Motorrad Full Integral ABS Pro, BMW Motorrad EVO Paralever, BMW Motorrad EVO Telelever, Rear Pre-load Adjustable
Dynamic Brake Control
Tyre Pressure Control
Rear rebound adjustable
Dynamic Brake Light
TFT with connectivity
Li-ion Starter Battery
Dynamic Cruise Control with Brake function
Matrix LED headlights
Comfort LED turn indicators
LED daytime riding lights
Handbrake/clutch lever adjustable
Hand protection with LED indicator
Engine skid plate
Storage compartment with charger
Hill Start Control
MSR dynamic brake engine control
Fuel Tank Capacity: 19 litres
Weight 237kg wet
WMTC Fuel Consumption 4.8 litres/100km
Comfort Riders Seat (850mm)
Comfort Riders Seat High (870mm)
Comfort Riders Seat Low (830mm)
R 1300 GS: $26,000*
Comfort Package (Passenger Kit, Windscreen Electronically Adjustable, Main Stand) with Comfort Rider’s Seat and Seat Heating: $1035
Touring Package (Preparation for GPS Device, Chrome-plated header pipe, Central Locking System, Hand protector extension, Case Holder L+R) with Innovations Package (Headlight Pro, Riding Assistant) and Top-case Carrier: $3,310
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