If there was ever one way not to raise suspicion about a new adventure motorcycle, it’s this: throwing your arms up in a fit when an innocent (and seemingly educated) bystander starts recording the camouflaged motorcycle you’re sitting on and riding and asks if its the bike he—and many others—have long been expecting.
Riding away in a fit of frustration after mumbling that it is, in fact, the BMW R 1300 GS and realizing you’re caught on video, not a photo, is about all you can do to save face.
There you have it. The BMW R 1300 GS is coming. No idea when or what features it will have, but based on what we know about the current R 1250 GS, other BMW models, and what’s trending in the ADV market, we can make some speculations about what’s to come.
Here’s What We Know About the R 1300 GS So Far
Based on the spy photos floating around, there are some things we know, none of which should be surprising. The first is obvious: the Boxer engine is back, this time presumably pumping out 1300cc of displacement.
Judging by the huge engine covers over the cylinder heads, it stands to reason that the combination of air- and water cooling has been ditched in favor of full liquid cooling.
This could be a requirement of the bigger engine, a necessity to meet strict emissions laws, or a combination of both.
According to the German publication MOTORRAD, it predicts horsepower will be in the 150 range and torque around 145 Nm. Another certainty is the Telelever front suspension and Paralever rear suspension with shaft drive.
BMW R 1300 GS Speculation
Starting at the front of the bike, we see a redesigned beak with a headlight integrated into it. It’s a different take from past GS models. Still, the space above, including the square space in the windscreen, could be used to integrate radar for adaptive cruise control and other safety features seen on the big-bore competition, like blind spot warnings. But with such a cloaked test bike to predict from, the final outcome could be much different than what we see here.
Moving to the tank and side panels, there’s a lot of shrouding and what could be fake panels used to either block or deceive the viewer.
The tank itself looks slim and contoured, though it doesn’t look particularly friendly for adventure riders who spend more time standing than sitting, as there doesn’t appear to be suitable shapes and lines to dig a rider’s legs into while standing.
We also see fully shrouded hand guards with integrated strips which could be turn indicators, reflectors, metal reinforcement, or even a decoy that won’t make it to the finished bike. Though it looks like the mirrors in the spy shots are recycled pieces from the BMW parts bin.
The rider sitting on the bike blocks most of the central portion of the bike, but what’s more interesting is all the stuff behind the rider. All the luggage we see in the spy photos doesn’t match what currently exists in BMW’s luggage catalog.
What makes it even more strange is that they appear to be held in place, or at least kept closed, with straps. That can’t be standard procedure.
However, BMW tends to be rather innovative when it comes to luggage, so we’re looking forward to seeing what’s in store this time.
More GS Speculation
In April, someone at BMW accidentally populated not one but two new GS variants to the BMW website—an R 1400 S and M 1300 GS. What’s even more interesting is that no Adventure version is listed on the website.
This has led some to believe that the R 1400 GS may not necessarily have a bigger engine but will be more off-road oriented than the standard R1300RS. And following BMW tradition, the M 1300 GS is going to be handed off to BMW’s M division to get all kinds of high-performance upgrades, similar to all of BMW’s M-series cars and the M 1000 RR sportbike.
While we don’t know exactly what BMW has in store, all this speculation circulating the internet has stirred up the rumor mill and led to some interesting possibilities. Whenever BMW introduces a new or updated model, it’s fully expected that some of the things mentioned here will make it, some won’t, and there will be other features up BMW’s sleeve we hadn’t even considered.
It’s always fun to speculate about what’s to come, especially when we have spy photos to work with, but what’s better is getting to see—and ride—the finished product.