2017 BMW R nineT Urban G/S Fast Facts, Photos & Video
I have a list of heroes within different facets of the motorcycle industry, from designer Miguel Galluzzi to international road racer Joey Dunlop. When it comes to motorcycle travel, Helge Pedersen is my indisputable hero. Back in 1982, Pedersen, also a photographer, sold everything he owned, bought a motorcycle, and traveled over 250,000 miles within 10 years. It’s all documented in his book “10 Years on 2 Wheels.”
The story is two-fold; it not only tells of Pedersen’s journey’s as a man, but also the story of the motorcycle he chose. The bike was the BMW R80 G/S, the original 1980 model attributed as the first-ever adventure touring motorcycle. The bike is unmistakable with its boxer engine and white/blue paint.
People have emulated the bike over and over, and now BMW itself has released a tribute to that original R80 G/S—but not on a modern-day GS platform. Instead, BMW designed the bike using an R nineT as the base.
Meet the 2017 BMW R nineT Urban G/S, which becomes the fifth R nineT model in the Bavarian motorcycle manufacturer’s “Heritage” lineup that also includes the base R nineT, the Scrambler, which we immediately fell for during a two-day test, and the two unveiled last month at Intermot, the Racer and Pure.
Before we get some miles on one, here are the Ultimate Motorcycling Fast Facts.
1. The R nineT Urban G/S takes styling directly from the 1980 BMW R80 G/S. The attributes to the icon include the white/blue paint, red seat, front headlight fairing, fender, and of course the fork gaiters.
2. The R nineT 1170cc flat twin remains the same as the other R nineTs. The legendary air-cooled engine, which produces, 110 horsepower, is mated to a six-speed transmission and transfers power via shaft drive. The boxer breathes through a 2-into-1 stainless-steel exhaust that exits on the left side bike.
3. Unlike the R nineT that consists of four frame components for easy customization (front, rear, removable end piece and detachable passenger frame), the Urban G/S is built with three components: front, rear and integrated end piece with a passenger frame.
4. Like the Scrambler, the Urban G/S arrives with a conventional telescopic fork (base arrives with upside-down fork). The Urban G/S also features BMW’s proven Paralever system out back.
5. The R nineT Urban arrives stock with light alloy cast wheels, 19” up front and 17” out back with 120/17 and 170/60 tires, respectively. Spoked wheels are available as an accessory, as are deep-treaded dual-sport tires.
6. Stopping the R nineT Urban G/S are dual 320mm discs up front squeezed by four-piston calipers. Out back a single 265mm disc is squeezed by a two-piston caliper. ABS arrives as standard.
7. BMW Traction Control (ASC, Automatic Stability Control) is available as an ex-works option.
8. The R nineT Urban G/S features other elements that add to the retro look. These include a simple instrument cluster that consists of a circular speedometer, a lower fork bridge, and a rear splash guard.