2020 BMW F 900 XR Preview: S 1000 XR’s “Baby Sister”
As the middleweight category continues to grow strongly across the motorcycle offerings for 2020, BMW has unveiled a new offering of its own at EICMA Milan Motorcycle Show.Meet the BMW F 900 XR, the mid-range versions based on the popular S 1000 XR, a bike that the Bavarian’s coin as an “adventure sport.”
Let’s take a first look at what BMW remained hush about ahead of EICMA 2019.1. The F 900 XR is basically the baby sister of the more powerful S 1000 XR but built on the platform of the GS models of the F series (F 750 GS and F 850 GS).2. Powering the F 900 XR is the same engine as the F 850 GS, but it grows from 853cc to 895cc. The parallel-twin now produces 105 horsepower at 8750 rpm and 68 ft/lbs of torque at 6500 rpm. BMW says more than 61 ft/lbs of torque is available from 4500 to 8500 rpm. The engine also uses two opposed counterbalance shafts to increase smoothness across the rev range.3. The base model arrives standard with minimal electronics – two riding modes (Road and Rain), ABS, and traction control, which is disengageable).4. In typical BMW fashion, riders can update their motorcycles with Riding Modes Pro and get all the latest in savvy BMW electronics. This adds two additional riding modes (Dynamic and Dynamic Pro), “dynamic” traction control that provides other parameters for measuring lost of traction, and cornering ABS. New for 2020 is the addition of what BMW calls “MSR”, an “engine drag torque control” that prevents the rear wheel from slipping as a result of abrupt throttling or downshifting.5. The XR chassis consists of a steel frame that uses the engine as a load-bearing element and positions the fuel tank in the standard place (not under the passenger seat as on the F GS series of yesteryears). The fuel tank is made from welded plastic – a first in the motorcycle industry – and holds 3.8 gallons.6. The bolt-on steel rear frame has also been newly developed for the F 900 XR. BMW says this helps created a visually short and slim rear.7. Suspension duties are handled by an upside-down 43mm telescopic fork and a fully adjustable shock attached to a double-sided swingarm. Wheel travel is 6.7 inches up front, and 6.8 inches in the rear.8. BMW offers its electronic suspension as an option. This suspension, called “Dynamic ESA (electronic suspension adjustment), will control the riding experience through electronic damping of the rear strut’s spring.9. Also available as options are cornering lights, keyless ignition, up/down quickshifter, and an emergency call system.10. The F 900 XR arrives with a 6.5-inch full-color TFT screen that can connect to the rider’s smartphone.11. The standard seat height is 32.5 inches. Higher and lower seats are available.12. The F 900 XR is available in three colors: Light White, Galvanic Gold metallic, and Sport in Racing Red.BMW has yet to announce availability and pricing.
2020 BMW F 900 XR Specs
Type: Parallel Twin
Bore x stroke: 86 x 77mm
Maximum power: 105 horsepower @ 8500 rpm
Maximum torque: 92 ft/lbs @ 6500 rpm
Compression ratio: 13:1.1
Valvetrain: DOHC, 4vpc
Fueling: Throttle bodies
Starting: Only if other than electric
Lubrication: Dry sump
Final drive: Chain
Frame: Steel monocoque w/ subframe
Front suspension; travel: 43mm inverted fork; 6.7 inches
Our first segment introduces you to the new Arch 1s. This latest, slightly more sporting American V-twin, adds to the original KRGT1 coming from the boutique manufacturer based in Hawthorne, Southern California. Senior Editor Nic de Sena rode through Malibu with Gard Hollinger, who co-founded Arch Motorcycle with his friend, Keanu Reeves. The 1s is a unique ride for sure, and Nic explains what makes the bike really stand out.
For the entertaining story behind Arch Motorcycle from Gard Hollinger himself, you must listen to his podcast episode on Motos & Friends HERE
The guest segment of Motos and Friends is brought to you by the faster and most technologically advanced, 2023 Suzuki Hayabusa—visit your local dealer or suzukicycles.com to learn more.
In our second segment, Associate Editor Teejay Adams chats with multiple Emmy award-winning writer, Producer, Director, and actor, Thom Beers. the former Chairman & CEO of Fremantle Media North America, responsible for American Idol and America’s Got Talent.
Thom’s fertile imagination led to most of the really big reality TV shows such as ‘Deadliest Catch’ (now in its 17th season!), and many others. Of course for us in the motorcycle world, you’ll be interested to hear the genesis and story of how he started the first real fabrication reality show ‘Monster Garage’, that showcased Jesse James, and then how that led to ‘Biker Build Off’ and the ‘Zombie Choppers’ movie.
You’d imagine that most of Thom’s time is spent sitting behind a desk and on his phone. Not so. His intense stories of capturing much of the content for these shows make for some hair-raising listening.