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Author Topic: BMW Rallye & Exclusive full report  (Read 403 times)

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Offline adventurer

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BMW Rallye & Exclusive full report
« on: May 14, 2017, 05:47:20 PM »
BMW 1200 GS Rallye and Exclusive launch
With warnings of bad weather ahead, and the request to bring rainsuits, we were pleasantly surprised with fantastic weather for the launch of the new Rallye and Exclusive BMW 1200 GS models.

 After a short presentation at Zwartkops Racetrack at the BMW offices, good to meet the new guy in charge of BMW SA, Edgar Kleinbergen, who is not afraid to mix it and get dirty with the rest of us, Thando Pato, the ever-efficient BMW PR lady introduced us to our ride leader and sweep guys, Stefan Boshoff and Aldo Van Der Walt of Country Trax, Daniel Erasmus the technical guru introduced us to the new electronic wizardry BMW have introduced, we kitted up, grabbed a bike and headed out. Our route took us along mostly dirt roads and tracks, I grabbed an Exclusive for the first stretch. The Exclusive is a full house model, has every electronic gadget you could wish for, including up and down quickshifter, the first time I experienced this on an adventure bike, I was quite dubious at first, having read a fair amount of criticism about having a quickshifter on dirt, let me tell you first hand, it is FANTASTIC! For the relatively inexperienced as well, now you do not have to use the clutch lever once on the go, you do not have to let go of the grip at all to activate the clutch, just hook the gear-lever with your boot, super smooth, up or down, and for the more experienced, of which I know a lot of riders change without a clutch anyway, you would still have to partly blip the throttle, no more with a quickshifter, just hook the gearlever, gear changes are sublime. Another new feature is Hill Climb Assist, which will stop you rolling back on a hill ascent for a few seconds, might be handy for those doing the drivers license test.

The new models are also keyless, the key stays in your pocket, the petrol cap is also keyless, wonderfully convenient at the gas station.
I found the Exclusive extremely comfortable, the soft height adjustable saddle, the handlebar / saddle / footpeg geometry suited me perfectly, the very comprehensive instrumentation perfectly visible, only a bit restricted while standing, the GPS mounting gets in the way a bit. The GS kinda encourages you to stand on dirt, I personally am quite used to staying seated most of the time on dirt, but on a different brand. The GS is super comfortable while standing, handlebar/footpeg geometry is just right. Our route took us on quite a variety of terrain, the Exclusive handled all with ease, all the riding settings can be changed on the fly, Enduro Pro was for me the best dirt option, what I really liked was that wherever you set the electronics, it stays there after you switch off the ignition and switch on again, it can be quite irritating to have to reset everything every time you get going again after a break, and things can be forgotten, especially ABS. Once you get back to tar, you just reselect ABS on the fly.

We stopped for lunch at De Hoek, a very upmarket venue out in the Magalies area, en route to Rustenburg.

After lunch I swapped with Glenn Foley of Dirt & Trail to the Rallye version, a very trick colour scheme, Cordoba blue frame, fancy BMW Motorsport colours on the tank, a one piece saddle allowing more rider movement on dirt, narrower as well, allowing more knee movement when standing,  a lower screen, wider offroad footpegs, a different steering rake angle, more offroad biased, in June I understand a more offroad suitable suspension package will be an available option, which I would certainly ask for, it currently has the same suspension as the Exclusive, which is certainly very good, I’m looking forward to the upgraded suspension though.

 To me the Rallye did feel more stable on dirt than the Exclusive, it tracked better, especially over corrugations in corners, a combination which can upset most bikes, steering dampers are standard on all models. The Rallye has the same electronics as the Exclusive, and both have a new advanced braking system which sharpens the brakes as the speed increases, both models have traction control modes which allow you to a hooligan, but stop the hooliganism before you get hurt, makes an inexperienced rider look a lot more experienced.

Both models have cornering ABS, the bike knows you are in a corner and adjusts the ABS input to suit, you now almost can’t crash the bike.
We then overnighted at Shepherd’s Tree Lodge on the other side of Rustenberg, a 5 Star venue in the Pilansberg Game Reserve, we were spoilt with a game drive and a bush braai, our game guide patrolled with his rifle, we were in the game reserve, no fences around us, just in case the wildlife did not know that bikers were not to be messed with…

The following morning, our bikes now all clean, it was a tar route back to base, the Exclusive was my mount of choice, I wanted a normal screen and a comfortable seat. The roads out that way are not the best, but the GS soaked up everything with ease, we rode at quite a pace, the 125hp legendary boxer motor is super smooth, more than ample power, for long distance touring, solo or pillion, with or without luggage, the GS Exclusive is hard to beat, it will handle most dirt routes with ease, but if you yearn for the really tough stuff, buy the Rallye, BMW have 2 amazing refined dual sport bikes, when you think they were always good, they have just got better.

At one point during day 1 I wound up on the previous version of 1200 GS LC, and I realized how much the new model had improved over last year’s model, the motor is smoother, gearshifts are smoother, brakes are better, the quickshifter is amazing, a good product just got better….

Many thanks to Mzansi Bikers Magazine and BMW Motorad SA for the invite, a truly memorable event.

Pics by Rob Till, Glenn Foley of Dirt & Trail, and myself
« Last Edit: May 16, 2017, 05:55:07 PM by adventurer »

Offline Skydiver

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Re: BMW Rallye & Exclusive full report
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2017, 10:01:03 PM »
Good review, thank you

Offline Geotraveller

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Re: BMW Rallye & Exclusive full report
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2017, 08:09:44 AM »
"No bike does everything perfectly. In fact, no bike does anything until someone gets on it to ride"

Offline meurig

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Re: BMW Rallye & Exclusive full report
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2017, 05:00:04 PM »
The gear shift assist is so much fun after getting over the initial " I don't need it" mindset.

On the XR I had, downshifts were best accomplished with a closed throttle and upshifts with an open throttle, otherwise the bike let you know you were changing gears with a hard "klunk"

Entertaining and lovely review Adventurer

Offline michnus

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Re: BMW Rallye & Exclusive full report
« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2017, 04:19:51 AM »
Look it's a road bike, I am still of the generation now which believes the older models were the real deal. Stupid I know.
But hell it's a pretty bike no doubt. :D

Cool write up @adventurer  :thumbsup:

Offline Ryperd

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Re: BMW Rallye & Exclusive full report
« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2017, 07:35:37 AM »
bl-bla-bla...which believes the older models were the real deal.

Ek is seker Els dink ook jy (die older model) is die real deal.  :deal: