BMW has released the details of its forthcoming K1200S, a radical departure for BMW and a motorcycle with a number of innovative features. Powered by a transverse in-line four instead of the longitudinal in-line fours in previous K models, BMW claims the 1157cc engine is the narrowest in it class and makes 160 horsepower. The engine's cylinders are tilted forward 55 degrees to keep weight down and distribute the motorcycle's mass evenly front-to-rear.
The K1200S uses a new non-telescopic front suspension design with two parallel links, electronically adjusted suspension, which BMW says "decouples wheel control from suspension and damping" and "transfers the forces optimally into the frame structure" for "steering precision second to none even when braking." The drivetrain uses BMWs traditional shaft final drive with an all-new gearbox, and the machine retains BMW traditions like anti-lock braking (ABS) and a catalytic converter in the exhaust.
BMW has created a site to tease the bike. The site can be found at www.face-the-power.com. Choose your language to enter the main site.
The following is BMW's official announcement about the K1200S.
BMW MOTORRAD RAISES THE VEIL: The K 1200 S high performance sports bike. 05/17/2004
Munich. The time for speculation is over. Now it's official: this year BMW Motorrad will introduce the K 1200 S, a completely new and fascinating high performance motorcycle in the sport segment.
The K 1200 S was designed as a sport bike and is a completely separate motorcycle within the K family. It is radically new, featuring an unprecedented number of innovations. It is a high-precision sport bike offering unique agility as well as enormous output. Its power to weight ratio is on the level with the competition and almost 50 percent better than the K 1200 RS, thus leaving no wishes unfulfilled with regard to riding performance.
The low weight and extremely agile chassis help the K 1200 S deliver superior handling in any situation.
The K 1200 S is powered by a transversely mounted 1157-cc four-cylinder inline engine with integrated transmission and is unique among sport bikes due to its overall concept in conjunction with the lightweight construction shaft drive.
The extreme forward tilt of the cylinder bank (55 deg.) ensures a low center of gravity. In this way it was possible to achieve an ideal wheel load distribution of 50:50 percent in combination with the overall geometric layout. The engine has an extraordinarily narrow design achieved by a series of special design features. The engine width at the crankshaft level is approximately the same as for 600-cc engines. This not only allows for very deep engine installation and maximum lean angle, it also gives the bike a narrow and sporty silhouette.
The engine can rev up into the five-digit regions and output exceeds 160 hp (more than 117 kW). Environmental compatibility is safeguarded by a closed-loop three-way catalytic converter and digital engine electronics, which have been standard features on all BMW motorcycles for years. The engine of the K 1200 S is based on the latest generation as presented at the beginning of the year in the R 1200 GS. It also features integrated knock control and in this advanced four-cylinder engine, it represents the most sophisticated engine management system currently available for motorcycles.
The K 1200 S is also highly innovative on the suspension side. A revolutionary front wheel suspension using two parallel linkswithout telescopic forksensures extremely sensitive response together with excellent precision, outstanding overall rigidity and low weight. The electronically adjustable suspension also represents a world first in production motorcycle manufacturing.
The new K 1200 S is of course also equipped with the unique BMW Motorrad Integral ABS in the partially integral version. In conjunction with the EVO brakes, this system ensures maximum deceleration and the shortest of braking distances in all road conditions.
The new BMW K 1200 S will be presented to the international public in September of this year at the INTERMOT motorshow in Munich. It will be launched onto the market soon after. The price has not yet been set. All familiar models of the K family, the K 1200 RS, the K 1200 GT and the K 1200 LT will remain part of the model range beyond 2004.