2009 BMW K Review


BMW, the German automobile and motorcycle manufacturer, introduced its K line in 2005, producing four models with 1147cc engines. For 2009, the company upgraded three of these models, giving them larger engines and changing their names accordingly, calling them the K 1300R, a standard bike; the 1300S, a sport bike; and the 1300GT, a sport tourer. Only the 1200LT remained unaltered.

The 1300 models all have 1293cc, liquid-cooled, horizontal, four-cylinder, four-stroke engines with dual overhead cams and fuel injectors. These models have six-speed manual transmissions with shaft final drives. The gearbox ratios have been tweaked, and the new Duolever central suspension girder struts absorb the road bumps in front. Paralever single-sided swing arms with adjustable spring preload shocks and rebound damping handle the rear suspension.

The K 1200LT, BMW’s stalwart touring bike and still the biggest and heaviest machine in the line, continues to use the 1172cc, liquid-cooled, longitudinal four-cylinder, four-stroke engine it was endowed with years ago. Like its siblings, it has a dual overhead cam and fuel injection. A Telelever telescopic fork with four inches of travel provides the front suspension; the rear is a single-sided swing arm with rebound damping. It has a five-speed manual transmission with reverse, and a shaft final drive. It’s the only bike in the K line to come with a CD-player and speakers, and it has the largest selection of luggage options.

These bikes are all designed to cruise at high speeds on the autobahn and to handle twisting mountain roads with ease. BMW offers an enormous variety of optional equipment tailored to the purpose of each model – high windshields, an assortment of seats (though the stock seats get high marks for comfort), onboard computers, accessory power outlets (because these days an iPod and a phone are more important than a CD player on a long ride), even a cup holder.

New For 2009

  • All three of the 1300 models were upgraded in 2009 with more powerful engines.
  • Tweaks to 1300S's engine included lengthening the stroke slightly to improve power; intake ports and exhaust valve timing were also tweaked. The bike got a new clutch and an improved gear box.
  • Among the changes for the 1300R are an improved exhaust system to meet higher emissions standards; a revised suspension system; a new, two-stage drive shaft; and a larger engine.
  • The 1300GT received ergonomic improvements and a fairing redesign.

2009 BMW K Specs

  • Model: 1300R, 1300S, 1300GT, 1200LT
  • Engine Type: 1293cc, liquid-cooled, four-cylinder four stroke (1300R, 1300S, 1300GT); 1172cc, liquid-cooled, four-cylinder four stroke (1200LT)
  • Bore and Stroke: 3.15 inches x 2.53 inches (1300R, 1300S, 1300GT); 2.78 inches x 2.95 inches (1200LT)
  • Compression ratio: 13.0:1 (1300R, 1300S, 1300GT); 10.8:1 (1200LT)
  • Valve Train: DOHC
  • Induction: Fuel injected
  • Ignition: Electric
  • Transmission: Six-speed manual (1300R, 1300S, 1300GT); five-speed manual (1200LT)
  • Final Drive: Shaft
  • Fuel Capacity: 5 gallons (1300R and 1300S); 6.3 gallons ((1300GT) 6.2 gallons (1200LT)
  • Estimated Fuel Economy: 47 miles per gallon (1300R and 1300GT); 49 miles per gallon (1300S); 54 miles per gallon (1200LT)
  • Brakes (Front): Dual hydraulic disc
  • Brakes (Rear): Hydraulic disc
  • Suspension (Front): Girder (1300R, 1300S, 1300GT); telescopic fork (1200LT)
  • Suspension (Rear): Single-sided swing arm with adjustable spring preload shock and rebound damping 1300R, 1300S, 1300GT); single-sided swing arm with rebound damping (1200LT)
  • Wheelbase: 62.4 inches (1300R); 62.4 inches (1300S); 61.9 inches (1300GT); 64.1 inches (1200LT)
  • Rake: 29 degrees (1300R); 29.4 degrees (1300GT); 24 degrees (1300S); 27 degrees (1200LT)
  • Trail: 4.1 inches (1300R); 4.4 inches (1300GT); 3.3 inches (1300S); 4 inches (1200LT)
  • Seat Height: 32.3 inches (1300R, 1300S, 1300GT); 30.3 inches (1200LT)
  • Curb Weight: 536 pounds (1300R); 560 pounds (1300S); 562 pounds (1300GT); 635 pounds (1300GT); 838 pounds (1200LT)
  • Tires (Front): 120/70 ZR17 (1300R, 1300GT, and 1200LT); 120/70 ZR17 (1300S)
  • Tires (Rear): 180/55 ZR17(1300R and 1300GT); 190/55 ZR17 (1300S); 160/70 ZR17 (1200LT)


  • 28-liter top case
  • Automatic stability control – factory installed
  • Heated hand grips – factory installed
  • Heated seat – factory installed
  • High seat – factory installed
  • High windshield – factory installed
  • Onboard computer – factory installed
  • Sports panniers
  • Tank bag
  • Tire pressure monitoring – factory installed

Key Competitors For The 2009 BMW K

  • 2009 Honda Goldwing
  • 2009 Ducati Multistrada
  • 2009 Moto Guzzi Norge 1200T
  • 2009 Yamaha FJR1300