2011 BMW F Review


The 2011 BMW F comes in four flavors, each with its own distinctive body style. The 650 GS, with 71 horsepower, has the Adventure body (for on road/offroad dual personality). The 800 GS (85 hp) is the Enduro body, for full-on offroad hijinks. Next in the lineup is the 800 ST, also 85 hp, with a Sport body, more oriented to street and track. Finally, at the top of the line comes the 800 R (for Roadster), boasting 87 hp, possessing the Standard body. All have the now-familiar tank with the top bulge, reminiscent of a camel hump, on which the rider lies almost prone over the front of the bike. However, the bulge is much more pronounced on the 2011 BMW F 800 GS and 800 R. Faced front on, the headlamp is off-center, providing an unusual variation to the traditional center-mount of most bikes. Overall styling is part elegant, part quirky, particularly with that blacked-out engine. BMW never claimed to be clone-makers.

Whatever body color is chosen, at least half the bike will be clothed in a satin basic black, which visually reduces proportions and makes the machines look down to business. An available light yellow hue is almost garish for this bike. The granite grey metallic suits the two-wheeler perfectly, understated, powerful, a bit menacing. The aluminum wheels are also black, for the appropriate communication of a speed threat arriving in the neighborhood. The rear shock-absorber spring jolts the color scheme with a bright red coil. Of course, the famous blue-and-white BMW insignia is prominent. Exhaust tubes exit the front of the engine and curve underneath on their way back. They are right out front in the wind, and from most indications, they tend to show heat discoloration fairly quickly. Premium fuel is required for proper operation. Four valves atop each cylinder make for eager, ready power. Peak horsepower is obtained at 8000 revolutions per minute, with 63 lb-ft of torque peaking at 6000 rpm.

The 2011 BMW F is a middleweight blend of commuter and track functions. In other words, it is a mighty fine, fun ride to the office. Seating is comfortable for rider and passenger, a typical BMW feature. Above 5000 revolutions per minute, vibration sets in. The grips, seat, tank and pegs issue rumbling reminders of their presence. That would be tiring on a longer run. Gauges are analog, quite traditional and readable. Alongside the two gauges is an LCD display for time, fuel, temp, gear and computer readouts. The basic F800R costs $9950, which is not bad for a BMW. However, adding the Premium Package: anti-lock brakes, heated grips, tire-pressure monitor, sport windshield, electric accessory socket and alarm, brings the cost to $11,395.

New For 2011

  • F800 is a new model, with new throttle valve system
  • Minor evolutionary changes in the rest of the range

2011 BMW F Specs

  • Model: 650 GS / 800 GS / 800 ST / 800 R
  • Engine Type: Parallel twin, two-cyinder, 48.7 cubic inch, four-stroke
  • Bore and Stroke: 3.23 x 2.98 inches
  • Compression ratio: 12.0:1
  • Valve Train: Double overhead camshaft, with four valves per cylinder
  • Induction: Fuel injection
  • Ignition: Electric starter
  • Transmission: Six-speed manual, with overdrive
  • Final Drive: Chain
  • Fuel Capacity: 4.2 gallons
  • Estimated Fuel Economy: 54 mpg
  • Brakes (Front): Brembo, dual hydraulic disc, 12.6-inch rotor
  • Brakes (Rear): Brembo, hydraulic disc, 10.4-inch rotor
  • Suspension (Front): Telescopic fork, 4.9 inches of travel
  • Suspension (Rear): Aluminum. adjustable, twin-sided swing arm, single shock absorber, 4.9 inches of travel
  • Wheelbase: 59.8 inches
  • Rake: 25 degrees
  • Trail: 3.6 inches
  • Seat Height: 31.5 inches
  • Curb Weight: 390 pounds dry, 439 pounds wet
  • Tires (Front): 120/70 ZR17
  • Tires (Rear): 180/55 ZR17


  • Anti-lock brakes, factory installed
  • Anti-theft alarm, factory installed
  • BMW Navigator IV
  • Center stand
  • Heated hand grips, factory installed
  • High Seat, Low Seat
  • Luggage Grid
  • On-board computer, factory installed

Key Competitors For The 2011 BMW F

  • Triumph Tiger 1050 SE
  • Triumph Tiger 800 XC
  • Ducati Multistrada Touring
  • Multistrada Pikes Peak
  • Triumph Tiger 1050 SE