2020 BMW F 900 R First Look Preview

BMW replaces its aging F 800 platform with the more sporty F 900 R.

BMW introduced the replacement of its F 800 platform at the EICMA motorcycle show. The 2020 F 900 R is positioned as a midsize naked streetbike that's "precise, intuitive, and dynamic, offering purist riding fun," according to its Motorrad project leader, Michael Zweck.

Also introduced at the same time is a touring-oriented brother, the F 900 XR, which we'll cover in an ancillary report.

What We Know About The 2020 F 900 R

BMW’s replacing its F 800 R with a more powerful and better handling version in the 2020 F 900 R as announced at the EICMA motorcycle show.
BMW’s replacing its F 800 R with a more powerful and better handling version in the 2020 F 900 R as announced at the EICMA motorcycle show.BMW Motorrad

The F 900 R is propelled by a larger-displacement liquid-cooled 895cc parallel twin with an eight-valve DOHC cylinder head. It gains 42cc via 2mm-larger cylinder bore (86mm). Forged pistons replace the cast components squeezing fuel to a lofty 13.1:1 compression ratio. The crankshaft fires at a 90-degree offset giving this powerplant the sound and feel of a 90-degree V-twin. Spent fuel is purged via an underbelly stainless steel exhaust.

To quell unwanted vibration, it uses a pair of counterweight shafts ahead, and behind, the crankshaft. Dry-sump oil lubrication keeps these heavy parts from spinning in a thick pool of oil, which increases engine efficiency.

Motorrad’s aim was to make a more mature mid-sized bike in the F 900 R. A rendering shows its sharper and more aggressive lines.
Motorrad’s aim was to make a more mature mid-sized bike in the F 900 R. A rendering shows its sharper and more aggressive lines.BMW Motorrad

Power is transmitted to the tire through a manual cable-actuated clutch (with back-torque limit/anti-hop function), a six-speed transmission, and chain final drive. Shift Assist Pro (electronic quickshifter) can be fitted as an accessory allowing for clutchless gearshifts.

Motorrad designers carve the F 900 R’s body panels in clay during the engineering phase.
Motorrad designers carve the F 900 R’s body panels in clay during the engineering phase.BMW Motorrad

Horsepower is rated at 105 while torque is claimed 67.8 pound-feet (European spec). It’s also worth noting that the Motorrad crew will offer an electronically limited 48 hp version available for European’s A2 licence class.

The midsize Beemer sips fuel from an ultra-lightweight, plastic-weld fuel cell, that BMW says is a first for the motorcycle industry. Fuel capacity is rated at 3.4 gallons.

The F 900 R is slimmer with a more sport-oriented riding position. Three seat height options are available for different sized riders.
The F 900 R is slimmer with a more sport-oriented riding position. Three seat height options are available for different sized riders.BMW Motorrad

Like most new 2019-and-up BMWs, including the awesome R 1250 GS and S 1000 RR, a huge 6.5-inch color TFT screen serves as instrumentation with vivid fonts, colors, and graphics. This makes it easy to decipher while riding, day or night. Bluetooth functionality lets riders pair their smartphones with the BMW Motorrad Connected app.

ABS and ASC (traction control) are standard. Both can be manually disabled with a push of a button, say, for slides.
ABS and ASC (traction control) are standard. Both can be manually disabled with a push of a button, say, for slides.BMW Motorrad

Overtly safety-conscious riders can opt for the Intelligent Emergency Call service, which BMW claims has the ability to automatically contact emergency services in the event of an accident. The call can also be made manually, however it requires a mobile phone connection via the presumably integrated SIM card on the motorcycle.

Full LED lighting comes standard, and for an upcharge, adaptive cornering headlamps can be fitted to better illuminate pavement through turns. This will be a must-have add-on for those who routinely ride after dark.

The parallel-twin engine in the BMW grows to 895cc via 2mm larger cylinder bore. Motorrad Europe claims the engine is good for 105 hp.
The parallel-twin engine in the BMW grows to 895cc via 2mm larger cylinder bore. Motorrad Europe claims the engine is good for 105 hp.BMW Motorrad

Two riding modes are offered (Rain and Road) with ABS and Automatic Stability Control (traction control) standard. Each mode offers different calibration of engine, ABS, and ASC response. Riders can also manually disable ABS and ASC. Additionally, for those who pony up for the optional electronic damping adjustment (Dynamic ESA), suspension damping character is linked to the modes.

The F 900 R is outfitted with full LED lighting. This image demonstrates the effectiveness of the headlamp.
The F 900 R is outfitted with full LED lighting. This image demonstrates the effectiveness of the headlamp.BMW Motorrad

Yet another available option is Riding Modes Pro. This upgrades the electronics suite with Dynamic Brake Control and a new feature, engine torque control (MSR), which automatically feeds the engine fuel during deceleration (enabling less drag on the rear tire). This mitigates rear wheel instability over slippery surfaces. More advanced Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) replaces ASC, and the ABS programming adds cornering, lean-angle-based function.

The optional adaptive cornering headlamp does a better job of illuminating the road through turns. The F 900 R is the only motorcycle in its class to offer this technology.
The optional adaptive cornering headlamp does a better job of illuminating the road through turns. The F 900 R is the only motorcycle in its class to offer this technology.BMW Motorrad

The F 900 R rides on a more narrow twin-spar steel frame with an alloy swingarm. It’s a shorter setup, decreasing wheelbase by 0.31 inch, for added maneuverability. Sport riders will be happy to know that the chassis geometry numbers are sharper for increased handling response.

A thick 43mm inverted fork soaks up bumps at the front and a direct-mount shock (no linkage) handles rear suspension duties. While fork damping is fixed, the shock allows spring preload and rebound damping adjustment. Additionally, suspension travel has been increased 8 percent up front and 14 percent at the rear as compared to the F 800. Triple hydraulic disc brakes, with radial-mount front calipers keep speed in check.

A computer rendering shows the design of the BMW F 900 R’s twin-spar steel frame and alloy swingarm. Wheelbase has been reduced slightly and the steering geometry is sharper for improved sport handling.
A computer rendering shows the design of the BMW F 900 R’s twin-spar steel frame and alloy swingarm. Wheelbase has been reduced slightly and the steering geometry is sharper for improved sport handling.BMW Motorrad

Ergonomics-wise the F 900 R offers a more sporty forward-position riding stance than its predecessor. Specifically, the foot controls are 0.59 inch further to the rear and the aluminum handlebar is nearly an inch more forward. Three seat height options are available (standard, high, and extra high) giving riders a range between 30.3 inches and 34.06 inches. All told, the BMW weighs 465 pounds with fuel, which is a tad heavy for a midsize streetbike.

Pricing and US availability are still unknown but more details to come when available.

2020 BMW F 900 R Specifications

PRICE TBD
ENGINE 895cc, DOHC, liquid-cooled parallel twin; 8-valve
BORE x STROKE 86.0 x 77.0mm
COMPRESSION RATIO 13.1:1
FUEL DELIVERY BMS-M
CLUTCH Wet, multiplate slipper clutch; cable actuation
TRANSMISSION/FINAL DRIVE 6-speed/chain
FRAME Steel bridge frame in monocoque design
FRONT SUSPENSION 43mm fork; 5.3-in. travel
REAR SUSPENSION Shock, three-way-adjustable for spring preload and rebound damping; 5.7-in. travel
FRONT BRAKES Radial-mount 4-piston calipers, 320mm discs
REAR BRAKE 1-piston caliper, 265mm disc
WHEELS, FRONT/REAR Die-cast aluminum; 17 x 3.5-in. / 17 x 5.5-in.
TIRES, FRONT/REAR TBD; 120/70-17 / 180/55-17
RAKE/TRAIL 26.0°/3.9 in.
WHEELBASE 59.8 in.
SEAT HEIGHT 32.1 in.
FUEL CAPACITY 3.4 gal.
CLAIMED CURB WEIGHT 465 lb.
WARRANTY TBD
AVAILABLE TBD
CONTACT https://www.bmwmotorcycles.com/