2015 BMW S1000XR First Look Review From EICMA

Beemer’s Superbike-Powered, Street-Biased Adventurer

One of the worst kept secrets in motorcycling was finally shared at EICMA today when BMW pulled the cover of its oft-spied S1000XR, an all-new adventure bike based on the Bavarian firm’s S1000 superbike platform. Aimed squarely at Ducati’s Testastretta-powered Multistrada, the current favorite of “tall-arounder” riders who never venture off-road and prioritize on-pavement performance above all else, the new S1000XR should be an excellent compliment to BMW’s best selling, boxer-powered R1200GS.

The fourth member of BMW’s S1000 inline-four family of motorcycles, the new XR defines a new category for BMW, which the firm has dubbed “Adventure Sport.” What does that mean? Think sporty performance combined with upright comfort, plenty of touring competence, and lots of everyday utility. The 999cc inline four is very similar in specification to the S1000R naked bike, with the same claimed output of 160 horsepower and 83 pound-feet of torque and an impressively broad and usable powerband that’s almost 10,000 rpm wide—which we can confirm, having recently tested the S1000R. Just like its naked sibling, the XR will come standard with two riding modes—Rain and Road—and Automatic Stability Control (ASC). An optional Pro package adds two additional ride modes (Dynamic and Dynamic Pro) and also a lean-angle sensor that enables the excellent and effective Dynamic Traction Control and ABS Pro that we know and love from experience on other S1000 bikes.

The frame is based on that from the S1000R, but with altered geometry to better fit the all-roads mission and a beefed up subframe to better accommodate the added loads of passengers and luggage (hard luggage, including a trunk, are among many available options). Medium-travel (5.9 inches front/5.5 inches rear) Sachs suspension components further offer the option of Dynamic ESA semi-active electronic suspension adjustment, for excellent ride quality and handling performance regardless of road conditions. BMW’s Gear Shift Assistant Pro up-and-down quickshifter is an available option here as well.

You can tell from just a glance at the discretely beaked fairing that this is definitely a member of the S1000 superbike family, even though it’s headlight openings are symmetrical (though the reflectors inside those apertures are still purposely mismatched). A wide, upright handlebar creates a relaxed seating position behind the manually adjustable, two-position windscreen, while multiple seat options will allow buyers to tailor seat height, too. Pricing has not yet been set, but in standard guise it shouldn’t be that far off from the filial S1000R and S1000RR—starting in the neighborhood of $15,000, in other words