You’re old school. You’re new school. And you want to tour. Where to turn? Either choose from a number of throwback V-twins or pick the BMW R1200RT. The RT has played a valuable role in BMW’s lineup for decades, beginning with the original R100RT of 1979. Now four decades later, BMW’s unique opposed-twin touring formula continues, with improvements those first RT adopters could scarcely have imagined. For instance, the R1200RT’s 1,170cc engine boasts four camshafts and fuel injection, has four-valve cylinder heads to boost power and efficiency, and employs air- and liquid-cooling, and a balance shaft.
For nimble handling and ride comfort, the claimed 609-pound R1200RT has BMW’s unique Telelever fork and Paralever shock, the latter of which has tool-less spring preload and damping adjusters. Happily, sporty Z-rated touring radials will weather any storm the RT’s rider can muster by turning up the wick on the 125-hp engine. And they’ll do so for a long while too; with its claimed 47 mpg fuel economy and a huge 6.6-gallon tank, the R1200RT can conquer some 300 miles between fill-ups.
Likes: Terrific comfort and economy; height-adjustable seat; standard stability control
Dislikes: LED turn signals and taillight but halogen headlights? That's backward!
Verdict: A stately, comfy, and gimmick-free touring twin