The shocking news on the RnineT

Discussion in 'New Models' started by faffi, Dec 1, 2017.

  1. faffi

    faffi A.S.A.N.

    Feb 24, 2003
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    When I was in Sweden, participating on the adventure rally, I also got a chance to test ride two new BMW RnineT versions; the Urban G/S and this one rninet.png

    I tried No 21 first. The suspension was harsh and made my MT07 feel rather smooth in comparison. At lower rpm, below 5000, it didn't feel nearly as eager as the MT, but once it lifted its skirts and went going it really went. From 100 to 180 kph in 3rd and later 4th gear, the traction control was working overtime on the moist road. First time ever I was happy to have TC as I think it would have spun out underneath me if not - I was caught completely off guard. Not by the power or acceleration but from the lack of grip from the sporty Metzeler in the cool (about 8C) and moist conditions. Not much traction!

    Engine was quite smooth, although one could easily tell it was running, and the brakes required far less effort than those on my MT. Being ham-fisted, I prefer the brakes on the MT, although there is always ABS to save the day in case of rider error.

    The seating position was typical, with cramped leg space and the bars a bit further away than on my Yamaha.

    The Urban had a slightly more relaxed seating position and the suspension felt softer initially, but riding it, the whole thing felt like an old bike; soft, yet harsh suspension and a lack of stability around high speed corners. Whereas the 21 felt related to my MT07, the Urban felt related to my Virago scrambler. The Urban engine also lacked the punch of the 21, showing little of the urgency of the first bike I rode. Since we were two riding together and swapping bikes, it was clear that one had more power than the other. Perhaps someone had set the Urban to a different mapping, but I wouldn't know.

    The brakes on the Urban also felt more like they belonged on a classic bike than something modern and sporty, but the worst was the suspension. Not only did it feel old school, the fork also bottomed over bumps that my Virago absorbed without flinching. Highly disappointing, I must say, for such a costly bike.

    The next day I also tried the Scrambler, and it had the same power as the 21, and its suspension was much firmer than that of the Urban, but not any more comfy. It didn't bottom, though. It was more stable than the Urban, probably thanks to the firmer suspension settings.

    For all I know, the suspension have different specifications between the Urban and Scrambler. If the none-adjustable forks should be the same, one of them must have had less oil in it.

    So, would I buy one? No, not for the asking price. In my opinion, the MT07, ugly as it is, provides more more fun at less than half the price. I like the shaft drive and I like the top end power and I think they look great, but for the gnarly roads I like to explore, the MT07 is simply a better tool.
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