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2024 BMW R 1300 GS Review | First Look

Forty-three years after the BMW R 80 G/S kicked off the adventure bike movement, the 2024 BMW R 1300 GS offers more power and sophistication than any R-GS to date.

BMW Motorrad has announced a thorough overhaul for its top-selling model for 2024, now called the BMW R 1300 GS thanks to an increase in displacement from 1,254cc to 1,300cc. The GS’s signature opposed “boxer” Twin now makes a claimed 145 hp and 110 lb-ft of torque, up from 136 hp and 105 lb-ft on the R 1250 GS. With a claimed curb weight of 523 lb, the new R 1300 GS is 26 lb lighter than its predecessor.

Related: 2021 BMW R 1250 GS 40 Years Edition Review | Road Test

The increased displacement results from a larger bore (106.5mm, up from 102.5) and a shorter stroke (73mm, down from 76). Not only did peak torque increase, BMW says there is a significant increase in torque throughout the rev range, with 96 lb-ft or more available between 3,600 and 7,800 rpm. The engine is also said to run more smoothly, and repositioning it within the frame reduces vibration. Returning is the BMW ShiftCam system that varies the valve timing and valve stroke on the intake side, but the camshaft drive arrangement has been revised. A new 2-into-1 stainless steel exhaust is lighter and optimized to work with ShiftCam. Of the 26 lb shaved off the GS, 8.6 lb came from the engine and another 5.7 lb from the rest of the powertrain.

The new 1,300cc Boxer makes a claimed 145 hp, making it the most powerful R-series Boxer ever.

As part of the redesign, the 6-speed gearbox was moved under the engine, which reduces the overall length of the powertrain and better centralizes mass. The transmission now uses a sensor signal transmitter and a torsion magnet for the optional Shift Assistant Pro quickshifter, which BMW says provides a more direct feel. The driveshaft now has larger universal joints that reduce rotational mass, and the rear axle now has a longer axle stub for easier mounting and dismounting of the rear wheel.

Four ride modes are standard: Road, Rain, Eco, and Enduro. The optional Riding Modes Pro adds Dynamic, Dynamic Pro, and Enduro Pro, and the “Pro” modes are customizable. The R 1300 GS can be further customized to show only preferred ride modes. Also standard is Engine Drag Torque Control (MSR), Dynamic Traction Control (DTC), Dynamic Brake Assist (DBC), and Hill Start Control (HSC).

The entire chassis of the 2024 BMW R 1300 GS has been revised. Replacing the former tubular-steel bridge main frame is a new steel sheet metal main frame, which BMW says allows for more compact packaging as well as increased stiffness. And replacing the former tubular-steel subframe is a die-cast aluminum unit that is said to be lighter, stiffer, narrower, and more tightly bonded to the main frame for added stability.

Suspension consists of the front Evo Telelever and rear Evo Paralever. The new Evo Telelever incorporates a novel flex element whereby the upper fork bridge is “pivotally and rotatably connected via a radial swivel bearing to a sturdy steering shaft tube, which in turn is guided in the main frame via a cylindrical roller bearing at the top and a deep groove ball bearing at the bottom.” BMW says the new design offers significantly greater rigidity as well as improved stability. The new Evo Paralever has a stiffer connection to the shock, a longer single-sided swingarm for increased traction, a quick-release axle, and a swingarm bearing that is now off-axis to that of the rotation of the cardan shaft joint.

The optional Dynamic ESA (Electronic Suspension Adjustment) has been updated as well. The system not only adjusts front and rear damping in real time based on settings and conditions, but it also now adjusts spring rate, automatically adjusts for different loads, and integrates with different ride modes.

Similar to the Adaptive Ride Height available on the Harley-Davidson Pan America and the recently announced Active Preload Reduction available on Triumph Tiger 1200 models, a new option on the R 1300 GS is adaptive vehicle height control, which reduces seat height from 33.5 inches to 32.3 inches during slow travel and when stopped. Also available is optional sports suspension, which adds 0.8 inch of suspension travel front and rear and a firm setup designed for off-road riding.

Standard equipment on the R 1300 GS includes Full Integral ABS Pro, which has Pro settings that turn ABS off at the rear wheel. Optional Dynamic Brake Control prevents unintentional throttle application during braking and reduces drive torque to get the most out of the rear brake for optimal stability and shorter stopping distances.

Replacing the GS’s signature asymmetrical headlight is a new centralized LED headlight surrounded by an X-shaped matrix of four LED running lights, and the optional Headlight Pro adds cornering function. LED front turnsignals are now integrated into the handguards.

The R 1300 GS also comes standard with a 6.5-inch TFT display with Bluetooth connectivity, the Multi-Controller wheel on the left handlebar, tire-pressure monitoring, heated grips, USB and 12V outlets, Keyless Ride, and Dynamic Cruise Control. The new optional Riding Assistant adds radar sensors to enable Active Cruise Control (ACC), Front Collision Warning (FCW), and Lane Change Warning (SWW).

Three wheel options are available, all in 19×3.0-inch front and 17×4.5-inch rear sizes. Standard and Triple Black models come with cast-aluminum wheels. Trophy and Option 719 Tramuntana model variants are fitted with newly developed cross-spoke wheels featuring aluminum rings for dedicated off-road use. A third option is new Enduro forged wheels, which are intended for off-road use and are 3.9 lb lighter than the more robust cross-spoke wheels.

In terms of styling, the 2024 BMW R 1300 GS has a more aerodynamic look, with a sharper beak, a flatter tank, and a slimmer tailsection.

2024 BMW R 1300 GS Triple Black

In addition to the standard model, several variants will be available. The R 1300 GS Triple Black variant returns with blacked-out bodywork and components, comfort seats, comfort passenger footpegs, and a centerstand. It also features an electric windscreen, wind deflectors, and special cockpit trim.

2024 BMW R 1300 GS Trophy with optional Enduro forged wheels

The R 1300 GS Trophy has a Racing Blue Metallic colorway with red and white detailing and a White Metallic Matte subframe. A high rider’s seat and Sport passenger seat offer the look and ergonomics of a rally seat (34.2-inch seat height), and the seat cover continues onto the fuel tank. The Trophy also comes with radiator guards and cross-spoke wheels with black rims or optional gold rims.

2024 BMW R 1300 GS Option 719 Tramuntana with optional luggage

The new R 1300 GS Option 719 Tramuntana features cross-spoke wheels with gold rims, a gold anodized handlebar, and gold trim on the bodywork. The chassis and components are black, the fuel tank center cover is Luxor Black/Grey, and the cylinder head covers are Avus Black Metallic Matte. The side trim sections, the top of the front fender, the aluminum tank, and intake silencer are finished in Aurelius Green Metallic. Special optional equipment includes a top case carrier in Avus Black Metallic, a gray-colored handguard extension, cross-spoke wheels with black rims, and titanium-colored anodized sport brakes.

Pricing for the 2024 BMW R 1300 GS starts at $18,895. Find out more at the BMW Motorrad website.

2024 BMW R 1300 GS Specifications

Base Price: $18,895

Website: BMWMotorcycles.com

Warranty: 3 yrs., 36,000 miles

Engine Type: Air/liquid-cooled, longitudinal opposed-Twin, DOHC w/ VVT, 4 valves per cyl.

Displacement: 1,300cc

Bore x Stroke: 106.5 x 73.0mm

Horsepower: 145 @ 7,750 rpm (factory claim)

Torque: 110 lb-ft @ 6,500 rpm (factory claim)

Transmission: 6-speed, hydraulically actuated slip/assist wet clutch

Final Drive: Shaft

Wheelbase: 59.8 in.

Rake/Trail: 26.2 degrees/4.4 in.

Seat Height: 33.5 in.

Wet Weight: 523 lb

Fuel Capacity: 5.0 gal.

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