I think I want this bike.

The BMW F800GS.  The littler brother to the big Beemers Obi Wan and his buddy Charlie rode around the world on.  For me, the bigger 1200 is just a bit too big, where as the 800 seems “Just Right”.

I saw this bike in a parking lot in SLC while Gundoc and I grabbed a quick bite before we turned around and went back up to the range.  I believe this to be the F800GS, but I could be wrong… But it’s the 800 that I’ve been studying.  Autoblog has a good article on it, here.

“Why not just make your KTM into a bike like that?”

Because that’s not possible.  My KTM is a single cylinder thumper for one, and the Beemer makes almost twice as much raw power.    This makes it more suitable for longer range rides.  Softer seat and a larger fuel tank are also better for a longer range ride.  Also, the KTM has a habit of saying “Okay, let’s just run completely out of gas… right… now!”  So some sort of fuel indication would be great, like on the BMW.  A windscreen, heated grips, ABS, an actual trip computer.  Things like that make for a more comfortable machine.

11 thoughts on “I think I want this bike.”

  1. I think that is actually a 650 gs, perhaps the dakar model, but based on the headlight, that is not an 800. I am also looking at an 800gs, thwy are awesome!

  2. I like the 800. Good bike. I just bought my first BMW. A 99 R1100 RT and I love it. Since it’s the bike I rode at work for many years it fits like an old glove. Plus, now I can afford to come up for a class with you and tote all my crap along.

  3. “Because that’s not possible….”

    Not to mention that the KTM’s suspension isn’t a BMW’s.

  4. Matt’s right. That’s an F650GS/Dakar, a single cylinder 650. Probably an ’01 or ’02, as that was when they had that color scheme. The saddlebags are aftermarket aluminum cases, much hardier than the BMW OEM bags. If you’ve visited the ADVRider forums (see the ADV sticker on the left case), you can find a ton of info on these bikes and others, and all the farkles available. There is also a dedicated F800 forum out there.
    Sadly, I just sold my ’02 Dakar. I will get the 800GS when funds allow. I’ve test-ridden the F800 in the sport configuration, and the engine is fantastic!

  5. I think I want to go back in time and get my Kaw 900cc two cycle bike. Now there was rocket!! and on the 60 mile laser ruled roads around Edwards AFB in the Mohave in CA it was so fast the cops couldn’t see it! Sigh wonder if my 1100 Shawdow is fixed yet…

  6. I test rode the 800 before settling on my Harley. BMW is amazing, and I wouldn’t hesitate to buy one if gravel roads were in my future.

    It had a bit more buzz then I’m used too, but the power was good, and the handling would leave most squids behind in the real world.

    What impressed me the most was how much room there was between the seat and pegs. My knees start to kill me if it’s too cramped, and the 800’s setup was very nearly perfect.

  7. windscreen?, heated grips? trip computer? fuel gauge? I think you might be looking for a car, Been riding for 30 years and these are all the things I want to get away from, next thing you know your going to want a radio too! just yankin your chain Ogre Great blog I check in every night

  8. Given the various BMW bike-options that Edelweiss offered on our HIgh Alpine Adventure trip, I chose the R800 over the big-speeders and LT’s (Light Truck) because it actually out-torqued the rest and was lighter. It proved to be excellent on the countless turns of the Stiffserjoch (Passo del Stelvio) where I beat the Gruppenfuhrer to the top – but I also had a LOT of practice on twisty Bay Area backroads like Empire Grade and the backside of Bonny Doon…

  9. considering the unfortunate knee problems you have been having maybe you should check to see if it comes with a trailer attachment so you can bring a hover round with you when you go riding.

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