Developed for the U.S. market, and available midway through 2017, BMW’s K1600B  made its official debut today at the Peterson Museum in Los Angeles. The new bagger model is based on the Concept 101 Bagger we reported on in May 2015. Expect the base price to be around $20k, while a fully loaded unit will retail around $25k.

Highlights of the new BMW K1600B:

  • 6-cylinder in-line engine according to EU4 regulations with an output of 160 hp at 7,750 rpm and a maximum torque of 129 lb.-ft. at 5,250 rpm.
  • Bagger design with eye-catching stretched streamline-style silhouette and low rear section.
  • Low rear frame for reduced vehicle height, dropped passenger seat height (- 7 cm) and typical bagger look.
  • Fixed side cases with a new compartment design, rear central cover and integrated light units in US-American styling.
  • Chrome-plated parallel silencers with ribbed end caps.
  • Folding rear mudguard for easy wheel removal.
  • Effective wind and weather protection with wind deflectors stretched further back.
  • Typical short bagger-style electrically adjustable windscreen.
  • Electronic suspension Dynamic ESA with automatic damping adaptation and “Road” and “Cruise” damping modes as standard.
  • Reverse-assist for even simpler maneuverability as an optional equipment item ex-works.
  • Shift Assistant Pro for shifting up and down without clutch as an ex-works option.
  • Intelligent Emergency Call as an ex-works option for rapid assistance in the event of an accident or in emergency situations (only in European markets where ConnectedDrive is available).

From BMW: The presentation of the “Concept 101” concept study as part of the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este in spring 2015 was an impressive new chapter for BMW Motorrad in the history of BMW Motorrad Concept Bikes. This BMW Motorrad interpretation of motorcycling on endless highways, the dream of freedom and independence and the embodiment of “Grand American Touring” now becomes reality in form of a series version of the new K 1600 B bagger.

As a high-performance, highly emotional and exclusive motorcycle, the new K 1600 B with the familiar 6-cylinder in-line engine and supreme 118 kW (160 hp) output, like the “Concept 101” study that preceded it, already embodies the motto of the “Spirit of the Open Road”. It is synonymous with elegance, power and luxury on two wheels and transforms every road, every tour and every moment into a particularly intense experience.

The characteristic streamlining with a low rear section and masculine colour scheme make for relaxed dynamic elegance.

In design terms, the new all-black (Blackstorm metallic / black for chassis parts and drivetrain) K 1600 B takes the form of a bagger, an exclusive custom bike type that is particularly popular in the USA. The characteristic properties of the bagger are its drop-shaped silhouette, whose highest point is the front fairing, the stretched drop-like silhouette in a “streamlining” style and the deep-set side cases with integrated US American style rear lights. New fully chrome-plated silencers run parallel to the road and are an organic fit for the visual appeal of the bagger.

Largely based on the technology used in the BMW 6-cylinder tourer K 1600 GT, the new K 1600 B implements its spectacular backward sloping linear design with a completely reconstructed rear section. This not only makes the bagger look particularly low-lying and slender, but also, thanks to the new rear frame, significantly reduces the height of the passenger seat.

Side cases with newly designed compartments and folding rear mudguard for easy dismantling of the wheel.

A re-design of the compartments in the side cases with slimmer covers and deeper body allows for particularly comfortable and effective loading of luggage. The rear mudguard has been designed to fold upward to make it easier to remove the rear wheel.

High visual impact and effective wind and weather protection.

The fairing of the new K 1600 B with its closely tailored dynamic windscreen makes the motorcycle look particularly powerful and impressive. For especially effective wind and weather protection, the side sections of the wind deflectors are stretched further back. Wind deflectors protect the rider’s hands. The two mirrors also match the design concept, ensuring a particularly good view of the following traffic thanks to the large mirror surfaces with an aspherical element.

Electronic suspension Dynamic ESA with automatic damping adaptation as standard.

With the electronically controlled Dynamic ESA chassis and its “Road” and “Cruise” modes, the new K 1600 B combines riding comfort, stability and dynamic performance ensuring an incomparable riding experience. In the standard “Road” setting, damping adaptation is fully automated, offering the very highest level of comfort and ultimate traction on virtually all surfaces. In contrast, the new K 1600 B offers very gentle damping in “Cruise” damping mode, ensuing a very high level of comfort at low speeds.

New reverse assist feature for comfortable manoeuvring and Shift Assistant Pro for shifting up and down without activating the clutch.

The new K 1600 B is particularly easy to manoeuvre thanks to the reverse assist feature. This is activated conveniently at the press of a button on the left-hand handlebar panel. Pressing the starter button initiates movement.

The Shift Assistant Pro available as an option allows the rider to shift up and down without activating the clutch in a large number of cases.

Comfortable foot rests for a “feet forward” position and optional exclusive forged wheels for individualisation.

A wide range of Original BMW Motorrad Accessories and options available ex works means that nothing is left to be desired in terms of the individualisation of the new K 1600 B. This includes the provision of comfortable foot rests for the passenger, while these elements can also be fitted to offer the rider a particularly relaxed “feet forward” position. Redesigned forged wheels with eleven double spokes each further enhance the exclusivity of the new K 1600 B.

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  • JMDonald

    I’m sure there are people out there that would buy this thing. The feet forward position seems unnatural to me. It’s alive! Alive I tell you!

    • Auphliam

      It appears to have mids like all the other K1600’s

  • TheMarvelous1310

    What is this, a BMW Street Bob? Yeah, keep talking about how irrelevant the big, slow, heavy Harley – Davidsons are.

    • Grant

      A bike that makes 160hp and 129lb/ft and weighs 700lb is not slow, heavy yes but not slow. Harley’s street glide (a bike that is close in terms of looks, size, and displacement to the k1600) weighs 810lbs and makes 79hp and 95lb/ft. That IS slow, heavy, and irrelevant.

      • TheMarvelous1310

        Slow is relative, and there’s no shortage of tuning options for Harley-Davidson motors.

        And like I mentioned before, if Harley-Davidson motorcycles are SO irrelevant, why the hell would BMW even make this? The K1600GT is an AMAZING bike! It’s all-day comfortable, good sound system, decent on gas, great looking for a tourer, nimble for anything heavier than 500lbs,and it pulls like a freighter! It’s almost perfect, and I know guys(two) who’ve traded in ‘Glides for Beemers so it’s obviously working, so why would they even want to do it?

        Could it be that there’s something you’re missing here about what Harley-Davidson does?

        • Andre Capitao Melo

          From what you’re saying, HD makes people want to trade bikes XD

        • Grant

          Eh, I doubt it. I appreciate Harley big twins for what they are, but they’re not for me. No amount of tuning is going to make their 103ci or even their 110ci in a 800-900lb platform appealing to me. Haven’t ridden a bike with their new motor so I’ll reserve judgement until I do. I was more praising the k1600 platform. Not necessarily this particular model. This just seems like an easy step for BMW to pick up sales from guys who want to fit in with the “bagger” crowd but also want some real performance. You’re right though irrelevant doesn’t seem to be the right word for motorcycles that account for such a large percentage of sales in the US. But they are irrelevant to me :)

  • Starmag
  • Old MOron

    K1600B? What’s the B stand for, “Bwaha-haha”?
    Or maybe it stands for “Bashed by DickRubble”. Where is he, anyway?

  • Old MOron

    We’re all living in Amerika
    Amerika ist wunderbar

  • Auphliam

    Ribbed end caps…hmm

  • DickRuble

    Not the first time BMW has ventured into the cruiser market

  • SRMark

    I guess they are trying to be mysterious. But photographing a black bike in the dark sorta defeats the purpose of showing off the bike. Maybe it makes the bike look smaller. If so, God help it.

  • gunny 2shoes

    does it get the directional headlight?

  • Uncommon Sense

    Disappointing. I was hoping it would look closer to the Roland Sands version with the lower rear and larger front tire. This thing looks like a gussied up Honda F6B. I’m sure it is a nice bike given its roots, but it is missing the aesthetic pop that attracts people to cruisers.

    HD has the chrome, loud pipes and built in vibrator. If BMW wants to attract those buyers, they need something a little more in your face, but more refined than a HD. The Roland Sands version accomplished that… this doesn’t imho.

    I’m not a huge bagger fan, but the Roland version really caught my eye and had me considering dropping the coin on it if they released it. This version is forgetable.

  • John B.

    HD has been losing market share to Indian, among others, and now BMW has entered the bagger market.

    As a publicly traded company, HD must meet quarterly profit and loss expectations, otherwise, its share price will drop. To protect quarterly results, publicly traded companies often forego highly profitable long term projects that will hurt near term results. IMO HD should take the company private, and devise a long term strategy to protect and build upon its market share. Warren Buffett made several fortunes taking public companies private, and releasing them from the tyranny of quarterly results.

    Behemoth baggers don’t interest me much, but it’s interesting to watch other manufacturers chase HD’s customers with increasing success.

    • Old MOron

      All that stuff about the tyranny of quarterly results has a nice ring to it. But it turns out that BMW, Honda, Kawasaki, Polaris, Suzuki, Yamaha are also publicly traded companies. How come they can put out bitching rides?

      I don’t doubt the quarterly results are a serious concern for public companies, but I’m not convinced that’s the reason Harley builds nothing but shiny tug boats.

      • John B.

        I looked at BMW’s annual report, and it appears motorcycle sales constitute only a small fraction of company revenue. I suspect I would find the same with respect to Honda and Kawasaki. In contrast, motorcycles and motorcycle financing constitute a large percentage of overall HD revenue. As such, motorcycle sales results determine quarterly results at HD, while motorcycle sales at BMW, Honda, and Kawasaki have little impact on overall company results.

        HD has built the strongest brand in American motorcycling, and (for whatever reasons) people buy HD motorcycles in great numbers. Riding through the Rocky Mountains last month, I would say 80% of the bikes I saw were HDs. HD owners must perceive value in the HD brand; i.e., the value of a HD motorcycle goes beyond the bike itself. Also, the best product rarely has the biggest market share. As such, I am not sure building better motorcycles necessarily solves HD’s problems, but confess I’m not an expert on how HD can regain lost market share.

        Here’s an article that argues HD should consider going private.

        • Old MOron

          Thanks, John. Will read the article when I have time in the near future. I thought about the other OEM and the fact that they make other products. Does the tyranny of quarterly results apply only to motorcycles?

          For example, BMW and Honda are in a highly competitive automobile industry. The tyranny or quarterly results doesn’t seem to stop them from putting out new and interesting cars.

          Or maybe consider Piaggio. I think all they do is scooters and motos, right? They don’t suffer the same stagnation as H-D.

          • John B.

            You always ask good questions OM, which I appreciate because it forces me to think rather than sigh.

            “The tyranny of quarterly results” applies, among other situations, when a company begins to lose market share and the best solutions require a strategy that will not generate profits for several years. I don’t know whether Honda or BMW has ever faced that situation.

            Did HD make significantly better/different motorcycles in November, 2006 when its stock price reached a historical high. If not, the overall quality of HD motorcycles may not account for its faltering market share and withering stock price.

            It appears Polaris (Indian, more specifically) is taking market share from HD. This article attributes this to the great bikes Indian has introduced. To my eye, Indian motorcycles have much more character than Harleys, but I would defer to the MO staff to tell us whether Indian motorcycles are better than Harleys. (Polaris’s investment to revive the Indian brand is a great example of a project that sacrificed near term profits to garner long term market share.)

            I don’t know HD’s business well enough to explain why HD’s stock price has faltered since mid-2014. I would say, however, to lose market share is a serious problem for any company, and this new bagger from BMW can’t be good news for HOG executives and shareholders.

          • Kevin Duke

            Polaris has been doing a great job with its two motorcycle divisions. Resurrecting a historic and revered brand like Indian and launching two new platforms would sell decently well even if they were mediocre, which they are much better than that. Still, those sales are a bucket in the ocean next to H-D. So, lots of upside and double-digit growth, but still a long way to go to even approach the MoCo. That said, it difficult to see how Harley’s share could grow much bigger, meaning sales numbers will have a tough time heading any direction but down unless exciting new products will attract new demographics to the brand.

          • John B.

            Thanks for the insight Kevin.

          • Auphliam

            The obvious conclusion, at least in my mind, is to expand into other genres – Sport, Adventure, etc. Think about If they all were to eventually even out – 33% market share each for Indian, HD and Victory. That seems like an ideal situation, but its all about perspective. That would be a huge boon for the PII brands, but HD would be in full on panic mode long before it ever got to that…but then what? Do they try to recover by doing what they’ve all always done? Like you said, there’s only so much market share to be had in their current arena. I would think HD should already be looking at other genres from a purely survival stand point, and the PII companies should’ve been looking there as a fresh market to attack.

  • DickRuble

    $25K for a loaded up Beemer vs $36K for a CVO Street Glide bagger. Just sayin’.. not that I’d buy any.. At $22K the K1600gt would be plenty of bike without inducing gag reflexes to passersby.

  • mugwump

    I see no mention of T-shirts