It’s a little strange to hear Nate Kern call me, and everyone else in the rider’s meeting, one of his kids. “It’s true,” says the childless Kern as he can see the weird looks on our faces this chilly December morning at Chuckwalla Valley Raceway. “I’m man enough to say I care about you guys and when you’re here, at one of my trackdays, all I want is the best experience possible for you.” This might sound like lip service since every trackday provider wants you to have a good time, but Nate Kern and his eponymous DoubleRFest trackdays have the weight of BMW behind it to come as close as possible to ensuring this sentiment rings true.
Hot off the heels of the newly updated S 1000 RR, BMW today unveiled the 2023 M 1000 RR – the basis of its racing programs all over the world. With the new M model, focus wasn’t placed on increasing power, but rather on making the most of the aerodynamics to use the existing power as efficiently as possible. As you’ll see in the full press release below, countless hours were spent in the wind tunnel and on the track to take full advantage of the aero package – and improve upon it where necessary. BMW says top speed has gone up to “189+ mph” (the legal department surely stepped in and said the actual number couldn’t be published), and so has total downforce from the wings. This helps keep the bike from doing wheelies when it really should be accelerating, so the traction control doesn’t have to work as hard. It also helps mid-corner to keep weight on the front tire for better mechanical grip through the turn.
It’s been nearly two years since BMW first debuted the M 1000 RR, its first motorcycle to carry the company’s high-performance M brand. We knew it wouldn’t be the first, though, after we broke the news that BMW had trademarked the name along with “M 1000 XR” and “M 1300 GS.” What we didn’t expect was for the next M-branded motorcycle to be based on the S 1000 R.
The naked bike wars have gotten a little spicier today, as BMW announced the all-new S 1000 R – a complete redesign from the previous model. The changes are many, but some might call it a retuned version of the S 1000 RR sportbike. Not that that’s a bad thing. So, let’s get right into it.
BMW officially announced its first two-wheeled M model with the new M1000RR. Based on the S1000RR, no slouch on its own, the M1000RR offers a higher level of performance, adding aerodynamic wings and bumping the power output up to a claimed 212 hp while reducing the claimed curb weight to 423 pounds.
With the World Superbike championship set to resume again this weekend in Jerez, after a long Coronavirus-induced break since the season opener at Philip Island in February, BMW felt it necessary to tell everyone how it was spending its time in lockdown – and it’s pretty fascinating.
Has it really been 20 years since the world didn’t seize up at the stroke of midnight, as we feared it might? Yes. Every time I walk out into the garage, my 2000 R1 sitting dormant on its stand (the last year of the first-gen R1) reminds me of what a long time ago that was. Next to all the new bikes it sees come and go, the old girl is positively archaic. In a good, Ann-Margret way, but still. While we’re still quarantining seems like a good time to look back upon what bikes have moved the game forward the most since the millennium.
Newly released filings from the California Air Resources Board confirm the BMW S1000XR is getting updates for 2020, likely including the ShiftCam variable-valve timing system added on the new S1000RR. Those looking for similar updates to the S1000R may be disappointed, however, as CARB documents suggest the naked bike is not getting the same updates.
Last fall, BMW introduced a line of upgrades and accessories for the S1000RR, under the company’s M performance brand. BMW may be planning to expand that concept with a line of high performance M models, as the company has filed trademark applications for M 1000 RR, M 1000 XR and M 1300 GS.
The 2020 BMW S1000RR is what happens when government regulations ruin what is otherwise a good motorcycle. If you’ve been paying attention to the S 1000 RR (Yes, that’s its technical name, with spaces between letters and numbers. I’m scrunching them all together from here on out.), you’re already aware it’s been available in Europe for some time as a 2019 model year – and the reviews are raving. But now it’s slowly trickling into US dealers as a 2020 model, and this review won’t be quite as amazing – and it’s not entirely BMW’s fault. I wasn’t sure why there was a discrepancy, but after talking with some other journos who have ridden the European version, I think I know why. More on that later.
Has it really been 10 years since the BMW S1000RR first debuted? The S1000RR has been one of our favorite literbikes for a decade now, but for the 2019 model year, it’s getting a complete makeover, with a new look and a brand new engine with variable valve timing claiming 205 hp.
China’s intellectual property office has published a design registration revealing what appears to be a new 2019 BMW S1000RR. The design, filed Feb. 23, 2018 with China’s SIPO with a priority filing with Germany’s patent office dated Aug. 23, 2017, reveals a sportbike looking nearly identical to spy photos we published last July.