Popular Mechanics South Africa


BMW MOTORRAD’S raison d’être has always been touring, touring, touring, either on- or off-road. Exceptions aside (the nutty S 1000 RR springs to mind), Markus Schramm’s team has served up clinical, superbly engineered continent flatteners for close on 50 years, epitomised by the Reise- Tourer boxer road bikes (RT) and the Gelände/Straße off-road stalwarts (GS).


Why, then, introduce a giant, low-riding cruiser, more Milwaukee than Berlin? The answer, in a phrase, is new markets. BMW’s recent retro obsession boils down to a desire to capture a younger, hipster market. Faced with a saturated touring market (of mostly older, white men), the marketing gurus suggested a fusing of BMW history and the current vogue for all things retro. First were the so-called naked bikes, the R nineT range – emotive machines conjuring up the marque’s own halcyon days of the R27 back in 1967,

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