This weekend I had the pleasure of riding the new 2020 S1000RR M sport. I had only ridden a base model K67 bike to and from work before this. No twisty roads. So not much good came out of that. Couldn't form a thorough opinion on anything. Prior to that I did around 50,000kms on my 2014 RR and 60,000kms on my 2016 RR. Not to mention countless run in's on RR, R and XR over my years at work.
I rode it home one night and since the weather was warm and sunny, I decided to continue into the hills. The weekend was supposed to be wet both days so I wanted some dry time to really see what it feels like at speed. I then also managed to get out on the weekend for a bit more of a longer ride with more sustained fast pace sections.
The first thing I noticed was that the seat is bloody hard. Like it's really bad. Commuting to and from work when you are just sitting and not moving around is going to be a pain. Its so thin and has very little padding. Feels like you are sitting on the battery and frame. Of course everyone will say it is a race bike and designed for the track. Comfort in regards to the seat does not matter. Well I can tell you that this bike will never see the track when I get mine. So commuting to work and 4 day mountain trips will be its purpose. The seat will not cut it at all. That's the first thing that's getting changed. It makes the K46 seem like a lounge chair.
The next thing I noticed was that the mirrors vibrate which renders them useless. At road speeds 60kmh, 80kmh, 100kmh. They are so blurry. I actually use my mirrors quite a lot on the road. They are a crucial safety feature for me when commuting. I think it comes from the design with the lights in the mirror. The head of the mirror is quite top heavy and they simply move too much. The older version on the K46 was much more sturdy and not so top heavy. I will note that at around 180kmh they are clear
This one is not necessarily a bad thing but the bike feels very tall. It feels taller than a K46 and you feel like you are really sitting right on top of it. Where as the K46 feels like you sit more in it.
The clutch take up point is hard to find. I can't always manage to get a smooth fast take off. The K46 you could just hold the throttle and let the clutch out smooth and then increase the rpm and it would launch really well. This new one seems to just die in the a$$. I can hold the rpm steady and let the clutch out smooth and it seems to bog down. Almost need to give it a lot of gas to get off the line. Would probably improve with time.
Ok so now that I have the bad points covered which in reality are very minuscule I can move onto the good stuff.
The change of direction is much improved. The K46 was always like a truck to flick from corner to corner. Was probably my only gripe with it. This bike is much more narrow in the guts. The carbon wheels make it effortless. Not only on their own obviously but the overall change of direction speed is more like a 600.
The brakes at first use for me felt very weird. I have heard that they lack the initial bite that the brembos have. But this makes them more progressive and aids trail braking into the corner. Initially I grabbed the brakes and it felt like I was going to run into the corner quicker than I wanted. I felt like I had to squeeze more than usual. That initial bite of the brembo always washed off a bit of speed first up. However they never faded and the pressure point never changed though which was very good. Rock solid the whole time. I got use them quickly and it became normal.
The engine is a monster. I only had it in Dynamic mode. The rev limiter was still in place so I was only able to hit 9k. But the torque that the low to mid range now has is massive. I normally rode my K46 above 10k every where. The whole idea was to keep above 10 and run gears to 14. Lots of 1st and 2nd just holding it out. This thing was chewing the K3 tyres with only 9k to play with and temps were still quite cool. That's a worry for later lol. I did find the limiter very annoying as I like to run gears out to red line and this forced me to shift earlier than normal which then caused me to lose rpm and increase speed which was not what I wanted for the road I was on and the way I ride. Once it hit 8k it then almost hit a power band when it went to 9k. I was like yeah this thing is gonna be a jack in the box once we hit 10k+. Tyre shredder. It feels faster than a S1000R in the low to mid rpm. Slower riders probably won't even hit 9k for the shift cam. Especially on the road. It's plenty fast below that. Kind of made the K46 good for fast guys because if you couldn't keep it on the pipe then you were no where.
The handling while the bike is on its side is unreal. Like I was so surprised how stable it was while at lean. On a bumpy road with sometimes loose surface the bike felt rock solid. I felt like I could lean even more and not have an issue. The K46 to me still moved around a little while leaned over. The new swing arm and shock really give the bike more mechanical grip. Like its more than just tyres. It really sticks like sh1t to a blanket. I only hit a lean angle of 52. Although I was riding with a friend on a K46 and I feel that the K67 reads a lower lean angle than what you're actually at. Definitely some discrepancy between the 2 I think.
The bars are much wider and flatter than the K46. They are higher too. Seems to be more comfortable than the K46. Aside from that plank of wood for a seat.
The exhaust is too quiet. When I get mine I am going to cut the headers just after the cats. That box is just for noise. So keeping the cats and just adding a link pipe to clean it up a bit but not have to stuff with the tuning. Should be able to achieve the desired result.
My friend who was following said to me that the brake lights flash when going into a corner on the brakes. I have seen this on a video of someone else. BMW has a feature called dynamic brake light which flashes in emergency braking situations. I do not think this is on the RR. I would say that braking hard into a corner while leaned over is no where near achieving the rate of deceleration in an upright emergency situation. I am going to check that out.
Very much looking forward to receiving mine in a few weeks hopefully. Got a few months of summer left to get some trips in