New tech for BMW’s K1600 range: GT, GTL, Bagger and Grand America get EU 5 engines, latest electronics and massive colour dashboard
The BMW K1600 is one of the most extreme bikes available. The only current inline-six engine in motorcycling, with a massive 1,649cc capacity, 160bhp of power and 180Nm of torque, it’s extreme in lots of good ways.
That wild engine powers a range of ultra-touring machines, starting with the GT and B bagger versions, then up to the more luxurious GTL and outlandish Grand America. All are rammed with super-luxurious rider comfort and entertainment tech, as well as cutting edge riding safety aids. The chassis design uses a stiff aluminium beam frame plus BMW’s Duolever front and Paralever rear suspension systems to give superb handling and reasonable all-up weights (from 343kg kerb weight on the GT to 370kg on the full dress Grand America). If you need to cross continents at speed and with the comfort of a first-class cabin, these are the machines for you.
For 2022, BMW’s bringing the whole range up to date, with a new EU5 emissions compliant engine setup. An overhauled engine management system adds a new engine braking control which works alongside the traction control, and steps in to add stability during hard downshifting on slippery roads. The power and torque outputs are the same as before, but now arrive 1,000rpm sooner, for more relaxed cruising.
There’s a new Dynamic ESA semi-active electronic suspension adjustment system, which links to the inertial measurement unit in the ECU, also used for ABS and traction control. That gives a fully integrated suspension and rider safety package, and also allows overall integration of suspension, ABS, power modes and traction into tailored riding modes.
The K1600s also get the latest 10.25” TFT LCD dashboard display seen on the new 2021 R1250 RT, as part of the BMW Connected setup. This links to your smartphone via Bluetooth and Wi-Fi to manage navigation, media and other phone functions (including SOS emergency telematics), with a waterproof, fan-cooled charging compartment for your phone.
The audio system has been upgraded to a version 2.0 system, with even more sound options, including DAB+ radio, and a clever integrated aerial system. All the radio antennae are now integrated into the bodywork rather than external whip aerials. New LED cornering lighting, optional parking floor-lighting, keyless ignition, central locking, hard luggage, quickshifter – the K1600s have the lot.
A solid mid-life upgrade for the K1600s then. These are niche heavyweight tourers, and won’t be the right everyday bike for many of us. But as an exercise in extremes, we just love them.
BMW K 1600 GT, GTL, B and Grand America:
- Revised six-cylinder in-line engine according to EU-5 regulations with new BMS-O engine control.
- Two knock sensors and four lambda probes instead of previously two.
- Power 118 kW (160 hp) at 6 750 rpm (previously 7 750 rpm).
- Torque: 180 Nm at 5 250 rpm (previously 175 Nm).
- Exemplary emission values, smooth running and performance.
- Even more powerful acceleration across the entire speed range due to increased torque.
- Knock sensors for optimised riding capability.
- Engine drag torque control (MSR) as standard.
- Dynamic ESA “Next Generation” electronic suspension with fully automatic load compensation as standard.
- New full LED adaptive headlight as standard.
- Connectivity: New multifunctional instrument cluster with 10.25 inch full-colour TFT display and numerous features such as easy-to-use telephony with extended smartphone connection as standard.
- Smartphone compartment with USB-C charging option as standard.
- 4 freely assignable favourite buttons as standard.
- New audio system 2.0 as optional equipment.
- Intelligent eCall emergency call equipment as optional equipment ex works.
- One attractive basic colour, style variant and Option 719 variant each.
- Option 719 “Midnight” for K 1600 B and K 1600 Grand America: Paintwork in Meteoric Dust II metallic with “Galaxy” theme applied by water transfer printing method.
- Extended range of optional equipment and original BMW Motorrad accessories.