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2008 r1200rt - what problems are prevalent?


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I am coming off a VTX and looking at a 2008 RT. The RT has 44,000 miles on it. what kind of things could I expect to repair/replace soon? what is high mileage for these bikes? New to BMW and all these FD failures, clutch problems, etc have got me a little gun shy. Thanks for your help.

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Final drives only fail on the internet. Clutches last forever. At 44k the engine is pretty much shot. Parts will start to fall off on a daily basis. If you're looking for a reliable gun, get a Sig. :grin:


Seriously, welcome to our little world. I have an '08 RT, & your concerns are largely unfounded. At 44k, I'd make sure all services have been performed, including it's just about time to replace the alternator belt. Not that it's about to break, but recommended replacement is 36k. I have 48k on mine, it still looks good visually with no cracks, so make your own call.


Now to the FD deal. Lot's of bad stuff on the interwebs about BMW FD's, but that doesn't mean they're unreliable. That's just the internet. If they were as bad as the internet makes them out to be, BMW would have been out of the motorcycle business a long time ago.


Other parts are just regular maintenance. For instance, I replaced brake pads front & rear at 44k at a cost of $88 for Galfers from Cycle Gear.


You're coming off a VTX, so we don't know what you're expecting out of a 12RT. All I can say is do your research( & this is a great place to start) & don't believe everything you read. Find folks with real world experience.


Good luck, & I hope you find the ride that fulfills your soul.


Oh, & I still highly recommend a Sig. :thumbsup:

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My biggest problems are the tank is always empty and constantly need new tires. You think they could put a larger tank on them bikes for all that money they charge.


Welcome to the mad house. :wave:

PS: 2007 with 102 K smiles, oh forgot the damn brake pads don't last either. :/

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Guest Kakugo

My 2009 RT is nearing that mileage, though given how things have slowed down around here it will take me a while to hit it.

FD failures happen to BMW, yes, but 2008 bikes had a few minor modifications which improved reliability considerably. DR posted a very interesting guide about how to diagnose a FD failure in its early stages. I feel much safer now.

The things you should really look out for are these:


1)Fuel system. This is the true Achilles' heel of these bikes, not the FD. Check for signs of cracks around the fuel hose coupling (full guides and cheap fixes on this same wonderful board) and if the bike has been fitted with the improved (black) Fuel Pump Controller. Buy a spare FPC or a bypass cable and learn how to fit it.

2)Shocks. Unless they have been replaced, at 44000 miles chances are they are completely shot. If the bike is ESA equipped and want to keep that function, there are both Wilbers and Hyperpro options available (there may be other options I am not aware of). Like many members of this board I fitted Wilbers shocks and I am completely satisfied with them. If you do not have ESA or can live without, there are more options available, including Ohlins. At that mileage a fork fluid change wouldn't hurt either.

3)Side case latches. Easy to check. Open and close the latches a few times by pushing on the button.

4)Battery. If the bike's still on the OE battery, it's living on borrowed time.


And that's about it. Just run the customary checks for a used bike.

The bike's wonderful you know you have made the right choice. :)

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I am coming off a VTX and looking at a 2008 RT. The RT has 44,000 miles on it. what kind of things could I expect to repair/replace soon? what is high mileage for these bikes? New to BMW and all these FD failures, clutch problems, etc have got me a little gun shy. Thanks for your help.


I recently traded in my 07 RT on a 2011 RT. The 07 had 140k miles on it and still had the original clutch and final drive.

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Slight hijack. Danny, how do you like those Galfer brake pads? What style pad did you get and how have they compared to other brands that you have tried. Currently runnig CL's bought from Beemerboneyard.

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Here's been my experience. I had a 2006 model, which had a couple of major problems, including a final drive replacement under warranty. I replaced the bike with an FJR, but was just unimpressed with that machine. A bit boring. I replaced that with a 2008 R1200RT which has been much more reliable. I had a fuel strip replaced within the first month of ownership, and experienced a short-lived, self-healing oil leak about the same time. Otherwise, it's been a very satisfying ownership experience. I put a clamp on the fuel pump to prevent the growth of small cracks, and replaced the fuel pump controller as a preventive measure.


The RT is just what I want in a motorcycle. It's pure joy to ride, comfortable and a bit sporty. The simplicity and the way parts fit together reflect a thoughtful and mature design - very easy to maintain in comparison to the Yamaha. I will admit, however, the japanese bikes may have the edge in reliability.


Perhaps BMWs are an acquired taste, but as I look for a second road bike, nothing else impresses me at the moment. I'd buy another one today.

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I have 2 RT's,an 05 an an08. 05 has 60000+ miles and the 08 has 31000 on it. One fuel strip and that's it!

As far as I concerned that's not bad. I put all the miles on both bikes.



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Need to be very wary of those miraculous good deals in AutoTrader, local newspapers, CraigsList, etc.


One of the most common scams is to use stolen credit card numbers to buy a bunch of ads for a non-existent vehicle and see how many suckers can be conned into sending deposits. Very common in the east, especially around any city or in hillbilly heroin country.

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Dbike: agree 100% with other board members on longevity and reliability. i own a 2007 1200RT with 40K miles on it and friend i ride with has 2006 with almost 60K miles on that bike. both have been bomb-proof and wonderful bikes. i service both of them regularly, they're both ridden fairly gently and both on factory FD's, clutches, you name it.

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