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Skywagon

Re: BMW are you listening

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Skywagon

Well after owning my wet now for 5 years since new I have a few things I would hope BMW would hear...

It's my most favorite bike of all time.  Other than the shock deal it's been almost defect free.  Nice job BMW...don't screw with it too much in the future.

 

Things I wish you would change:

Seat sucks...and you know that

Heater wire on front seat too short.  Seat fell wire broke.. PIA to get new connector but I did.

Why weird shape handlebars...hard to attach standard ram mounts to hold beer while riding :)  Handle bars too far forward.  Would be really nice if they were adjustable

Front fender too short in the back...fixed with farkle

LED's no H7's

Single horn sucks...bring back the dual 1150RT horns which sounded like a truck

Keys are good..keep the ignition and tank key or at least make it an option

How about a decent tool kit

Touch up paint

Adjustable gear shifter and rear brake pedal

Decent Blue Tooth system that is upgradeable at no charge...

Ability to reset maintenance indicators without buying $400 tool

ALTERNATOR that doesn't require engine removal.

 

All minor things....

 

What are your desired changes

 

 

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Rinkydink

That about covers it. Although the alternator probably falls more into the major category. I wish there was more storage. The two “glove boxes” are a joke. 

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TEWKS

Wish they would of replaced one of the color options on the GSA with black for 2020. Same three color choices two years in a row. :dontknow: Keep two, replace one, easy!

 

 

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Paul De

Haha.  An oil spec that isn't confusing and BS!

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RecentConvert

Longer lasting fork seals - on fourth set

Smoother shifting 1-4.  Not just an incremental amount either

Make the valve covers from durable steel, titanium, or something that will survive an 8 mph tip-over

 

And I agree with most of the previous posts!

 

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RightSpin

Don't get me started on the key thing!  I might lose my composure.

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Skywagon

im gathering these up.  I actually have a business acquaintance at BMW NA who asked me this very question.  He asked if I would gather the opinions of some other riders, document, and send in.  I said I would....and I will when this thread slows to a crawl.  I laughed and like the one about oil...please tell me which one and when you do don't pick one with ingredients you same are harmful to your engines...

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AZgman
  • Use a water pump that doesn't weep
  • Raise the GPS mount on the R1200GS
  • Include a simple (like the National Cycle model) LED headlight guard as standard, or, make the lens replaceable!
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strataj

The list is looking good butt I have one to add.  How about a GPS that locks on an RT.  I'm hoping they continue to have mounts for Garmin GPS's, I know lot's are moving away from Garmin to Smart Phones.

 

 

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Veefore

I agree on the weeping water pump.  Perhaps a bigger device pocket on the right for a phone.  Absolutely love the bike, picked it up in June.  Refreshing to hear BMW welcomes input, Honda gave up on the sport touring segment and was pretty indifferent when I would ask representatives at events which led me away from my ST1300 after 11 years......

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wbw6cos

Standard size power outlet that matches the rest of the freeworld size without needing an adapter plug. 

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Paul De
5 minutes ago, wbw6cos said:

Standard size power outlet that matches the rest of the freeworld size without needing an adapter plug.

Or one of each type, I do like the secure click of the current plug

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Paul De

Maybe not so related to the bikes, but quit forcing dealerships to have exclusive sales floors for their product...it only makes of the trend of loosing dealers worse.  Don't need an MBA to figure out that without outlets, there can be no sales!

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alegerlotz

How about a GPS lock on the RT?  You shouldn't be required to have "central locking" to use it either.  

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ScottT
20 hours ago, Paul De said:

Haha.  An oil spec that isn't confusing and BS!

20 hours ago, Paul De said:

Haha.  An oil spec that isn't confusing and BS!

What's confusing about the oil specs? Looks crystal clear to me in the owners manual.

 

SAE 5W-40, API SL/JASO MA2, Additives (for instance,
molybdenum-based substances) are prohibited,
because they would attack the coatings
on engine components, BMW Motorrad recommends
BMW Motorrad ADVANTEC Ultimate oil.

 

BMW Motorrad ADVANTEC Ultimate oil is SAE 5W-40, API SN/JASO MA2. API SL is the minimum API rating. 

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Rinkydink
46 minutes ago, Paul De said:

Maybe not so related to the bikes, but quite forcing dealerships to have exclusive sales floors for their product...it only makes of the trend of loosing dealers worse.  Don't need an MBA to figure out that without outlets, there can be no sales!

Having lost both of my in state dealerships I can certainly relate. 

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Ozzyal
2 hours ago, Paul De said:

Maybe not so related to the bikes, but quite forcing dealerships to have exclusive sales floors for their product...it only makes of the trend of loosing dealers worse.  Don't need an MBA to figure out that without outlets, there can be no sales!

 

I've never understood why BMW /Suzuki / Honda  , don't have a motorcycle department in each dealership   , I  mean really  , how hard can it be to have your spare parts guy trained  , 1 x mc mechanic and employ a salesman with bike experience  . 

One of the major reasons why I haven't bought a new BMW is having to travel 400kms to comply with warranty service schedule.  

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Paul De
6 hours ago, ScottT said:

What's confusing about the oil specs? Looks crystal clear to me in the owners manual.

 

SAE 5W-40, API SL/JASO MA2, Additives (for instance,
molybdenum-based substances) are prohibited,
because they would attack the coatings
on engine components, BMW Motorrad recommends
BMW Motorrad ADVANTEC Ultimate oil.

 

BMW Motorrad ADVANTEC Ultimate oil is SAE 5W-40, API SN/JASO MA2. API SL is the minimum API rating. 

 

Crystal clear as mud.   The background of my statement would be tangential to this topic so please take a moment to read through this thread.   Long story short, BMW's own spec even precludes the use of their own labeled Advantec Ultimate oil. 

https://www.bmwsporttouring.com/topic/93431-experience-experimenting-with-oil/

 

 

 

 

 

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Paul De

ooo-yeah.  TPMS sensors that have replaceable batteries and the batteries are of a common specification!

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John

Please use a human, and not an ape, when designing ergonomics - fix the bloody seat and handlebars!! If you're incapable of working it out, make the bars adjustable so that we can!

 

Decent, 21st century bluetooth. Give owners the option of free updates over the air to bike firmware/software/GPS maps, the same as companies like Land Rover do.

 

Serviceable tyre sensors - not throwaways.

 

GPS lock to the bike.

 

 

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AndyS
10 hours ago, ScottT said:

What's confusing about the oil specs? Looks crystal clear to me in the owners manual.

 

 Hi Scott, have you totally missed the massive oil thread on here about oil. Paul De is spot on with his comment about it being confusing BS.

The part where your jaw drops is when a member sent some BMW Motorrad ADVANTEC Ultimate oil for analysis.

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realshelby

While some things brought up are good to consider, I think mechanically this bike has done well for owners. Yes, I think about the alternator. But there isn't a high failure rate. Still.....there just has to be a better way. I would take an external alternator any day. 

 

I wish for two things. 

#1 is compartments on the tank/dash big enough for putting in a phone, gloves, camera. These seem to be an afterthought currently.

 

#2 is a big deal to me. I want either 7 gears or a LOT higher 6th gear. There is no reason to run 5000 rpm for tank after tank with the power this bike has. Needs to turn 7-800 rpm less at 70 mph in top gear. 

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AndyS
47 minutes ago, realshelby said:

 

 

#2 is a big deal to me. I want either 7 gears or a LOT higher 6th gear. There is no reason to run 5000 rpm for tank after tank with the power this bike has. Needs to turn 7-800 rpm less at 70 mph in top gear. 

It is interesting though. The 1150 had a tall(ish) 6th gear but lots of owners then complained that it was too high and hadn't grasped the fact that it was really a high speed cruising gear and that you needed to change down to get the bike to punch through an acceleration maneuver.

 

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AndyS

As for me, I'd like to see:

Better rider's seat,

Windscreen with a flip similar to the Works Quiet ride.

LED Headlights.

Change the headlight protocol so that there are 2 x dip beam and 1 x high beam.

More usable storage (although now I use the areas where the speakers used to go, I have quite a reasonable amount.

Handlebar adjustment for height, reach and angle (maybe fit inverted Laverda Jota bars!).

Accessory sockets rated for a higher load so that heated clothing can be used front and rear at the same time!

Headlight assembly easily removable from the front of the bike in a complete module.

Some clever design with footrests such that a user could choose to have them as they are, and then maybe an option to invert them so that they would be lower down to achieve slightly less knee bend.

Solve the dreadful 'CLUNK' into first gear.

More easily removable Tupperware. Maybe less fasteners and more interlocking tags and push in panel fixings.

Easy access air filter.

More robust tags etc on tupperware.

Locking SatNav

Grips to be a tad fatter (the same diameter as say, the 1100 and 1150RT's).

 

There are more, but that will do for now!

 

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narcosis

Here's my list which aligns with others (most were fixed with farkles/mods)

Most Important

- saddle

- handlebars (made better with Ilium Bar Backs)

- more power to USB port in glove box (won't keep smart phone charged when running Waze, for instance)

- 1st to 2nd (I think this was fixed in 2018 or so)

Things I can live with that could be better

- Bluetooth

- short front fender

 

Available in a lowered version (the low seat option is not really an option).  I'm in the process of lowering the bike with Tractive Shocks.

 

 

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92Merc

1) Better shifting trans

2) LED headlights

3) hydraulic valve lashers for no valve checks.

 

After that, I call them optional features that would be nice.  But not a huge need.

 

Oh, and bring back Ebony Metallic!

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realshelby
54 minutes ago, AndyS said:

It is interesting though. The 1150 had a tall(ish) 6th gear but lots of owners then complained that it was too high and hadn't grasped the fact that it was really a high speed cruising gear and that you needed to change down to get the bike to punch through an acceleration maneuver.

 

1150's were "geared" about the same as I recall. But the Wethead and especially the Shifthead has significantly more torque in the 3-6,000 rpm range. And I mean a LOT more. No need to turn 4000 rpm at 70 mph. If you need more rpm, downshift. I almost never downshift this Wethead unless coming to a stop or in tight curves. It is simply much smoother and has a relaxed feel in the 3000-3500 rpm range. 

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Paul De
1 hour ago, AndyS said:

It is interesting though. The 1150 had a tall(ish) 6th gear but lots of owners then complained that it was too high and hadn't grasped the fact that it was really a high speed cruising gear and that you needed to change down to get the bike to punch through an acceleration maneuver.

 

 

 

Umm cake and eat it too maybe.  How about a 7th gear.

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RecentConvert

I like the idea of a taller last gear (be it 6th or 7th).  I know I've attempted to shift into it many, many times already.

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Veefore
10 hours ago, Paul De said:

ooo-yeah.  TPMS sensors that have replaceable batteries and the batteries are of a common specification!

+1!

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Cap

+1 to most of these ideas... most of these are unforced errors

 

One thing I haven’t seen mentioned is the exhaust flap failure that requires purchasing an entire header to fix.  A repairable exhaust flap would be nice.

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Green RT
20 hours ago, Ozzyal said:

 

I've never understood why BMW /Suzuki / Honda  , don't have a motorcycle department in each dealership   , I  mean really  , how hard can it be to have your spare parts guy trained  , 1 x mc mechanic and employ a salesman with bike experience  . 

One of the major reasons why I haven't bought a new BMW is having to travel 400kms to comply with warranty service schedule.  

Both of the BMW car dealers near me also sell BMW motorcycles. I bought my current bike from one of them. About a year later, a BMW motorcycle-only shop opened, so now I never visit the car dealers.

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WBinDE

Wireless charger for smartphone, if they're going to rely on your phone to provide services by connecting to the dash display (like the TFT on the GS's) make sure there's a constant, reliable, easy to use source of power. Bad enough if the phone dies when you're trying to get from here to there, or in the middle of a song, but mitigating it by having adapters to adapters and wires going every which way isn't a great solution. KTM accomplishes this with a nice waterproof box on the 1290, with a little charging cable although it's only for music, not navigation.

 

How about a tipover switch? Japanese bikes have had them forever, it seems like such a simple worthwhile idea. I know, I know, don't drop the bike, but it happens.

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Dave_in_TX
22 hours ago, 92Merc said:

1) Better shifting trans

2) LED headlights

3) hydraulic valve lashers for no valve checks.

 

After that, I call them optional features that would be nice.  But not a huge need.

 

Oh, and bring back Ebony Metallic!

Who needs hydraulic valve lashers? My 2014 R1200GS has 120K miles on it and the valves are still in spec.

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Bill_Walker
On 10/31/2019 at 8:06 AM, RecentConvert said:

I like the idea of a taller last gear (be it 6th or 7th).  I know I've attempted to shift into it many, many times already.

I can't say I know where you and the other posters are coming from on this.  Hell, when I first got the wethead, it was so much smoother than my 1150 I occasionally found myself going down the freeway at 75 in 4th gear.

 

But I'm also one to keep the revs above 4K most the time.  Maybe 3600 on the wethead.  Anything less feels like lugging it, to me.  It's not a Harley.

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powwow

Follow the car companies and integrate software (i.e. Car Play) that will connect your phone to a navigation screen on the dash of the bike.  No need to be carrying a phone and also have to deal with Garmin.

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Beech

Alarm read out if the side stand switch or clutch switch fails. (with over ride on the side stand switch lock out until next cycle of the ignition so you can get somewhere.

 

Addressing a poster above: " One of the major reasons why I haven't bought a new BMW is having to travel 400kms to comply with warranty service schedule "

You do not have to have the bike serviced at the dealer to maintain warranty. Do it yourself and keep paperwork for oil and filters. Buy the service DVD for the valve and timing work. It has all the details to keep you out of trouble. Use it along with a Haynes manual.

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JamesW

The title to this thread is, "BMW are you listening" so I feel OK about this post.  What I would like to see is a wethead without an integrated motor/transmission with a dry clutch.  I would also like to see the alternator removed from the motor.  I would also like to see a double sided swing arm with a simplified drive shaft system that's similar to the system used by Yamaha and their FJR.  If BMW would build such a bike I would buy one.  Oh, and I could care less about electronic adjustable suspension and gadget technology in general.  Throttle by wire with electronic cruise control being the one exception.  Powered  windscreens are also fine as is electronic engine management and ABS.

 

Nope, I have never owned a smart phone and never shall I ever.  In my past life my job title was telecommunications specialist so go figure.:rofl:  I guess my age is showing a bit here and I admit to being an analog kind of guy.  Also, I've come to the conclusion that society in general would be better off without social media and the internet in general.  But that is a subject matter for another time.

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Skywagon

Thanks all....I'm going to compile a list of these things and send them to my buddy.  I won't leave anything out as it wouldn't be fair to ask your opinion and censor it...if that were true I would run for Congress :)  It will take me a couple of days as recovering from a long weekend of riding and the Lonestar Rally in Galveston.  

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AndyS
17 hours ago, JamesW said:

The title to this thread is, "BMW are you listening" so I feel OK about this post.  What I would like to see is a wethead without an integrated motor/transmission with a dry clutch.  I would also like to see the alternator removed from the motor.  I would also like to see a double sided swing arm with a simplified drive shaft system that's similar to the system used by Yamaha and their FJR.  If BMW would build such a bike I would buy one.  Oh, and I could care less about electronic adjustable suspension and gadget technology in general.  Throttle by wire with electronic cruise control being the one exception.  Powered  windscreens are also fine as is electronic engine management and ABS.

 

Nope, I have never owned a smart phone and never shall I ever.  In my past life my job title was telecommunications specialist so go figure.:rofl:  I guess my age is showing a bit here and I admit to being an analog kind of guy.  Also, I've come to the conclusion that society in general would be better off without social media and the internet in general.  But that is a subject matter for another time.

I am confused by your post James.

I guess you want a light weight motorcycle, but you don't want the ease that comes with the integrated gearbox. Why not?

You want the alternator removed from the motor. Why?

What is the problem with the sing sided swing arm? I love it.

Strangely, the one thing you could live with (the fly by wire), is the one thing I could do without!

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Paul De
2 hours ago, AndyS said:

I would also like to see a double sided swing arm

 

2 hours ago, AndyS said:

What is the problem with the sing sided swing arm? I love it.

I'm with Andy on this one.  Changing out a flat when on the roadside with a single sided swing arm machine tends to be easier.  Sure you still have to loosen/ remove the muffler with a single sided swing arm bike, but that isn't as much of a pain as trying to weasel the wheel out the rear of the bike between the swing arm and rear fender.

 

Skywagon,

 This was a fun thread and please let us know if you get any feedback.  Not holding my breath though.  Maybe the input is a little skewed to existing older owners but that's OK because I sure don't need the GPS to highlight the cafes in the area that serves Avocado Toast like a millennial might want as a feature:old: 

 

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JamesW
5 hours ago, AndyS said:

I am confused by your post James.

I guess you want a light weight motorcycle, but you don't want the ease that comes with the integrated gearbox. Why not?

You want the alternator removed from the motor. Why?

What is the problem with the sing sided swing arm? I love it.

Strangely, the one thing you could live with (the fly by wire), is the one thing I could do without!

 

First, an integrated gearbox is a potential costly item to repair should a problem arise without an active warranty same is true of the alternator.  There have been reports of alternator failure in these wetheads caused by overheating which can also be very costly to repair especially if the warranty is expired.  BMW has a long history of final drive failures beginning with implementation of the single sided swing arm beginning with the introduction of the oilhead bikes.  Actually I could easily live without the throttle by wire so I agree with you on that point.  I could take it or leave it.  

 

I keep cars and motorcycles a long long time so cost to repair and reliability are paramount when it comes to rolling stock purchases.  Also, because I do virtually all of my own maintenance construction simplicity means much to me.  On my '93 R1100RSL should I have a transmission issue I can remove the transmission in about 3 hours and carry just the transmission into a shop for repair or box it and ship it.  Try that with your wethead and with your wethead you will man your wallet big time.  I think a majority of wethead owners plan to buy a new motorcycle before their warranty runs out rather than take a chance on having to deal with potential very costly repair issues.  I, on the other hand, tend to keep cars and bikes for decades.  My FJR is 9 years old and I have no plans to sell it.  Now it does also have an integrated engine / transmission but Yamaha has a sterling reliability rating and transmission issues are virtually unheard of unlike BMW.  Same is true of the alternator.  

 

I would gladly trade that single sided swing arm for increased reliability instead of ease in dealing with a tire issue.  And hey, most road side tire puncture issues are easily dealt with by tire puncture repair kits that don't require tire / wheel removal anyway.  Just has become a non-issue for the most part.

 

What I would like to see is a wethead engine in an R1100RT, R1150RT or RS and forget the whistles and bells.  This is not likely to ever happen because young people today are hooked on gadgetry that they just can't live without.  They are programmed just like their gadgets.  I only recently bought a cell phone from Jitter Bug and I pay just $5/mo for cell service.  I bought the phone just so I could call home when I'm on a motorcycle foray into the hinterland.  In several months I have not used the phone once because I can't seem to remember to take it with me. lol..lol..

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Bill_Walker
On 11/3/2019 at 8:50 AM, JamesW said:

Also, I've come to the conclusion that society in general would be better off without social media and the internet in general.

 

And yet, here you are.

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JamesW
37 minutes ago, Bill_Walker said:

 

And yet, here you are.

 

How observant you are.  I must be bored.:classic_rolleyes:

 

 

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Bernie

You guys should check out the Ural. Vintage BMW at it’s worst.

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alegerlotz
7 hours ago, JamesW said:

 

First, an integrated gearbox is a potential costly item to repair should a problem arise without an active warranty same is true of the alternator.  There have been reports of alternator failure in these wetheads caused by overheating which can also be very costly to repair especially if the warranty is expired.  BMW has a long history of final drive failures beginning with implementation of the single sided swing arm beginning with the introduction of the oilhead bikes.  Actually I could easily live without the throttle by wire so I agree with you on that point.  I could take it or leave it.  

 

 

"should a problem arise" is the key.  The clutch is a wear item...  The alternative is to guarantee a costly repair because you need to split the bike apart to change out the dry clutch they used to use...

 

I'm happy keeping my wethead as designed.

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Paul De
1 hour ago, alegerlotz said:

I'm happy keeping my wethead as designed.

+1

My tag line fits well here.

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JamesW
5 hours ago, alegerlotz said:

 

"should a problem arise" is the key.  The clutch is a wear item...  The alternative is to guarantee a costly repair because you need to split the bike apart to change out the dry clutch they used to use...

 

I'm happy keeping my wethead as designed.

 

Removing the transmission in an airhead or an oilhead is not at all difficult.  I've done it on my R1100RSL and on my R1150RT (sold) just to clean and lube the trans input shaft splines.  Did a clutch on an airhead.  BMW's motto in the seventies was:  "Simple by Choice".   

 

I wonder how many wethead owners actually purchase the somewhat pricy third party extended warranty.  I also wonder why BMW doesn't offer an extended warranty themselves.  That's something I think they really should do.  That said a 3 year warranty really is pretty darn good and a lot better than some of their competition.

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AndyS
3 hours ago, JamesW said:

 

Removing the transmission in an airhead or an oilhead is not at all difficult.  I've done it on my R1100RSL and on my R1150RT (sold) just to clean and lube the trans input shaft splines.  Did a clutch on an airhead.  BMW's motto in the seventies was:  "Simple by Choice".   

 

I wonder how many wethead owners actually purchase the somewhat pricy third party extended warranty.  I also wonder why BMW doesn't offer an extended warranty themselves.  That's something I think they really should do.  That said a 3 year warranty really is pretty darn good and a lot better than some of their competition.

James, you say you are a long term owner. So, as such you WILL have to change your clutch. On a Wetheads the clutch is so much easier to deal with than on all the previous iterations. It is literally hours rather than days of work. As for the alternator due to heat and electrical failure, there has been failure, but way less than you infer, and more likely the ones you have read about have not been on RT's . In terms of single sided swing arms, well I agree the Oilheads were vulnerable to issues, however, I have heard of NO issues with the Wethead. Also on your proposal that having your vehicles off the road for longer than needed, well, every time you do a tyre change, that is 'time down'. So a single sided option is a winner for you there too. I just can't see any of your arguments flying here. Yes, I agree that there is a lot of technology that is essential like tyre pressure monitoring, and air temperature read-back, but the bottom line is, you are NOT obliged to use it. You can still enjoy all the other benefits of these later bikes, like the handling, engine performance, braking, fuel consumption to mention a few.

 

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alegerlotz
9 hours ago, JamesW said:

 

Removing the transmission in an airhead or an oilhead is not at all difficult.  I've done it on my R1100RSL and on my R1150RT (sold) just to clean and lube the trans input shaft splines.  Did a clutch on an airhead.  BMW's motto in the seventies was:  "Simple by Choice".   

 

 

Model T Fords are easy to work on as well, but Ford no longer builds cars with flat head engines, solid rear axles, straight cut gears, etc...  You don't see many people driving cars with those technologies on a daily basis, either.  Technology moved on and while there were tradeoffs with design, by and large things have improved in terms of performance, efficiency, and safety.

 

There's a seemingly endless supply of older low mileage bikes out there, so you can avoid modern ones by riding one of those.  If BMW made a choice to turn back the technology clock, I know that I'd be riding something else, and I suspect I'm not the only one.

 

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