Friday, November 13, 2020

2017 BMW R1200 GS Adventure Review

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As a long term owner of a “standard” R1200 GS I have been itching to try a GS Adventure. This video is my review of the updated 2017 R1200 GS Adventure. Many thanks to the great team at Bahnstormer in Maidenhead for making this review possible.

I’m now on that Twitter thing! Join me @MissendenFlyer

I use the following equipment to record and edit my VLOGs:-
GoPro HD Hero 4 helmet camera
GoPro Session (4) “B” Camera
Nikon D7100 DSLR for static and video shots with various lenses
Lavalier microphone and sellotape for in helmet audio
BOYA BY-M1 3.5 mm Lavalier Microphone for in-garage pieces
Movo LV20 Dual Lavalier Clip-on Microphones for 2 person interviews
Power Director 8 for the PC (for video editing)
Radio mic for in garage audio
Rode VIDEOMICPRO On Camera Microphone for general use
Rode Deadcat VMPR Windshield to kill wind noise
Neewer CN 160 LED Dimmable Ultra High Power Panel Video Light
Goliton® Camera DSLR Triple Mount for LED Video Lights Microphones
A pair of Lantoo LED Floodlight 50W for additional lighting

My current motorcyles are:-
Honda CRF250L
Triumph Street Triple R
Ducati 899 Panigale

For any additional enquiries please send a PM or leave a comment below…


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  1. Hello TMF, thank you so much for the time you put into these reviews. I know this review is a bit over 3 years old but I do have one question for you: what's your take on the jerky throttle issue many have complained about? I've owned the older version: bought it new in Feb '13 and sold it in Sept of the same year because I just couldn't get used to riding with the clutch partly in when the rev counter was just above idle (be it when letting go of the throttle or just giviing it an ever so light twist ). Thank you again for your work and keep it up with the Bonnie and the RE. Cheers

  2. Pick my 1200gsa up tomorrow and its all your fault. Great review as all your reviews are. Keep up the good work👍

  3. The GS 1200 is an excellent running bike for 3 years, then the warranty expires and the GS begins to fall apart, at this point the GS becomes very very expensive to own!

  4. Hi, great review as always. Just got my first BMW, an r1200gsa and am very impressed with it. At 5'8" I was a bit concerned about the size of the bike but I have bought the low framed model, don't know why more people don't order it, no problems what so ever. Manouvering at slow speed is easier than any sports bike and stopping causes no concerns because my feet are almost flat down on both sides. I have read that some people question if the handling is affected by the low frame, having test ridden the larger model I can only say that if it is then I didn't notice it, handling is surprisingly good on both, I have no problems keeping up with my mate's whatever they ride. Anyway just subscribed to your channel, keep up the good work and ride safe.

  5. I have just bought. A go pro 6 and was wondering how you get the commentary to with footage any advice would be helpful

  6. Ive gone from a 2015 Super Tenere ES to this bike. I do love the GS . Its a great tar touring bike, but am disappointed with the bike on dirt.

    If your going to adventure remotely in Australia the big Yamaha is faster and safer on the dirt.

  7. Hi, I'm interested in purchasing the GS TE. What extras would you recommend to go with the standard equipment. I note that you have stated the flywheel is the same on both the GS and the GSA. Have you ridden a more current GS and if so would you still go for the GSA. Thank you. Ride safe.

  8. Was this the "Low" suspension model, if not have you ridden the "Low" suspension one? Thanks again for your in depth review.

  9. I have a 2014 GS LC 1200 with 70k on it. I love this bike but have just returned from 10 days in The Flinders Ranges (5,000kms) with a riding mate on a 2015 Super Tenere ES. I rode the Tenere for about 30% of the trip. We both wanted to compare the two. We ride a lot together and both run Conti TKC 70’s.

    There’s a few things we had different opinions about – but this list is what we did agree on.

    DIRT RIDING – The Tenere was a clear winner. Just feels more dirt orientated, and gives more confidence in steering from the rear.
    HIGHWAY TAR – Yamaha feels more stable (marginal) – BMW offers a little better wind protection(marginal)
    ON TAR IN TWISTIES – BMW seems a little better handling the tight stuff.
    ELECTRONICS – Similar – except can’t turn off ABS for dirt on the Yamaha. (Apparently an easy mod – which my riding mate has done)
    RELIABILITY – BMW a couple of minor warranty issues, and a shaft drive issue not covered. The Yamaha has had no issues at 55k.
    ENGINE PERFORMANCE – Torque is the most important and both machines are similar. The BMW has more power, but for our needs you just don’t find yourself redlining everywhere! The Yamaha has more torque in lower revs which is right where you want it. We have had numerous drag runs on dirt and tar, and you can’t really split the two. The BMW will only just start to get away after 140kph though.
    CENTRE OF GRAVITY – The engine centre of gravity seems better in the Yamaha surprisingly. Comparing engines, the Yamaha bottom end is lower in the frame. The BMW pots are not as low as you might expect in comparison – almost the same height of the Yamaha.
    GROUND CLEARENCE – BMW slightly better, but with base plates there is no issue.
    CARRY CAPACITY – Even, except we both agree Yamaha panniers locking system is not good.

    I feel I might be caught in the “buy what’s in vogue” cycle – which has been the GS.

    We both agree the Yamaha is a better off road bike, and I actually like the Yamaha engine better. The Yamaha geometry is closer to a dirt bike design in the swing arm arrangement and fork rake. I'm having trouble ignoring Yamaha's success in dirt bikes, and they seem to have added this to the big Tenere.

    Long range touring on tar we think the BMW could be slightly better. As my time is spent mostly exploring on dirt roads in Australia, and only on tar to get to dirt roads – I think I’m going the Yamaha direction. I can ride this bike faster and harder on dirt then the GS – so why wouldn’t I?

  10. Around town, fill up only 1/2 of fuel and the bike feels as nimble as the regular GS. Long distance, fill up the tank and ride until you need a break to stretch. This tank will outlast anyone's tolerance to sit on a bike without a stop 😉
    With regards to the speedo, I don't really look at the numbers that much in detail. A glance is more than enough as to when the needle is at 8 o'clock the speed is 35 to 40 mph, 9 o'clock is 60 mph and 10 o'clock is 75 mph is all I really need to know. I found the Nav unit to be distracting and got rid of it.

  11. Watched nearly all reviews from TMF…I spent the day today at my local dealership (Atlanta, GA) test riding the new '17 GSADV and a '16 k1600gt…Long story short…The sky fell out while riding the GT and I did not feel safe.. I rode the GS and the difference was nothing short of astounding, Although I loved the specs and styling of the GT… the GS ADV just had too much versatility, comfort and features to pass on. A nearly 12 hr buying process ended with a notification from my service adviser that the new GS ADV had a safety recall and could not be ridden home….I was offered a loaner to which I agreed however disappointingly. Big thanks to TMF!!! love the reviews

  12. The GS looks quite ugly and the sound has a grating effect on the ears. Also hate BMW's aversion to even a hint of chrome.

  13. Hi sorry to go on but would you possibly be able to tell me what the seat height actually was on the adventure with the low seat fitted? Would be much appreciated .

  14. Hello,sorry for the late comment on this particular video.Have watched and thoroughly enjoyed all your videos from touring to cleaning tips and now having been ten years without a bike I am seriously considering going back to all year ridding again on a 2017 adventure xc model (depending on the nice lady at the bank).One question you could maybe answer for me? In your video you say you are around 5'8" as am I and you had the low seat fitted .Would you recommend that over the low chassis version as I've heard many conflicting reports ?

  15. Hi TMF! I would like to thank you for the job you are doing with all the reviews. your reviews are one of the best in the world wide web! I would like to ask you one short question. If you would buy the R1200GSA new would you buy it with all the electronic packages or rather a basic version? The reason why I am asking this is that I am a guy who keeps the bikes several years (actual bike in my ownership 10+ years) and the BMW would be also at least that long in my garage. Are the electronics reliable over such a period of time? wishing you a lot of success with your channel. greatings from Ingolstadt Germany

  16. Great review! Got a a 2016 early April, just 1600km on it, with all possible options and extras. Thought about the 2017 but there wasn't really much difference, or not enough to justify the £3.5k price difference. Now done >6,000 kilometers on it, and it's great. Had a R1200RT so was a bit worried I'd have to accept less comfort but don't really miss anything. Maybe heated seat but feel the material in package seat works very well, even at around 0C 🙂

    Replaced the screen with a Puig Touring screen (standard is really useless, at least for tall guys), with visor/spoiler (recommended!). Also acquired some Wunderlich extras. Done quite a bit of gravel & forest roads. Fantastic stability and handling. Quickshift in enduro mode is VERY nice. 🙂

  17. Great review I am 175cm and have the standard seat on low setting both balls of my feet are comfortably on the ground while stopped so hopefully that won't be a problem, I have just bought the 2017 GSA 1200 and so far I am loving it. The height concerns me still but so far I am ok with it.


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