After BMW announced several changes to the potent in-line four powerplant in its S 1000 RR superbike earlier this year, we figured it was only a matter of time before the tech trickled down to its flagship adventure sport tourer. And sure enough, here comes the 2020 S 1000 XR, lighter, faster and more versatile than ever before.
The big news of course is the RR-derived engine, which pumps out a claimed 165 horsepower at 11,000 rpm and 84 lb-ft of torque at 9,250. Fourth, fifth and sixth gears have longer ratios to reduce noise, fuel consumption and engine speed (hopefully addressing some of the buzziness we’ve noted in our tests — read our review of the 2016 S 1000 XR here). It also now features what BMW calls engine drag torque control (MSR), which reduces rear wheel hopping under hard deceleration.
The suspension, frame and swingarm have all been tweaked to reduce weight, and coupled with the lighter engine the 2020 S 1000 XR is said to weigh just 498 pounds (our 2016 test bike weighed in at 531 pounds).
The list of standard features is long: Dynamic ESA (electronic suspension), four ride modes (Road, Rain, Dynamic and Dynamic Pro), Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) with wheelie control, ABS Pro (cornering ABS) with Dynamic Brake Control (DBC), 6.5-inch TFT display, LED lighting and Hill Start Control Pro. Options include Dynamic ESA Pro with two damping modes and automatic load compensation, HP Shift Assistant Pro (up and down quickshifter), Headlight Pro with DRL and cornering lights, and electronic cruise control.
The 2020 BMW S 1000 XR will be available in Ice Gray and Racing Red/White Aluminum. U.S. pricing and availability are TBA.
BMW surprised us with two new mid-range models, the 2020 F 900 R and the F 900 XR, both based around a slightly enlarged version of the parallel twin released last year that powers the F 850 GS. With an increase from 853cc to 895cc, BMW says the new engine is good for 105 horsepower and 68 lb-ft of torque, and its dual counterbalancers result in a smooth riding experience.
Apart from the engine, the 2020 F 900 R and the F 900 XR also share a steel frame and rear subframe and feature unique lightweight plastic-welded fuel tanks (3.4 gals. for the R, 4.0 gals. for the XR), a 6.5-inch TFT display, LED lighting, two ride modes (Rain and Road), ABS and ASC (Automatic Stability Control) as standard.
Options include Riding Modes Pro, which adds Dynamic and Dynamic Pro ride modes, Dynamic Traction Control (DTC), cornering ABS (ABS Pro), Dynamic Brake Control (DBC) and engine drag torque control (MSR), which prevents rear wheel hop when decelerating. Dynamic ESA (electronic suspension, rear only) is also available as is Headlight Pro, which adds cornering lights, and Keyless Ride.
Both models feature an upside-down fork and rear monoshock, with 5.3 inches of travel at the front, 5.6 at the rear on the F 900 R, and 6.7 front, 6.8 rear on the F 900 XR.
The 2020 F 900 R will be available in Blackstorm Metallic, San Marino Blue Metallic and Hockenheim Silver Metallic/Racing Red. The 2020 F 900XR will be available in Light White, Galvanic Gold Metallic and Racing Red. U.S. pricing and availability are TBA.
In addition to the new 390 Adventure, KTM revealed several new and updated machines at the EICMA show in Milan, Italy this week that should further its reputation as a performance-oriented brand. The 1290 Super Duke R returns to the lineup completely revamped, and a Rally version of the 790 Adventure R promises heaps of off-road ability — both are expected at dealers in February 2020. The cover was also lifted from the new KTM 890 Duke R, which will come to North America in the fall of 2020 as a 2021 model. Details on the latter bike weren’t readily available, but we imagine giving a displacement bump to what appears to essentially be a 790 Duke is to compensate for Euro 5 emissions restrictions.
2020 KTM 1290 Super Duke R MSRP: $18,699 USD Though the name hasn’t changed, the 2020 1290 Super Duke R is so improved from its predecessor that it’s essentially an all-new motorcycle. Coming in at a claimed 416.6 pounds dry, the bike is said to be lighter and more powerful and have better handling than its predecessor.
Engine An updated more powerful 1,301c LC8 V-twin, with titanium inlet valves and resonator chambers on the cylinder heads, gets new top-feeder injectors and 56mm throttle bodies for improved air/fuel mixture at high rpms. A new ram air intake positioned in the new headlight mask also maximizes flow by forcing air into the combustion chambers. New thinner engine casings and revised water and oil cooler mounts have resulted in a 1.7-pound weight savings, and new exhaust headers optimize gas flow. An updated Pankl gearbox provides quicker shift times, shorter shift action and lighter lever modulation.
Frame A new ultra-lightweight chrome-molybdenum steel frame carries the engine as a stressed member. The combo is said to be 3 times stiffer and 4.4 pounds lighter than its predecessor. A new lighter composite subframe combines a number of functions to save weight and increase functionality, and a longer single-sided swingarm has been repositioned closer to the output sprocket for more control.
Suspension An updated, lighter 48mm WP Apex USD fully adjustable split front fork has separate damping circuits. The newly developed WP Apex rear shock absorber features separate gas and oil reservoirs, making it lighter and more compact than its predecessor. A “no-tools-needed” manual preload dial eases rear shock set-up, and new linkage at the rear helps smooth out rough roads.
Wheels New CAD designed wheels offer a lighter build while keeping strength, and new Bridgestone S22 tires were developed with a specific carcass in the rear for the KTM 1290 Super Duke R that provides a more stable ride in corners, improving grip and performance.
Electronics Reworked and updated ride modes have been designed to be less intrusive in all modes, with smoother anti-wheelie functions. MSC (Motorcycle Stability Control) with Cornering ABS by Bosch includes Supermoto mode, Ride mode technology and multi-stage, lean angle sensitive Motorcycle Traction Control (MTC). The lean-angle sensitive MTC uses a 6-axis lean angle sensor and two different controllers to keep things in check. The wheel-slip controller regulates the amount of spin or break in traction at the rear wheel. A pitch angle controller identifies and regulates abrupt changes in front wheel lift.
Optional “Track mode” includes launch control, 9-level spin adjuster, a track ride mode and anti-wheelie off function. Optional “Performance mode” takes the basic concept of “Track mode” but adapts it for the street. An optional dealer-installed Performance Pack combines Motor Slip Regulation (MSR) and Quickshifter+, and cruise control adds long distance convenience. KTM’s Race On keyless system means less hassle and increased security.
Details KTM My Ride is standard on the 1290 Super Duke R and features a Bluetooth connection to the rider’s smartphone to control audio playback and accept phone calls. A new LED headlight and LED daytime running lights improve visibility, and the new multifunctional TFT-dashboard with increased functionality displays information in a clear and bright display. Finally, new colorways and bodywork are aggressive and lean — every panel and plate has been calculated for optimum thickness and minimized wherever possible.
2020 KTM 790 Adventure R Rally MSRP: $19,499 With only 500 units planned for production worldwide, the limited edition KTM 790 Adventure R Rally adds top-line suspension components from WP Pro to make it the most off-road-capable ADV bike in KTM’s lineup. Based on the KTM 790 Adventure R, the Rally model has the same steel trellis chassis, compact LC8c parallel twin engine and the R’s electronic rider aids. The major difference is the addition of the special WP Xplor Pro suspension, which was developed in the same department as WP’s Factory Racing equipment for superior performance. It also adds 30 mm of suspension travel front and back and raises seat height to 35.8 in.
KTM says that the WP Xplor Pro 7548 fork uses cone valve
technology that allows unlimited opening, so harshness of the suspension is
reduced, while the closed cartridge construction ensures reduced friction, consistent
performance over longer periods and improved responsiveness. The WP Xplor Pro
6746 shock absorber uses KTM’s trademark progressive damping system (PDS),
which allows progressive damping without using a linkage for reduced weight and
Other upgrades to the 790 Adventure R Rally include a completely new and unique color scheme, Akrapovic titanium silencer and an off-road-specific air filter from the KTM PowerParts line. The bike also has special high-strength DID Dirt Star rims, a high, race-specific straight seat and Rally footpegs.
2021 890 Duke Here are photos of the 2021 890 Duke. Besides the addition of a passenger seat cowl and bump stop and passenger footpeg delete in this European-version photo (and obvious color and graphic changes), we don’t yet know what else has been changed besides displacement. KTM’s “Scalpel” 790 Duke certainly didn’t lack for power, so perhaps it was done for Euro 2020 reasons…we’ll find out soon enough!
BMW is marching steadily toward its promised cruiser, anticipated sometime in 2020, with the news of its latest concept bike based around the new 1,800cc “Big Boxer” opposed twin. Buried in a press release for a new Concept R18 /2 (pronounced “slash two”) were photos showing the design and production of the /2, including the most detailed shots to date of the new engine, clearly functional and roadworthy.
First, the bike. The Concept R18 /2 appears to be a classic cruiser in design, with modern flowing lines, a small headlight cowl and a slightly bobbed rear fender. Wheels are cast, 19 inches up front and 16 at the rear, with Brembo brakes and a gorgeous Candy Apple Red paint on the bodywork.
The 1,800cc air/oil-cooled boxer engine used in the /2 has a classic BMW 1960s aesthetic, finished in matte gray and black. The massive cylinders protrude past the ends of the handlebar, and dual air intakes funnel under the rider’s thighs to the airbox beneath the front of the seat. To the rear of that is a hidden single shock absorber to maintain the classic hardtail look.
We’re not quite sure why BMW wants to try breaking into the American cruiser market, given lackluster sales in the segment (and its own ill-fated R 1200 C attempt in the late ’90s/early oughts). Hopefully plans include a bagger as well…but in any case, we’re excited to see and hear more about this new R18 Big Boxer engine, clearly headed for production in the near future.
Kawasaki’s Ninja 1000 sport tourer is getting a host of updates for 2020, enough in fact that it’s been given a new (sort of) name: the Ninja 1000SX. When we last tested it back in 2017 (read the review here), we were impressed with the tour-ready Ninja’s comfort and handling, so we’re looking forward to getting a ride on this updated model.
The Ninja 1000 already included modern electronic rider aids such as an IMU-based KTRC traction control system, ABS and power modes. But for 2020 the Ninja 1000SX also gets an electronic throttle, a.k.a. throttle-by-wire, cruise control and new integrated riding modes — Sport, Road, Rain or Rider (manual) — which link the KTRC and power modes for easy on-the-fly adjustments.
It also comes equipped with an up and down quickshifter (KQS) as standard, the latest Bridgestone Battlax Hypersport S22 tires, a revised windscreen with three rather than two positions, a light restyle and a new TFT display with two modes (one for touring and one for sport riding) and Bluetooth smartphone connectivity via Kawasaki’s Rideology app.
Kawasaki also says it’s tweaked the potent engine with revised cam profiles for quieter operation, shorter intake funnels for cylinders 1 and 4 to help reduce emissions and a new exhaust system with a single right-side muffler rather than the previous dual-sided design, reducing the Ninja 1000SX’s weight by a claimed 4.5 pounds. Suspension also received a tweak in the form of a new low-speed slit on the fork’s damping pistons for smoother fork action.
Best of all, the 2020 Ninja 1000SX is priced just $200 more than last year’s model, coming in at $12,399. It’s available in one color option: Metallic Graphite Gray/Metallic Diablo Black. Kawasaki accessory 28-liter quick-release bags are an $899.95 option.
Kawasaki is updating its Z650 and Z900 naked sport bikes for 2020, with the Z900 receiving the most significant changes that bring it up-to-date and closer to its competition technology-wise.
The Z900, which was first launched back in 2017, impressed us from the start with its smooth, tractable power and rider-friendly character, but we dinged it for its lack of electronic rider aids when compared with the competition. (Read our comparison shoot-out review of the 2017 Z900 and the Yamaha FZ-09 here.) Kawasaki has addressed that complaint for 2020, giving the Z900 updated electronics, plus some tweaks to the frame and suspension and a light facelift.
Kawasaki Traction Control (KTRC) includes three modes: Modes 1 and 2 control ignition timing to prevent wheel slippage in sport riding conditions, while Mode 3 has higher sensitivity and controls ignition timing, fuel and air for ultra-smooth operation. Two power modes operate independently, with full and low (approximately 55% of full with a milder throttle response) options.
Additionally, the Z900 also offers Integrated Riding Modes that link the KTRC and power modes for quick and easy adjustment to suit a giving riding situation. There are four modes, Sport, Road, Rain and Rider (manual).
Other changes for 2020 include a new 4.3-inch TFT instrument that incorporates Bluetooth smartphone connection via Kawasaki’s Rideology app, a revised frame with added strength in the swingarm pivot area, updated suspension settings, slightly revised styling that includes an LED headlight and new Dunlop Sportmax Roadsport 2 tires.
The 2020 Kawasaki Z900 will be available in Metallic Spark Black/Metallic Flat Spark Black and Candy Plasma Blue/Metallic Matte Fusion Silver for $8,999 ($9,299 for ABS version).
Meanwhile, the 2020 Z650 gets a light style refresh that includes an LED headlight, TFT display with Rideology app connectivity and new Dunlop Sportmax Roadsport 2 tires. It will be available in Metallic Spark Black and Metallic Spark Black/Metallic Flat Spark Black starting at $7,249 ($7,649 for ABS version).
The ranks of lightweight, entry-level adventure bikes will grow by at least one in 2020 with the introduction of KTM’s new 390 Adventure. Ready for touring and light off-roading at a claimed 348 pounds dry with a 33.6-inch seat height, the bike’s high-performance heart is the liquid-cooled, 373cc DOHC single with four valves from the 390 Duke, which has EFI, a balancer shaft, PASC slipper clutch and a Ride-by-Wire throttle for smoother and more refined response. The engine is carried in a steel trellis frame with a bolt-on seat subframe and die-cast, open-lattice swingarm similar to the larger 790 Adventure’s.
The 390 Adventure’s WP Apex 43mm upside-down fork was originally developed for enduro riding and features 6.7 inches of travel with a spring on both sides; compression and rebound damping are separated into the left and right fork legs respectively. The WP Apex shock has 6.9 inches of travel and adjustable spring preload and rebound damping. Extra robust cast wheels — a 19-inch front and 17-inch rear — are fitted with tubeless Continental TKC 70 tires for a blend of street performance and off-road grip.
The 390’s Bybre brake package includes a 320mm front brake disc and 4-piston radially mounted front caliper, and a 230mm rear disc with a 2-piston floating rear caliper. An ergonomically designed 3.8-gallon fuel tank gives the 390 Adventure a claimed range of more than 249 miles. Rider aids include Off-Road and Cornering ABS and Motorcycle Traction Control (MTC), and the 390 Adventure comes standard with an adjustable windscreen, LED lighting and KTM My Ride, which allows for a Bluetooth connection to control incoming calls and an audio player through the full-color, 5-inch TFT display with multifunctional dashboard. An up/down Quickshifter + is optional for the 390 Adventure, along with a number of KTM Power Parts accessories. The 2020 KTM 390 Adventure is priced at $6,199; availability is TBD.
Harley-Davidson made some waves at EICMA this week, showing off two models it teased in 2018, the Pan-America adventure-tourer and the Bronx streetfighter. Both are powered by a new liquid-cooled 60-degree V-twin engine platform called the Revolution Max — 1,250cc in the Pan America and 975cc in the Bronx. Harley also confirmed that both models will launch in late 2020.
The Revolution Max is a bold new step for a company invested so heavily in (air-cooled) tradition — although perhaps not as bold as its LiveWire electric motorcycle unveiled earlier this year and now on sale at H-D dealerships nationwide. (Read our First Ride Review here.) Harley says the Revolution Max is designed to minimize weight and maximize performance, with a narrow profile that integrates into the bike as a stressed member of the frame. It also features a counter-balancer for smooth and comfortable operation.
Harley claims performance targets of more than 145 horsepower and 90 lb-ft of torque from the Revolution Max 1250, and more than 115 horsepower and 70 lb-ft of torque from the Revolution Max 975.
A few other details about the new Pan America and Bronx were released as well, including a collaboration with Brembo to create a new radial monoblock caliper that complements Harley’s unique design, and a continuing partnership with Michelin to develop co-branded tires specifically for each model.
Thanks to a smattering of new images (scroll down to see them all), we can also glean a bit more info about the new bikes.
Suzuki has announced updates for its lineup of big V-Stroms, including a nomenclature change from 1000 to 1050. The 2020 V-Strom 1050, V-Strom 1050XT and V-Strom 1050XT Adventure feature sharper styling with bold, bright paint schemes that reflect Suzuki’s historical race livery, and a few technological updates.
At the heart of each Strom is the tried-and-true 1037cc 90-degree V-twin that Suzuki says has been updated with more horsepower while still complying with worldwide emissions standards. Ride-by-wire with dual electronic throttle assemblies powers a revised traction control system with an additional ride mode (for a total of four), a new three-mode Drive Mode Selector that adjusts power delivery characteristics and the addition of Suzuki’s one-touch Easy Start System. There is also a new LCD instrument with mounting bar for a GPS and a new USB port.
The base V-Strom 1050 rolls on cast wheels, but the V-Strom 1050XT and 1050XT Adventure both include tubeless spoked wheels for more off-road endeavors. They also feature the Suzuki Intelligent Ride System (S.I.R.S.) with a new six-direction, three-axis IMU. The S.I.R.S. includes electronic cruise control and an updated cornering ABS and combined braking system that now includes Hill Hold Control and a Slope Dependent Control System that manages rear wheel lift when riding downhill.
Both the V-Strom 1050XT and 1050XT Adventure also come with a redesigned windscreen, hand guards and mirrors, a new height-adjustable two-piece seat, a centerstand, engine guards and more.
The 2020 V-Strom 1050XT will be available in two colors, Championship Yellow and Orange and White. The V-Strom 1050XT Adventure will be available in Glass Sparkle Black and includes quick-release aluminum panniers and heated grips. Pricing and availability on all three models is TBD.
When the original Bonneville Bobber launched back in 2017, we were smitten. True, it had some quirks — not enough front brake and a limited fuel range being the most noticeable — but overall we loved what Triumph had created: a factory bobber that delivered in both looks and performance.
Then the following year we got the Bobber Black, with dual front brake discs mounted to its fat front tire — quirk number one, check. In the meantime, Triumph released its first Triumph Factory Custom (TFC) model, the Thruxton TFC, and we swooned. Then earlier this year we got a look at the new Rocket 3 TFC and we salivated.
Now Triumph has announced its third TFC model, and guess what? It’s the Bobber.
The 2020 Triumph Bobber TFC will sport more power across the powerband, with 39% lower engine inertia resulting in a 500 rpm-higher rev limit. It’s also a claimed 11 pounds lighter (although that number is subject to change as the bike is homologated for the U.S. market).
As with all TFC models, the Bobber TFC is dripping with high-end components, including fully-adjustable Öhlins suspension front and rear, Arrow exhaust, dual front brake discs with Brembo M50 monobloc calipers and MCS radial master cylinder, an additional Sport riding mode (joining the standard Road and Rain) and an LED headlight with distinctive light pattern.
It gets unique clip-ons rather than a traditional one-piece handlebar, carbon fiber bodywork, a billet top and bottom yoke with numbered plaque, a real leather seat and special TFC badging throughout.
Only 750 Bobber TFCs will be built and sold worldwide, and like all TFC models it comes with paperwork signed by Triumph CEO Nick Bloor, a personalized custom build book, a Bobber TFC bike cover, a TFC document wallet and a leather TFC branded backpack.
More details will follow the Bobber TFC’s homologation in January 2020. U.S. pricing is also TBD.