View Full Version : Vertically Challenged

06-22-2007, 08:40 PM
I have ridden a 1150RT in the past the seat was in the lower position and I was almost flat footed on the ground. I have now purchased a '07 R1200RT. It will have the lower seat when it gets here. I read somewhere the ESA will make the bike taller. At 5'9", I'm wondering if the lower seat will cancel the added height of the ESA and if I'll feel comfortable with my feet down.:dunno

Tom K.
06-22-2007, 09:56 PM
Where did you read that ESA raises the bike? I've never seen this in any BMW literature or in any of the magazine tests.

FWIW, I have the low seat on my '06 RT with ESA. I'm 5'10" with a 30" inseam and the stock low seat allowed me to easily flatfoot. However, I couldn't ride more than 100 miles without pain in the nether regions. The Rick Mayer seat I now have on the OEM pan is quite comfortable and while I can't quite flatfoot in the upper position, it's close enough to not be an issue.

Enjoy your new bike!

06-22-2007, 10:08 PM
It took a little searching but I found the post...I hope I'm not diming easy out.

"It is a convenient way to adjust the suspension. If you like to vary your riding, ride with and without a passenger or vary the load you carry, it comes in very handy.

Take care; it puts additional height on the bike. So if you are vertically challenged, you might want to think otherwise.

Welcome to the forum!


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I appreciate your information and I should be good to go.


06-22-2007, 10:11 PM
Sit on the bike and toggle through the ESA settings, depending on the setting chosen the ESA changes the initial height, especially if you choose one-up with gear, two-up or two-up with gear, in anticipation of the load.

Tom K.
06-23-2007, 06:49 PM
Sorry I wasn't clear.

Of course ESA alters the height according to the pre-load setting chosen. But doesn't manually adjusting the pre-load on a non-ESA model have the same effect? And any adjustment should compensate for the additional suspension sag due to the added weight of luggage and/or passenger, and the resulting seat height for the rider should be essentially unchanged

My statement was based on BMW specifying seat heights based on seat position, or low vs. normal seat, but not ESA vs. non-ESA. In other words, an RT with the normal seat in the low position and no pre-load should be 32.2" according to BMW - ESA or non ESA.

06-23-2007, 11:41 PM

You can ride the bike with ESA in the low position with or without passengers. It may not ride as will with passengers, but you shouldn't hurt the bike.

I have a 29 inch inseam, and I ride mine with the seat high, and the ESA low. I did, tho, lower the rear of the bike by building a bracket, or adaptor, with which to reposition the rear upper shock eye. I gained about 3/4 of and inch. I'm not really flat footed, but one flat foot is enough if the other toe will touch.

I also lowered the pegs, and raised the bars. With the seat in the hi position, it seems to help my hips, back, and legs.


06-24-2007, 02:15 PM
Which is the lower version of the ESA ? I ride in comfort mode and 1 rider. I can't tell. Thanks Joe:)

I am 5'8" so I need help

Tom K.
06-24-2007, 06:37 PM
Which is the lower version of the ESA ? I ride in comfort mode and 1 rider. I can't tell. Thanks Joe:)
I am 5'8" so I need help

Solo rider is the lowest ESA position - whether it's comfort, normal or sport shouldn't affect seat height, only suspension damping. With the engine running, you can sit on the bike (off the centerstand), and change the ESA preload to rider+luggage or 2riders. Wait a few seconds and as the ESA preload icon starts flashing, you'll feel the rear of the bike move up accordingly.

Also, make sure your seat is in the lower position.