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Thread: K1200 GT/RS Differences?

  1. #1
    Out There Somewhere bmwrider88's Avatar
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    K1200 GT/RS Differences?

    Howdy.
    Thought I'd toss this out to the collective:

    I've been looking at K bikes, and have developed an interest in the '03-'04 K1200 GT & RS, which appear pretty similar. I was wondering- what, exactly, are the differences between the RS & GT models?

    I've looked at bikes as old as 1998, and I also wonder- Is there a year for these that's "better" or "best" one way or the other?

    Is it true that the front & rear wheels are offset? How does this affect the ride/handling, if at all?

    As an aside, I have a 1988 K100RS and am thinking it'd be nice to update the stable- sell the old K, and bring in a "new" steed.

    Thanks for the opinions and help.

    Tom

  2. #2
    Daily Rider jurgen's Avatar
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    GT: Color matched bag lids, larger windshield, e-adjustable, larger wind protectors for hands, wind deflectors for legs along fairing panels. Round mirrors, higher handlebar risers. Thicker grips.
    Did I miss anything?
    J?rgen
    Red Rocks
    04 R1150GS adv
    04 K1200RS last of the great bricks

  3. #3
    MysticRed
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    Quote Originally Posted by jurgen View Post
    GT: Color matched bag lids, larger windshield, e-adjustable, larger wind protectors for hands, wind deflectors for legs along fairing panels. Round mirrors, higher handlebar risers. Thicker grips.
    Did I miss anything?
    More upright riding position?

  4. #4
    Kein Nasebohrer RBEmerson's Avatar
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    The difference cues are in the model letters: RS = rennsport (racing sport) and GT = grand touring

    What MysticRed said: the GT riding position is a little more upright. Additionally, the windshield is a little bigger and electrically adjustable. With the RS it's smaller and has two positions (changed by skilled grabbing and yanking ).

    Additionally, the mirrors are little larger and have a rounded rectangular shape (the RS mirrors are ...ah... lacking - which is why so many RS' have GT mirrors). There are four added pieces on the tupperware - handgrip and leg wind deflectors.

    GT's can have heated seats (not, AFAIK, standard, but I could be wrong on this point), RS' don't. Some folks have converted to the GT heated seat, although managing the switching adds to the fun of swapping saddles.

    Past that, these bikes are pretty much the same (e.g., both will have cruise control). The GT series continued on after the RS ended. The overall vehicle changed significantly at the point. As to "the best year(s)", I'd say the '02 on versions are preferable. The ABS works better (yeah, yeah, yeah... some people claim the ABS II system is s*** - haters gotta be hatin') and generally the design was well matured at that point. Past that, you get into a more expensive ride. Nice if you have the money, but I honestly can't even sell myself on moving up.

    I have an '03 RS and find it quite suitable for both short and long haul riding. However, I ride solo. If SWMBO ever decides to ride again, I'd rather do it with a GT. I think the RS tends to favor the solo rider slightly. YYMV.

    Down side: OK, there are gripes about the ABS. Agreed that, if the brain goes, it's probably going to run close to half of what you might pay for an '02-'03 K1200xx. OTOH, they don't all die.

    BMW used two quick-disconnect fittings near the fuel tank - one line feeds fuel the fuel injection system, one line returns excess fuel back to the tank. Unfortunately, BMW used plastic fittings that fail - often dumping raw fuel in the process. Not Good. There was a recall to replace the plastic fittings with metal fittings. If they're not on your GT or RS, change them ASAP!!!

    Idling, the bike sounds like there's a box of rocks in the crankcase. They all do that. Once you're moving at a fast walk, the noise goes away and from there on the engine is turbine smooth. For laughs, demo an RT "boxer" and then demo a GT. Which is smoother?

    Up side: Either bike handles well and goes like stink. I have never heard anything about the wheels being offset. That doesn't make a lot of sense. Ya can't believe everything ya hear on the Interweb, ya know...
    Don't let your bike go anywhere your brain hasn't already been five seconds ago...

  5. #5
    Registered User Beemer01's Avatar
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    And -

    For me the GT has a more comfortable riding postion. I've knocked off 900 mile days - and much of that at fairly high speeds - 85-90 indicated....Atlanta to Chicago in a day.


  6. #6
    Out There Somewhere bmwrider88's Avatar
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    Thanks guys!

    There's a lot of good info on these, and special thanks to RBEmerson for the most detailed response yet on my question.

    I wound up buying an 02 K1200RS off eBay, I made a thread on it (here in FB forum), so you may read about it and comment if you desire. I'd ridden one of these not too far from home (an 04, in Baltimore) but that one was a 3 owner bike, and the current owner had bought it several years ago with 10K on and ridden it up to 50K. NICE guy, tho (a fellow MOA member and real BMW enthusiast)- and he let me test ride his bike, which I liked- but then I found this 02, a 1-owner bike with only 45K on.

    I noticed the bike sounded almost like a diesel at idle, even commented on it- comparing it to my 1988 K100RS, which is whisper-quiet.

    So I'm stoked. I WILL ask about the plastic to metal change on the fuel line dis-connects, and also if there's ever been any problems with the ABS.

    Now, I just hope my GF likes it!

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