2022 BMW S 1000 XR Review: One or one thousand

Leow Ju Len

BMW’s updated S 1000 XR still proves itself a capable, mega-fast, and easy to ride adv-sports tourer over both short and long distances, within and without Singapore

2022 BMW S 1000 XR

Price : S$66,800 machine price without COE, Road Tax, insurance
Large adventure/sports touring motorcycle
165hp, 999cc inline 4

More civilised, capable, and easy to ride
Improved chassis dynamics
Lots of onboard tech

Windscreen causes windblast
More tame than before


Is the ability to thrill, or sheer usability more valuable in a bike? Big motorcycles are usually purchases of passion, but experienced riders know that it’s usually the bike that can do one kilometre as easily as a thousand is the one you put big miles on. 

BMW’s new S 1000 XR certainly fits the bill, without losing too much of the thrill. 

Slap a superbike-derived engine into a sports touring package with tall, adventure-style ergonomics and you have a recipe for a continent-crossing mile eater. As long as those are tarmac miles, that’s what BMW’s S 1000 XR has been peddling since its debut in 2014. 

The second-generation BMW S 1000 XR impressed us back at its international launch back late 2019/early 2020, bringing new stuff to the table, while looking quite similar to before. Now that COVID induced shortages and delays are finally starting to wrinkle out, we were able to test the new XR on Singapore’s roads at last and to find out if the brochure’s claim of ‘lighter, faster, and more versatile’ is true. 

Lighter, stronger…

The first bit is certainly true. The bike’s 10kg lighter than before, at 226kg wet, and a whole 23 kg lighter than the current R 1250 GS. 1.6kg is lost by the new frame, and five kilos with the new 999cc engine. 

It’s not full-dress tourer heavy, and in traffic the relatively slim (non-boxer) profile means easier lane-splitting, but as usual of tall bikes, pushing it around does take some muscle. 

Shedding the panniers shows that the bike’s profile is actually rather svelte

The XR’s new chassis, fuel tank and body panels result in improved wind protection. Swinging a leg over the wide 840mm seat required some dexterity, particularly with panniers mounted. Seated, we found ergonomics to be natural, no aches or pains in any major joints.

However, we couldn’t get along with the height of the one-hand adjustable windscreen, which regardless of position, caused intense buffeting at ear level and over-head. YMMV, naturally, but it’s something to be aware of. 

LED lighting all around – a hallmark of the second-gen bike

With new-design LED lights all around (adaptive cornering mainbeam, indicators, taillights, foglights) the bike is certainly ‘lighter’ this time around, but there’s also another kind of illumination – the clear, bright and now familiar 6.5-inch TFT screen, underpinned by BMW’s industry-leading infotainment system.

Multiple display screens give you all the info you need, with navigation done through the bar-mounted rotary controller. Bluetooth means you can connect your phone and headset both, while the BMW Motorrad Connected app was stable and featured a log of the riding route, and details like G-force and lean angle. The on-board navigation system was precise and legible, and good for getting from point A to B in the city. 

It’s a testament to how well the system works that you can do everything from view vital info, navigate, make calls, or activate the numerous technical or safety systems (ABS Pro, adaptive suspension, drive modes) with relative ease. 

Page 2: But is the new XR really faster?

We take BMW’s S 1000 R for a spin and find out why it’s two bikes in one

Pages: 1 2


bmw motorcycle s 1000 xr S1000XR sports tourer

About the Author

Leow Ju Len

CarBuyer Singapore's original originator, Ju-Len in person is exactly how he is on the written word and behind the wheel. Meaning that he darts all over the place and just when you thought he's lost the plot, you realise that it's just you not keeping up with his incredible rate of speed and thought.

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