A lot of people would like to travel and see the world. However, my personal view is that there is no better way of seeing the world than on a motorcycle.
That is, for the aenturous types who are ready for the rain, sun, wind, sand, gravel and unexpected terrain. And when all this is factored in, there is probably no better bike you would rather have than BMW’s R 1200 GS Aenture, also known as BMW GSA. GSA version of the BMW has a larger capacity fuel tank (33 litres), off-road ability, strength and longer travel suspension.
The Aenture is the more off-road-orientated version designed to be ridden across continents, over difficult terrain. Think of it as the Land Rover of the two-wheeled world. The big tank could give the rider a non-stop run of approximately 482km on one full tank. That is equivalent to riding from Kampala to Katuna powered by this machine’s partially liquid-cooled, 1,170cc boxer engine.
Its designers tried to bring down the weight by making the tank from aluminium instead of plastic and also gave it a height-adjustable seat that is narrower at its front, to make reaching the ground easier. Despite that, this is still one huge motorbike, and a heavy one at that – 260kg when fully fuelled. But much of the weight does seem to vanish once under way, partly due to BMW’s centralised mass.
Safety meets comfort
This machine is built to offer maximum safety and comfort for long rides on any given terrain. Motorcycles can cause damage at braking points and that is where the anti-lock breaking system (ABS) and the automatic stability control (ASC) traction control system come in handy.
Whereas the ‘long-legged’ BMW will cruise lazily within the legal limits, it can instantly explode to blistering speed with minimal use of the six-speed gearbox.
The beamer is capable of going into different riding modes, just with the push of a button. ‘Rain’ mode provides support on wet surfaces by moderating accelerator response. The suspension is configured for a correspondingly soft response.
In ‘Road’ mode, the control systems are set to ensure optimum performance on dry roads. This mode provides a spontaneous, linear throttle response.
‘Dynamic’ mode reveals the sportiest face of the new BMW R 1200 GSA for road riding with an even more spontaneous and direct throttle response. This mode brings the full potential of the machine to bear.
‘Enduro’ mode enhances the R 1200 GSA for off-road riding. This means that even motorcyclists with limited enduro experience will quickly get their off-road bearings and have loads of riding fun. This mode is optimised for use with standard tyres.
The ‘Enduro Pro’ mode is for the more ambitious riders providing spontaneous engine response characteristics and is designed for use with studded tyres.
These modes and the bike’s build set it apart from the rest. Arthur Musaazi, who owns a 2011 version of the motorcycle, describes it as “Awesome.”
“It is not a bike it is a BMW,” he declares, adding, “I have owned a couple of bikes, but nothing like a BMW GSA. It is absolute freedom!”
He has ridden it to Gulu, Lira, Soroti and Kapchorwa. He recently rode it to Bujumbura, via Kigali, and is currently in Nairobi for the Concours d’Elegance, a showcase of all makes and types of cars and motorcycles. Odeon Tumwebaze is riding the bike of his dreams in the 2008 version.
“It is great on and off road. It is as good in bends as on straights. It is a bike for all places and all times,” he says.
“I am riding my dream bike so, the new dream is to be as good a rider as the bike I ride and upgrade some time in the future,” he adds.
Source : The Observer