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2009 BMW Concept Lo Rider First Look

Tuesday, November 4, 2008
BMW is banking on allowing riders to choose the type of exhaust system  seat  headlamp and paint for their Lo Rider will be a strong selling point.
BMW is banking on allowing riders to choose the type of exhaust system, seat, headlamp and paint for their Lo Rider will be a strong selling point.
BMW sprung one of the first surprises at EICMA 2008 with the introduction of its newest concept study, the BMW Lo Rider. We haven't seen BMW venture into the power cruiser segment since Pierce Brosnan ripped around the streets of Saigon on a stolen BMW R 1200 C in the 1997 James Bond movie Tomorrow Never Dies. Only a tight rake on an inverted telescopic fork and 6-piston brake calipers on a wave rotor disc mean the Concept Lo Rider places more emphasis on performance and less emphasis on cruiser. A tubular trellis frame and Paralever rear-wheel swingarm ring with Monster familiarity. Sourcing the vaunted BMW Boxer flat twin for its power, the Lo Rider is claimed to get over 100bhp out of its electronically-fed, overhead camshaft-equipped engine.
But the beauty of the BMW Concept Lo Rider lies in its level of customization. Like streetfighters? Then go with the vertically-arranged dual headlamps with a sporty raised exhaust system. Choose the seat bench for two, opt for a semicircular headlamp up front and run the pipes down low and you've got a roadster. Mix it up - BMW wants you to. This level of customization on a factory bike is unprecedented and is a promising prospect to boost sales.
While we could drone about about BWM's Lo Rider, we'll let the Bavarian motorcycle manufacturer fill you in on some of the bike's details.

The facts in brief.

The BMW Lo Rider - sporty, purist roadster study with an individually variable design.
Purist, powerful, unfaired and reduced to the absolute essentials - these few words provide an incomplete description of the BMW Lo Rider, the new concept study by BMW Motorrad. At first sight, the focus would seem to be on the creation of a roadster with a muscular appearance, openly displayed technology and powerful flat twin engine for pure emotion and maximum motorcycling fun. But behind all this is in fact a completely new custom concept.
How do you like your exhaust - up high or down roadster low
How do you like your exhaust - up high or down roadster low?
The bike's low weight, the powerful and high-torque flat twin engine and high-quality chassis technology give it a high level of sporty riding dynamics, while the lowered chassis and the relaxed yet active seating position with the broad handlebars are more of a loan from cruisers and naked bikes. The concept is such that, for the first time, the customer can be involved in the design of the BMW Lo Rider to an extent which goes beyond what has previously been possible to date. Numerous options including different exhaust systems, seats, headlamp units and paint finish variations allow for a level of customisation which is far greater than the familiar individualisation by means of special equipment features and accessories. This means that the entire character of the vehicle can be adapted to the customer's individual taste: the customer can take full pleasure in assembling a machine just as he wants it - from a cool cruiser to an aggressive muscle bike.
Buyers of BMW s Lo Rider will have four different paint finishes from which to choose from.
Buyers of BMW's Lo Rider will have four different paint finishes from which to choose from.
- Combines current technology with modern and classic stylistic elements.
- Design elements can be individually combined by the customer.
- Raised or lowered exhaust system, as preferred.
- Seat for one or two as preferred, or aluminium perch seat.
- Headlamp unit in classic shape or in streetfighter style, as preferred.
- Fuel tank with or without aluminium trim, as preferred.
- Four paint finishes for the fuel tank.
- Three paint finishes for the engine casing.
- Front and rear wheel wings finished either in black or chrome, as preferred.

Leading the way with concept studies - a BMW Motorrad tradition.

BMW Motorrad has a tradition of coming up with new ways and ideas when it comes to motorcycling. Fascinating studies and designs have been produced in the past using ideas which then found their way into serial production. But studies by BMW Motorrad are about more than just trying to develop a motorcycle which has not existed in a given form before. In addition to functions and quality, BMW developers focus on the emotional component - the connection between man and motorcycle. The guiding principle is that a motorcycle should not just function perfectly but should also appeal to all the riders' senses simultaneously, arouse an emotional response in him and fill him with enthusiasm at every moment - when stationary and when moving, as a whole and in its detail. In short: it has to light the fire.

Emotion through interaction - individualization made-to-measure.

With the BMW Lo Rider study presented at the EICMA in Milan, BMW Motorrad is not just demonstrating a continuation of this policy but is in fact taking a significant step forward in focusing on the interaction between man and motorcycle. The idea is that for the first time, the customer should be interactively involved in the design of his BMW - going far beyond the familiar adding of special equipment features and accessories. The customer is to be given the opportunity to be much more deeply involved in the design of the Lo Rider from the outset, creating a customised, made-to-measure machine based around the principal components such as engine and chassis.

Classic meets modern - a combination of stylistic elements from different eras.

The study Lo Rider does not fit into any of the classic motorcycle segments - and it is not supposed to. It combines the latest technical attributes of high performance sports motorcycles with the traditional, classic principles of motorcycle construction. State-of-the-art chassis components from sports motorcycle construction such as the powerful upside-down fork, 6-piston brake calipers with real bite and wide 17-inch tires are combined with style defining elements of
With the sporty perch seat  racing plate and high exhaust layout  this BMW Lo Rider has a definite cafe racer feel to it.
With the sporty perch seat, racing plate and high exhaust layout, this BMW Lo Rider has a definite cafe racer feel to it.
motorcycle construction from the fifties and sixties. For example, with the exhaust system in a more traditional lower position in side pipe style creates a classic roadster or cool cruiser look, while a raised exhaust system is reminiscent of legendary racing machines or typical scrambler models of days gone by. Together with a range of variously designed seat concepts, also based on styles of the fifties and sixties, as well as differing paint finish versions, the BMW Lo Rider offers the motorcycle fan a wealth of possibilities by means of which to interpret the roadster theme in a highly individual way according to his own personal taste founded on a single basic motorcycle. In fact the Lo Rider gives the creativity of its rider almost completely free rein.

Chassis and engine - state-of-the-art technology based on classic principles.

The mixture of classic and modern stylistic elements of motorcycle construction combined with state-of-the-art technology is what gives the Lo Rider its defining look from all angles. A torsionally stiff space frame of sophisticated architecture openly displays the bike's technology and together with the upside-down telescopic fork at the front and Paralever rear-wheel swingarm provides the modern basis in terms of chassis technology - just as it is to be found in some current models of the BMW Boxer series. What is more, the chassis of the Lo Rider has been lowered as compared to conventional roadsters.

In terms of tire dimensions, the 17-inch wheels represent the current state of the art for sports motorcycles, though with their chrome wire spokes, black hubs and steel rims they ingeniously echo the characteristic stylistic elements and flair of a past era. By contrast, contemporary technology and a high level of riding dynamics is provided by elements such as the high performance dual brake disc with powerful 6-piston calipers, together with wave brake discs borrowed from motor racing at the front and the single disc brake at the rear.

In terms of its engine, the Lo Rider also relies on technology which is both contemporary and full of character - the legendary, highly responsive BMW flat twin "Boxer" engine. For 85 years, the construction principle of this engine has stood for unmistakable, authentic design, a full torque curve and unique sound and power. In its current version with an output of over 100 bhp, overhead camshafts, electronic fuel injection and exhaust gas purification, the powerful response of this dynamic and distinctive 2-cylinder is simply perfect for the BMW Lo Rider.

The customer as designer - individual designs and paint finishes

The concept study Lo Rider is mainly focused on the two essential component groups of a motorcycle, the engine and the chassis. Any superfluous decoration is omitted. Instead, variable components such as the exhaust system, seat, headlamp unit and paint finishes determine the bike's outward appearance, at the same time defining its conceptual style. The combination of these classic and modern components is entirely subject to the personal taste of the customer. For example, he can initially express the dominating character of the BMW Lo Rider through the placement of the exhaust system, creating either a sporty style or opting for a more roadsterlike look by having it lowered.
High performance dual disc brakes and a Paralever rear-wheel swingarm mean that the Lo Rider may sport an old school look but it s performance should be all 21st century.
High performance dual disc brakes and a Paralever rear-wheel swingarm mean that the Lo Rider may sport an old school look but it's performance should be all 21st century.

A very sporty effect is created by the classic perch seat made of aluminium sheet metal, while the simple single seat reduced to the absolute minimum will appeal to purist motorcycle fans. The single seat can also be optionally extended to include a pillion passenger module.

The specification laid down for the development team led by David Robb, Head of Design Development at BMW Motorrad, was that all the conceivable combination options of these components should produce different end results but that the bike should always retain a rounded, coherent character in itself. Whether with a raised or lowered exhaust system, with sporty perch seat or seat bench for one or two people: the Lo Rider comes over differently every time but always makes an impression.

The same applies to the selection options in creating the front section of the Lo Rider. With their aggressive, modern design, the vertically arranged dual headlamps give it a touch of the streetfighter, while the classic, semicircular headlamp provides an echo of past times. Once again, the same principle applies: however different the styles thus created might be, they always have a consistent emotional appeal for the rider.

Further possibilities for individual design are available to the customer in the choice of paint finish. There are four different colors available for the fuel tank, and with the three different paint finishes for the engine casing this allows the customer to create a very distinctive, personal look, defining the character of the Lo Rider as anything from refined to sporty. These always harmonize perfectly with the deliberately classic, high-quality aluminium parts such as fuel tank trim, seat holder and wing struts. Different styles can also be created with the front and rear wings which are available either in black orchrome finish.

Finally, another element which harmonizes perfectly with the overall concept of the Lo Rider is the individually adaptable range of rider equipment. This includes classic leather jackets, protector jeans, boots, gloves and authentic jet and integral helmets. This ensures that not only the appearance of the Lo Rider is perfect but that the rider has just the right look, too.
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Mohan R -WOWWWWWWWWWWW  December 30, 2010 03:56 AM
I love have it ,, I am Crazy about bikes........, Make it in India(Chennai)....... where is in chennai.........

Jim -Build it NOW!  December 18, 2010 05:52 PM
You have got to build this bike because I have to have it. I have had many beemers and this one would be great for my collection. I hope upper management is listening. Build this bike NOW!!!!!!!
One suggestion, use stainless steel spokes....please.
Richard -Boxer all the way  October 2, 2010 12:48 AM
It is so sad to learn that BMW has stop all boxer productions but the GS and RT, in the UK at least. My first bike was a 1964 R50. The R model defines BMW motorcycle for me as a kid, I was confused when I saw the Ks and wondering was it the creation of Jap/Ger collaboration.I been wanting to buy a modern boxer for ages but find all models are too big/heavy or a bit plain like the Rs. The last decent model for me was the 1150S again, a bit heavy. The Lo-Rider certainly tick all the boxes for me by the info on the web. Simple/light/individual full of character and most important of all it has a boxer on board. The S1000RR is great, but BMW, please don't turn into just another soulless motorcycle manufacturer with the same bike that everbody else have.
Marty -new concept  January 4, 2010 04:14 PM
I am an American! How the hell can I buy American with a nasty bmw that looks like this! Piss off, I gotta buy one!
sensio -Finally  December 30, 2009 10:02 PM
I agree with comments above- would also be good to customise the wheels-- not just spokes and forks as it is a 'mashup' of styles anyway. Otherwise, gotta love the concept. You can never accuse BMW of not sticking out their design necks Sometimes they get it very wrong--- see 'Rocksta') but this is a winner in my books.
Fanche de con -BMW LoRider  August 19, 2009 06:51 AM
If anybody got news get in contact on voltac@free.fr
Lee Mac -BMW Lo rider  June 30, 2009 02:45 AM
i want a new bike and am gonna wait for this!!
castorp -Please BMW, bring it out soon!  June 28, 2009 05:33 AM
I like the retro/cafe racer/naked chopper look better than the other BMW bikes. Would sure buy one if the price is reasonable. Customization would be cool but I am sure some (cheaper) more standard versions would be fine for me too. Please BMW, bring it out soon! Cannot wait for another year really...
Sam -MAKE THE BIKE!!!!  April 28, 2009 03:27 PM
pleeeeeeeeease make the bike! i allready have a BMW HP2 sport. and if you make this i will have to buy one!
kevo -I'll sell my triumph  March 2, 2009 03:35 PM
C'mon BMW - build this thing already!!!
hottr6 -I do like this  February 24, 2009 12:33 PM
Glad to see engines are not being hidden from view any longer, but that still does not make this a cafe racer. To qualify, one need to be able to "spit through the frame". That's how my old Guzzi is (much modified after 32 years), and after 170,000 miles, we'll just keep on keepin' on.
Tyler -Incredible  February 9, 2009 03:46 PM
I will sell my harley in a heartbeat the day this bike hits the showroom. I've seen guys modify their sportys to look similar but this is sick!
Rooster -What a relief!  February 8, 2009 10:08 PM
I've owned four R1200cs, and I've been in a panic. The thought of owning anything but a BMW is not even an option for me. I promise to purchase one of these the second they hit the showroom floor.
mark cohen -custom low rider  February 2, 2009 05:29 PM
please have a person with knowledge contact me. Iam a BMW customer bikes & auto's Thanks USA 435-901-8165 Mark Cohen
Jaydev -MY HEART HURTS! Please Build!  February 1, 2009 02:30 PM
This is the bike that may make history for BMW again! A bike that is totally customizable and brings a cruiser/street-fighter back into the market. BMW Don't event think about NOT building this bike now that we have seen it. BUILD AWAY and i promise will purchase one immediately!
webman94 -BMW ROCKS!  January 12, 2009 12:14 PM
I absolutely love this bike. I've never been a huge fan of their newer stuff, but always liked the 1970's-80's boxers. They just had 'character.' Nowadays, this seems to be in short supply. Many of BMW's more recent bikes were more like appliances. This is why I bought a Ducati M750 monster in '97. Nice bike, but FRAGILE! It blew up at 37k. I've heard of BMW's that go 150k and more... I'd love to have this bike. It has the direct, mechanical connection most modern machines lack, but also has some of the best new technology. I really like the fact that it can be customized. I might buy two different seats, pipes, and headlights, and switch from one to the other as the mood suits. I would like to see an optional, R-90S-style cafe fairing, and maybe some small hard bags, which would further increase the bike's versatility. You wouldn't need any other bikes at all, then.
Yepes -Awesome. BMW, please build it.  December 11, 2008 06:23 PM
I love the idea of classic looks with modern technology. This concept shows that BMW is not afraid of being original and different (in a great way), that is called attitude!
toke -nice  December 11, 2008 06:19 AM
need one:) pleas build it now....
Bill -Break the mold  December 5, 2008 11:29 PM
I think this bike is gorgeous! Tired of all the plastic bikes and cruisers (America...why are you fixated on plastic faired, wannabe GP bikes and "Lazy-boy" chair riding cruisers??). There are plenty of "standard/streetfighter style" bikes out there. Nice to see BMW finally joining the fray! Great concept! Build it!
andy -bm..what??  December 5, 2008 06:21 PM
Sorry but I don´t get the point about this ugly mofo!..maybe I am too old for motorbikes and get a bicycle soon
Ken -Build it!  December 4, 2008 11:05 PM
While the Moto Guzzi Grisco is a great bike, it's beauty is in the eye of the beholder (personally, I find the frame tubes cutting into the tank to be hideous). For more traditionalists...there is the BMW Lo-Rider. Guzzi and BMW both have the twin and shft drive..that's where the similarity ends. Besides the fact...where is your closest Moto Guzzi dealer? And where do you get aftermarket parts for it (let alone servicing!)? Enough said. I think BMW has a great concept here. Add to the fact that you can "have it your way" and you've got a winner! Personally...I'd pick this over a Guzzi ANY day.
I already own a Griso -Unoriginal BMW  November 25, 2008 12:44 PM
If BMW is going for ugly as an art form (see Bengal designs)than this guy is right on target. Mistaking this as radical design only says one thing: Yet another person that has never heard of Moto Guzzi. Or it means you have never seen a Guzzi Griso or the Cafe Racer concept made a while back: http://www.mcgrathem.nl/cms/components/com_fireboard/uploaded/images/Guzzi_cafe_racer_griso.jpg or http://www.doxupport.com/JMCNB_Multimedia/Pics/Guzzi_Bellerofonte_Bobber.jpg or even this bike: http://bp0.blogger.com/_eSQ6LlLAFu0/RmvSIb4aiQI/AAAAAAAAA6o/rw5_K9MyxmQ/s1600-h/Yamaha_RenStar.jpg Great Idea copy someone's work put an futuristic headlight on and "look at this stunning piece of Bavarian Engineering..." Excellent strategy, seems to be working for Hyundai too. PASS.
Ugene -Back to the begining  November 17, 2008 06:50 PM
It seems that motorcycling is going (style wise) full circle again. Bikes seem to be going back to basics. Nakeds, Cafe Racer, Streetfighter, etc. It refreshing to see the market get away from the "Race-Replica" style that's dominated US sales (for non-cruisers). I think people are finally starting to realize that plastic clad race style bikes are not that practical on the street and lack the character that made motorcycles so desirable in the first place (the "Fun Factor"...not how fast you can go). I think most riders want a bike they can "connect" with, not necessarily a bike that does everything effortlessly. Character is the name of the game now...as it used to be and as it should be. Congrats to BMW for stirring up the soul with this bike. I hope they build it! Two thumbs up for this one!!
Doug -bmw lorider  November 15, 2008 09:04 PM
I remember a couple years ago I received a BMW email survey about what I would like to see in a new cruiser. My response was more leg room and more power. IT LOOKS LIKE THEY MADE MY BIKE.
Cowboy -What took so long???  November 12, 2008 09:47 AM
What a marketing concept... to build what the customer wants. I've been upset with Harley for not offering the XR-1200 here in the states. Now, I think I'll wait for this new BMW... if they don't take too long, or over-price it.
54strat -Almost perfect...But...  November 10, 2008 06:44 PM
When I dream about a bike, this is what I see; I just never thought it would be a Beemer. My version has always been a Suzuki with a TLR engine - wrapped in the original SV frame, of course. Right or wrong, I've always see BMW as a European Harley - more cache than cash-value (what can I say, I'm cheap). I can't help but think that BMW is bringing out this bike to thwart Harley's Euro-only XR1200. Given the choice(and the price of admission)I'd take the Beemer over the Harley. Several years ago, Honda showcased a bike called the NAS (Naked American Standard): V-twin as stessed member, single sided swingarm, mono fork, and stripped to the bone. Talk about bike horny - I began calculation how many trips to the blood bank I,d need to make help make the payment. Honda never brought it to market - saving me numerous fainting spells - and I still think is was one of the great misfires in motorcycling history. The thing is, while I would have moved Heaven and Earth to pay for the Honda, I can't see myself selling one of my kids for the Beemer. For me, it's about performance, and additude way behind.
82-Greg -Rear Drive Failures  November 9, 2008 08:31 AM
Did they fix the source of rear drive failures the factory refuses to acknowledge?
Ken -Well Done!!  November 6, 2008 04:08 PM
Now THIS is what motorcycles should be! Simple, stylish (your way), and powerful (but not so much as to be useless like the new "Streetfighter"-joke from Ducati). Kudo's to BMW for thinking of street riders (instead of track stars)! Two thumbs up BMW!
Tortuga -A real beauty  November 6, 2008 04:00 PM
This is a winner. The "factory121" approach is something really new in this field. Go ahead with this project, keep it simple, light, fun to ride and it will become a cult machine. Another question for BMW: WHEN?
Jason -Will this happen????  November 6, 2008 01:24 PM
I have been in the market for a new bike........preferably the R1200R. I am looking to purchase one this coming spring. However, I WOULD MUCH RATHER HAVE THIS BIKE!!!!!!! Do you think this concept will become reality or is it just a pipe dream?
Jimbolaya -KTM vs. BMW  November 6, 2008 12:55 PM
Apologies for triple posting; can't stop commenting on this thing. I believe it was a BMW salesguy who finally gave me a good reason why BMW bought Husky. Worldwide, KTM eventually acquired such a huge portion of dirt bike sales that realistically, the only way they could continuge to GROW was to expand into the street bike market, which they of course have done in the past few years: Superbike, just unveiled a Touring Supermoto, etc. BMW took KTM's foray as a shot across the bow, a direct challenge from they Austrian neighbor to the north. KTM declared war on their neighbor's turf. BMW responded in kind, purchasing a major dirt bike company, playing tit for tat. BMW also clearly realized that if they didn't get off their butts & start making real, clear waves, they might be overtaken & destroyed by their European competitor. The rest is history: new G650s, G450X, K1200, K1300, World Superbike entry, & then this here bike we're all drooling over. Every admirer of this new BMW unveiling owes KTM a huge debt of thanks! Way to go KTM! Thanks! Beer's on me!
Jimbolaya -Air/oil cooled for styling  November 6, 2008 12:42 PM
This bike is further proof how much easier it is to design the right look around an air/oil cooled motor vs. the stylistic problems encountered (plumbing, no cooling fins) w/ liquid cooling. Old farts (the ones w/ the money to burn on these luxuries) want modern performance. But we've owned so many bikes by now that there's no way we're going to drop the huge money required for new modern bikes unless it really gets the endorphins flowing while staring at it & blipping the throttle (the twin helps here). The just unveiled Ducati Streetfighter looks great, but chain maintenance/cleaning & the valvetrain maintenance is frighteningly costly. Plus it's gonna cost about $17k. Also, working on bikes, cleaning, servicing, lubing the chain is NOT the thrill it once was, hence this rock-reliable/proven shaft-drive beast looks even better. Go BMW, please drop the first one at my door!
Jimbolaya -Maxxx, your suspicion is correct  November 6, 2008 12:29 PM
My '00 R1150GS, sold at 37k miles, was just broken in. Up until just a few thousand miles earlier, it continued to run smoother & smoother. Indeed, it's probably humming smartly right now & will continue to do so to 200k miles. Unlike a particular American brand, just as you mention. Around the same time as the Bimmer I also had a '00 Guzzi 1100i & Buell Ulysses (hopped-up Sportster motor). The Guzzi tossed a rod around 12k & the Ulysses motor vibrates so badly it feels like it is self-destructing (sold it after three weeks, what a mistake). This new concept Bimmer is the most attractive big bike I've seen. It's combination of huge, effortless torque, power, looks, reliablity, factory backing/support, & comfort/convenience is way over the top. I'm 54, have owned about 65 bikes (mostly street) & rabidly examine new bike offerings looking for something to really pique my interest. I thought I had given up on larger heavier bikes, but this idea looks to good to pass up. Besides, it may weigh 100 lbs less than my R1150GS, which was about 589 lbs w/ a full tank (includes BMW's awesome tool kit. If BMW doesn't bring this I'll be pissed. I intend to put off any pending big bike purchase till this arrives. Cafe Racer version, please.
OptionTrader -I like the spokes!  November 6, 2008 08:33 AM
I like the spoked wheels. BMW has been using tubeless versions of them for years.
Shane -Interesting  November 6, 2008 05:17 AM
I find it interesting that the bike has Queensland Australia number plates,does this mean some testing was done in Australia. You will notice aussie flag in top right hand corner of number plate symbol in top left hand corner is a kangaroo.
Henning Homeister -Thats the way aha aha - I like it  November 6, 2008 02:13 AM
This is the bike I always wantet to build by myself... Now I just have to wait and being glad that I dont have to buy a Harley after 3 BMW bikes. YES - We can!!!
john -spokes  November 5, 2008 08:18 PM
lose the spoked wheels and give me a modern set with tubeless tires.
Louis -AWESOME!  November 5, 2008 10:11 AM
I love it! Great idea and very original. They should of been doing this years ago though. The bike looks good with any of the combinations. I have always loved BMW bikes but their recent bikes are blowing away the competition in all catagories!
Louis -Awesome!!!!  November 5, 2008 07:33 AM
Very original! That is a great idea. I absolutely love it. I have always liked BMW bikes but there latest stuff is blowing away the competition!!!
Maxxxxx -Amazing  November 4, 2008 08:46 PM
...Good bye Harley!! I'm getting this BMW as soon as it will be available. It is gorgeous and it'll probably run for 200,000 miles if you just change the oil a few times.
Jimbolaya -Ouch! That is SWEET!  November 4, 2008 05:46 PM
One of the most impressive unveilings ever. I am stoked. Bring it on BMW I don't think I could resist the urge to sign for this bike. The cafe racer version is too much. Get bored w/ it after a few years, trade someone else for different parts & you GET A NEW BIKE FOR PRACTICALLY NOTHING! How good is that? Wow! Best "overall" performing drive-shaft bike ever. L-O-V-E it! Too bad for Honda they snoozed & didn't release the EVO6...shame on Honda!!!!!!