BMW issues 'service campaign' for R1200GS and GS Adventure

Potential fork stanchion problem means BMW has invited thousands of GS owners to bring their bikes back for inspection

BMW R1200GS Adventure

BMW HAS issued a begun a mass service campaign for R1200GS and R1200GS Adventure models produced between November 2013 and June 2017 because of concerns over the fork stanchions.

BMW’s action comes as a result of mounting pressure from affected owners across the world, with some reporting fork stanchions failing and leaking oil and in extreme cases, separating, often on off-road rides when the fork is dealing with extreme stresses. Anecdotal reports also speak of forks failing while riding on the road.

In affected bikes, the problem lies with the clearance between the fork tube and pressurisd top seal plugs. On bikes where the plug fails, forks will start to leak oil but could also begin to creak and offer imprecise control as a result in the amount of play in them. 

The campaign – BMW hasn’t gone as far as calling this a recall - is the first public acknowledgement by BMW Motorrad of an issue that GS owners have been discussing for some time. As a 'precationary measure' BMW wishes to check all GSs made during the November 2013 and last month. BMW has said it will contact affected owners and, rightly, fix bikes free of charge.

South African GS rider Tony Giorgia set up the BMWFatalFlaw website after his forks snapped while riding his GS off-road. He suffered multiple serious injuries and for the past 12 months has been working to get BMW to take responsibility for the accident by getting GS owners to share any similar experiences.

As more riders contributed their stories of fork problems and discusssed the issue on social meda platforms, BMW needed to make public statement and recently issued the following:

'Service Campaign R 1200 GS and R 1200 GS Adventure

As part of a service campaign, BMW Motorrad is checking the fixed fork tubes of the front forks on motorcycles of the R 1200 GS and R 1200 GS Adventure models for the production period November 2013 - June 2017.

BMW Motorrad has determined during ongoing field observations that the fixed fork tube of the specified models can suffer preliminary damage due to unusual incidents with momentary high stress without the user noticing the damage, e.g. through changed drivability. Such high stress can be caused e.g. when driving over an obstacle, during a fall or when driving through deep potholes with unvarying speed. Preliminary damage to the front wheel rim is also not unusual in such cases, but need not be necessarily present. Potential preliminary damage to the fixed fork tube manifests itself through a gap between the pipe and the pressed in top seal plugs. For the check, the rubber grommet mounted in this position must be pushed down.

BMW Motorrad has therefore decided to check the above-mentioned vehicles and repair them if required. The owners of the affected motorcycles will be informed by BMW Motorrad. The service campaign is free of charge for customers.

Best regards,
BMW Motorrad Team'