R1200GS gets steering damper for 2014

Steering damper now standard equipment on BMW's flagship adventure bike

BMW HAS given the R1200GS a steering damper for 2014.

Both the base model and the more off-road focussed R1200GS Adventure get a steering damper as standard equipment. It's one of a number of updates, which also includes the addition of a new electronics package and riding modes.

Some early reports on the 2013 model described a steering weave at speed.

Bike Magazine's Martin Fitz-Gibbons described a tankslapper on a straight road. He said: 'Down one laser-straight, Fenland-flat road late in the afternoon, the bike I was riding snapped into a vicious tankslapper.'

Kevin Duke, editor-in-chief of US website Motorcycle.com, described an incident on a rippled surface, saying: 'In an instant and with seemingly no provocation, the bike went into a wild tankslapper that threatened to throw me from the bike. It was a very panicked second before the steering regained its composure.'

A BMW spokesperson commented: 'The steering damper and two-mode Automatic Stability Control (ASC) are standard equipment for all R1200 models – GS, GS Adventure and RT - from the 2014 model year onwards. The Adventure and RT bikes will have these features from their launches early in the new year and the GS model has benefited from the upgrade since the annual model year change this autumn. It makes economic and logistical sense to harmonise this specification across all R1200 models as they are built on the same production line.'