Have you ever had the nakedness dream friends? You know the one; you're walking around with your arse flapping in the wind, your dick pointing uselessly to the footpath and you're wondering what the hell you were thinking of when you decided you'd just walk around town in the buff for a while.
It's always an embarrassment dream and no good ever comes of it. Like you never find yourself suddenly whooping it up with Miss Kinnear, your old grade four school teacher - no, it never works like that?
Interesting this nakedness business. It's got to be a primal thing. Like, why is it friends that as soon as a manufacturer makes a stormin' road-warrior bike; there's a solid block of riders who immediately want to take the fairings off and ride around on it naked? (Is it because we like seeing the dangly bits? Is it a fascination with what lies beneath?)
Interestingly, the gorgeous Dolores (who will strip off at the slightest provocation ? she's positively seismic in the raw) once asked if I'd ever had the nakedness dream on a bike? no, not once, never. Curious eh?
This brings us, a little untidily, to BMW's new F 800 R naked sports bike, which it has just launched at the EICMA 2008 - the Milan Motorcycle Show (running from the 4th to the 9th of November).
Alongside the naked R 1200 R and K 1300 R, this is now the third BMW naked bike to see its world premiere in the BMW Urban 'world of experience' display.
Take a long look at those dangly bits friends. That's one nice 'naked' there.
The engine of the F 800 R is powered by BMW's 798 cc 4-valve parallel twin (from the F 800 S). With a rated output of 64 kW (8,000 rpm) and torque of 86 Nm (6,000 rpm), the new naked promises strong pulling power; BMW also claims spontaneous throttle response and low fuel consumption.
BMW also claims low levels of vibration (a problem, traditionally, as you know, with some parallel twins) due to a unique additional 'swivel rod' feature which "compensates the first order and second order mass forces". (That translates, out here in 'we're not engineering geeks' world, as "it's pretty smooth".)
The six-speed transmission comes with shorter ratios on the three upper gears for increased performance.
With a dry weight of approximately 182 kg (or around 204 kg fully fuelled), a double-sided rear-wheel swing-arm, a stiff aluminium frame chassis designed for handling, agility and steering precision, big telescopic forks with 43mm stanchion diameter, and high-performance Brembo brake system with ABS, the F 800 R has the fire-power to take the fight up to the 'medium weight' sports-naked segment.
No word on price for downunder yet friends. We'll keep you posted.
Continuing the naked theme? ("Let's all git naked and lie in a great big pile"? has anyone made a song out of that yet?) BMW has also revealed a new concept study by BMW Motorrad - the BMW Lo Rider. "Purist, powerful, naked and reduced to the absolute essentials," is how BMW describes it.
With fifties and sixties style, low weight, a high-torque flat twin engine, lowered chassis, broad handlebars and relaxed seating position, the Lo Rider has 'Easy Rider' cruising written all over it.
The flat OHV electronic fuel injected twin boasts output of over 100 bhp. And, keeping the royal arse off the tarmac, the Lo Rider features upside-down telescopic forks, a Paralever rear-wheel swing arm, six-piston brake calipers and wide 17-inch tyres.
It's just a 'concept' at this stage, so no need to start counting the ducats (just yet).
Go get yourselves naked and run free friends. The Dirk
BMW F 800 R GALLERY
BMW LO RIDER CONCEPT GALLERY