The BMW R1250GS (2019) and the R1200GS (2018) Compared

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by AdamChandler, Sep 19, 2018.

  1. AdamChandler

    AdamChandler n00b Supporter

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    Note to Inmates, I'll try to keep his thread updated based on what shows up around this site and online. If you have critiques or things I missed, please let me know and I'll try to keep it updated.
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    I've been thinking about this for the last few days and I think perhaps writing it out here will benefit me as I like jotting things down as it'll help me get to a solution but this could benefit others. I also hope the comments here will inform me and others planning on making the change.

    For 2019 Model Year, BMW has refreshed the RT and GS lines of bikes both of which have shared the same motor for a while with a VTEC like design with increased power output, torque and better fuel economy assuming you are gentle with the throttle.

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    Here is the Press Release from BMW Group on the new design.

    There are very minor aesthetic differences between the 2018 and 2019 R12xxGS. Both from a glance look identical.

    Here are the highlighted changes to between the GS model years but I've removed the features that were already on the 2018 bikes:

    • Further developed boxer engine with BMW ShiftCam Technology for variation of the valve timings and valve stroke on the intake side.

    • Even more power across the entire engine speed range, optimised fuel consumption and emission levels, increased running smoothness and refinement.

    • Increased output and torque: 100 kW (136 hp) at 7 750 rpm and 143 Nm at 6 250 rpm (previously: 92 kW (125 hp) at 7 750 rpm and 125 Nm at 6 500 rpm)).

    • Capacity increased to 1 254 cc (previously: 1 170 cc).

    • Asynchronous valve opening on the intake side for optimised swirl and therefore more effective combustion.

    • Camshaft drive now via toothed chain (previously roller chain).

    • Optimised oil supply and piston base cooling.

    • Knock sensor system for optimised travel suitability.

    • Latest generation of BMS-O engine control and use of twin-jet injection valves for even more effective carburetion.

    • New exhaust system for optimum performance characteristics.

    •Riding Modes Pro, featuring additional riding modes, Dynamic Traction Control DTC, ABS Pro (standard in the R 1250 RT), Hill Start Control Pro and Dynamic Brake Assistant DBC, available as an optional equipment item ex works.

    • In addition to standard adjustability of seat height (exception: HP style for the R 1250 GS), wide range of seat height variants ex works.

    Here is a dyno chart showing the R1200 versus R1250:
    [​IMG]

    You will experience higher torque off the line but the major spikes in torque and horsepower will not arrive until the shift cam does its job and changes things up to suck in more fuel and make more power.

    If you were waiting for more power, then the 2019 R1250GS is worth waiting for.

    Here are additional videos highlighting the engine designs:




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    Comparing the two bikes:
    1250GS: (2019)

    • 1254cc boxer twin
    • 134bhp @ 7750rpm
    • 105.5lft (143Nm) at 6250rpm
    • 20l tank (260 mile range) (5.28 gallons)
    • 49.2MPG (highly debatable)
    • 850/870mm seat height
    • 249kg (wet)
    1200GS: (2018)
    • 1170cc boxer twin
    • 125bhp @7700 RPM
    • 92.2 ftlb@6500rpm.
    • 20L Tank (190 mile range) (5.28 gallons)
    • 35.9MPG (highly debatable)
    • 850mm seat height
    • 244kg (Per USA Manual)

    Full Technical Specs of the R1250GS:
    • Engine – Boxer twin, 4-valve, DOHC
    • Capacity – 1254 cc
    • Cooling – Air/Liquid
    • Bore x Stroke – 102.5 x 76 mm
    • Power – 100 kW / 136 hp at 7750rpm
    • Torque – 143 Nm at 6250 rpm
    • Compression Ratio – 12.5:1
    • Valves – 40 mm intake / 34 mm exhaust
    • Induction – 52 mm throttle bodies, BMS-O
    • Generator – 510 w
    • Fuel Consumption – 4.75 litres per 100 km WMTC
    • 0-100 km/h – 3.6 seconds
    • Transmission – Six Speed constant mesh, helical
    • Primary Ratio – 1.650
    • Gear Ratios – 1st 2.438 – 2nd 1.714 – 3rd 1.296 – 4th 1.059 – 5th 0.943 – 6th 0.848
    • Secondary Ratio – 1.061
    • Drive – Cardan Shaft
    • Front Suspension – Telelver, central spring strut, 37 mm, 190 mm travel
    • Rear Suspension – Paralever, preload and rebound adjustable by handwheel, 200 mm travel (Optional Dynamic ESA)
    • Castor – 109mm
    • Steering Head Angle – 62.9 degrees
    • Wheelbase – 1525 mm
    • Front Brakes – Twin 305 mm discs, four-piston radial calipers
    • Rear Brake – 276mm disc, two-piston caliper
    • ABS – BMW Motorrad Integral ABS (part integral), disengageable with optional ABS Pro
    • Rims – Alloy, 3×19″ (F), 4.5×17″ (R)
    • Tyres – 120/70-19 (F), 170/60-17 (R)
    • Seat Height – 850/870 mm (800 to 900 mm possible with optional seats)
    • Wet weight – 249 kg
    • Fuel capacity – 20 litres

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    Power output will come at a cost.
    [​IMG]

    The R1200GS and Adventure are each getting a little bit heavier.

    549 pounds wet versus today's R1200 which clocks in at 525 pounds
    The standard GS Adventure 2018 weighs 564 pounds.

    This weight increase may or may not be noticeable in a straight line with the increased power and all of the weight could be motor-weight so it is kept down low so handling, maneuverability and living with the bike won't be any more difficult but dropping it off road will be slightly more of a chore but barely noticeable given how these fat-bikes lay down ...i.e. not fully given the cylinder heads keep the bike at a 30 degree angle.

    Another though is that the motor weight is unchanged and all of the weight increases are coming from the exhaust system which will soon need to comply with Euro5 specifications which means more sensors, more catalytic converter, more baffling in the silencer / muffler and overall just more metal handling the exhaust gases.

    A few more tidbits based on this review at MCN: https://www.motorcyclenews.com/bike-reviews/bmw/r1250gs/2019/

    Perfect power delivery

    We spend hours in the saddle desperately trying to feel the Shift Cam working, but we can’t. There’s no step, jolt or hesitation when the inlet cam slides along the top of the engine (in just five milliseconds) to increase valve lift. All you feel is a flood of perfectly delivered power.

    The BMW R1250GS engine in all its glory

    That clever cam, featuring partial and high-lift cam lobes (operated by an electronic shift gate), staggered inlet valve opening (which creates swirl in the combustion chamber for a better burn) and a 3mm longer stroke, all add up to a motor with 14ftlb more torque, at 250rpm less than the 1200’s.

    Power whenever you need it

    There’s no fixed point in the revs where the inlet cam shifts. At anything below 5000rpm in top gear (around 80mph), for example, the motor can be running semi-skimmed or full fat cams - it all depends on how hard you open the throttle. But with the engine spinning faster you’ve got 136 shouty horses to play with (up from the 1200’s 123bhp) and enough poke to clutch-up easy third gear wheelies.

    The bigger-bored motor (up from 101 to 102.5mm) may still not rival a 160bhp KTM 1290 Super Adventure in a Top Trumps shoot-out, but the BMW never leaves you feeling short-changed.

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    What of the rest of the bike, what else is new?

    What you get with a 2019 R1250GS is more electronics in the form of riding modes, hill start control (already a feature on a few 2018 BMW models) and a new motor. The bike itself, has a slightly different design but if you look closely, almost everything is identical allowing the vast majority of aftermarket accessories to fit the new bike without issue.

    The bike itself...not a lot of huge changes from the 2017.5/2018 model year bikes. Most people won't be able to tell the difference until they see 1250 written on the fairings and Shiftcam written on the heads.

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    Here are a few accessories that will likely need to be modified to fit the new bike:
    • Machine Art Moto's X-Head will need to be redesigned
    • Most Crash bars will need to be modified due to the new exhaust header shape and it's very hard to tell if the motor mount bolts are changed enough that a small re-tooling will need to take place
    • Skid Plates may have different lower motor mount bolt locations and how the lower part of the engine pokes out a bit underneath where the motor was fairly much a 90 degree angle from front cover to lower side
    • The slope of the rear subframe connection looks slightly curved from the current 2018s which could impact aftermarket frame-guards and maybe even Maier / Machine Art moto rear shock guards
    It appears that these accessories will have no issue but we'll have to confirm once these bikes start shipping:
    • Seats
    • Pannier Racks (side). top racks could be incompatible without measuring
    • LED Lighting (unless there was a change to Canbus which would impact CanSmart, EZCan and CanOpener)
    • Headlight Guards / covers
    • various guards from Wunderlich, Touratech and AltRider that cover the kickstand switch, brake reservoir and O2 sensors are all good to go based on what we've seen
    • Side stand enlargers are likely fine
    • Aftermarket windscreens appear to fit based on photos
    • The tire size is unchanged and speed sensor appears identical so aftermarket wheels from Woody's would fit fine
    • The final drive appears unchanged
    • Suspension also appears to be unchanged from 2018 meaning unless electronics changed, your Tractive / Touratech shocks can transfer over
    • There is still a steering stabilizer / damper but unclear if the size or mounting orientation is different
    • Radiator guards look identical
    • Tank bags that account for the GS slope will fit no problem
    • Risers will change over
    • Hand guards from Machine Art Moto or Barkbusters will also fit
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    Cost?
    How much more is a 2019 R1250 GS cost over a 2018? I don't think I've seen a figure yet but expect an increase of at least $1,000 MSRP as refreshes like this will always be a chance for a manufacturer to bump the price.

    Also expect insurance rates for this bike to be slightly higher given the displacement and power increases alongside the higher MSRP.

    Although the 35 to 49MPG figure will save some coin at the pump if you ride a lot.

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    What about the R1250GS Adventure?


    Traditionally, the Adventure spec arrives a full model year after the standard bike. In this case, both bikes have already been submitted to CARB (California Air Resources Board) which has lead to speculation that the Adventure isn't far-off.

    BMW hasn't shown any photos of the 1250 Adventure but some journalists are reporting that the Adventure spec is coming a few months after the R1250GS so we can assume Springtime.

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    Availability?

    Dealers as of August were telling customers that ordering for 2018s had already stopped and 2019s were in production.

    Some years, this was a bit misleading such as the 2017 Model year GS and the 2017.5 model year. One day the bike just changed without receiving a new model year designation and sometimes the cut-off for model year just happens without any changes at all so you could infer that there could be some 2019 R1200GSes that come off the line but it does seem that BMW truly ended production for all R1200GS and RT models in August of 2018s and all 2019s off the line will have the new motor.

    Availability for USA will be sometime over the Winter and I think the Adventure spec availability is probably more likely to be Spring to Summer.

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    "I need a motorcycle now but should I really wait?"

    This is a personal decision but I'll lay out pros and cons of each.

    Here's why buying a 2018 is a GOOD idea:
    • Huge Aftermarket accessories choices for you. It'll be a full year from now before the smaller company are able to re-tool, test and produce parts for the new bike. If you need protection on your bike or a more comfortable seat, you may want to grab a 2018.
    • The ADVRider Flea Market will have a lot of R1200LC Accessories for you as inmates are upgrading to the new model. This can work in your favor.
    • JVB and Others have contributed massive amounts of technical data, DIYs and How-Tos that can help you work on your own bike and the turn around time for new documentation for the 2019 might not come before your first oil change, valve check or repair
    • Heck, even BMW dealerships may be working on their first R1200GS/RT when you come in for service. You have to trust they take care on your brand new machine where parts availability will be slim and a replacement bike might be a few months off given the first few batches of deliveries will be pre-sold
    • Lower Power = lower insurance costs
    • The 2018 R1200GS is in it's 5th year of production with gradual improvements made each year to make it better. You're buying a motor that has been built over 100,000 times in a german factory and has logged millions of miles in the real world
    • You might be able to get a 2018 for a steal (1-3K off MSRP) as dealers want to clear the LCs out of the showroom for the new fancy 2019 models
    • In addition, the 2018 will have a lower MSRP than the 2019 so you're already saving some coin there.
    • Finally, you have a few more months of riding left this year (northern states) and you can start riding in March as soon as the snow melts versus the 2019 buyer who may be waiting depending on how many of these BMW can get out into the field without any major issues.

    Here's why buying a 2018 is a BAD idea:
    • You're going to take a larger depreciation hit than a 2019. No one wants old technology despite what some inmates say about it although this may not be the case if someone does want a pre-shiftcam bike without 'all of the issues' if there are any, you may have a nice deal having the last of the LC bikes?
    • You're going to some day wish you had more power and low-end torque and after FOMO or regret or just ultimately be sad at the BMW Rally with all of these fancy R1250s around you doing burn-outs and wheelies in 2nd gear.
    • The 2018 has pretty poor fuel economy. I get 36MPG. some get higher and ShiftCam increased fuel economy quite a bit with a range that gets close to GS Adventure territory
    • The 2018 does not have Hill Start Control (unless you retro-fit it for a price)
    • The 2018 lacks the fancy ride modes of the 2019
    • There's no dynamic braking on 2018 at least for USA..most ROW bikes have it and if DOT approves it, the 2019 GS will have it in USA
    • You'll miss out on the new color schemes. "Exclusive" (Black & Yellow) and HP (White, Red Blue which are M Motorsport colors)
    • The new Exhaust system looks great on the 2019 and the 2018 is fairly bland (by appearances) but the 2018 and 2019 have a very similar exhaust note (You can listen to the exhaust note here)
    • The 2018 won't have gold wheels. You may require gold wheels and regret not having them.
    • The 2018 motor is now officially 'old' and 'last year's tech' so if you want to have the latest, the 2018 is a bad purchase for you simply because it's old, uncool and boring and the KTM people will laugh at your crappy motor while they do wheelies over you and power slides
    • The 2019 has easily accessible tire pressure stems which to some is a huge change :p
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    Here are BMW Group Press Photos of the 2019 R1250GS (Adventure spec not released yet so no photos)

    Exclusive Color Scheme:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    HP (Replacing Rallye?)
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    Blackstorm Metallic:
    [​IMG]

    Cosmicblue Metallic:
    [​IMG]

    HP (Motorsport):
    [​IMG]

    Blackstorm Metal (Exclusive):
    [​IMG]

    Here are some individual / external press photos:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    1250's Belly versus 1200 (which is why I think skid plates will need to be redesigned by 3rd parties)
    [​IMG]

    1200:
    [​IMG]


    Will Update more info as I have more. Desperately looking for pricing information.
    #1
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  2. hubbydubby

    hubbydubby Rugged Path

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    My God, it’s a best seller already.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    #2
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  3. JimVonBaden

    JimVonBaden "Cool" Aid! Supporter

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    Sorry Adam, way too much text. Cliff notes:

    Comparing the two bikes:
    1250GS: (2019)

    • 1254cc boxer twin
    • 134bhp @ 7750rpm
    • 105.5lft (143Nm) at 6250rpm
    • 20l tank (260 mile range) (5.28 gallons)
    • 49.2MPG
    • 850/870mm seat height
    • 249kg (wet)
    1200GS: (2018)
    • 1170cc boxer twin
    • 125bhp @7700 RPM
    • 92.2 ftlb@6500rpm.
    • 20L Tank (190 mile range) (5.28 gallons)
    • 35.9MPG
    • 850mm seat height
    • 238kg
    Lots of text about the tech updates and options.

    The thing that stands out to me, which doesn't compute, is the mileage. Does the 2018 really only get 35.9mpg while the 2019 gets 49.2? First, I don't believe either number, but no way does the 2018 only get 36mpg. Of course apples to apples.
    #3
  4. krussell

    krussell Gravel Warrior Supporter

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    Great summary Adam. One nit, the O2 sensors moved, you can see it clearly in the last photos in your post, or in the photos I posted in the speculation thread.

    One thing I haven't seen spec'd is final drive ratios. We can assume they will remain as they are in 2018, but if the engine is considerably smoother, it may be an opportunity to make the RT the same as the GS.
    #4
  5. krussell

    krussell Gravel Warrior Supporter

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    It doesn't compute in a way that matches the 4% improvement that was claimed either.
    #5
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  6. chtucker

    chtucker Been here awhile

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    My 2016 GSA gets 41-42mpg.... I think that is more accurate/average of a LC from what I have seen others post.

    I would like one, but a 10-15% increase in hp/torque won't make me jump. TFT, Hill start would. Seattle has hills like San Francisco and sometimes it would be nice.
    #6
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  7. Dwit

    Dwit Adventurer

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    At 4 percent, if you use to getting 41 you would get 42.6. This is believable. I think bmw list the 18 47 mpg that no one gets.
    #7
  8. LAFS

    LAFS Long timer

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    MPG I get 42-45 on my GS. I have had a few 47 MPG.

    I have Hill Start, dont use it but I have it.

    I have ride modes, more than I use.

    Dynamic braking? Not sure what that is but I do have ABS Pro/Cornering ABS and hope to never engage it in a corner.

    Good write up for reference though.
    #8
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  9. Tremblay

    Tremblay Been here awhile

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    Hill start takes a little getting used to, but its freaking magical.
    #9
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  10. Dwit

    Dwit Adventurer

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    I have hill start on my rt and have only used it a few times. I don't commute on my bikes though. If I did I think I would really like it and now that it can engage automatically, thats makes it even more useful. That said, I have taking out a few 18's and the story over the 16 (if you don't care about the new motor) is the transmission. Its much nicer.
    #10
  11. sb955i

    sb955i Grudge no toil.

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    2017 RT now at 10k kms and averaging 4.4 l/100km.. Canadian eh. So new fuel consumption marketing sounds optimistic to me..

    Having some thoughts on the cam shift mechanics.. to me it looks like the shift timing needs to be spot-on or the followers will experience an uneven ramp, possibly causing weird wear on either the cams or the followers. Also looking at the solenoid dowel that engages the cam shift pathways, there's an opportunity for failure there with an overworked solenoid or a sticky/sloppy dowel..

    So I'll sit this out until some bikes get some miles on them. (which is basically me saying I can't afford another new bike right now! LOL)
    #11
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  12. AdamChandler

    AdamChandler n00b Supporter

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    I don't think it's too much text for someone who has $21K USD and wants to buy a new GS and is deciding whether or not to wait.

    Were your numbers different from mine? I want to make sure the figures I have above are accurate.
    #12
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  13. chtucker

    chtucker Been here awhile

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    Seattle hills where hill start would be nice 10583899_10204634654775966_1868901425524857182_n.jpg
    #13
  14. AdamChandler

    AdamChandler n00b Supporter

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    No notes online about ground clearace of the R1250GS. If you look at the photos, it looks like the engine sits lower than the current R1200
    #14
  15. sb955i

    sb955i Grudge no toil.

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    Also, just to put this in perspective, if you can knock 6kg off the old GS, then you've got the same HP/weight ratio as the new shift-head.

    So maybe now we can justify that lighter exhaust. :brow
    #15
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  16. chtucker

    chtucker Been here awhile

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    Or loose 15lbs off the rider..
    #16
  17. sb955i

    sb955i Grudge no toil.

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    ..don't get personal :fpalm
    #17
  18. chtucker

    chtucker Been here awhile

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    If it was personal, it would be a 20lb weight reduction for me..
    #18
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  19. nostatic

    nostatic i drank what?!? - Socrates Supporter

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    I consistently got 42 mpg with my '16.

    From the article:

    "some GSs will now get BMW-branded Hayes calipers - others Brembo"
    #19
  20. LAFS

    LAFS Long timer

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    VTEC has been around since around 1989 in production. I posted it because I feel it is a good way to grasp the basic concept of what Shift Cam is closely related to.

    I do not believe Shift Cam is any different. After reading this and other things I am convinced it was to save fuel and meet Euro 5. I also believe that they needed, rather than wanted, to increase displacement. VTEC was a fuel saving measure first and foremost. In can be a power inducing measure but in this case it was used for fueling first and increasing the motor size brought the power.

    As I know first hand tuning options are endless with VTEC. My car is tuned and VTEC comes on a bit early than stock ad with fueling it makes 5500-8K RPM very exciting, with a red line at 9K.

    "The VTEC (Shift Cam) system provides the engine with valve timing optimized for both low and high RPM operations. In basic form, the single cam lobe and follower/rocker arm of a conventional engine is replaced with a locking multi-part rocker arm and two cam profiles: one optimized for low-RPM stability and fuel efficiency, and the other designed to maximize high-RPM power output. The switching operation between the two cam lobes is controlled by the ECU which takes account of engine oil pressure, engine temperature, vehicle speed, engine speed and throttle position. Using these inputs, the ECU is programmed to switch from the low lift to the high lift cam lobes when certain conditions are met. At the switch point a solenoid is actuated that allows oil pressure from a spool valve to operate a locking pin which binds the high RPM rocker arm to the low RPM ones. From this point on, the valves open and close according to the high-lift profile, which opens the valve further and for a longer time. The switch-over point is variable, between a minimum and maximum point, and is determined by engine load. The switch-down back from high to low RPM cams is set to occur at a lower engine speed than the switch-up (representing a hysteresis cycle) to avoid a situation in which the engine is asked to operate continuously at or around the switch-over point."
    #20