Is it a spelling mistake, or did BMW let the cat out of the bag? An interesting line in a UK-market brochure has people wondering if BMW is finally about to introduce a new middleweight touring machine.
The conjecture comes after BMW sent a brochure to British dealers that talks about an “F 850 RS mid-range tourer.” Hang on a minute—there’s no such bike in the BMW lineup now, and never has been. So does that mean we’re about to see one introduced?
It would, after all, make sense. Although BMW’s better-known for its big-dollar street touring rides (currently, the R1250 RS and R1250 RT), it has a long history of making mid-displacement equivalents, for budget-minded buyers. For years, the F800 GT model has held that spot in the lineup, offering a lower-priced alternative to the more expensive big-bore machines. It’s powered by BMW’s liquid-cooled parallel twin engine, and last saw updates for the 2017 model year, when the engine got some re-tuning. BMW also added new gauges and other minor tweaks at that time.
When the F750 GS and F850 GS models debuted later that year on the 2017 show circuit, the natural assumption was that we’d see the same updated parallel twin put into a sport touring package. BMW has followed that pattern for years. But so far, that hasn’t happened, despite rumours, and there’s been very little solid indication that this was BMW’s plan, until now. Presumably, the F850 RS that was mentioned would be a replacement for the F800 GT.
Or would it? BMW is telling everyone that this is simply a typo, that there really isn’t an F850 RS coming. Believable? Hard to say, but after the new R1250 Shiftcam engine broke cover a tad early last fall, you can bet the boys and girls at BMW Motorrad are keen to ensure that sort of thing doesn’t happen again. Frankly, it’s hard to believe an F850 RS isn’t coming, and while it may be a while off, we won’t be shocked if one shows up on this fall’s show circuit.