750 Continental spied
BMW have long been pioneers, but have appeared resistant to the move to full TFT or LCD dash options – until now. We are living in a world where connectivity is becoming ever more crucial, so crucial in fact that a smartphone battery showing less than 20% is enough to send some into meltdown! BMW have now recognised this, and for 2018 the R1200GS and R1200GS Adventure (to be launched this Autumn) will feature a brand new TFT dash as an optional extra that allows the rider a far greater degree of interaction not only with the bike, but also the outside world.
The 6.5-inch display replaces the default home screen showing the usual information such as revs, speed, fuel etc. It has a low reflection surface to help readout even in direct sunlight, it self-dims in low light, and can be linked to a smartphone via Bluetooth. But the interesting stuff happens when you turn the BMW multi-controller wheel and the up and down toggle buttons.
Rather than simply change a small section of the home screen, BMW have decided to dedicate the whole of the screen to the requested function. So if you have selected to see the bike’s tyre pressures, the whole screen is taken up with this information. If you want to see what music is playing, the whole screen shows your music choice. BMW have decided to approach connectivity this way as they feel that by making the display focus solely on the requested task it is faster and easier for the rider to read it and make their choice before a simple hold of a button quickly returns the display to the home page. And the connectivity doesn’t stop there.
The new dash can be linked to both a smartphone and BMW’S helmetmounted Motorrad Communication system, meaning you can receive calls while on the go (there is no text or email function). This is nothing new, but what BMW have added on their system and other manufacturers haven’t is the ability to also make outgoing calls, again using a dedicated screen and easy menu system. In addition there is a fault diagnosis section and you can also find out where you are going!
BMW aren’t abandoning their traditional standalone GPS navigation system, but the new dash can be linked to a fairly rudimentary nav system via a smartphone and BMW’S free Motor- rad Connected App. Linking up gives you free sat-nav as well as the ability to record your route, store points of interest and access various ride statistics. The navigation is limited to simple ‘turn left’, ‘turn right’ instructions that are displayed on the TFT dash, but it is certainly enough to get you to your chosen location on short trips. Well, until your phone runs out of battery as, remarkably, BMW haven’t included a USB port on the bike as standard.
‘BMW have devoted the whole screen to the requested function’
The homescreen offers all the essential information for your journey Ok, so there’s nothing that new about TFT but BMW have come up with some clever features