On the road
With an upright riding position and wide bars, the F750 offers a riding position that is relaxed and comfortable, inspiring a sense of balance and symmetry. There is a neutrality to the effort you put into steering the bike and it remains linear as the speed increases. Away from traffic and busy roads, the 750GS feels astounding, unlike what you expect from a mid-range adventure bike. On your favourite back lanes, the GS can be ridden very fast with no decay in the handling. The unadjustable right-way-up forks and rear shock work brilliantly to eliminate bumps in a way that is almost uncanny. Some of the roads I blasted the F750 down were pretty gnarly and I found myself seeking even poorer roads, to see if I could find a weak spot in the handling. I couldn’t. The road holding inspires confidence and the way it remains composed and settled would shame some sportsbikes.
But it’s not just the F750’s composure that’s outstanding — the motor’s also pretty impressive too. The modestsounding 76bhp delivered by the parallel twin is meted out by a clean stream of torque that always seems accessible when you need it. This ever-ready power delivery creates an exciting and powerful sensation of drive that is managed perfectly by the chassis.
The sporty feel of the bike is surprising considering it’s fitted with a 19in front wheel, complete with 110-section tyre. There is no sign of lazy or lethargic steering, while the relatively fat front footprint inspires a feeling of security when steering and on the brakes.
Arriving at high speed to a lower-gear corner is no drama for the GS; the brakes are powerful with perfect feel and it scrubs off speed effortlessly. Unlike a lot of current Euro4-compliant bikes, the ABS doesn’t kick in annoyingly early but only when the system detects a genuine loss of traction.
The F750 offers a surprising level of rideability on back roads and even when you take to single-track roads with lots of uneven and broken sections, it’s nothing short of outstanding.
The 6.5in TFT dash fitted to this test bike (£595 extra) looks like a small tablet and completely dominates the view. It shows everything you need to know in vivid contrasting colours; the main body of the dash displays the revs from left to right, while the speed is shown in the middle of the screen in huge numbers. Other parts of the display can be customised to suit your requirements, such as tank range and trip mileage.
Cruising at an indicated 70mph in top gear, the GS sips fuel at an indicated 61mpg while the engine spins over at 4250rpm. Kicking back to an indicated 50mph in top gear, the consumption increases to 65mpg and the engine is only just ticking over at 3000rpm. The ergonomics work well for motorway cruising, the triangle giving an ideal riding position for any speed. The well-sculpted seat is a perfect shape with good padding, making running the bike to its maximum fuel range really easy. Cruising at 70mph, you can coax
“It’s not just the F750’s composure that is outstanding...”
200 miles before filling up but doing this will display an alarmingly large low-fuel warning notification at around 160 miles.
The weirdly low windshield took a lot of getting used to. Barely more than a flyscreen that covers the clocks, it’s a mystery why BMW would fit a screen so small as standard, as it deflects only a small amount of airflow. Adding a larger screen would be a priority for me if I had to live with it for a longer period of time.
Both the 41mm front forks and rear shock provide such a smooth and well-damped ride that it negates the need to fit BMW’S hi-tech Dynamic ESA (Electronically Adjustable Suspension) as an optional extra.
There are two riding modes, Road and Rain, both giving full power but the latter dampening response. Also in Rain mode, the level of ASC (Automatic Stability Control) and ABS are changed to suit conditions with reduced grip.
I only used Rain mode to gauge the difference from Road, and the feel and connection that you get with the throttle and chassis as standard is first class. So switching to Rain is unnecessary in all but the worst conditions.
This test bike was fitted with a few extras, such as the three-stage heated grips (£250) operated by a button on the right-hand switchgear. Gearshift Assist Pro (£395) allows clutchless changes up or down the gearbox – an expensive luxury but it works well, keeping the chassis settled and allowing the engine to deliver its smooth wave of thrust to the back wheel.
A reasonably low 815mm seat height makes the F750GS easy to manage around town. At 5ft 6in I was able to get both feet securely on the floor when stationary. The F750GS will accelerate from 0-60mph in 3.95 seconds, an impressive performance for any bike, let alone one perfect for new riders. And while we’re talking speeds, BMW claims it will max out at 118mph but our Gps-verified test revealed that it’ll actually do 124.5mph before hitting the limiter.
At urban speeds, the brakes proved just the ticket, with plenty of power and feel. Another worthwhile accessory fitted to this test bike was the centrestand, which is the most effortless we’ve used, especially considering that the F750GS is no lightweight at 224kg fully fuelled. With urban performance and practicality like this, it’d make the perfect commuter tool.
5 2 0 710 920 WHEELBASE 1559MM RAKE 270 TRAIL 104.5MM
Above: Optional TFT screen works well. It should, though, for £595Top right: LED DRL headlightUp-and-down quickshifter is £395Familiar BMW thumbwheel and optional SOS button