R straight six-cylinder aspirator, xenon, LED, adaptive headlights, Seat heating, navigation, stereo system, e-call, floor lighting, reversing aid - top company car, right? Uh no. Motorcycle. And what one. No curve cutter but one from the Monumental travel department with paneling, suitcases and topcase with backrest for the passenger. The Americans call it full dressers, but the BMW K 1600 Grand America should actually introduce itself as “Icke bin’s, wa!”, After all, like almost all BMW motorcycles, it comes from Spandau. It's crazy what they're pushing off the ramp in the meantime. Air-cooled heritage trendsetters, water-cooled professional boxers, travel enduro bestsellers, 200 hp super athletes mixing up the competition.
And recently the K 1600 Grand America. It is based on the K 1600 B. B like Bagger, which does not represent a construction machine but a very special US style: a design line that flattens towards the rear and includes cladding and bags. Negative wedge shape, so to speak, that makes it clear to everyone: dynamics - I like to leave the others. Such a device wants to cruise. Gladly long and persevering, not restricting its owners when packing their clothes or letting the pillion sit indefinitely. Result: add another top case and name it Grand America. Especially in black, the most powerful of all BMWs stands conclusively. Right up to the silencers installed parallel to the floor and the LED taillights integrated in the case.
Spacious comfort without limits. Just US style
First-class southern style, you mean? Our talking. So off to South Carolina, take a long walk around the block. Actually, this is also BMW country, as they build a large part of the X models in Spartanburg for the whole world (by the way: real US export hits, the cars, Mr Trump ...). The Grand America likes it. It's just easier here than here. More roads, fewer people, relaxed highways, plenty of nature and a few beautiful hills around them, which you opened up with wonderfully curvy, smooth slopes. Goes well with Grand America, because you don't want to turn the 360 kilo drum on a stamp. In general, the fat thing puts even experienced motorcyclists back into novice mode. Third driving lesson or so. When stopping, just always look for a firm hold .... When the machine tilts to the side, it's shift. After all, a reverse gear with the electric starter helps when maneuvering.
More perfectMass balancing, that's how it works
But who has been wanting electric starters and maneuvering for a long time when they can let out such a great guy: free-sucking six-cylinder, 1600 cubic meters. Where can I get that? Well, here. After the ignition, even seasoned drivers wonder. Because this engine is already running without you noticing. In-line six-cylinders not only have a perfect mass balance in the physics textbook, but also in practice. Vibrations while standing: none. In connection with the initially very subdued sound, this makes the first start-up maneuvers difficult. The usual reference points are missing. But that is quickly learned and makes room for surprises that quickly change direction of enthusiasm. Because holla, the thing is marching. Of course, mass is inert, especially so much mass. But the motivated 1.6-liter does it with its 160 hp and 175 Newton meters, most of which are ready quite early. From three or four thousand tours he pushes with splendor. Not only acoustically, but also longitudinally dynamically, pushes the horizon quickly towards the windscreen. Thanks to the shift assistant, the gas tap can stay open when shifting up, just pulling the foot pedal is enough.
From creamy to angry
The motor can then turn correctly on the first free section. Click the mode switch on Dynamic and off you go. Direction five, six, seven. Hui, the creamy flatterer turns into an angry guy with an aggressive intake screeching and hissing exhaust sound. Doesn't actually match the leisurely character of the fat tourer, but it's fun. In all honesty, motor enthusiasts can't help but laugh when this six-pack overrides the sound of the stereo and the noise of the wind. It is a shame that there is hardly anything like this anywhere else: six-cylinder vacuum cleaner, great.
But be careful, poking into curves freshly euphoric with the right momentum, disillusioned. Too highthe weight, the driving experience too decoupled, the seating position too touristy. At least for the novice. Grand America remains consistently comfortable and relaxed. Noticeable also in the modes of the selectable adaptive dampers. Cruise is soft. Point. You can literally feel the large oil passages in the dampers. But “Road” is also soft. Just a little less. Only one thing helps: get involved. Place your feet on the running boards on the left and right of the motor housing, adjust the disc electrically and relax. Maybe dedicate a moment to infotainment, which can be controlled using buttons and a selection dial on the handlebar. The pilot can also regulate the seat heating intensity there or the on-board computer.
Sound? Six-cylinder plus stereo kick
Just drive? Where are you thinking? But there is something about the soundtrack from the speakers. Of course, the tones fly away at high speeds, but with moderate cruising it doubles the joy. And you share it with the environment. Speaking of the environment: a motorcycle always consists of the elements. Especially when it rains. Experience it when such a cool stream runs down your back to your buttocks. But if you stay on the pace, you get really wet quite late, a large part of the mess is diverted. We tried that for you. Not entirely voluntarily, but intensely. Intensive. The way the whole bike feels. Somewhere in the border area between motorcycle and car.