BMW Unveils New 6-Cylinder K1600GT and GTL

One man’s bust is another man’s boon. In this particular case the bust could be perceived as BMW’s withdrawal from Formula 1 auto racing, while the resulting boon would undoubtedly belong to BMW Motorrad, the Munich-based company’s motorcycle division.
BMW Motorrad is the beneficiary of the super high-tech F-1 racing team’s former engineering facility, which will become the new home for all things two-wheeled at BMW. How apropos that the first motorcycle to touch tires to the floor of the ultra trick facility would be the all-new 6-cylinder powered K1600GT and K1600GTL; the company’s sport- and luxury-touring offerings for 2011.
Last week, we were one of the lucky few “outsiders” to have ever been allowed inside the secret plant for a personal glimpse of the highly anticipated 6-cylinder-powered machines that broke cover in autumn of 2009 as the Concept 6.

BMW is preserving the excitement of this important introduction, choosing to not release any photos of the 2011 GT and GTL until the Intermot show in November. In other words, no photographs of the machine have been made available to the press. We have to make due for the moment with concept and design sketches seen here. Having seen the bikes up close and personal, we can attest to sleek lines and a design flow that effectively meshes sportbike aerodynamics with somewhat traditional touring lines, held together by signature, distinctive BMW appearance with accompanying flare and sheen.

BMW Motorrad Chief Designer David Robb thinks more in terms of jazz music when describing the design concept of the bodywork of the GT and GTL, inferring a kind of free-flowing form that feels like total spontaneity but that is actually quite structured.

BMW has once again proven its status as an engineering innovator in full force these days. The 6-cylinder K1600 GT and GTL promise a new level of sport- and luxury-touring performance combined with a new spirit of ride-ability.