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Helical gearbox

The new generation of boxer models is fitted with a gearbox which enables both light and precise gear shifts. BMW Motorrad has achieved this by means of a completely redesigned gearbox generation. The cogs of the 6-speed gearbox are helical, ensuring lighter and more precise shifting and a significant reduction in running noise compared to conventional gearboxes. At the same time, the R 1200 GS gearbox has been reduced in size to reduce weight and installation volume. The compact housing fits in between the engine and the secondary drive (swing arm with integrated shaft). The entire gearbox weighs just 13 kilograms.

The highly rigid helical gearing not only means the cogs run more smoothly due to the softer meshing, it also means the individual gears engage more gently. The precision can be clearly felt when changing gear. In conventional motorcycles, the gear shift is activated by shifting the cogs on the shafts, whereas in the helical gearing system of the BMW Motorrad gearbox, it is effected by means of a constant mesh transmission with three sliding sleeves: the cogs thus constantly intermesh and are activated indirectly. The advantage of the sliding sleeves is that they are lighter and narrower than shifting cogwheels, so they can be shifted more easily across the shift forks and shafts. Thus the shift distances are very short and precise. To improve weight optimisation and ease of operation, the gear selector drum is hollow and supported by ball bearings.

The idler gears are mounted on low-friction needle bearings, whilst the shafts are on ball bearings. These are so-called "clean bearings" which prevent penetration by particles. Maintenance intervals are thus extended: the gearbox oil only needs to be changed every 40,000 km.

The gearbox control system has been redesigned for the current boxer generation: the gearshift shaft emerges to the left of the housing. These facilitates the mounting of the gearshift linkage to the gear lever at the footrest.

The optimum stepping with an active, low-geared 6th gear provides impressive pulling power. The gearbox is fitted as standard with a potentiometer so the individual gears can be shown in the multifunction display. For optimum maintenance, the potentiometer can be exchanged with gearbox installed.