< AllMoto's Motorcycle Investor mag


allmoto logo

Motorcycle Investor mag

Subscribe to our free email news


BMW R90 resources

(introduction by Ian Falloon, Mar 2022)



Boxer game-changer

Although in production for only three years, the R90S was the most significant post-war production BMW motorcycle. Its release coincided with the fiftieth anniversary of the BMW boxer motorcycle, and instigated a new era for the boxer twin.


The R90S made the world look at BMW motorcycles in a new light. Prior to the R90S BMW motorcycles were idiosyncratic, expensive, and primarily luxury touring machines designed to appeal to the older rider.


Although the new-generation R75/5 did much to change the staid image that existed during the 1960s, the R75/5 still couldn’t compete with the new wave of high performance Japanese Superbikes that emanated in the early 1970s.



That all changed when Bob Lutz persuaded BMW’s conservative management to sanction the development of the R90S, a sporting machine that could take on the best in the world.


As ace BMW tuner Udo Gietl says, “The R90S was a pivotal bike for BMW. It showed the world that the “always” black bike could be very pretty, and win races.


The R90S provided a new face for BMW motorcycles around the world and is to BMW as the 300SL Gull Wing is to Mercedes-Benz. Neither was perfect but they were iconic.


The R90S wasn’t BMW’s best product, but it had a profound impact on their marketing direction. The R90S was an example of the perfect combination of timing and product.



R90s in depth

Period road test from Classic Two Wheels

Specs and others reviews at Motorcycle Specs


Falloon on Facebook

Falloon website

More features here

See the bikes in our shed


Produced by AllMoto abn 61 400 694 722
Privacy: we do not collect cookies or any other data.

allmoto logo

Try our books...

Travels with Guido

twitter allmoto








Email newsletter


News archive


Our Bikes stories

Travels with Guido columns


About AllMoto

Email me