Remember the F650GS Dakar? Well, now there’s the BMW G650GS Sertao. Same deal: taller suspension, standard accessories like an engine protector and bark busters and wire wheels; all for an increased off-road focus. “Sertao” refers to Brazil’s north eastern interior while “sertanejo,” Portuguese for a person from Sertao, is commonly used to mean something like “cowboy,” so they’re invoking adventure without licensing the use of a race name.
The biggest change is going to be the additional suspension travel, up to 210mm front and rear, up from 170 and 165mm respectively. That also brings about a small increase in wheelbase, up from 1477 to 1484mm. The increased travel ups seat height from 800 to 860mm or an optional 900mm (35.4 inches). The front wheel also increases in diameter from 19 to 21 inches while the 17-inch rear wheel shrinks from 3.5 inches wide to just 3 to enable the fitment of proper off-road rubber.
Of course, the same problem that afflicted that old Dakar is going to be a problem on the Sertao — it’s heavy and slow. Wet, the new bike weighs 192kg/423lbs while the 652cc single-cylinder only makes 48bhp and 44lb/ft of torque. That means this adventure tourer still puts the emphasis on dirt roads over actual dirt even if it is now the most off-road-focussed bike in BMW’s adventure line up.
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