This is the maintenance schedule and service intervals for the BMW R 1250 RS, released in late 2018 for the 2019 model year.
The BMW R 1250 RS is BMW’s sportiest of its sport tourers with boxer engines. The 2019 model replaces the previous BMW R 1200 RS which had a liquid-cooled but smaller engine.
Still powered by a DOHC liquid-cooled boxer twin, the BMW R 1250 RS’s motor is a 1254 cc (previously 1170 cc) capacity engine, putting out a peak of 100 kW (136 PS / 134 bhp) @ 7750 rpm and peak torque 143 Nm (105 ft-lb) at 6250 rpm, both of which specs are a rough ~10% increase over the outgoing 1200 motor.
Final drive is still via a shaft.
The 1250 motor is known as the “ShiftCam” engine as it has variable valve timing to help it deliver a broad spread of torque.
The 1250 ShiftCam motor in the R 1250 RS is used in other BMW motorcycles of similar vintage, like the BMW R 1250 RT, which was launched at the same time.
In late 2022, BMW announced an updated BMW R 1250 RS with the same motor and drivetrain, but EU5 compliance too.
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BMW R 1250 RS Service Intervals
Overall, the service intervals for the BMW R 1250 RS are every 6000 miles / 10000 km or year, whichever comes earlier.
At every service, change the oil, and do a host of other checks.
The valve service intervals are 12000 mi / 20000 km, wider than earlier air/oil-cooled models.
Other things to note about the service intervals for the BMW R 1250 RS:
- There’s no alternator belt to change in the 1250 engine (unlike earlier models)
- You change the rear bevel gear oil every 12000 mi / 20000 km or 2 years
- Change the brake fluid after one year, then every 2 years
One interesting thing is that BMW doesn’t mention changing the coolant, just checking it. BMW uses a “permanent” (OAT) antifreeze that isn’t meant to be changed. Various dealers/mechanics still say you should change it every 3-4 years, though. Especially if you do a test and conclude that its antifreeze and corrosion protection properties are failing.
What you need to service your BMW R 1250 RS
The R 1250 RS is a very reliable, durable motorcycle — in fact, it’s used by some police forces for their high-speed chase bikes.
Servicing the “ShiftCam” BMW R 1250 RS requires many different parts to the earlier liquid-cooled R 1200 RS models. The parts list is also slightly different to other 1250 bikes.
Here’s what you need to service your big RS.
|Part||BMW R 1250 RS spec|
|Engine oil||The manual calls for “SAE 5W-40, API SL / JASO MA2” without additives, preferably BMW Motorrad oils e.g. BMW Motorrad Advantec Ultimate 5W-40. A well-respected alternative is Castrol Power RS 5W-40.|
|Oil filter||BMW part number for the oil filter is 11427721779. The HF160RC is a drop-in replacement from Hiflofiltro.|
|Rear drive oil||Use a high-quality API GL-5 synthetic 70W-80 hypoid gear oil, though many BMW mechanics use 70W-90. A high quality choice is Castrol 75W-90 synthetic that many dealers offer.|
|Spark plug||Standard spark plug is an NGK LMAR8AI-10 per the manual for the 1250 motor.|
|Air filter||BMW part number for the air filter is 13727726799. The K&N BM-1113 is an aftermarket alternative.|
|Coolant||The manual doesn’t mention what type, but get long-life BMW coolant from a dealer or online.|
|General lubricant||Use lithium soap-based grease to regularly lube external pivot points.|
|Brake fluid||Specified fluid must be DOT 4, e.g. Castrol DOT 4 or BMW DOT 4 fluid. BMW part number for the brake fluid is 83132445461.|
|Brake pads (front)||Part number for front brake pads is 34118548028 (you need two pairs). An EBC alternative is FA630HH (double sintered, long-life).|
|Brake pads (rear)||Part number for rear brake pads is 34218562163. An EBC alternative is FA209/2HH (double sintered, long-life pads).|
Maintenance schedule for the BMW R 1250 RS
Below is the maintenance schedule for the BMW R 1250 RS, presented in a simplified format from the manual, as it’s unnecessarily repetitive there. The maintenance is consolidated into one table below.
Notes on the schedule
- The running-in check is omitted (Dealers usually do this during the warranty period)
- Past the end of the maintenance schedule, keep following it in the pattern shown.
- The maintenance schedule for many items follows a “per x years” or “x distance” schedule. Follow whichever comes first.
|km x 1000||10||20||30||40|
|mi x 1000||6||12||18||24||Every|
|Conduct standard BMW annual service checklist (see below)||X||X||X||X||Year|
|Change engine oil and filter (BMW Motorrad Advantec Ultimate 5W-40, HF160RC)||X||X||X||X||Year|
|Change oil in rear bevel gears||X||X||2 years|
|Check valve clearances||X||X|
|Change all spark plugs (LMAR8AI-10)||X||X|
|Replace air filter element (BM-1113)||X||X|
|Check or replace air filter element||X||X||X||X|
|Change oil in telescopic forks||X|
|Change brake fluid, entire system (BMW DOT 4)||After 1 year, then every 2 years|
BMW R 1250 RS Standard Service Checklist
This is the “standard service checklist” to be done every year or 10000 km / 6000 miles.
Note that this is updated guidance for the BMW R 1250 RS. Previous manuals didn’t mention a distance component for the annual service checklist, saying you only had to do this every year. However, it makes sense to retrospectively apply this to previous years.
Items marked [D] are for dealers.
|Standard BMW annual service (1250 motor)|
|[D] Perform vehicle test with BMW Motorrad diagnosis system|
|Visually inspect clutch system|
|Visually inspect brake lines, brake hoses, and connections|
|Check front brake pads and brake discs for wear|
|Check brake fluid level, front wheel brake|
|Check rear brake pads and brake disc for wear|
|Check brake fluid level, rear wheel brake|
|Check the steering head bearing|
|Check coolant level|
|Check side stand/centre stand’s ease of movement|
|Check tire pressure and tread depth|
|Check lighting and signalling system|
|Functional test for engine start suppression|
|Final inspection and check for road safety|
|Check battery state of charge|
|[D] Set service date and countdown distance with BMW Motorrad diagnosis system|
|[D] Confirm BMW service in on-board literature|
About the BMW R 1250 RS
The BMW R 1250 RS is the latest in the series of sportbikes that started with the R 100 S back in 1976 (for the 1977 model year).
A lot has changed since then, but the fundamental concept of a boxer-powered fully faired comfortable sportbike hasn’t changed fundamentally.
But a lot has changed since even the R 1200 RS of a couple of generations ago. It was only last generation that the R 1200 RS got liquid cooling, and now the R 1250 RS gets a bigger engine and variable valve timing, for and even better spread of torque than before.
The R 1250 RS shares an engine with the concurrently released R 1250 GS and R 1250 RT. It’s a 1254cc boxer twin that’s liquid cooled and has dual overhead cams and four valves per cylinder.
In all three bikes it puts out the same power — 100 kW (136 PS or 134 bhp) at 7750 rpm, and a peak of 143 Nm (105 ft-lb) at 6250 RPM. These specs are a significant bump over the previous 1170cc liquid-cooled engine.
The motor has some improvements to mean that maintenance is even easier. The camshafts are driven via a toothed chain. Cooling and oil supply is improved ,and the knock sensor system is optimised for travel.
Brakes are Brembo 4-piston radial-mount calipers biting 320mm rotors — sportbike spec.
The R 1250 RS has really advanced suspension in the higher-spec models — Dynamic ESA “Next Generation” which has fully automatic load compensation. They’re 45mm inverted forks, and the rear suspension is a BMW paralever with remote preload and rebound adjustment.
The Exclusive package gets you a huge number of additions — cruise control, Dynamic suspension, a quick shifter, Riding Modes Pro, and more.
In late 2022, BMW announced an update to the R 1250 RS, adding an “ECO” driving mode, standard ABS Pro, a “Sport” core screen for the TFT, a USB socket, and optional seat heating. BMW also made a minor update to the maintenance schedule, which is reflected above.
Manual for the BMW R 1250 RS
The above maintenance schedule comes directly from the 2021 manual for the BMW R 1250 RS, with parts references coming from parts fiches.
In recent model years, BMW has updated the maintenance schedule for the R 1250 RS. Changes have been described and discussed above. See the screenshot above.
You can download BMW’s manuals for their motorcycles here.