“What the heck?”, (with a raised eyebrow) is quite a typical reaction to the newest pack of BMW bikes.
“BMW’s are massive, bulky chariots for old farts.” – Hmmm, not any more. Have been to your local BM dealer lately? If not then you are in for quite a surprise. While the super-techno-funk look may not be your cup of tea, the ‘Beemers of late are definitely not boring.
Belonging to this category is the F650 SCARVER. You can actually stand there all day looking at the thing without knowing what to think. It probably belongs to the “love-em-or-hate-em” group, but there are plenty of features about this ride that you can’t ignore.
Getting on the seat you realise it sits a lot lower that it looks – a real plus for novice riders or anyone who hates tall bikes. If you like your gadgets, this is for you because this thing is a gadget with a donk attached to it. Special attention has been given to every bit to make it as practical as possible.
There is an innovative space above the thing that looks like the tank (real tank is underneath the seat) that hold a tank bags, a helmet with lockable strap or even a water proof stereo system?
The tank look alike also has backward ergonomic handles that the passenger can lean forward and hang on to. The blokes can hang on to the rear handles which double up as a luggage rack.
Heated hand grips anyone? (An optional feature which stops your fingers from dropping off on cold days.) Not a bad thing really. Maybe it isn’t good for the “tough guy” image – but hey, no one has to know.
Enough of the clever devices – what is it like to ride?
Hit the starter and you’ll be greeted with a slightly familiar, although smoother sound of the single cylinder thumper.
Pull away and the first thing you will notice is how manoeuvrable this bike really is. Sticky traffic conditions – no problem. Good visibility from the seemingly high perch, although this is combine with a fairly low seat so I don’t know how they do it.
The engine is not as smooth as the bikes aesthetics would suggest, but you have to expect some vibes from the single cylinder. Having said that, it really isn’t a problem at all unless you are bogging it down really low or hitting the redline. Everything in between is very smooth considering.
Power kicks in very low and pulls hard all the way to the needle-stopper. It doesn’t mind being in the revs, although doesn’t need it to stay in a good power band. Overall a very capable donk with a versatile usage factor which fits in well with the bike.
Gadgets already covered, the other real strong point of this bike is the nimble handling. It really drops into the corners nicely. Initially it takes a bit of getting used to as it literally just flops into the bend, but you soon learn to trust it and it sits well. Everything about the handling says ‘city bike’ and would surely make one of the best commuters around.
Going through medium speed bends, you could probably keep up with most bikes as it really feels pretty good and has enough power to pull straight out of the corner at lower revs.
At highway speeds it isn’t as stable as its larger counterparts, but that’s to be expected. You feel a little shaking here and there, but again not really a problem as this only would happen way above legal speeds (theoretically of course).
The handling is confidence inspiring which is great for all riders alike.
Brakes are excellent and can get even better with optional ABS in those sticky situations. Most BMW brake systems are very powerful, so only one or two fingers are needed in most cases. You don’t want to be grabbing these for sure.
Perhaps the most interesting part about the “Scarver” is that it feels like 4 bikes in one. Slightly motocross, part touring, sporty handling and cruiserish ambience.
For those of use who don’t have a pocket deep enough for 3-4 bikes, it may be the go.
In each of the categories a dedicated bike would be better but the Scarver is a happy medium and is a great bike which is heaps of fun to ride – and practical to boot.
- Futuristic appearance
- Low seat, stable confident seating
- Practical innovative applications
- Comfortable seat great passenger helpers
- Single cylinder vibes at low and very high revs
- Extreme manuverablility at low speeds
- Tacho takes a bit of getting used to – although aesthetic
- Solid brakes
- High manueverabilty lacks stability at high speed
- Gadgets- heated grips, accessory space – backpack,
- Good medium speed cornering attributes, good lean angle
- 4 bikes in one, every rider will find something to like
- Wide rear tire
This bike was provided by Pro Cycles, Hornsby.
See their details below for a great deal on new or second hand motorcycles:
48 George St. Hornsby 2077
Phone: 02 9477 5422