Photos by Chris Johnson
Ride West BMW in Seattle, Washington, will evidently be the first dealership in the United States to offer the factory-modified “low frame” or low suspension BMW G 650 GS, with its 29.5-inch seat height, to the state’s rider safety training courses.
According to Ride West president Keith Thye, “We’re pleased to announce that we will be providing 30 BMW G 650 GS low-frame motorcycles to safety training providers in our area. This is a pilot program we’re really excited about, because we will now have a presence with thousands of riders who may not have been exposed to BMW motorcycles in the past. It works for the Washington Motorcycle Safety Program with the expansion of their intermediate courses, for the providers by bringing them new motorcycles with state of the art technology and features, and most importantly for the students who will be training on road-worthy motorcycles with BMW safety features.”
The BMW G 650 GS motorcycles for the riding classes have shorter forks, shocks and stands from the factory, and Ride West removed their “beak” front fenders and added some small crash bars to the sides. Ride West says the bikes are small enough to be used by students, especially those who are shorter in stature, but large enough and of sufficient power that new riders will not “outgrow” them (BMW does not recommend using them for two-up riding, however). These BMW G 650 GS models have ABS and will be available for sale to students who wish to reserve them after the completion of their class. Ride West is located at 8100 Lake City Way in North Seattle; for more info see www.ridewest.com.
These are awesome to ride!
I am reading this in disbelief. I live in Canada, Atlantic to be exact, and I have been searching for a newer model BMW which does not require a stepladder to mount and extendable legs when you need to stop. I have left comments on all manuifacturer’s websites lamenting the lack of models for shorter people. What is it with the big names that they ignore the needs of smaller people. You are losing out, and got yourselves to blame. Did you know short guys have a need to prove that they can ride as good as taller people.
So, now that BMW is offering shorter seat height dual sport type bikes, I hope the scheme spreads rapidly to Atlantic Canada, so I can get one of there.