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Discussion Starter #1
Trying to do my home work on a 2011 R1200RT. Owned and ridden BMW motorcycles in the past but haven't kept up on all the models and improvements in the last several years. ESA, Electronic Suspension Adjustment is that correct? How dose this work? I'm a one up rider and can't see spending the extra money for something like this.When I travel long distances I do pack a lot of gear. Bikes of old, had three rear spring adjustments and that was all there was to it. Not sure what the other abbreviations mean. But I 'll handle them later. For now.... What is ESA going to do for me?

Nice bunch of people here on this site. Been learning a lot. :D
 

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m1der said:
Trying to do my home work on a 2011 R1200RT. Owned and ridden BMW motorcycles in the past but haven't kept up on all the models and improvements in the last several years. ESA, Electronic Suspension Adjustment is that correct? How dose this work? I'm a one up rider and can't see spending the extra money for something like this.When I travel long distances I do pack a lot of gear. Bikes of old, had three rear spring adjustments and that was all there was to it. Not sure what the other abbreviations mean. But I 'll handle them later. For now.... What is ESA going to do for me?

Nice bunch of people here on this site. Been learning a lot. :D
On an RT, two (maybe three) things:

1. Electronic adjustment of damping -- choices of comfort, normal and sport.

2. Electronic adjustment of spring preload (and thereby, rear ride height) -- choices of single rider, signle rider+luggage, two-up+luggage.

On the pre-'10 RT's those were the only functions. On newer bikes (and therefore maybe the '11 RT), there is a third function:

3. Electronic adjustment of spring rate -- actually making the spring rate higher or lower to make the spring firmer or softer (I don't know the names of the settings).
 

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I'll chime in with Mark on this one. He did a great job of concisely explaining ESA/ESA II. But who would find this useful?

- Those who ride two-up semi-frequently. It is very convenient to just have the pillion hop on and then adjust the pre-load to two-up with a push of a button instead of adjusting by hand. For shorter inseam folks, this is especially nice since you can mount and balance in the low position (one-up) then tap a button for two-up and take off. Note that the pre-load can only be adjusted with the bike standing still and the motor running.

- Those who constantly ride over varied terrain. Living in the northeast US, our roads look more like a collection of obstacle courses rather than smooth tarmac. My ride to work is extremely bumpy (even the long way!) until I am several miles from my destination. It is nice to adjust the dampening from comfort (bumpy) to normal/sport on the fly. Unlike pre-load, you can be moving when the dampening is adjusted.

However, if you seldom ride two-up and/or are in an area where the roads are predictably smooth and in good repair, ESA II is an expensive option that might not be missed. If you are into the sportier side of riding an RT, you might want to save the ESA II money and invest it in some top-notch suspension bits like progressive springs and performance shocks.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for the replies. They helped to explain ESA. I tend to agree that it may not help me much. I can save some money for other things on the bike. If the road gets bumpy- slow down. :D Hope to have things figure out by July for the MOA Rally. If not, I'll get the R80RT "84" for me and the K1100LT "94" for my son, ready. We are also looking for a "Tranny" for a 1990 R100RT.
 
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