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Old 12-22-2010, 08:33 PM   #1
dwestly OP
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C1, anyone?

So, is there anyone else out there with a BMW C1 in the U.S.? We just found and purchased this one. Its probably one of the few legally-titled C1s in the country. This is like the coolest ride...ever. Between my wife and I, we've got 8 other bikes in the garage, and nothing is as fun to ride as the C1!

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Old 12-22-2010, 08:43 PM   #2
btcn
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SWEET RIDE! Looks comfortable as hell! Full backrest! Is that a 125 or a 200? And where is the passenger supposed to ride? Behind the seat, or just no passenger?
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Old 12-22-2010, 08:56 PM   #3
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They made two versions, a 125cc and a 176cc. This is the 125 version. Single cylinder Rotax, fuel injected, with a CVT belt drive. 4 point safety harness and a full roll cage, windshield wiper/washer, heated seat and grips, and (not shown here) a trunk that you can stack a dozen large pizzas in that attaches to the rear luggage platform. The centerstand actually retracts via a lever, once you use another lever to lower the C1 onto its suspension for riding. Probably the only scooter that has its own pre-flight checklist... No rear seat or pegs for a passenger, although they did make an optional rear pillion for the back rack. Riding it is a hoot, although a little weird at first. First time you lean into a corner with the canopy over your head is a little strange. Not a lot of fast acceleration, but it will cruise comfortably at 50-55 mph. We're still testing the mileage, but errand runs are suggesting 60-70 mpg. Talk about people-friendly...this thing draws stares and waves everytime we ride it. We've got a cop friend that lives just down the block. He was going to work the other day in his cruiser and saw us test riding it in the neighborhood. He did a u-turn and came back to the house, just to check it out and take pics of it, to show his buddies on his shift...
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Old 12-23-2010, 04:55 AM   #4
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nice any hints on your cost for it? any chane you could upload some more pictures of it?
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Old 12-23-2010, 05:25 AM   #5
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Its a 2001. They only made them for two years, for the European market, and total build was about 13k units. The problem was cost, given all the development and expense of the safety features. You can find low mileage ones still for sale over in Europe. I actually found a zero miles C1 on the Internet, for sale at 8k Euros. Don't know how many are in the U.S., as they were never officially imported here. We bought ours from a Brit living in Atlanta, who had TWO of them in his garage. Ours has about 3,500 miles on it (actually just over 5k kilometers, since its the Continental, vs UK version). We paid him 5k USD for it. Price might have been a little high, but what the heck! Pic below isn't ours, but an exact duplicate of it. A couple of features to note: The HUGE trunk. Yes, it is as big as it looks. Also, notice the large lever extending out and up from underneath the handlebars. That's the mechanical lever that lowers the C1 onto its suspension, from the centerstand. It appears very top-heavy, but in riding it, not as much as you'd think. The engine is at wheel height and the gas is under the seat, so that helps the CoG. And yes, its VERY comfortable to ride!

BTW, this is the one bike (my sig line notwithstanding) that you ride WITHOUT a helmet. The full roll cage and safety harness are designed to keep the rider inside the cage during an accident. There are YouTube videos of C1 crash testing, and this thing is impressive in its ability to protect the rider, in both front and side impacts. The harness/roll cage system actually works, and the rider stays protected inside in an impact. A helmet in this case only adds weight to the head motion in an impact. My research indicates, although I've yet to confirm it, that at least one or two European countries have actually issued a helmet waiver for this bike. My wife and I are both MSF RiderCoaches and very ATGATT, so riding this thing sans helmet is a weird feeling...

Almost forgot...it also has ABS. Not bad for a 125cc scooter. BMW actually revived this about a year ago, as an all-electric concept bike that they were showing around for awhile. I wouldn't be surprised to see it make a comeback in that configuration.

My wife is also a personal trainer and health consultant at a local, women-only gym. She is using it as a commuter for the daily 14 mile roundtrip. We're figuring with gas at $3/gal, it costs about 63 cents in fuel to make the roundtrip...added fun: Priceless!

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Helmet laws merely delay Darwinism. I fully support an individual's right to be stupid...it eventually makes more room for the rest of us.
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dwestly screwed with this post 12-23-2010 at 05:49 AM
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Old 12-23-2010, 08:22 AM   #6
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Right..... Firstly, I love these bikes, Bonkers as they are in concept and execution.

Now for a bit of my personal history.

In South Africa, where I was born and lived till 2002, when the company I worked for transfered me to London, England (Got made redundant in October after almost 14 years with them) I used to keep a Vespa and a propper bike , in this case, at the time it was an R1150GS..... The local BMW agency used to call me up at least once a motn to ask me to ride the C1 as a mobile advertisement for them, as I was and am a drug rep, so I used to call on hospitals, where the bike parking was right at the front doors.
This meant extra exposure for them, and obviously me speaking to people, refering them to the dealership, which impacted positively on my trade in prices for the bikes I bought from them.
Their C1 had the box on the back too, which was perfect for my salesmans bag.

I found the C1 to be a lovely, yet quirky ride, as you say, comfortable, economical and even in bad weather, actually not bad at all.

Port Elizabeth where I come from is known by two names "The Friendly City" and also as "The Windy City" so it was a good test for side wind stability etc.

I have just done a couple of Ebay searches for you as well as Autotrader, and you can follow the links below.

I think you paid a very fair price for the C1 you got.

I trust and hope you and your wife will enjoy it thoroughly.
Sometimes the fastest bike is not the most fun.... I am wanting something small at the moment, and one of the bikes I keep coming back to is a Sachs Madass. 50cc or 125cc of pure fun.


Links below for Ebay and Autotrader.

Hope they help.


4000 for a 2500miler, lovely colours.

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/2002-BMW-C1-12...item45f70b39e7

1350 for this one, has 31k miles (50k km).
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/2000-BMW-C1-RE...item4cf3f99458

From Autotrader.

2500 for one that has done 30k miles (50k km)
Seem to retain value well.

http://www.autotrader.co.uk/classifi...38rb?logcode=p

and 1600 buys you one with 46k miles (75k km)
http://www.autotrader.co.uk/classifi...38rb?logcode=p



I would have one of these as a novely, but also usefull bike in no3 spot, as I have a car, and the R1200GS works for my wife and I together, and I would love a small 50cc-250cc size town bike.
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:05 AM   #7
dwestly OP
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Grizz,
Thanks for the comments. I also appreciate the research and comment on pricing. Nice to know we got a fair deal on it, as I didn't have a lot of research time to make the offer. Wife and I are already enjoying it tremendously. As you say, its not always the newest/biggest/fastest that makes the most fun. This little C1 is more smiles per mile than anything I've ever ridden... Let me know if you ever get across the pond to Florida... :)
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Helmet laws merely delay Darwinism. I fully support an individual's right to be stupid...it eventually makes more room for the rest of us.
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AMA, IBA, MSTA, BMWMOA, Ducatista, MSF RiderCoach, OEM Demo Team Manager
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:19 AM   #8
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Thats a keeper. Congrats, and ENJOY!
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:31 AM   #9
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Man is that thing is just too cool! It looks cooler every time I look at it! Too bad we don't have many of those in America! I would definitely be after one if there were!

I bet that is a lot safer than you average motorcycle as well. But the only thing I can see as a danger is serious impacts and side hits. For example, say you are hit from the side real hard by an SUV running a red light, you will slam your head on the ground when it goes over, wouldn't you? ANd since it is more dangerous to wear a helmet in most situations, that could be a small problem.

But it does have seat belts, right? That would definitely make rear end hits WAY safer! It would be neat to see an airbag version though, like the Goldwing!

Does that big lever get in the way at all though?

But I am sure BMW designed it very very well. They did design it for impacts, if you say they have crash test videos.

That is a 125 cc engine? They claim 15 BHP out of that little engine! That is more than my Honda Elite 150 has, and more than Honda's SH150i.

Actually, that is almost the same as the Elite 250, which is around 19 HP! That thing must have reasonable power! It has a little more weight, but that power should help that a lot! So how fast have you gotten it to?
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Old 12-23-2010, 12:34 PM   #10
grizz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwestly View Post
Grizz,
Thanks for the comments. I also appreciate the research and comment on pricing. Nice to know we got a fair deal on it, as I didn't have a lot of research time to make the offer. Wife and I are already enjoying it tremendously. As you say, its not always the newest/biggest/fastest that makes the most fun. This little C1 is more smiles per mile than anything I've ever ridden... Let me know if you ever get across the pond to Florida... :)
Always a pleasure.

I like to share what I know, and a little research in the right place teaches me, and will make you enjoy the toy even more.

In the UK these have to be ridden with a helmet.
In South Africa I seem to recall not ever wearing a helmet with it.

You never know, we may be in the USA soe time in 2011 as my wife loves the USA and wants me to go there with her.
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Old 12-23-2010, 01:18 PM   #11
dwestly OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by btcn View Post
Man is that thing is just too cool! It looks cooler every time I look at it! Too bad we don't have many of those in America! I would definitely be after one if there were!

I bet that is a lot safer than you average motorcycle as well. But the only thing I can see as a danger is serious impacts and side hits. For example, say you are hit from the side real hard by an SUV running a red light, you will slam your head on the ground when it goes over, wouldn't you? ANd since it is more dangerous to wear a helmet in most situations, that could be a small problem.

But it does have seat belts, right? That would definitely make rear end hits WAY safer! It would be neat to see an airbag version though, like the Goldwing!

Does that big lever get in the way at all though?

But I am sure BMW designed it very very well. They did design it for impacts, if you say they have crash test videos.

That is a 125 cc engine? They claim 15 BHP out of that little engine! That is more than my Honda Elite 150 has, and more than Honda's SH150i.

Actually, that is almost the same as the Elite 250, which is around 19 HP! That thing must have reasonable power! It has a little more weight, but that power should help that a lot! So how fast have you gotten it to?
Let's see if I can answer these in order:

- Side impacts: If you watch the YouTube videos of the C1 crash tests, they show side impact testing. Because the rider wears crossed shoulder belts and a lap belt, they stay securely positioned inside the roll cage during the impact. The entire outer shell around the rider compartment comprises the roll cage, so there is no penetration from the impact.

In fact, while the bike will start without wearing the belts, it will not engage the transmission unless both belts are fastened. You could bypass the system by locking the belts in behind you, but what's the point in defeating the safety system?

When riding, the big lever (there are actually two, a second one raises and lowers the center stand) folds down against the front of the rider compartment and is out of the way.

I can't vouch for the hp as I can't imagine sticking it on a dyno, but I have had it on a short Interstate run at 60 mph...that's about its top end, unless there is a good tailwind. It will cruise comfortably all day at 50-55 mph.

It looks a little top-heavy, and probably is, but its not real noticeable once you're moving. What is a little weird is your first few corners, as you're not used to seeing the canopy over your head lean into the turn.

The only thing you have to really focus on is remembering to put your feet down at stops! Because you're sitting behind a windshield, complete with wiper, etc, there could be a tendency to forget you're on two wheels. Your feet when underway actually sit in footwells created by the fairing, so you have to slide your feet back in preparation for a stop. Once you've mastered the routine, no big deal...

It is one seriously cool ride...
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Helmet laws merely delay Darwinism. I fully support an individual's right to be stupid...it eventually makes more room for the rest of us.
2012 R1200GS Rallye Edition, 2013 Ducati Hypermotard SP, 1990 Honda GB500 TT
AMA, IBA, MSTA, BMWMOA, Ducatista, MSF RiderCoach, OEM Demo Team Manager
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Old 12-23-2010, 01:31 PM   #12
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In man's eternal search for more power and speed.....

A very good friend of mine who died of cancer this year, aged 39, who sold me some of my bikes over the years also used to build "fantasy models".

This was a C1 with a 400cc MX engine and rather wide rear tyre.

Hope it does not give you ideas.

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Old 12-23-2010, 01:51 PM   #13
btcn
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Sorry about your friend, grizz. That sucks, cancer really sucks!

But that is a cool model! I have had a little model of a red C1 in my dresser forever!

And I do think those safer features sound good. I bet it is rather safe. 60 MPH is pretty good for such a big 125. Also, with that big canopy you can't get a tuck in! So that sounds rather good!
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Old 12-23-2010, 05:56 PM   #14
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I always liked the way the stand deploys on the C1. Wiper is cool too. A fellow in Arkansas (Timo) brought his US legal C1 to the Tornado Rallye in Kansas City a few years ago and it is a cool Scooter. I think he said a dozen or so were available when he bought his. Was not anything difficult to make legal here. Not many of them in the USA, my guess under 25.
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Old 12-23-2010, 08:33 PM   #15
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It would not shock me that 10 years from now it's worth the same as you paid for it. i read a few review of it when it came out. perfect weekend touring and around town.
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