2014 BMW C600 Sport

BMW's first foray into the scooter market isn't cheap, but it is impressive.

BMW’s first foray into the scooter market isn’t cheap, but it is impressive.

I’m a fan of all things two and four wheeled but my taste in cars and bikes has been described as eclectic (at best). So when the opportunity came up to ride BMW’s first foray into the maxi scooter market I obviously jumped at the opportunity that many wouldn’t. The C600 Sport is the ‘entry’ model of BMW’s scooter range. I say ‘entry’ because it’s a range that starts at around $13,000 in Australia…that’s an expensive scooter no matter how you look at it.

For your significant investment you get a 647cc parallel twin, pushing out 44kw and 66nm of torque. Not massive figures for a motorbike, but pretty impressive for a scooter. These figures become slightly more notable when you compare them to the previous king of the maxi scooter, Yamaha’s TMAX, which uses a 530cc parallel twin to produce 34kw and 52nm.  The C600 will do 0-100km/h in about five seconds and continue on to a claimed 175km/h. Evidently, this is not your average scooter then.

The C600 continues with BMW Motorrad’s occasionally confusing nomenclature (due to its engine size having little to do with its name) and its huge equipment list. You get heated grips and a heated seat, tyre pressure monitoring, ABS, twin front discs, ambient temperature display, a huge analogue speedometer and a digital tachometer. The tachometer is irrelevant as the C600 uses a CVT transmission, meaning no matter what you do, then engine sits at about 4,000rpm. This produces a fairly average drone from the low slung muffler. An Akrapovic slip-on is optional to make this drone more noticeable to the rider and surrounding public.

BMW C600 Sport. Storm Trooper's commuter of choice.

BMW C600 Sport. Storm Trooper’s commuter of choice.

despite the CVT induced engine drone, the C600 offer pretty spirited performance. It would easily keep up with your average motorbike and definitely feels lighter than its 249kg wet weight; no doubt thanks to its low centre of gravity. Its 1,591mm wheelbase (80mm longer than a Harley-Davidson Iron 883) provides excellent stability but does make the C600 a little slow to turn and also makes it feel its size when maneuvering through traffic. Another thing that makes traffic a little difficult is its relatively high 810mm seat height, this is all relative though as I’m no what you’d call tall. The C600 will easily cruise at 110km/h (and much more) all day. The adjustable screen provides good protection from wind and the elements, while the 16L tank should give you a 300km range. Making this scooter a genuine do everything mode of transport.

After spending a day with the C600 Sport to say I was impressed would be an understatement. It’s quicker than it should be, it handles better than a maxi scooter has any right to and its fit-and-finish is typical BMW. The only hurdle I can see is its $13,000 price of admission. Admittedly this is the same price as Yamaha’s TMAX 530, but it’s also the same price as many other more versatile motorbikes. But if a maxi scooter is your thing, the C600 Sport would have to be one of the best. Ever.

Faster than it has any right to be.

Faster than it has any right to be.

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5 responses to “2014 BMW C600 Sport

  1. I believe bmw c600 is no comparison to the 2014 yamaha tmax. They are almost the same performance wise. I have a 2014 yam tmax with a commander 5 also akaprovic exhaust and finally a Malossi MHR 2000 variator that would put a Beemer scoot to shame. I want a response

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    • If they’re almost the same performance wise (and price wise and size wise etc etc) then how would they not be comparable? Stock vs stock, the BMW has the advantage and is better finished than the Yamaha. I don’t doubt that with a few mods the Tmax gains performance. The BMW would too.

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      • Ok let’s get down to it, the tmax ha one major advantage over the Beemer its Kevlar belt driven, the bmw is chain which is dirty and a lot of maintenance to keep up. Also the max is somewhat lighter than the BMW c600. Ok if there was a drag race stock to stock the Beemer would win but the tmax would chew it up in the twisted. Also the seat height of the BMW is much higher than the bmw which is another strike against the Beemer. I could go on but what’s the point yamaha tmax rules.

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  2. The BMW’s chain drive is enclosed and a wet bath set up, so it doesn’t require adjustment and lubricating as often as a conventional motorbike set up. The BMW’s biggest advantage is its fit-and-finish which, similar to most European bikes, is a step above the Japanese. Brembo brakes, heated grips and seat, tyre pressure monitors etc etc. The trade off of course is maintenance is often far more expensive. I’m a fan of the TMax as well, don’t get me wrong. As the first maxi scooter I encountered I’m still impressed with its abilities!
    I’m glad you’ve found a find you love John and thanks for reading.

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