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BMW Motorcycles [Hardcover]

Darwin Holmstrom
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Book Description

July 27 2002 10 X 10
The entire history of the BMW motorcycle production, from the original R32 of 1932, through the war years and into the 21st century, is covered in this in-depth look. Particular attention is given to the groundbreaking motorcycles BMW produced in the 1970s. Those include the R90S and the R100RS -- the first mass-produced motorcycle to come equipped with a full, frame-mounted fairing -- and the innovative and popular motorcycles BMW offers today, including the exotic R1200C cruiser and the K1200LT luxury, touring bike. Both of which proved so popular they sent Honda back to the drawing board with its mighty Gold Wing.

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From the Back Cover

When the time comes to sell your house, quit your job, and leave it all behind to pursue your dream of traveling around the world on two wheels, the bike you’ll most likely select is a BMW. In BMW Motorcycles, author Darwin Holmstrom brings the story of these legendary machines to life, describing the societal and personal forces that created BMW’s two-wheeled line. Holmstrom explores how motorcycles grew from a sideline to a major part of BMW’s business, how World War II nearly destroyed the company, and how BMW motorcycles evolved from stodgy touring bikes to cutting-edge machines that seamlessly blend tradition with modern styling and technology. Filled with Brian J. Nelson’s stunning photography, this insightful book offers a fresh perspective on some of the finest motorcycles ever built. BMW Motorcycles is a must-have for all Beemerphiles.

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Darwin Holmstrom is the author or co-author of numerous car and motorcycle books, including the best-selling Camaro: Forty Years, Muscle: America’s Legendary Performance Cars, and Top Muscle. He lives in the Minneapolis, Minnesota, metro area.


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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best BMW bike book available, so far? Feb. 2 2003
Format:Hardcover
Having on my shelf just about every BMW motorcycle book available on Amazon[.com] (and I did not pay the high prices currently showing for some titles, even though I bought them via Amazon[.com] vendors!), I must say, as far as quality of photographs, this is the best!
Text is also very good. Some books on BMWs that are/were available are very slight - at least one of the ones I bought via Amazon is a remainder from England - a "packaged" book; part of a series on various makes of bike, with little text and photos used in several titles.
Having owned a BMW (R100RT) when I lived in London, England, and now a R1100RT, I can attest to their being fine machines -bikes that deserve such a worthy book on them.
I agree with the author's review that many other books on BMWs focus on the early history and concern earlier types and do not contain much on the later models. I think the author is arguably not stating the obvious reason here. This is maybe because they were written before the current "oilhead" twins were produced so understandably could not cover them, or if revised then the books were merely slightly updated after these newer types arrived on the scene so include only a chapter or so on them?
This book being recently published is (obviously)as a result more timely on its coverage.
As a rider of Triumphs some years ago, I'm saving up to buy the similar volume covering that historical make as well - not seen it but I'm sure it will make a fine companion to this title.
A great book at a reasonable price, considering the wealth of color photos, for any motorcycle fan and especially for BMW riders.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Author's review Jan. 2 2003
Format:Hardcover
In researching this book, I read just about everything ever published about BMW motorcycles. Frankly, the early information was difficult to sort through and often contradictory, even though this is the era that has been written about most extensively. The informational value of my book lies in the coverage of BMW motorcycles after 1969. The motorcycles of the modern era have been covered in far less detail, as if other authors were not interested in the motorcycles built after that date.
But the real value of this book is the stunning photography provided by Brian J. Nelson, one of the finest photographers working in the field of motor journalism. It's unfortunate that there is no photography from the book posted on this website, because Brian has transformed this work from just another motorcycle history book into a true work of art.
On a more sophomoric level, I found writing this book rewarding because I was able to use a conjugation of the verb "fornicate," and also because I was able to alude to the interbreeding practices of European royalty prior to World War I. Incorporating these things into a BMW motorcycle history tested my creative skills.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! Blew me away! Nov. 26 2003
Format:Hardcover
I expected another boring book about BMWs, but instead of the mind-numbing parts lists that pass for books on the subject, this one was actually a blast to read. I even laughed out loud. The history was there, and I learned a lot I didn't know, especially about the bikes that were exported to North America, but what struck me was how entertaining the book was. I bought it because of the great photography and wasn't even expecting to read it, but once I started, I couldn't put it down. This is by far the best BMW book ever published.
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3.0 out of 5 stars BMW A history March 20 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Excellent overview of BMW history. Not musch about current motorcycles, but good coverage of first models and their evolution.

Good reading for the person interested in the history of this company and of the earlier models.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Needs another revision Nov. 28 2009
Format:Paperback
This book needs another revision to align the pictures with the text and add some or more specifications.
Ian Falloon's "Standard catalog of Ducati Motorcycles" is the way I would like to see it.
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