2019 BMW C 400 GT Review

Lamb-Stephen
By Steve Lamb

Production Manager - Still considers himself a novice rider, despite passing his test over twenty years ago. Steve has only ever owned four bikes - a '95 Suzuki GSX600F (which he dropped in the first minute of ownership), an '04 Yamaha FZ6 Fazer and currently a '16 Ducati Scrambler Classic, as well as (very slowly) building a '94 Yamaha SR125 'brat tracker'.

 

The 2019 BMW C 400 GT model has been expected for some time. Ever since the release of the C 650 X was closely followed by the C 650 GT, it was clear that a more touring orientated version would follow close on the heels of the C 400 X. And now, some 6 months after our review of the X model, we take a look at Munich's A2-compliant mile muncher.

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT Price

The 2019 BMW C 400 GT is not a cheap scooter. Let's get that out in the open right away. At £7050 for the base GT, rising to £7955 for GT SE (which includes the TFT screen, heated grips and heated seat), the BMW is the most expensive in class, but that premium price is somewhat reflected in the excellent design and typically Teutonic build quality. If you want neon wheels and Day-Glo paint schemes, then start looking elsewhere.  The limited range of colours (White, Black and Moonwalk Grey - a £50 option) reflect the business-class style of the bike and the city commuter style of BMW’s expected customer. The styling of the C 400 GT is perfectly proportioned - even the stylish quad headlights reflect BMW as a brand with their LED angel eye outers lifted from the latest 3 and 5 series design catalogue.   

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT PCP Examples

While the outright purchase price of the C 400 GT might be enough to make you spill your gin and tonic, a look at the current factory PCP deals make for more pleasant reading and, at just over £100 per month (after initial deposit) compares very favourably with a monthly bus fare or train ticket at just £5 per weekday.

 

C 400 GT Base Model

Cash Price - £7050.00

Deposit - £1410.00

35 x £101.70

Final Payment £3,372.40

5k miles p/y

9.9% APR

 

C 400 GT as tested (inc TFT screen £595, anti-theft alarm system £220, £50 for the moonwalk grey metallic paint)

Cash Price - £7,865.00

Deposit - £1,635.00

35 x £126.79

Final payment £3,552.26

5k miles p/y

9.9% APR

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT Review Specs Price

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT Rivals

The A2 compliant maxi-scooter segment is an ever more competitive market with closely matched products from Yamaha, Suzuki and Kymco, and of course BMW's own C400 X. On paper the BMW shows little to justify the extra price, delivering similar power and a little less torque than the larger engined alternatives.

 

 

BMW C 400 X

Suzuki Burgman 400

Yamaha XMax 400

Kymco Xciting S 400i ABS

Engine

350cc single cylinder, four stroke, water cooled

400cc single cylinder, four stroke, water cooled

395cc Single cylinder, four stroke, water cooled

400cc single cylinder, four stroke, water cooled

Power

33.5bhp (25kW) @ 7500rpm

30.8bhp (23kW)

@6300rpm

32.8bhp (24.5kW)

@7000rpm

35.5bhp (26.5kW) @7500rpm

Torque

25.8lb-ft (35Nm) @ 6000rpm

26.5ftlb (36Nm)

@ 4800rpm

26.5ftlb (36Nm)

@ 6000rpm

27.8ftlb (37.7Nm)

@ 6000rpm

Weight

204kg

215kg

210kg

205kg

Seat Height

775mm

755mm

800mm

810mm

Fuel Tank

12.8ltr

13.5ltr

13ltr

12.5ltr

Price (from)

£6200

£6299

£6149

£5599

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT Review Specs Price

 

Power and torque

In normal riding, it's unlikely you'll see peak power, which is delivered at 7500rpm. As with all CVT scooters, which ride as if they have a single very long gear, peak revs are only seen at top speed. Peak torque at 6000rpm also feels high in the range, but with a flatter spread of torque, even at 4000rpm 85% of max torque is still available. This is reflected in swift acceleration, providing plenty of grunt for overtakes. Motorway speed cruising is comfortably achieved, but I did find that with a long throttle travel, you need plenty of twist for your go.  

 

 

Engine, gearbox and exhaust

With a 350cc single cylinder engine, you can't get away from a slight lumpy feel at tick over, but as the revs rise, and particularly over 5000rpm, this smoothes out nicely and feels much silkier and responsive. The CVT transmission is very smooth with a firm and positive clutch engagement at 2500rpm, making confidence inspiring departures from lights or junctions, and allowing you to get well ahead of the traffic. The exhaust is, as you would expect, non-intrusive and subtle, but does have some pleasing bark when the throttle is blipped - a very nice touch.

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT Economy

BMW claim a WMTC consumption figure of 80.7mpg (3.5ltrs/100km). After a day of riding a mixture of B-roads, A roads and some dual-carriage way, the on-board computer was reporting consumption of 70mpg, so with some careful coaxing, I would expect that this could be improved. With a full tank of 12.5 litres, even at the 70mpg we saw, a range of 200 miles is easily possible, which lends itself nicely to the touring intent of the bike.

 

 

Handling, suspension, chassis and weight

Equipped with 35mm upside down front forks, and twin rear shocks (adjustable for preload), combined with a low centre of gravity, the bike feels very stable, right from the off. Even when provoked over some of Northamptonshire's finest pot holes, the bike remains stable and solid with no crashiness or harshness. Low speed riding and manoeuvring is a breeze thanks the predictable nature combined with a low and slender seat, and narrow foot boards. Overall, the bike hides its non-inconsiderable weight very well, feeling much lighter than its official wet weight of 212kg.

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT Review Specs Price

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT Brakes

As per the C 400 X sister-bike, braking is delivered via twin front disks and a single rear. Calipers are Bybrem items, an off shoot of Brembo, and provide impressive stopping power without being snatchy or unsettling. The rear brake alone is more than capable of hauling the bike down to a controlled stop, while front and rear ABS provides confidence in all conditions.

 

 

Comfort over distance and touring

As GT is aimed at the more touring orientated market, BMW have clearly worked very hard at making the bike as comfortable as possible. This is mainly achieved with much larger screen and improved frontal aero. At 5’6” I did experience some light buffeting from top of screen, but overall it’s a very pleasant place to be, protected from the vast majority of the weather.  While hands are still exposed, heated grips make riding in all weathers a comfortable experience. The addition of a heated seat, as part of the comfort pack, adds to the luxury, once you get over the odd, slightly incontinent-like feeling of a warm bum.

 

 

Rider aids and extra equipment / accessories

All variants of the C 400 GT are equipped with full LED lights, keyless ignition and ABS and TCS, but for me, by far the most innovative feature, and one that I am sure we will see on other scooters, is BMW's 'flexcase' luggage system. In simple terms, this allows the floor of the under seat storage to expand, utilising the otherwise dead space above the rear wheel. This allows the stowage of larger items, or a full face helmet. The system will only expand with the engine off, and the bike will not restart until the ‘flexcase’ is stowed, ensuring no unexpected wheel/luggage interfaces. On test, the extra space easily took my Arai Rebel full face helmet, although some journos with side mounted go-pros found it less accommodating.

The SE model is equipped with both the comfort pack and a communications pack, giving TFT screen with Bluetooth phone connectivity, on board computer and various display modes.

A taller screen, top box, luggage rack and leg covers are all available from BMW's comprehensive after market accessories catalogue.

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT Review Specs Price

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT verdict

A competent touring alternative to the C 400 X, and a much more grown up and business orientated scooter, the 2019 C 400 GT offers a great package. I fear that the lack of power would get tiring on very long-distance runs or with a pillion, but for out of city commuters looking for a cost effective and stylish alternative to sitting in traffic or yet another train delay, the BMW makes perfect sense.

 

Three things I loved about the 2019 BMW C 400 GT…

• Build quality

• Flexcase storage

• On board computer for the tech-heads

 

Three things that I didn’t…

• the price

• Screen causes buffeting

• more relaxed attitude (compared to the C 400X)

 

2019 BMW C 400 GT spec

 

New price

£7050 - £7999 (SE)

Capacity

350cc

Bore x Stroke

80mm x 69.6mm

Engine layout

Single Cylinder, Overhead Cam

Engine details

Water cooled, 4 stroke, 4 valves

Power

33.5bhp (25kW) @ 7500rpm

Torque

25.8lb-ft (35Nm) @ 6000rpm

Top speed

86.5mph (139kph)

Transmission

Stepless CVT with two step spur gearing and centrifugal clutch

Average fuel consumption

Claimed 80.7mpg

Tank size

12.8 litres

Max range to empty (theoretical)

227miles

Reserve capacity

4 litres

Rider aids

ABS, TCS

Frame

Steel tubular

Front suspension

35mm Dia Telescopic forks

Front suspension adjustment

None

Rear suspension

Double spring struts

Rear suspension adjustment

Preload

Front brake

265mm Double discs, 4 piston Bybre calipers

Rear brake

265mm Single disc, 1 piston Bybre caliper

Front tyre

120/70 15 Pirelli Angel Scooter

Rear tyre

150/70 14 Pirelli Angel Scooter

Rake/Trail

63.6º x 81mm

Dimensions

2210mm x 835mm 1437mm (LxWxH)

Seat height

775mm

Kerb weight

212kg

Warranty

Unlimited miles / 3 years

Website

www.bmw-motorrad.co.uk

 

To learn more about what the spec sheet means, click here for our glossary

Link to Bike Insurance

 

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