Could you tell which is the best battery type for my S1000RR?
Many thanks, Ray
Hmmm, looks like most BMW S1000RRs have AGM batteries as original equipment – Absorbent Glass Mat. That’s a step above the old lead-acid filled battery for sure, and you can read all about AGM tech here if you’re interested. Your BMW dealer will sell you a new one for $ 158. Some people just feel more comfortable with original equipment, and we can all be happy that original for most of us is no longer the 6-volt antique in the rubber box in the lead photo.
Browsing over to a place like BikeBandit.com, of course, opens up your options. There, you’ll find the same AGM unit (probably made by Yuasa) for the same $ 158.52. But alongside that one, you’ll see a plethora of battery options including lithium, lithium ion and gel types, in a range of prices from $ 63.95 to $ 208.99. (Also a Parts Unlimited AGM with the same specs as your original for $ 79.95, or even your local Wal Mart for similar AGM battery pricing.)
All I can tell you from personal experience is I’m a huge fan of lithium batteries. I stuck a Shorai battery in my R1 in early 2010, and when I walked out to my hot garage right now to give the starter a poke, it spun the engine up quickly and the bike fired almost instantly. I do start the bike every couple of weeks, but that’s really only to keep the carb jets clean; the battery doesn’t even need a trickle charger unless your bike has a clock or an alarm that draws a little power. Even then, you can just disconnect the battery if you don’t want to buy a charger. Lithium batteries also weigh a lot less than other types.
The Shorai to fit your bike is model number LFX19A4-BS12, with a claimed weight of 3.2 pounds and a price tag of $ 199.95 (though they’re having a 20% off sale right now).
We also hear good things about WPS Featherweight batteries, also available at BikeBandit – another lithium ion unit, with a claimed weight of 2 pounds and a $ 158.95 bottom line.
With any “new” technology of course, there will be naysayers with tales of explosions and fires, and the Samsung Note 7 and hoverboard meltdowns didn’t do lithium ion’s reputation any good. But those were caused by corner-cutting manufacturing techniques. Lithium ion is a mature technology that’s been around for more than 25 years. Pick a reputable manufacturer and you should enjoy years of truly maintenance-free instant starts.
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