If you own an historic BMW motorcycle and are in Munich seeking advice from BMW Group Classic, there’s a good chance you’ll bump into Oliver Landinger. He is one of two experts here who dedicate their working lives to motorcycles. So it’s no surprise to find him appearing on posters beside a knockout BMW K1 super-sports bike. His very own BMW K1 .
Oliver Landinger (48) is a qualified mechanic and started his career as an apprentice at BMW. After completing his training he stayed on – and has never wanted to go anywhere else. Why would he? No other company could have given him similar opportunities. From customer service he moved to Formula One – an intensely demanding challenge that also proved to be extremely rewarding and enjoyable.
From there he joined Classic, where historical accuracy is of the essence. Variety is, indeed, the spice of life.
BMW: a family tradition
Landinger comes from a family of technology enthusiasts and his father, a keen motorcyclist, also competed in races. His son was there with him from a young age and these early experiences made a deep impression. The natural next step was to pick up a spanner himself. Many members of his family swore by BMWs – on two wheels or four. For them, the brand really was synonymous with driving/riding pleasure (delete as appropriate).
So when a colleague decided to sell his K1 one day in the 1990s, Landinger couldn’t resist – he simply had to have it. Its futuristic design and the superior power that went with it lived up to his expectations in every way. What’s more, the K1 was rare. As the pinnacle of the model range it had always been something special. During its five years in production (1988–1993), 6,921 were built at the plant in Berlin. Only 2,050 of those were registered in Germany.
The future is now if you’re riding a BMW K1.
Unveiled at the IFMA Cologne bike show in 1988, the BMW K1 was one of the first ever motorcycles with a full fairing. The super-sports machine attracted huge press coverage, particularly on account of its spectacularly innovative design. When glimpsed in an everyday setting, it looked like it was just popping back from the future. Its chassis is an extensively modified and enhanced version of the K100’s. The longitudinal in-line four-cylinder engine now used four valves per cylinder. It developed 100 hp from about 1,000cc, allowing the K1 to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in under four seconds. The three-way catalytic converter was a world first on a production motorcycle, thanks to modern fuel injection.
Landinger compares the bike to a BMW 7 Series rather than a hardcore sports car. In his view, the combination of comfort and power is second to none. The K1 is suited equally to sumptuous cruising with minimal gear changes and higher-paced blasts on motorways or smooth country roads. Behind the spectacular design the K1 is, first and foremost, an excellent all-rounder. Its status as a modern-era classic is long since assured, as is its potential to gain in value.
Cherished, cared for and sometimes ridden .
Being a true pro, Oliver Landinger performs all maintenance tasks himself, and so far there has been no need for repairs. His garage contains other machines, too. Although not all of them bear the famous blue-and-white roundel, he does also own a BMW R 60/2 (currently going through an unusually needy phase). All in all, it is mainly a lack of time that stops him from pursuing all his dreams and passions to the full. When will Landinger indulge in another outing on the K1? He has to admit that, unfortunately, this happens all too infrequently. As a family man to the core, he has thousands of items on his to-do list. Including DIY, which – like so much else, and as the name suggests – he largely “does himself”.
Oliver Landinger is proud of the poster featuring him alongside his K1. Because that’s the way he is. A total professional. A true fan of the BMW brand. And fired by enthusiasm for each new day.