Motoring

New BMW Motorrad cruiser rated R 18

What most people don’t know about BMW is that they made motorcycles for longer than they have made cars.

BMW manufactured its first motorcycle in 1923 and since has enjoyed success on-road, off-road and on the racetracks with its infamous boxer engine motorcycles.

New to the line-up is BMW Motorrad’s R 18, a motorcycle that celebrates the marques traditions and historical models. The cruiser takes inspiration from famous models such as the R 5 in both a technological and visual manner and returns to being a product with a no thrills, pure riding experience and a boxer motor. The newly developed boxer motor comes in the form of a 1.8-litre, two-cylinder producing 67 kW and 150 N.m of torque. The “Big Boxer” motor is styled to appear like the traditional air-cooled boxer engines of past. Also designed in a historic fashion are the double-loop steel tube frame and the rear swingarm which resembles that of the R 5.

Upfront you will find telescopic fork suspension elements instead of electronic adjustment options with a 120 mm suspension travel while the rear directly mounted central suspension strut has 90 mm of travel and features travel-dependent damping and adjustable spring preload options. The R 18 comes standard with twin disc brake at the front and a single disc brake at the rear all in a four-piston fixed callipers configuration. In keeping with the traditional design theme, the front and rear wheels are wire-spoked.

While for the most part the R 18 swop modern technology for a traditional riding experience, it does offer thee riding modes; Rain, Roll and Rock and also standard on the new BMW is Automatic Stability Control but can be disengaged. Also is engine drag torque control while there is an optional reverse assist Hill Start Control function. While the abovementioned items assist in keeping you on the road, the optional pinstripe work, open-running driveshaft and the boxer engine reminiscent to that of 1936 will keep the eyes on you.

The new R 18 will be available in First Edition guise, which features exclusive equipment and black paint finished with a white pinstripe, from the date of launch. Customers can also opt BMW Motorrad individualisation options or either of the two design collection models featuring milled aluminium parts created with Roland Sands Design. Also available is customising seats with US manufacturer Mustang Seat or exhaust system from Vance & Hines.

The new BMW Motorrad R 18 will be available in South Africa from the fourth quarter of 2020 and pricing will be announced closer to the launch.

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