The BMW R18 Cruiser Is Finally, Finally Here

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Alas, the long wait is over, as BMW Motorrad has finally shown us the production version of its much-hyped cruiser model, the BMW R18.

Featuring the largest boxer engine ever produced by the German brand, the BMW R18 boasts an 1,802cc displacement for its two horizontally opposed cylinders.

As was teased, peak power is a paltry 90hp (67 kW), but the real attention-getter is the torque curve: 116 lbs•ft (158 Nm).

That peak torque figure hits at just a mere 3,000 rpm, but the BMW R18 churns out at least 110 lbs•ft (150 Nm) all the way from 2,000 rpm to 4,000 rpm, making for a nice broad power band to play with on the open road.

Visually just a tad smaller than a Honda Gold Wing, the BMW R18 tips the scales at 761 lbs (345 kg) at the curb. The styling keeps things light though, with the big twin-cylinder air-cooled engine on display for all to see. 

The engine has a six-speed gearbox that is mated to an exposed shaft-drive to the rear wheel – again, a nod towards BMW’s heritage and the BMW R 5 motorcycle.

The frame is made from steel tube, and the swingarm is a double-sided affair that is decisively rigid.

Meanwhile, the exhaust sweeps from the massive cylinder heads that protrude from the side of the motorcycle. It is of note that all the body panels on the BMW R18 are made from metal, not plastic, including the 4.23 gallon teardrop-shaped fuel tank.

For the technical bits, traction control (ASC) and engine drag torque control (MSR) come standard on the 2020 BMW R18, with powered reverse and hill start control available as optional equipment. 

Giving a strong nod back in time to the BMW R 5, we have to say that BMW has crafted a true modern motorcycle with a heritage look, which should appeal to the sense of your typical cruiser rider.

The seat height is a very approachable 27 inches, and the suspension has some good travel, with 4.7″ (120mm) at the front and 3.5″ (90mm) at the rear.

A keen eye has also been given towards customization, not only with BMW bringing a large parts bin of aftermarket goodies, but also in the design of the bike, in order to make it easy to work on and modify.

Pricing, as always with BMW, is a bit awkward. Officially, the MSRP is $17,495…but that figure rises to $18,100 immediately in the company’s online configurator.

For the “First Edition” model, with all the features you would actually want, we are talking just a hair over $22,000 MSRP.

Source: BMW Motorrad