Paul Agnew takes a look at the all new BMW Motorrad R 18 and hails it a magnificent machine offering hours of relaxing touring enjoyment. Photography: Roger Moore

They say that beauty lies in the eye of the beholder or, perhaps in this case, the bike holder. So, if you want a piece of pure motorcycle beauty then get a grip of the new BMW Motorrad R 18.

Launched in Autumn 2020, the acclaimed R 18 is a bike like no other, capable of combining the best of now with the best of then. Even a slow stroll around the magnificent machine is a visual feast – there is so much to see, enjoy, savour.

A truly modern cruiser with a nostalgic sense of BMW design, this is a reminder of the very first cruisers suitable for touring. It also invokes timeless marks of BMW motorcycle history, such as with the white double lining found on the R 18 Classic First Edition.

The heart beats around the superlative boxer engine with the most displacement the manufacturer has ever built. It stands for hours on relaxing tours offering pure enjoyment.

The drop-shaped tank is another icon from history and emphasises – as does the elongated end silencer – a streamlined flyline.

With the warmer weather and longer days now upon us, the R 18 is fully ready, entirely willing and perfectly able to spring into life – a high-quality bike for a discerning customer who isn’t averse to admiring glances. Cruisers’ popularity stems from their presence and power – perfect for stylish, cool and confident motorcycling, from smooth urban riding through the Lancashire highways to unhurried expeditions on long-distance road trips.

BMW has counted on the boxer engine since 1923 when it launched the R 32, equipped with an air-cooled, twin-cylinder, flat-twin boxer engine.

The all-new R 18 boasts the biggest boxer engine yet, with a capacity of 1802cc, delivering a torque of 158Nm at 3000 rpm. All this helps generate a top speed in excess of 180km/h.

There’s a beast within the beauty and here are some of the many highlights and options:
• Iconic style blending modern technology with authentic materials.
• Exposed drive-shaft based on the classic role model.
• Elaborately crafted double-loop steel tube frame.
• Harmonious ergonomics for relaxed riding and optimum control.
• Disc brakes front and rear, with wire-spoked wheels.
• State-of-the-art LED lighting technology, classically interpreted.
• Adaptive turning light for even better illumination of the road when cornering.
• Classically designed circular instrument with integrated display.
• Keyless Ride for convenient function activation by remote control.
• Reverse assist for convenient manoeuvring and hill-start control.
• The First Edition has an exclusive look in paint and chrome.

And if you’re going to own a cool bike, then surely it makes perfect sense to dress the part.

Introducing Ride & Style (part of the BMW Motorrad Heritage Collection) with a full range of new clothing items, from leather jackets to denim outfits, gloves and signature boots.

Traditional style with the very best in contemporary and authentic motorcycle lifestyle clothing, all the materials and textiles used are robust and long-lasting to fulfil the highest standards of safety and functionality.

The famous colour identity of the early classic motorcycles – bold black metal parts adorned with the fine white decorative lines, the so-called TwinStripes – is reflected throughout the entire collection. The original branding and the BMW metal emblem are also incorporated in the design.

The copper-coloured details and visual accents displayed in these garments hark back to the materials used in classic BMW motorcycles going back for close on a century.

Created with passion, the Heritage Collection helps provide maximum riding enjoyment with its low weight, flexibility and high comfort. With regular wear, the leather components take on a nice patina that underlines the vintage look.

Robust, durable, striking and long-lasting, suitable for every kind of adventure, the non-abrasive leather will cope with every type of weather and the elastic denim fabric also allows you to ride over longer distances comfortably. With a snug and perfect fit, this gear is perfect for relaxed rides.

Bike aficionados reckon that BMW had been teasing for some time about the merits of the R 18, before finally revealing all in 2020. Now that same knowledgeable group – alongside the global (and often cynical) critics at large, are hailing this mean machine as nothing less than ‘rolling motorcycle art’, a feast of BMW heritage wrapped in a case of modern technology.

The flexible concept of the R18 and its extensive equipment range also allows endless customisation options. You have the complete freedom to adapt your bike to your personal taste and preferences. To make it your own.

If all that isn’t enough, you get a three-year warranty on all new machines.

The R 18 is your ticket to ride in style. Go on, fill your boots.

Motorrad is the motorcycle brand of BMW

Bowker Motorrad
Customs Way, Preston Docklands PR2 2UW
01772 767300



Tedd Walmsley

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