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The BMW R 18 Classic Aims To Pile On Misery On Harley-Davidson


It gets twin seats, saddlebags and a conventionally styled exhaust

  • It is based on the standard R 18 cruiser.
  • The 1,802cc boxer twin puts out the same 91PS and 158Nm as the regular R 18.
  • There’s also a First Edition version of the R 18 Classic.

The BMW R 18 is one of the hottest cruisers in the market today, blending old school charm, German brilliance and modern technology all into one elegant package. It is BMW Motorrad’s first cruiser in over a decade and a half but it has been well worth the wait. Now, the Bavarian brand has revealed a more traditional version of the cruiser: the R 18 Classic.

Majority of the elements on the R 18 Classic remain unchanged from the regular bike: the LED lighting systems, pear-drop shape tank, and hardtail-esque rear section. You do get new auxiliary LED headlights and a large windshield giving it a proper touring face. Plus, you can seat a pillion now, the saddlebags are standard and a smaller 16-inch front wheel can be found on the bike. This recipe is quite similar to the Harley-Davidson Heritage Classic, which will be its main rival.

Powering the bike is the same 1,802cc air-cooled boxer twin in the same state of tune as the regular R 18: 91PS and 158Nm. The rear wheel continues to be driven by an exposed shaft mechanism. Instead of the fishtail-tip exhaust of the R 18, the Classic has conventional cylindrical slash-cut units. Three riding modes, traction control and MSR are available. Hill Start Control and reverse assist can be found on the First Edition version, though the latter will not be available on the India-spec model.

Yes, even the R 18 Classic gets a First Edition version. The gloss black fuel tank and rear mudguard get a traditional double-white BMW pinstripe. Plus, the regular metal finish bits are chrome finished here, and you get special First Edition badges.

BMW will be getting this R 18 Classic in both standard and First Edition to India next year. It will be slightly pricier than the regular R 18. Expect pricing to start from Rs 21 lakh (ex-showroom) for the base model and Rs 23 lakh for the First Edition.

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