BMW Motorrad has started introducing its 2021 range of motorcycles, and with the new range, has added a new variant to the BMW R 18 model line-up. The BMW R 18 Classic is based on the standard BMW R 18, but gets some additional equipment to make it more touring friendly, and a slightly different passenger seat. The obvious changes include a clear windshield, a pair of leather-finished saddlebags with traditional looking buckle stays, and all of these are removable, so the R 18 Classic can be turned back to something which is almost identical to the standard BMW R 18.
On the R 18 Classic, there are also extra LED headlights, a smaller, and wider 16-inch front wheel, instead of the 19-inch front wheel on the base R 18, and also gets standard cruise control. The saddlebags come with 15.5 litres of storage space, or 10 litres with the removable liners, and the buckles are cosmetic, just to give the traditional look. The fasteners are more conventional push-in units. The windscreen slots into the top of the forks and attaches to the bolt-on auxiliary light bracket with locking brackets, and can be removed or replaced very quickly and conveniently.
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The powerplant is the same as the R 18, so the 1,802 cc, air-cooled boxer twin puts out the same 91 bhp of power and 157 Nm of peak torque. The engine is mounted on a double-cradle steel frame and the hidden rear suspension system gives the look of a classic hardtail cruiser. There is a modern electronic system, with multiple riding modes, ABS, traction control, engine brake control, which can be monitored and set via a simple LCD unit on the analogue speedometer console. There's also the option of adding an electric reverse gear and hill start control.
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BMW also offers a wide range of extras for both models, the R 18 and the R 18 Classic, with wheel options ranging from 16-inch to 21-inches, different seats, footboards, screens, bars, luggage and cosmetic components, so the standard 345 kg kerb weight of the base R 18 becomes irrelevant with the addition of aftermarket components.
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With the additional components, the BMW R 18 Classic adds some weight too, pushing its kerb weight to 365 kg, compared to 345 kg of the base BMW R 18. The base R 18 is priced at ₹ 18.90 lakh (Ex-showroom) in India, and if BMW Motorrad India decides to introduce the R 18 Classic, expect prices to be around ₹ 21 lakh (Ex-showroom). The BMW R 18 Classic is expected to be offered on sale across BMW Motorrad dealerships by the second quarter of 2021.