2021 BMW R18 Touring version

A touring version of the BMW R18 cruiser has been spotted by spy photographers, sporting a fork-mounted windscreen and leather saddlebags. A potential competitor to the Harley-Davidson Heritage Classic, this touring model joins the cruiser and fairing-mounted bagger versions we uncovered in design filings in late February.

The model in the spy photos verifies a lot of the details we saw in the design filings for the cruiser version. The chassis, fork, fuel tank, fender, seat and single circular instrument nacelle appear to match what we saw in the cruiser. The test bike’s exhaust matches the designs from the bagger’s slash-cut exhaust instead of the cruiser’s bulbous fin-tipped silencers, but the tourer is otherwise identical with the addition of the bags, windscreen and additional lighting.

The spied model also has the cruiser’s smaller fuel tank rather than the larger tank on the bagger. The bagger designs also show a thicker one-piece saddle and hard cases while the model in the photos is has the cruiser’s smaller seat and leather-wrapped bags.

The 1802cc Boxer stands out against the otherwise black model in the photographs. We do wonder how warm those giant air-cooled jugs can get, and the rider’s feet appear to get awfully close to the cylinder heads.

The fuel tank emblem on the test bike is covered up, but we do see “R18” embossed on the panel behind the rider’s calf, suggesting BMW’s new cruisers will go stick with that name rather than a R1800 nomenclature.

BMW says it will debut the production version of the R18 cruiser on April 3, though it’s unclear whether the two touring versions will be revealed at the same time.

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