BMW Concept 9Cento Previews Future Mid-Sized Adventure Sport

Dennis Chung
by Dennis Chung

BMW introduced a new “Adventure Sport” concept model at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este previewing a new mid-sized sport-touring model. The eventual production version of the BMW Concept 9Cento would, essentially, be a smaller version of the S1000XR with the frame and engine of the F850GS.

The BMW Motorrad Concept 9cento is our interpretation of a modern all-rounder for the new mid-range segment,” says Edgar Heinrich, Head of Design BMW Motorrad. “Functional properties such as touring capability, storage space and wind/weather protection are relevant to most motorcyclists but they’re rarely included in the design of a concept vehicle. In this year’s concept bike we’re demonstrating that all these rational aspects can be coupled with a dynamic design to create something really exciting and highly emotional.”

Like the S1000XR, the 9Cento concept has a bit of an adventure styling, though it’s designed to stick mainly to paved roads. In this respect, it would also be a replacement for the F800GT and F800ST sport-tourers. The shape of the nose and fairing draw a lot from the S1000XR, enough so that we wouldn’t be surprised if the production model will be named the F900XR.

The proportions are different from the S1000XR however, with a lot of volume toward the front wheel and a short, rising tail that exaggerates the length of the swingarm. Aluminum parts such as the central tank cover, footrest mounts and rear seat support are milled with fine groves that resemble a topological relief, with the lines all pointing forward to the front wheel.

The frame appears to be the same as the one used on the F850GS but the subframe connecting it to the rear carrier is aluminum reinforced with a carbon fiber reinforced polymer fleece to reduce weight without compromising strength. The sense of lightness is further conveyed by the open space between the seat and the subframe.

BMW designed a set of bags for the concept though they don’t look large enough to be of practical use for many people. But that’s not really the point of this exercise. For the 9Cento, BMW wanted to showcase two innovations. For one, the cases are attached electromagnetically, allowing for quick, toolless attachment and removal. The tops of the case are also padded, and when attached, they combine with the otherwise slim saddle to form a larger passenger seat.

The Concept 9Cento offers full LED lighting, with a long daytime running light under the high and low beam lights. The rear lights are integrated into the bottom of the rear seat carrier.

At the moment, the 9Cento is purely a concept model but we would not be surprised if a production model will be ready as soon as the Intermot show in October. Check back with us here on for the latest information as it becomes available.

Dennis Chung
Dennis Chung

Dennis has been a part of the team since 2008, and through his tenure, has developed a firm grasp of industry trends, and a solid sense of what's to come. A bloodhound when it comes to tracking information on new motorcycles, if there's a new model on the horizon, you'll probably hear about it from him first.

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  • Gjw1992 Gjw1992 on Jun 01, 2018

    Back end apart, it has similarities to the latest Tracer 900/900 GTs. Sharp yet high front end, contrasting body vs lower fairing paint scheme. Hope it is closer to a 900 and a little more output than the new 850s.

  • David Cardinal David Cardinal on Sep 10, 2018

    I love it! I looks like a great upgrade they could use for the XR next generation design as well. BTW, I have a 2016 XR with 9,000 miles and no problems with vibrations after the first 3k miles. It does look like a really long wheel base