A More Powerful BMW R18 in the Works?

The BMW R18 has been enjoying successful sales numbers worldwide, if not in Malaysia, since its launch in 2020. However, is there going to be a more powerful BMW R18 in the works to rival the Ducati Diavel and Triumph Rocket 3?

All this talk began after the new BMW Motorrad CEO, Markus Flasch posted a teaser on his Instagram post. Flasch has said before that he is very enthusiastic about motorsports in a recent interview about whether the German automotive giant will enter MotoGP. And in the photo, we see him grinning about something under a cover, besides adding the caption “There is something big coming…”


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A post shared by Markus Flasch (@markusflasch)

Although there is not much we can derive from that photo, we can see than the bike’s rear wheel hub and swingarm. Firstly, the swingarm of the current R18 consists of welded steel sections. From Flasch’s post, we can see that the top run of the swingarm is boxed aluminium, while the bottom is a large steel tube bolted onto the hub. Apart from that, the angle of the universal joint of the driveshaft has a different angle.

As such, it shows an articulated (moving) hub akin to the GS series, rather than a fixed hub like the current R18’s.

Next, the rear wheel is different altogether and it appears to hold a much larger tyre. The Diavel and Rocket 3 are both wearing 240mm section tyres and this prototype BMW may seem so, too. As such, the engine needs a lot of torque and power to support that big shoe, hence will BMW hot-rod the R18’s engine?

BMW has some tinkering to do since the Diavel’s engine does 168hp, while Triumph moved the goal post by giving the Rocket 3 Storm 180hp. But BMW can surely do something.

Wahid's lust for motorcycles was spurred on by his late-Dad's love for his Lambretta on which he courted, married his mother, and took baby Wahid riding on it. He has since worked in the motorcycle and automotive industry for many years, before taking up riding courses and testing many, many motorcycles since becoming a motojournalist. Wahid likes to see things differently. What can you say about a guy who sees a road safety message in AC/DC's "Highway to Hell."

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