So drives the new BMW R 18 Transcontinental

uAt a quarter past ten in the morning, the cliché has already become a reality. Bayern 1 unleashes AC / DC, Highway to Hell, as the thick R 18 Transcontinental rolls south on the Autobahn and gradually leaves Munich behind. Highway to Karwendel.

The bass is raised slightly so that the 280-watt Marshall system with its subwoofers can demonstrate what the sound pressure is. The formidable audio system, which on this car has been upgraded to the maximum surcharge with speakers not only in the front paneling but also in the side cases and in the top case, asserts itself against traffic and wind noises even at 120 km / h. Although adaptive cruise control maintains an even distance from the vehicle in front, there is not much more to do than sit, listen and breathe evenly. And maybe put your feet forward to relax, like Americans do when they ride their Harleys across the prairie and say hello to the bison.

Since the typical American way of stretching the feet forward is in principle impossible due to the locking cylinders of the typical German boxer engine, BMW had to use all its development experience. The solution: legrest. These are huge chrome parts, costing 400 euros, which are mounted above the cylinder. From a hip standpoint, it is a challenge to maneuver your legs and feet from the footpegs, around the cylinders, on the over-positioned leg rests, but what needs to be done, has to be.

A super tourer with all the bells and whistles

As the Transcontinental roars into the sun, we ponder for miles whether the bending of the body caused by the use of the legrests should be described as haphazard or cramped. Until the thought process is finally interrupted by the sight of the first heavy clouds in the distance.

The R 18 Transcontinental is the fourth heavier and more expensive variant of the still young classic series with a specially created huge two-cylinder boxer engine. A complete dresser, as the Ami says, a super tourer with all the bells and whistles: cinema screen in the passenger compartment, heated comfort seat, automatic load compensation, hill start assistance, central locking, turning light with rotating module , just to name a few examples – some standard, some optional. BMW has created this bike for markets around the world, but especially for the American one.

Weatherproof: Airtight bulkheads, heating on, let's go.

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BMW R 18 Transcontinental

As is known, Harley-Davidson dominates the cruiser market there and the Indian also plays a role. To be able to attack us, BMW has the upper hand with an equipment without gaps, a workmanship and an attention to detail that touches the limits of madness. Also for the choice of screws that hold the brand’s badges on the tank, they looked around in the collection of historic motorcycles of the company. As previously reported, fanaticism of this type abounds in the four types of R-18s.

According to tradition, only a boxer engine was suitable for this series, constant iron for almost 100 years. As decades ago, its cardan shaft on the rear wheel rotates openly and offers a wonderful sight. This combination embodies the soul of blue and white motorcycle construction, like the 45-degree V-twin in the case of Harley-Davidson. Unfortunately, many Americans don’t understand this. Unknowingly on YouTube, they wonder why the cylinders are positioned exactly where your feet extend while browsing. They think it’s a design flaw, the Philistines.

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