IF ever a bike was prime for café-racerising it’s the R nineT – and BMW has finally got the memo.
The R nineT Racer is one of two new iterations of the boxer-engined retro bike, the other being a new naked version called the R nineT Pure.
The Racer benefits from a frame-mounted half-fairing, a seat hump and rear-sets, and styling intended to evoke memories of 1970s sports bikes, not least BMW’s R90 S.
The Pure is a ‘roadster reduced to the essentials’ according to BMW.
Both have more in common with the R nineT Scrambler than the more-expensive first model in the range, (originally called the R nineT, then the R nineT Roadster and now listed on BMW’s website as simply the R nineT again).
Like the Scrambler, the new Racer and Pure have conventional forks and four-pot Brembo front brake calipers instead of the upside-down Öhlins and radial-mounted Monobloc calipers found on R nineT.
Both of course have the 1170cc air/cooled boxer-twin engine that characterises the range, making 110hp and now meeting Euro4 emission limits (just in time for Brexit).
They also share the ‘modular’ tubular steel frame of the Scrambler, consisting of three separate sections – a front main frame, rear main frame and removable pillion frame – to allow individual customisation, for example with a range of different seats.
But they ditch the Scrambler’s 19-inch front wheel in favour of more road-oriented 17-inch cast-alloys at both ends, with wire-spoked ones available as an option.
Both also get a new upswept stainless steel two-into-one exhaust, which BMW says reflects the styling of café racers and roadsters of the ‘60s and ‘70s. The Racer’s has a polished finish while the Pure’s is brushed.
The new exhaust is one of a number of alterations to achieve Euro4 compliances, which also include a new engine map and larger catalytic converter.
BMW’s traction control, called Automatic Stability Control, comes as an option, while ABS is of course standard.
Both have ‘high-end’ styling details according to BMW, including fork bridges and footrests in forged, clear anodised aluminium.
The R nineT Pure comes in non-metallic grey while the Racer comes in a white and multi-coloured paint scheme ‘reminiscent of past BMW Motorsport colours', with the frame in aluminium silver’.
They were revealed today at the Intermot motorcycle show in Cologne, Germany, with price to be confirmed.
Here's a walkaround video of the new R nineT Racer: