BMW R 18 Transcontinental v/s Harley-Davidson Street Glide Special
German bikemaker BMW Motorrad has launched the R 18 Transcontinental variant in India at Rs. 31.5 lakh (ex-showroom). At that price point, the full-sized cruiser rivals the Street Glide Special model from the US-based iconic marque Harley-Davidson, on our shores. With factory-fitted panniers and a top rack, which one of these two is a better long-distance tourer?
Why does this story matter?
- Harley-Davidson has always been the first choice for people looking for a comfortable long-distance touring motorcycle in recent years.
- However, BMW Motorrad has also entered the niche motorcycle segment with its newest offering, the R 18 Transcontinental, which features a similar-looking batwing-styled front fairing and a potent 1,802cc, twin-cylinder engine.
- But can the European newcomer upset the US-based reigning champion?
BMW R 18 Transcontinental looks more visually appealing
BMW R 18 Transcontinental features a teardrop-shaped fuel tank with double pinstripes, a batwing-styled front fairing, a round LED headlamp, designer alloy wheels, a stepped-up seat, and dual exhaust tips. Harley-Davidson Street Glide Special packs a muscular fuel tank, a large front fairing, a circular LED headlight, designer alloy wheels, a stepped-up seat, and twin side-mounted exhausts. Both bikes get a semi-digital instrument console.
Harley-Davidson Street Glide Special has a more powerful engine
BMW R 18 Transcontinental draws power from a 1,802cc, air/oil-cooled, boxer-twin engine that generates a maximum power of 91hp and a peak torque of 158Nm. Harley-Davidson Street Glide Special is backed by a larger 1,868cc, air-cooled, 'Milwaukee-Eight 114,' V-twin engine that generates a maximum power of 112hp and a peak torque of 168Nm. Transmission duties on both motorcycles are handled by a 6-speed gearbox.
Both motorcycles are equipped with disc brakes
In terms of the safety of the rider, the BMW R 18 Transcontinental and Harley-Davidson Street Glide Special come equipped with disc brakes on both the front and rear wheels, along with dual-channel ABS and traction control. The suspension duties on both cruise motorcycles are taken care of by telescopic forks on the front side and a mono-shock absorber unit on the rear end.
Which one should you buy?
In India, the BMW R 18 Transcontinental will set you back by Rs. 31.50 lakh, while the Harley-Davidson Street Glide Special can be yours at Rs. 34 lakh (all prices, ex-showroom). In our opinion, you should definitely look at the BMW R 18 Transcontinental if want a capable long-distance touring motorcycle with comfortable riding characteristics and a capable engine under Rs. 35 lakh.