BMW has given us a sneak peek at their next-generation R nineT, which they’ve now named the R12 nineT. They recently obtained type approval in Europe for this bike, alongside another version simply called the R12, which seems to take on a more cruiser-style approach.
These type-approval documents provide us with essential details about the bikes’ dimensions, performance, and weights. Surprisingly, the R12 nineT won’t be more powerful than its predecessor, and the R12 falls even further behind in terms of performance.
The R12 nineT, shown in the images released by BMW, continues the neo-retro roadster theme that the R nineT introduced. It blends modern suspension and brakes with BMW’s traditional air-cooled boxer twin. The design pays homage to the past, particularly the R90S from the 1970s. This is why they’ve retained the “nineT” name, originally created to celebrate 90 years of BMW motorcycle production. Even though BMW has been making motorcycles for a full century now, with the first being the R32 in 1923, the “nineT” name has become well-established over the last decade.
In terms of specifications, the sportier R12 nineT, according to its type-approval information, produces 107 horsepower at 7,000 rpm from its 1,170cc air-cooled boxer twin. This output is essentially the same as the previous model, albeit with a slightly lower rev range. Torque peaks at 85 lb.-ft. at 6,500 rpm, which is very close to the current-generation bike, but this time it peaks 500 rpm higher.
For Europe, BMW will also offer a detuned version of the R12 nineT with 94 horsepower to comply with the region’s A2 license laws. These laws allow bikes with up to 94 horsepower, which can then be further restricted to 47 horsepower for less experienced riders. These restrictions can be lifted once riders obtain their full motorcycle licenses. A ready-restricted 47 horsepower version of the R12 nineT has also received type approval.
The non-nineT “R12” model has only been type-approved in 94 horsepower and 47 horsepower versions, with no full-powered, 107 horsepower variant. The 94 horsepower model peaks at 6,500 rpm and reaches a maximum torque of 81 lb.-ft. at 6,000 rpm. In contrast, the restricted 47 horsepower version maxes out at 5,250 rpm and produces only 72 lb.-ft. of torque, peaking at just 3,000 rpm. The top speeds of these bikes align with their power outputs. The R12 nineT is the fastest, reaching 134 mph, while the 94 horsepower version manages 130 mph. The R12 falls slightly behind, topping out at 126 mph, and the restricted 47 horsepower versions of both bikes max out at around 100 mph.
The R12 nineT’s dimensions show that it’s an inch longer than its predecessor at 83.8 inches, with nearly identical width and a slight height difference at 42.1 inches. Another variant measures 43.9 inches tall, suggesting the availability of an optional cowl. Both the R12 and R12 nineT share the same twin-exit exhaust system, and their weights are quite similar, with the R12 nineT weighing 489 pounds and the R12 weighing 505 pounds.
The most noticeable difference between the two bikes is their wheel and tire sizes, indicating the R12 adopts a more cruiser-style stance. The standard R12 nineT retains the same wheel sizes as the current model, while the R12 switches to narrower wheels—a 19-inch front and a 16-inch rear. This change suggests a cruiser orientation. Furthermore, the R12 is longer than the R12 nineT, indicating extended rear bodywork.