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ADV NewsSpy Shots Reveal More Off-Road Oriented BMW R NineTs In The Works

Spy Shots Reveal More Off-Road Oriented BMW R NineTs In The Works

Next-gen Scrambler and G/S variants set to get more serious in the dirt.

Published on 08.09.2021
Judging by spy shots recently published by MCN, things are about to get a lot more interesting in BMW’s R nineT stable, particularly for those of us who might be interested in a nostalgically-styled BMW that comes with modern off-road focused amenities.  

In the photos we find two of BMW’s four current R nineT variants, the Scrambler and the Urban G/S, in the midst of receiving off-road oriented updates, the most obvious of which are the addition of more dirt-compliant, 21” spoked front rims, replacing the standard 19” cast wheels on the current variants. 

But the fun doesn’t stop there, especially for the G/S edition which looks to have had its header pipes and oil cooler gathered higher and tucked for enhanced clearance and protection from stirred up rocks and dirt. The test mules are even wearing a bit of sludge up their fronts, as if to affirm their dirty intentions.  

The Urban G/S had already added some off-road accents, such as the rugged hand guards and higher Scrambler-style dual muffler exhaust, when it was updated for 2021. On these test mules there are several additional adventure-ready bits, such as more rugged levers and footpegs, including what look like removable passenger footpeg sets. Both seats appear to be new, too, with the G/S’s bench-style seat looking rally-ready.


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Changes for both the Scrambler edition and Urban G/S in 2021 had already included a revised rear shock, standard ABS Pro (cornering ABS) and an extended range of standard and customizable equipment, including a Dirt Mode option within the extra-price Ride Modes Pro electronic upgrade, which delays actuation of the bike’s Automatic Stability Control (ASC) and Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) for greater pilot control when you’re navigating loose road surfaces.

Current Urban G/S and Scrambler suspension (a traditional non-adjustable telescopic fork with 4.9” of travel and adjustable rear mono shock offering 5.5” of travel) seems to have also been revised for more legginess, with the G/S variant expected to receive the biggest increase.

The G/S version retains its classic plastic headlamp nacelle and high front fender while the Scrambler in the photos carries over its streety bobbed front fender and naked headlamp. BMW’s Scrambler and Urban G/S are pointed directly at Triumph’s base model Scrambler 1200 XC and its more off-road focused XE stablemate. 

And while the Urban G/S will definitely catch the eye of the nostalgic shopper, it could easily become the sweetheart of more adventure-minded buyers who are fans of BMW’s practical knowledge and advanced engineering and technology, but would like a taste of it in a more classically styled package. 

Aside from the reworked headers on the G/S there is no sign the R nineT’s 1,170cc oil-cooled boxer engine will see major changes, especially since it received new cylinder heads, valve components and a new turbulence system for 2021, changes made to support an even more robust midrange. The mill currently offers a peak 109 hp at 7,250 rpm and 86 ft-lbs of torque at 6,000 rpm. 

While scrambler-style bikes have been culturally cool since the days of Steve McQueen and The Great Escape, the modern ones have tended to be more style than substance…at least if you’re thinking of jumping them over fences and racing across roadless landscapes, as shown in the movie scenes that made them famous in the first place. 

But add some modern off-road capability to that classic rebel vibe and keep it priced in reach of all the would-be McQueens in the world and BMW just might have a winner (or two) on its hands.   

Photos: MCN

Author: Jamie Elvidge

Jamie has been a motorcycle journalist for more than 30 years, testing the entire range of bikes for the major print magazines and specializing in adventure-travel related stories. To date she’s written and supplied photography for articles describing what it’s like to ride in all 50 states and 43 foreign countries, receiving two Lowell Thomas Society of American Travel Writer’s Awards along the way. Her most-challenging adventure yet has been riding in the 2018 GS Trophy in Mongolia as Team AusAmerica’s embedded journalist.

Author: Jamie Elvidge
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5 thoughts on “Spy Shots Reveal More Off-Road Oriented BMW R NineTs In The Works

  1. Pingback: Spy Shots Reveal More Off-Road Oriented BMW R NineTs In The Works - ADVENTURE & OVERLAND MOTORCYCLE TRAVEL

  2. Pingback: Off-Road : Spy Shots Reveal More Off-Road Oriented BMW R NineTs In The Works - ADV Pulse - K레이서97

  3. Good news but the pictures show why people like me (over 185cm) look on this bike as if it was washed too hot: It’s just to small and they aren’t going to change it. Regards from Germany, Oliver

  4. Pingback: Photos Suggest A BMW R nineT Adventure Bike May Happen - Should It? - Adventure Rider

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