BMW has just filled another trademark application surrounding the R 12 name, this time an “S” was attached to the end of it which prompts a bunch of theories and speculation as to where BMW will be taking its model lineup in the future.
Previously, BMW filed a trademark application for the name “R 12,” which was initially and still thought to be a cruiser with a “smaller” displacement engine compared to the likes of the huge R 18. The R 12 name was registered by BMW in the U.S., Japan, Australia, and Germany. The application was accepted on February 17, 2022, and from June 2022 onwards, BMW has the right to use that name until 2031, subject to renewal and extension.
Back then, the thought was that BMW would give the R1200C a proper successor, and judging by the format of the name, it appears that the new model could follow in the R 18’s design. However, new evidence suggests that there is more to the R 12 name than another cruiser from the brand.
“R 12 S” was trademarked and as far as S models go in the BMW lineup, the S will tell you that it is going to be a “sporty” model, possibly with fairings. The application for the R 12 S name was made on October 18, 2022, which several sources picked up on and made stories around.
Gallery: 2021 BMW R 18 Classic
Sources like Motorcycle.com speculated that the application points to an R NineT successor because of that “S.” Their theory is that the R NineT will get a new platform citing that the letter “R” followed by only two numbers is akin to the R 18’s format, which is also shared with other historic models from the German marque’s portfolio.
As such, it’s likely that the new R 12 and R 12 S will be retro-inspired models with a displacement of about 1,200ccs. On top of this, the R NineT’s model was introduced on the 90th anniversary of BMW Motorrad, which was back in 2013. Next year would be the brand’s 100th-year anniversary and “R TenT” is just plain weird to say. Thus a more sane name is to be expected, R 12.
Other sources like Cycle World are speculating that the “S” could just mean that the R 12 will get a snazzier version of the base model in the lineup. Without going too deep into speculations, it seems that the story could go either way. Whether BMW releases a successor to its R NineT is still up in the air. Nobody knows for certain yet, well except for BMW themselves, of course.