BMW Motorrad India will be launching the BS6 derivatives of the G 310 R & G 310 GS very soon. Here's what's we expect from the new motorcycles in terms of features and equipment, while also trying to understand why they still won't come 'cheap', against the rumours doing the rounds.
BMW Motorrad will be launching the BS-VI compliant version of its entry-level motorcycles, the G 310 R and G 310 GS, in India soon. The updated versions of both the motorcycles are in the final phase of testing and are expected to reach the showroom floors in a couple of months – most likely by June/July 2020. We’ve come to know that the updated bikes were supposed to go on sale at an earlier date than that, but due to the ongoing Coronavirus crisis, the final developmental work on these motorcycles was stalled midway, and as a result, the launch has been pushed back by at least two months.
The new BMW G 310 R and G 310 GS may not make their public appearance in the coming few weeks, but there’s some good news. You see, the updated versions of these two motorcycles will feature some much-needed changes in terms of features and equipment, and, more importantly, they will even get a price revision, so as to make them a little more affordable than before.
So, what all features will the new G 310 twins pack? To start with, both the models will get full-LED headlamps in their 2020 update. There will also be some minor design updates, like sharper body panels and new paint schemes, but the styling will remain largely unchanged. The instrument cluster is expected to get a revamp as well, and while it’s not confirmed, we expect to see a colour TFT display on the new motorcycle. BMW may continue with the LCD display of the old motorcycle, but given the fact that its Indian cousin – the TVS Apache RR 310 – has gained a colour TFT display in its 2020 BS6 version, we’re hopeful that BMW will follow TVS’ footsteps here.
Like the 2020 Apache RR 310, the updated G 310 R & G 310 GS will come with a BS-VI compliant version of the same 312cc, single-cylinder, liquid-cooled engine. The power output and torque are expected to remain unchanged from the previous version, meaning the numbers should stand at 33.5bhp and 27.3Nm as earlier. The six-speed gearbox will be unchanged as well. The suspension setup is also expected to be left untouched in the new versions.
In the new Apache RR 310, we noticed the BS6 upgrade has made the engine a lot more refined than before. We expect to see a similar kind of improvement in the new G 310 R & G 310 GS. Having said that, in the past, we’ve always felt that despite having the same powertrain, the G 310 twins were a little more refined than the Apache RR 310. So with the BS6 engine upgrade, we expect the BMW to be slightly better again in terms of overall NVH levels.
The 2020 Apache RR 310 gets a ride-by-wire throttle, four riding modes, a slipper clutch and new Michelin Road 5 tyres. So, will the BMWs feature similar upgrades? We aren’t sure about this at the moment, but our sources have confirmed that ride-by-wire and slipper clutch may be included in the package this time. If you ask us, we think BMW shouldn’t skip these features in the updated models because these will put the G 310 twins at par with rivals in terms of features and equipment.
Will they be considerably cheaper?
The biggest surprise in the new motorcycle could be their revised pricing though – or, as we’ve been told, a 'price correction' is the better term for this. When BMW launched the G 310 twins in India in 2018, the bikes were heavily criticised for their high price tags – the G 310 R was priced at Rs 2.99 lakh (ex-showroom), while the G 310 GS was for Rs 3.49 lakh (ex-showroom). Not to mention, the aftersales service charges were also on the premium side, while their rivals were both sold and serviced at more affordable rates. All of these factors combined deterred a lot of prospective buyers, obviously.
With the new G 310 twins, BMW seemingly wants to ‘correct’ these mistakes and will price the motorcycles more aggressively. There’re rumours doing the rounds that the new models may get a price cut of close to Rs 75,000 (on-road), but our sources close to the matter tell us that that’s not going to be the case. A price cut of that proportion may be possible at the dealer level for an offer period, but don’t expect that to reflect in the sticker price of the new bikes. Instead, a price cut of around Rs 20,000-Rs 25,000 (ex-showroom) is a likely possibility.
Additionally, the price revision of Rs 75,000 or more is unwarranted because ever since their launch, the BMW G 310 twins have been, surprisingly, selling in decent numbers, as opposed to the common public belief. In its sales report for the first quarter of 2020, BMW Motorrad sold 1,024 motorcycles and they claim that around 80% of the sales were driven by G 310 series. Even in 2019, BMW Motorrad India sold over 2,400 bikes, more than 85% of which were G310 twins. And that, if you think about it, isn’t a bad number given the fact these motorcycles sell for a higher premium than their rivals and are only sold through a limited dealer network of 15 showrooms across the country!