With adventure bikes being the two-wheeled equivalents of popular sport utility vehicles (SUVs), in both sales and fashion, it’s no surprise BMW’s latest off-road themed bike has been eagerly awaited.
The G 310 GS is the smallest-capacity, and least expensive BMW adventure bike to date with a 313cc, single-cylinder engine and on-the-road (OTR) retail price of $21,800.
It debuted at BMW Motorrad’s Grand Slam event, held on 7-8 April, 2018 at the Sarimbun Scout Camp on 70 Jalan Bahtera.
Above: Mr Horst Herdtle, Managing Director of Performance Motors Ltd, and company.
“With the new G 310 GS and our Grand Slam event, we are aiming to deliver the BMW Motorrad GS experience first hand to a new segment of riders, and it’s also one of the many customer engagement events and activities we have organised for 2018,” said Mr Horst Herdtle, managing director of Performance Motors Limited, the official dealer for BMW and BMW Motorrad in Singapore.
BMW’s hot new crossover was also at the Grand Slam event – read our review of the new BMW X2 (above right)
Preceding the Grand Slam event was a smaller, more intimate ‘mini-rideaway’ event called Muck Rush.
A group of 46 participants (BMW Motorrad owners/customers plus their families) enjoyed a short intra-Singapore rideaway to the site on April 7, camping overnight in tents.
April 8 saw the Grand Slam Sunday event with roughly 200 attendees at the full-day event. Participants could test the new G 310 GS, R nine T Scrambler, or even their own personal bikes on a short off-road obstacle course.
Also on site were merchandise stalls for riding gear and accessories, including Hodaka Motoworld (agent for HJC helmets, Komine and RS Taichi riding apparel and much more) and Metzeler tyres.
The launch of the G 310 GS represents an all-new segment for BMW as a Class 2A-friendly adventure bike, and is aimed at bringing new riders to the German brand, including members of the fairer sex.
“I’m 157cm tall, which makes really big bikes hard to handle for me, but the G 310 GS is more manageable. I liked that the bike was easy to handle, it’s nimble and light, and the power delivery is quite smooth for a single-cylinder engine,” said Ms Meow Lim, 33 (above, second from the left) who tested the bike in the short off-road course.
That message seems to have already succeeded on one level, judging from the strong turnout of ladies at the event. Female ridership, both in Singapore and around the world, has been growing steadily as events such as the Belle Moto charity ride show.
The 313cc single-cylinder machine follows the G 310 R model, launched last year and reviewed positively by us, but as the ‘GS’ (gelande/strasse, or offroad/street) label suggests, it has more off-road styling and purpose.
It uses the same 34hp, rev-happy single cylinder engine from the G 310 R of course, though the chassis and styling is very different. Visually it’s in the same vein as other GS models, with the usual signatures such as a tall stance, ‘beak’ front fender and sharp side-shrouds.
The overall geometry is more relxaed, there’s long travel suspension, a 19-inch front wheel and chunky off-road style pegs.
As an entry-level machine it has less advanced features than its brethren, but dual-channel ABS – which can be deactivated for off-roading – is standard.
Having tested the G 310 R and found it tractable, fast and easy to ride, and with a very smooth single cylinder engine, we expect good things from the G 310 GS.
Also present at the event was the latest version of the R 1200 GS. The top of the GS range, and BMW’s most popular bike around the world, the bike (in both standard and Adventure variants) receives new connectivity and infotainment capabilities.
There’s new 6.5-inch full colour TFT screen and rotary dial on the left handlebar. Rider and passenger can pair their Bluetooth intercoms to the head unit, as well as a smartphone with the BMW Motorrad Connected app to provide music streaming and navigation services.