BMW G310R – Novice Friendly Naked Roadster

The smallest of BMW’s line up and most definitely a motorcycle targeting novice riders, the G 310 R is a really beautiful looking naked roadster without the scary power that can get a beginner into trouble.  

In this article I will cover all you need to know about the BMW G 310 R. Let’s get started.

Table of Contents

BMW G310R is a novice friendly naked roadster
Image via BMW Motorrad

BMW G310R Review

The G 310 R was the first of BMW’s collaboration with TVS and the joint mission to bring in a new range of motorcycles for new riders and also for markets like India where small capacity machines are desired. 

As it turns out along with Ducati and their Scrambler Sixty2; BMW was ahead of the game with small bikes as that is where the trend is currently heading around the world with Royal Enfield, Triumph and Harley Davidson all heading in that direction. 

The G 310 R was quickly followed by the G 310 GS which both share the same engine but are based on different bigger popular models in the line-up, the BMW Roadster and GS series. 

Met with both anticipation and suspicion, many didn’t know what to expect from the new BMW. Would it be up to the usual quality, would it be expensive, would it still feel like a BMW motorcycle? The bike was to be manufactured in India, surely therefore, it would lack something that BMW riders came to expect from the German institution. 

Well, many like me turned up to see the new BMW and were nicely surprised at the styling, parts used and seemingly premium (albeit smaller) machine that lay before us. While manufactured in India, the German design team and engineers in Munich didn’t fail to meet expectations with the G 310 R before sending it out for production. Every detail was thought about, but more on that later.

The 2021 BMW G 310 R has received a tune up and now is fully compliant with Euro 5 regulations which should also satisfy the US emissions regulations; other changes since its release are subtle with styling tweaks.

Cycle World writer Don Canet likely gave BMW one of their most satisfactory statements “The lightweight, nimble handling, attractively styled G 310 R will naturally appeal to novice riders. Having a firsthand look at its superb build quality along with spending a day in the saddle, I’m pleased to report that the fun-to-ride nature of the BMW single-cylinder sport naked isn’t lost on this seasoned enthusiast.”

BMW insisted that the G 310 R was for every rider and naturally US reviewers would put the small bike in the entry-level category; but much like Don, many riders of all capabilities and experience reported glowing reviews about the bike. Mission Accomplished.

Styling wise it is a looker and I don’t think it is badly priced at all (see prices later on). For the money quality oozes out of the Roadster, from clean welds, quality castings, heavy grips and bar ends that are far from flimsy and the plastic bodywork is incredibly precise and machined to fit perfectly. 

The LCD Dash greets the rider with a host of functions such as tachometer, speedo, gear indicator and a shift light (perfect detail for new riders). BMW logos dotted around add to the premium feel of the bike from the badges on the tank to the one near the ignition. 

A little nod to the gold forks and standard red, white and blue paint work screams BMW racing (if you are like me that throws in the cool factor).

Something riders really appreciate is a comfortable ride and the G 310 R provides that. A natural riding position and the seat is wide with plenty of room to shift around, it is actually one of the most comfortable motorcycle seats I’ve sat on. Wide bars give you complete control and your visibility is great being upright and ready for anything the road throws at you. 

New riders especially will appreciate the smooth gear selection, light clutch lever and gentle but capable throttle that gets the power stirred up to move you in stop/start traffic, or on the open road. 

One complaint that comes up is the distance between the grip and clutch (and brake) lever, it can be a stretch for small hands, and while being light to pull, the distance can be tiring. Aftermarket levers are available however and as easy fix. 

A second point is that the gear selection is very smooth but as a result some riders can struggle to find neutral easily missing it on the way down or up. The gear indicator light should help with this, but shouldn’t be relied on, practice and time will sort this problem out for most. 

Cycle World took the motorcycle on the freeway and said “The claimed peak output of 34 horsepower at 9500 rpm proved easily capable of keeping up with fast lane Hollywood Freeway flow.”

At higher speeds the bike can vibrate a bit but in normal riding conditions off the freeway it is smooth as is the power delivery. 

Handling is intuitive and lightweight. The bike is lighter than it looks physically which makes it very easy to maneuver; however, the frame is solid which is always confidence boosting.

ABS comes as standard which is great for reassurance particularly for novice riders. 

Something quite cool about BMW Motorcycles is their riding academies/training schools for both on road and off-road riding. I have put the links below for the UK and US sites for you to look at. 

If you are a new rider and are looking at the G 310 R, heading to BMW for your training might be a good idea for you to learn on BMW bikes and get to grips with the way they handle. 

There were training packages in the UK for both the G 310 R and G 310 GS, where if you bought one, the road to your license was included in the pack (or was discounted) and you got a bundle of BMW riding kit. It’s not a bad way to get on the road with a new license and your own motorcycle.

Going on down the line into the training you could look at track training and even off-road handling like on the BMW GS line of bikes. Learning to ride off-road on big bikes is a sure fire way to learn how to ride better overall and have a lot of fun in the process. Who doesn’t want to be like Charlie Boorman and Ewan Mcgregor in Long Way Up, Down, Sideways and every other way round?

More info at these links: BMW US Rider AcademyBMW Rider Training UK

BMW G 310 R Specs

Technical Data:

  • Engine – 4 stroke, Liquid-cooled, single-cylinder engine with four valves, two overhead camshafts and wet sump lubrication
  • 313 cc
  • 34 horsepower at 9,250rpm
  • 20.6 ft-lbs at 7,500rpm (27Nm)
  • Compression Ratio – 10.9:1
  • Electronic Fuel Injection

Transmission:

  • Clutch – Multi-Disc Oil Self-Reinforcing Slipper Clutch
  • 6 Speed Gearbox
  • Final X-Chain Drive

Chassis/Brakes:

  • Tubular Space Frame
  • Inverted Front Fork
  • Cast aluminum dual swing arm, central spring strut, spring pre-load adjustable
  • Wheelbase – 53.4”
  • Wheels – Cast Aluminium
  • Front Brake – Single Disc
  • Rear Brake – Single Disc
  • BMW Motorrad ABS

Dimensions/Weight:

  • Seat Height: Standard – 30.9”; Low – 30.3”; High – 31.5” (2 seat options available as genuine accessories to cater for riders of different heights)
  • Inner Leg Curve – 69.2” (Standard Seat)
  • 2.9 Gallon Tank
  • Total Length – 78.9”
  • Height – 42.5”
  • Width – 33.4”
  • Weight, with fuel etc. ready to ride – 362lbs

Standard equipment:

  • BMW Motorrad ABS
  • Electric throttle Ride by wire
  • Stainless steel exhaust system
  • Aluminum swingarm
  • LED headlight, tail light and LED indicators
  • Adjustable brake- and clutch levers

Optional accessories:

  • Low seat
  • High seat
  • Luggage rack
  • Topcase Light
  • Topcase 7.9 gal.
  • Heated grips
  • 12 V power outlet and USB charging socket

Color Options

  • Cosmic Black
  • Sport Style – White, Red and Blue
  • Style Passion – Limestone Metallic, White, Red
  • Polar White – discontinued for 2021

Specs as per BMW Motorrad

BMW G 310 R in red white and blue

BMW G 310 R Top Speed

There is some discrepancy online about just how fast the G 310 R will go with BMW claiming 89mph but some test riders and owner have both reported 5mph either side of that figure. 

It is safe to say the BMW G 310 R isn’t built to set the road on fire and won’t be setting any records, simply because the target audience is the novice rider. 

If you bear that in mind with your purchase you won’t be disappointed; on most roads being able to hit 80mph comfortably for overtaking on the motorway/highway (which is generally above the legal limit in most places) and cruising steadily at 70mph will be more than satisfactory for most riders in most conditions.

Zeroto60times has recorded a 2019 G 310 R at doing 0-60mph in 6.0 seconds flat and the standing quarter mile down as doing it in 15.1 seconds. 

These figures aren’t too shabby, for comparison the Kawasaki Ninja 400 shaves just 2 seconds off both of those times and the model has a bigger engine capacity and being a Ninja naturally lends itself to a more race specific tuning. 

How Much is a BMW G310R?

UK Pricing:

2021 New: £4,785

Used: There are multiple adverts currently online with 2018 machines priced £2,700 with only around 2000 miles on them. The average used prices seem to be from £2,500-£3,000. 

USA Pricing:

2021 New: $5,045

Used: In contrast to the UK, the G 310 R seems to have depreciated less since it’s release and has held on to a bit more of its value. 2018 editions with similar mileage are selling for $4,700. 

Also worth noting that in the US there are plenty around as far back as the 2018 model year that are brand new, no-miles bikes. This suggests that dealers have struggled to sell – perhaps down to the machine being a small capacity machine and not as popular as similar capacity dirt bikes. 

With that said there is more of leniency to smaller machines that has been seen over the last year or two and therefore along with similar capacity bikes it is possible that the US will follow on with this trend, particularly for new riders!

India Pricing:

2021 Base Model New: ₹ 2,50,000

Used: ₹ 2,60,000 up to ₹ 3,00,000

There are quite a few G 310 R motorcycles for sale in India with up to 8,000km and they are on par with a 2021 pricing. Some of this can be accounted for by the used bikes having been upgraded with modifications and BMW extras.

It also says a lot about its popularity in India compared with the UK and US. If a motorcycle maintains its value and still sells despite some miles being added to the clock, it is fair to say BMW has a winner in that market. 

Where is the BMW G310R Made?

The BMW G 310 R is manufactured in TVS Motor Company’s Hosur plant in India. 

In 2013 BMW announced they would be working with TVS to produce a series of smaller capacity motorcycles below 500cc’s. 

The G 310 R was originally designed and engineered in Munich, Germany before going into production for worldwide markets in India.

Is the BMW G310R a Good Bike?

The BMW G 310 R is not a speed machine, not even close, but it isn’t meant to be.

Infact, when researching its reliability the complaint that came up most was about its power output, which isn’t a reliability issue or a mechanical one. The fact is it isn’t meant to be a lightning fast machine, if it was, well it would defy the point of being made for it’s targeted audience. 

It is comfortable, fun, premium quality, capable, and priced competitively. Not sure what more you need out of a motorcycle really? Therefore, in my book it not just a good motorcycle, but a pretty damn good one. 

Is the BMW G310R Reliable?

I tried really hard to find an issue with the G310R on forums and owner groups etc. The fact is the G 310 R may be a collaborative effort but the quality is BMW through and through. 

There are hardly any complaints about its reliability, those that do exist have been covered under warranty without any issues from BMW. 

Therefore I would suggest that it is a safe bet in terms of reliability. 

Verdict

I actually considered a BMW G 310 R for myself as top-speed doesn’t matter to me and small bikes are my favourite. They are incredibly comfortable machines (I am 5ft 8”) and the seating position inspires a lot of confidence with the wide bars. 

It is still in the running for my: have some fun, pretend to be a young hooligan and look good while riding, motorcycle. 

Plus it’s a beemer and they can do wrong in my eyes (except the prices sometimes). 

If I was a new, young rider again or advising one, I think the G 310 R is a great choice and the used prices (particularly in the UK) aren’t much more than some 125/250s. It certainly feels like and looks like a big motorcycle, without the scary unmanageable power and is sure to put a smile on your face.

BMW G310R - Novice Friendly Naked Roadster

Related Posts

Leave a comment