Whenever we run a story about a big adventure-touring motorcycle, some readers always comment that they'd buy something like that it if were smaller. Well, now's your chance.
In addition to the Honda CRF250 Rally unveiled yesterday, the expected ADV addition to the BMW 310 line was revealed at the EICMA show today: the BMW G 310 GS.
With a clear family resemblance to the R 1200 GS, the smallest BMW adventure bike is being positioned by BMW both as a way for newer riders to get into the BMW line at a more accessible price point while still getting the BMW name and the ADV styling. The G line is built in India and is aimed at giving BMW a chance at bigger sales in other world markets, but I expect the G 310 GS will come to the United States, as well.
On to the specs. We've seen the 313 cc four-valve single before on the G 310 R street bike. Power runs through a six-speed transmission and chain final drive. BMW says the weight, fully fueled, is 374 pounds. The GS version adds ADV ergonomics and 110/80R19 front and 150/70R17 rear tire sizes so you can go more street or more dirt, depending on your riding environment. Touches like the removable rubber inserts in the rider footpegs reinforce that versatility, but don't get too carried away. Those tires are mounted on cast aluminum wheels, not spoked wheels, so this bike looks to me like something that would probably work great for navigating the urban jungle, but less adept at dragging you through a real jungle.
Switchable ABS is standard, as is the rear luggage rack, which can accommodate a BMW top box. All that makes it sound like a motorcycle I probably wouldn't choose for riding across Russia's Road of Bones, but it would be great for slipping through the traffic of Mumbai or Saigon or Lima in style, and then riding into the mountains on the weekend. I'm sure that's what BMW has in mind, too. Let's hope a few of them end up in some U.S. cities, too.