TVS have just released the Apache RR 310, a lightweight sportsbike that should be big news for BMW fans. Eh – BMW? Back in 2013, the German brand struck a deal with Indian motorcycle manufacturer TVS to produce a range of small-capacity bikes. The first fruit born of that partnership was the BMW G310R (a baby S1000R) in 2016, followed by the G310GS (a baby R1200GS) earlier this year. So, the TVS Apache RR 310 is basically a G310RR (or a baby S1000RR) – it just hasn’t got any BMW badges. Yet.
Like the 310 range from BMW, the TVS is powered by a 312cc reverse single, which the firm say develops 33.7bhp @ 9700rpm and 20 ftlb of torque. These figures do differ slightly from those given by the Germans, which could be down to different fuel maps or some tactical rounding up. While the power figures are the same, the extra bodywork of the TVS means it weighs 170kg (wet), which is 11kg more than a standard G310R. That extra bodywork does make it more slippery, though, giving it a top speed of 99mph. The engine isn’t the only thing it shares.
Both the TVS and the BMW have the same frame; it just looks different near the footpegs, as TVS have done a great job of blending a classic, tubular-steel frame into the modern lines of a sportsbike. The subframe is different, though, to accommodate the new superbike-esque back end as well as the pillion pegs and exhaust bracket. A fair bit of the finishing kit is the same, too, including the wheels, KYB suspension (albeit tuned differently in the Apache) and ByBre brakes. Yet TVS haven’t stood still; there have been some significant changes elsewhere to turn this into a proper little superbike.
For a start, the controls are all different, so it’s got rearsets, clip-ons and a higher saddle, all of which give a much sportier riding position. It’s also got a different dash, which is vertical rather than horizontal and generally looks more modern than BMW’s slabby one.
It’s also stuffed full of tech that gives 18 different bike diagnostics as well as the ability to view post-ride analysis. The Michelin Street Sport tyres are new, and TVS has even designed a fresh thermal-management system, whose special fairing gills protect the legs from the reverse-cylinder engine’s extra heat. Nerds might have also spotted the wavy discs, but the most interesting part is a new set of yokes that are a direct copy of those fitted to BMW’s S1000RR. That’s either an outrageous patent infringement or an obvious sign that there’s a G310RR on the way.
Cut to the chase
Will we see the Apache in the UK? It’s unlikely – but it’s a sure bet that we’ll see a G310RR in the not-too-distant future. In India, the Apache is priced the same as a made-in-India KTM RC390 (£5199 over here), so we’d expect the BMW to be a similar price. It might not be too far away, either, as BMW’s current trend of ‘one a year’ would make this prime for release in summer 2018. The only issue the brand might have is that delays to this project may mean by the time the RR version is released, the competition will have moved on again.
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