For 2021 BMW has given two of its most popular roadster models a fresh new update to bring them into the new decade with a bang.
Starting with the pint-sized hero of the BMW lineup, the G310R, BMW has given its most affordable model a visual update for 2021 in the form of new plastics and lighting.
The 313cc single-cylinder heart retains its 34hp of peak power, but for 2021 now boasts Euro 5 homologation and a new so-called "electronic throttle grip" which now offers an even more sensitive throttle response.
An automatic idle speed increase when starting also prevents a possible sudden stalling of the engine while the self-boosting anti-hopping clutch is also new. The new clutch reduces engine drag torque and provides a significant increase in rider safety - particularly in the case of learners adjusting to using the clutch during braking manoeuvres involving simultaneous downshifting. As a side benefit the new clutch also offers significantly reduced operating forces at the clutch lever – which now along with the brake lever is a 4-way adjustable unit. In the first position, BMW says the levers are now 6mm closer to the bars which will come as a relief for those among us with short fingers.
Most noticeably, the headlight has been upgraded to an LED unit as well to reflect the R1250R while the indicators have also received the LED treatment.
For those looking for more than the G310R’s single cylinder of power, BMW has also given the S1000R a full revamp for 2021 as well.
While 34hp is ample for pootling around town, the S1000R’s 165hp comes straight from its S1000RR and, with after going on a diet and losing a total of 5kg (wouldn’t we all like to lose at least that much?) the S1000R’s wet weight comes in at just 199kg, which should make for quite the performer. This can be further reduced with the BMW M package which swaps out the wheels for either forged or carbon fibre units and drops the weight another 4.8kg.
The frame and swingarm are based on the S 1000 RR and have been made considerably lighter than the outgoing model. At the same time, the engine in the so-called “Flex Frame” takes on a much greater supporting function than before as a stressed member.
The new frame is also narrower which BMW says has reduced the motorcycle’s width in the area of the knee contact area, which makes for a more relaxed riding position with even more freedom of movement.
The underslung swingarm has been pinched from the S 1000 RR and the spring strut with is now located significantly further away from the swing axis and the engine. This prevents the engine from soaking up waste heat and ensures even more stable temperature behaviour and even more constant damping response.
In order to keep fuel consumption and noise down, BMW tweaked the gear ratios for 4th, 5th and 6th gears which now have longer gear ratios. In addition to a smoother, self-reinforcing anti-hopping clutch, the new S1000R is equipped with engine drag torque control (MSR) for the first time as an optional extra. BMW says the engine drag torque control prevents the rear wheel from slipping as a result of abrupt throttling or downshifting thanks to being electronically controlled.
Like its baby brother, the S1000R has also received a visual refresh for 2021 with the love ‘em or hate ‘em asymmetrical headlights now scrapped in favour of a new LED headlamp and powerful LED light units as standard. The Headlight Pro system which adds an adaptive turning light and light guides with daytime running light function is available as an optional extra ex works.
Also getting a new look is the design of the fairings, with the bike getting a more emphasised "tail up - nose down" look than the outgoing model to give the S 1000 R an eye-catching visual impact that may have been lost with the switch to a more conventional-looking headlight.
As expected the electronics suite is jam-packed with everything the rider may need to keep the S1000R under their thumb. Included are three riding modes, Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) and ABS Pro as standard equipment. When it comes to optional extras, BMW’s "Riding Modes Pro" which unlocks the "Dynamic Pro" riding mode, Dynamic Brake Control (DBC), engine drag torque control, “Engine Brake” and “Power Wheelie” functions.
All the rider modes and safety aids are controlled by a 6.5” TFT display that was pinched from the S1000RR superbike. The rider can choose between customised screen displays for various purposes. The Pure Ride Screen, for example, provides all the necessary information for normal road riding, while a further Core Screen shows displays for banking angle, deceleration and traction control. For even more nerdy stats and figures, the optional M package provides a third Core Screen with bar display and lap timer.
As is becoming more and more prevalent, BMW has included a Bluetooth smartphone interface which allows app-based arrow navigation as a standard function of the TFT.
However, it appears that Kiwis will have to wait until sometime "late next year" for the new bikes to arrive in Kiwi dealerships. BMW Motorrad NZ's, Nick Lewis, said there is currently no firm date on when the bikes will arrive here.
"We do not have an ETA yet and we are still receiving current models and are waiting on shipments, he said.
"We haven’t confirmed what options we will be bringing in either. "
While options are yet to be confirmed, BMW Motorrad NZ tends to spec NZ bikes quite highly going by previous models to make their debut here. We'll let you know if there is any further news on the S1000R or G310R front for the 2021 model year.