The BMW Group has set its motorcycle segment new targets for the coming years. By introducing additional models and entering new market segments, the company aims to win new customers worldwide, increasing deliveries of motorized two-wheel vehicles to 200,000 units by 2020.
“We want to sustain our profitable growth in the motorcycles segment over the coming years and make a lasting contribution to the success of the BMW Group,” commented Peter Schwarzenbauer, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, responsible for MINI, BMW Motorrad, Rolls-Royce and Aftersales. “To achieve this, BMW Motorrad will develop its business with new products and expansion in growth markets.”
It appears the company is looking at every road available to get where it wants to go. In the case of motorcycles, an untraveled road would be the smaller engine rides as well as an electric model . Entry into the segment below 500 cc will lay the foundation for growth, starting with the world premiere of the new BMW G 310 R. The compact, agile one-cylinder motorcycle has been specially designed for the growing Asian and South American markets, as well as Europe.
“With the BMW G 310 R, BMW Motorrad is bringing a genuine premium offering to the segment below 500 cc,” said Stephan Schaller, head of BMW Motorrad. “We will also be expanding our urban mobility offering in this class – including bikes with electric drive trains.”
Newly conceived from scratch, the G 310 R was designed specifically for the world market, can run on the most diverse fuel qualities, meets all emission standards and local requirements and takes the typical BMW premium aspiration to the segment under 500 cc.
BMW Motorad describe the new motorcycle as having ‘an unmistakeable visual kinship with athletic family members such as the BMW S 1000 R’. The small headlamp mask with striking headlamp, dynamically modelled fuel tank trim elements and characteristic roadster proportions with a striking front section and dynamic rear give the BMW G 310 R a mature presence on the road.
The centerpiece of the new BMW G 310 R is a completely newly developed 313 cc liquid-cooled single-cylinder engine with four valves and two overhead camshafts together with electronic fuel injection. The capacity of 313 cc results from a bore of 80 millimetres and a stroke of 62.1 millimetres.
The striking feature of the engine is its backward-tilted cylinder in open-deck design with the cylinder head turned by 180 degrees, making it possible to position the intake tract at the front, viewed in the direction of travel. With an output of 25 kW (34 hp) at 9 500 rpm and a maximum torque of 28 Nm at 7 500 rpm, the engine of the new G 310 R is a very dynamic partner in conjunction with the low unladen weight of 158.5 kilograms according to DIN.
The new single cylinder BMW G 310 R - Source BMW Motorrad
But riders need not worry about BMW Motorrad getting distracted from their current successful sweet spot. Notwithstanding this new development, BMW Motorrad’s core business will remain the exclusive premium segment above 500 cc.
The company is market leader in 26 countries and delivered more than 121,622 vehicles to satisfied customers worldwide in the year to the end of October. That’s an increase of 11.5% from year-on-year, or to put it another way, motorcycle sales have almost reached last year’s record level of 123,495 units after just ten months.
The German motorcycle manufacturer considers its BMW R nineT launched in 2014 is an important growth driver, with more than 8,600 units already delivered this year. BMW Motorrad says it will build on the success of its classic models with the BMW R nineT Scrambler derivative, which will celebrate its world premiere at the EICMA motorcycle show on 17 November.
“With the countless possibilities for individualization offered by the BMW RnineT and the BMW R nineT Scrambler, we see tremendous potential in the US market, in particular,” said Schaller.
The BMW R nineT, the company's future - Source BMW Motorrad
If building more motorcycles, they need a place to sell them. BMW Motorrad will continue to extend its retail network to keep pace with the planned global expansion. By 2020, the number of dealerships will increase to 1,500 from over 1,100 today.
As with any road trip, how long it takes to get to the destination, and even arriving at all depends on the conditions. The BMW Group’s forecasts for future growth are based on the assumption that general economic conditions will remain stable.
This may be coming a well-used phrase in the pages of Clutch and Chrome, but our motorcycle future certainly looks interesting.