Upcoming, affordable performance bikes for India: Royal Enfield Interceptor to BMW GS 310

The Indian motorcycle market has seen an expansion in recent times. Last year, India became the biggest two-wheeler market in the world. While a majority of the customers buy commute-oriented bikes, the number of people seeking performance bikes is increasing each day. In 2018, quite a few manufacturers will launch performance-oriented products in the market. Which are these bikes? Let’s find out.

TVS Apache RTR 180

Representational image of Apache RTR 160

TVS launched the all-new Apache RTR 160 4V in India recently. However, the bridge-bike between the RTR 160 and RTR 200 is yet to be updated. TVS is working to launch the Apache RTR 180 in the Indian market and it will get similar updates to the all-new Apache RTR 160.

Similar to the Apache 160, the RTR 180 is expected to get a much aggressive design that is inspired by the RTR 200 4V. The engine of the bike is expected to be updated too and it will get the 4-valve system like the Apache RTR 160 4V and the RTR 200 4V.

TVS Apache RR 310 Race Edition

TVS launched the flagship Apache RR 310 last year in India. However, it misses out on a few vital features like a slipper clutch, which is available on the cheaper Apache RTR 200 4V. TVS is working on a Race Edition version of the Apache RR 310, which will offer a much aggressive seating posture and will also get features like the slipper clutch. The bike is expected to be a little more expensive than the regular RR310 and will also get lower handlebars that will allow the riders to sit in a much more aggressive way.


BMW India has confirmed the launch of the G310R in the Indian market. The G310 R is expected to be launched in the Indian market by as soon as June/July. It will become the most affordable BMW motorcycle in India when launched and will take on the likes of KTM 390 Duke. The motorcycles are already being manufactured in India and are being exported to the international markets.

The G310R will be powered by a 313cc, single cylinder, liquid-cooled engine with twin overhead camshafts. The motorcycle produces a maximum of 33.6 BHP of power but weighs only 158 kg, which results in a very good power to weight ratio. The engine is a reversed cylinder design that will give it a better centre of gravity and fun to ride.


Alongside the naked G310R, BMW will also launch the GS 310R in India. It is the most affordable BMW bike from their adventure GS series and it will be manufactured in India too. The bike will get signature BMW GS features like the front beak, radiator shrouds, headlamp cowl and the tank design. The motorcycle will be the powered by the same 313cc, 34 BHp-28 Nm engine and will get a six-speed gearbox.

Royal Enfield Interceptor

Royal Enfield Interceptor was first showcased at the EICMA motorcycle show last year and it will be launched in the Indian market soon. The bike will be powered by a 650cc parallel-twin engine that has been developed from grounds up. It is an oil-cooled plus liquid-cooled engine that gets fuel injection, four-valve heads and an overhead camshaft.

The bike gets a maximum power of 47 Bhp at 7,100 rpm and 52 Nm at 4,000 rpm. It gets a 6-speed transmission with a slipper clutch unit. The bike also gets ABS as standard. It will take on the Triumph Street Twin but the price will be much lower at Rs. 3-4 lakh.

Royal Enfield Continental GT 650

The Royal Enfield Continental GT 650 will replace the Continental GT 535 that was discontinued by Royal Enfield sometime back. The Continental GT gets a cafe racer styling that makes the rider sit quite aggressively. While the Interceptor offers a relaxed riding position, the Continental GT 650 offers an aggressive riding position that is more suitable for shorter rides.

Benelli Imperiale 400

Benelli Imperiale 400 was showcased last year at the EICMA show and will soon launch in India to take on the likes Royal Enfield Classic 350 and Classic 500. The retro-looking cruiser is powered by a 373cc, air-cooled, fuel-injected engine that produces a maximum power of 20 Bhp and 28 Nm. It will be soon launched in the Indian market and will be the first such product from the Benelli. Also, it will be the first bike on the market that will take on the Royal Enfield bikes directly with styling and engine specifications.

Hero Xpulse 200

The Xpulse 200 attracted a lot of crowd at the 2018 Auto Expo and is a much-awaited bike in the Indian market. It will become the most affordable adventure bike in the Indian market after its launch. It can be termed as a spiritual successor of the Hero Impulse. The bike is based on the Xtreme 200R and gets powered by the same engine option. It gets a 200cc single-cylinder engine that churns out a maximum of 18.3 Bhp and 17.2 Nm. The bike will also get standard ABS and long-travel suspension.

Suzuki GSX 300

The Suzuki GSX 300 was recently leaked after Suzuki’s Chinese partner Haojue filed the design patent for HJ 300. The HJ 300 will have a Suzuki branded cousin just like the current products of Suzuki like the GW250 and the GSX-R250. The Suzuki bike will be a global product and it will be launched in India after the growing popularity of the performance bikes in the country. The bike is expected to get a 299cc, liquid-cooled, parallel-twin engine that will produce around 30 Bhp. It is expected to be launched by the end of this year in the Indian market.

KTM RC 390

While the KTM 390 Duke was thoroughly updated last year, the fully faired cousin of the bike, the RC 390 missed out on the features that were offered with the 390 Duke. The bike is expected to get similar mechanicals like the current version but it will feature a new full TFT console among other visual updates.