TVS Apache RR 310 Long Term Review
Long Term Test No. 145
City duties or munching miles, the Apache RR 310 is suited for all kinds of rides
In the past two months, I have been riding the TVS Apache RR 310 almost every day. Daily commute, small weekend trips and a lot more. With the improving weather, I was able to take it out for a few food searching night rides too. Covering over 2500 kms, its been a blast but there are a few trips which didn't go as planned as the team was greedy on riding it as well. So as the motorcycle is about to go for a quick service, I thought it would be the best time to write about it!
We got the motorcycle a couple of months back and it hadn't done many kilometres. It was supposed to come on a Friday but we got it on a Saturday and boy I was happy. I had a Sunday ride planned with my friends and they were not up for a surprise like this. I showed up the next morning and everyone was expecting me on my Honda but not the TVS Apache RR 310! Instead of being the sweeper in the group, I was leading and we had a lot of fun. We reached our destination and as it comes after a good set of ghats, literally everyone was checking out the chicken strips on the Apache I was riding. A very fine line which meant I did not push it to the limit but I was almost about to do a knee down!
The RR 310 has very usable low-end torque, does a great job in stop-go traffic
However, I had a buzzy arm by the end of the ride as we were riding back at triple-digit speeds and there is decent amount of vibrations. Not much to be bothered about but enough to be brought to notice. I had a word with the TVS team and the bike was serviced before it came but a few nicknacks troubled me. Like the headlight low beam was too low and the chain used to snap with the swingarm when I would encounter bad roads. One thing I really like though is the suspension setup, neither too soft not too hard and it went well with almost all kind of roads, literally!
As it was the primary vehicle I used to do my office commute with, one more thing bothered me a lot, the mirrors! If you encounter traffic and want to manoeuvre through it, the mirrors would always get in the way. They are wide enough so basic traffic filtering was fine. But if the congestion is too much then I would have to stop or rather just fold the mirrors and continue riding. At this point, the usable low-end torque from the motor would come in handy. And as soon as the roads opened up, gathering pace was just a throttle away. There is one thing I have noticed, that all the Apaches till date have had a very good throttle response. Same is the case with the RR 310, it is quick and responsive.
The exhaust note isn't appealing but it gets loud and engaging as you rev hard
While the commutes and rides have been going on, the APache RR 310 has been returning us about 28 to 34 km/l. Sanely riding the bike over a longer distance, we have been able to do 320-340 kms on a single tank. But the fuel consumption drops to under 28 km/l in heavy traffic and city riding conditions. The worst mileage I have experienced is 26 km/l where I was stuck in stop-go traffic for almost two hours. But the motorcycle didn't shut due to heating issues. You can feel the hot air blown on your shin but it isn't bad at all.
The brakes are very impressive but the Apache nose dives a lot under heavy braking. The ABS kicks-in most of the times as the RLM (rear-wheel lift mitigation) comes into play. The grip from the Michelin tyres is good but the tyres need to be warmed up. Early morning starts and it takes about two minutes to be ready to go. While there is a decent amount of wheelspin that happens but once you get going for 5-10 kms, the tyres get warmed up and provide optimum grip. These tyres are more suited for long distance touring as they provide a good grip and the tread hasn't worn out much. But as soon as you hit some gravel or loose sand, these don't grip that well. However, the tread pattern is nice and works well for both wet and dry riding conditions.
TVS Apache RR 310 Service Schedule
1. Free Service Schedule - (whichever is earlier)
* 1st Service - 1000 kms/60 days
* 2nd Service - 5000 kms/180 days
* 3rd Service - 10000 kms/360 days
2. Paid Service Schedule -
* 4th Service - 15000 kms/540 days
* 5th Service - 20000 kms/720 days
Pillion comfort isn't the best as the pillion sits on a whole new level and there's nothing to grab onto. They have to hold onto the rider or get a grip on the tank. However, even with a pillion, the Apache feels very stable and tips into corners just like that. You can feel the weight on the clip-ons if the pillion is heavy but it does not bother much if you are in continuous motion. In the last month, I have served quite a lot of pillion duties while there have been instances where I was the pillion. Although it gets scary, as the pull from the engine is quite a lot if the pillion hasn't grabbed onto anything.
While I have been enjoying riding the Apache for a good time, there have been some issues with the bike which I have already mentioned earlier. However, the test motorcycle is from the first lot and the vibration issues have been there all along. As you ride an Apache RR 310 you tend to join a few groups from around owning the same bike, where I have seen the vibrations reduce drastically in the current models. I have also noticed that TVS has been considering all the customer issues and acting on them pretty well. Newer models rolling out of the showrooms are getting rubber housings on various places and it actually dampens the vibrations to a great extent. It's time, that the long-termer heads back for a quick service and be ready for more mile munching.
* The 310cc engine - fun and torquey
* Ergonomics are spot on for the rider
* Brakes and tyres are very well suited to the motorcycle
What's Not So Cool
* Manoeuvring through traffic is a task
* Pillion isn't very comfortable for long distance riding
* Vibrations can be felt and the exhaust note isn't pleasing at lower RPMs
Further Reading -