Yamaha R3 vs Benelli 302R vs TVS Apache RR 310 vs KTM RC 390 vs Kawasaki Ninja 300: Spec Comparison
With the advent of the Yamaha R3 in its refreshed avatar, the degree of competition has risen in the entry-level sportsbike segment. To evaluate what it brings to the table, we compare it with other prominent players of the market.
The new Yamaha R3 gets BS-IV compliant 321cc liquid-cooled, parallel-twin engine that churns out a max power of 42PS and a peak torque of 29.6Nm at 9000rpm. The engine comes mated to a 6-speed transmission system.
The Benelli 302R, on the other hand, draws power from a 300cc parallel-twin, liquid-cooled engine, which produces peak power of 38PS at 10,000rpm and torque of 27.4Nm at 9000rpm, coupled to a 6-speed gearbox.
Powering the TVS Apache RR 310 is the BMW G 310 R’s 312cc single-cylinder liquid-cooled engine whose power and torque figures are rated at 34PS and 27.3Nm respectively. Talking about the updated 2017 KTM RC 390, it packs a 375cc single-cylinder, liquid-cooled BS-IV compliant engine that generates 43.5PS of max power and 36Nm of peak torque. Last but not the least, the Kawasaki Ninja 300 houses a 296cc DOHC parallel-twin engine with power and torque rated at 39PS and 27Nm respectively.
Clearly, the KTM RC 390 wins the battle here, followed by the Yamaha R3 and the Ninja 300. The TVS Apache RR 310, despite having a single cylinder, produces considerable power that falls only marginally short of the power of the latter two.
The Yamaha R3 comes with the same semi-digital instrument console and clip-on handlebars as its older model. The updated R3 still doesn’t get LED headlamps; instead, it comes with halogen ones just like the Ninja 300. Features like ride-by-wire throttle and slipper clutch still are absent; however, ABS is offered as standard.
The KTM RC 390 carries on with the same headlamp unit, LED DRLs and the LED tail lights from the older model. The LCD display unit is also retained from the previous-gen model. However, the 2017 edition of the RC 390 features first-in-segment ride-by-wire throttle technology for enhanced control. It also gets slipper clutch for quick downshits and ECVAP (Evaporative Emission Control System) for the prevention of fuel loss in the form of vapours. ABS continue to be offered as standard.
The Benelli 302R gets a partly digital instrument console for essential readouts and halogen bulbs with LED DRLs for improved vision but misses out on an LED headlamp. The bike gets switchable ABS as standard, sourced from Bosch.
The TVS Apache RR 310 comes with raised clip-on handlebars that make for a sporty yet comfortable riding position. It is the first TVS bike to feature LED headlamps. The tail end gets LED taillights. For readouts, it gets a fully digital instrument cluster with a unique vertically laid out placement. For safety, it gets dual-channel ABS as standard.
The Kawasaki Ninja 300, on the other hand, neither gets LED headlamp nor taillights. It gets a semi-digital instrument console for basic readouts. There is an analogue tachometer and digital screen that displays the odometer, speedometer, fuel gauge and clock. It also gets an assist and slipper clutch. Unfortunately, it doesn’t get ABS.
The steel diamond frame lends rigidity to the Yamaha R3 which suspends upon conventional telescopic front forks and a monoshock unit at the rear. The bike weighs 173kg (kerb) which is, however, 3kg more than its predecessor but significantly less than its rival Benelli 302R’s kerb weight of 198kg and marginally over the TVS Apache RR 310’s 169.5kg (kerb) and the KTM RC 390’s 170kg.
What’s worth noting on the updated Yamaha R3 is that it now comes equipped with new, lighter Metzeler Sportec M5 tyres (front- 110/70R-17 and rear- 140/70R-17), that contribute to its agile handling and balance, instead of earlier fitted MRF ones. For braking, it gets a single disc at both the ends - 298mm disc at the front and 220mm at the rear. ABS is standard, as mentioned earlier. Its saddle sits 780mm high, which is at an optimum level to comfort riders of varied heights and sizes.
At 198kg, the Benelli 302R is the heaviest and muted performer of the lot. It uses the steel trellis frame and comes with 41mm inverted telescopic front forks and rear swing arm with central shock absorber. The Metzeler M5 Sportec tyres on the 302R are slightly narrower than the optional TNT 300’s Pirelli tyres but are good to handle wet and dry terrains. Braking is via dual 260mm front discs and 240mm rear disc. A saddle height of 785mm makes it easy for riders to climb on and off the bike.
The TVS Apache RR 310 underpins the same trellis frame that is seen on the BMW G 310 R, however, with slight modification to suit the former’s sporty riding stance. The suspension setup is comprised of KYB inverted front forks and a rear monoshock unit, adjustable for preload. The engine is compactly placed on the frame which makes it up for unmatched handling and control. The bike is brought to halt by a 300mm petal front disc and a 240mm rear petal disc. It gets Michelin Pilot Sport tyres (front- 110/70 R17 and rear- 150/60 R17) for better grip. The saddle of the bike sits at 810mm, considerable but not as low as its competition.
Like its predecessor, the KTM RC 390 is also built on the lightweight trellis frame. It rides on WP upside down front forks and monoshock at the rear. The braking force to the wheels is provided via a 320mm disc at the front and a 230mm disc at the rear. The bike features Metzeler tyres (front- 110/70 ZR17 and rear- 150/60 ZR17), like its few rivals. Tipping the weight scale at 170kg (kerb), the RC 390 is agile and easy-to-handle.
Lastly, the Kawasaki Ninja 300 employs a steel diamond type chassis and features 37mm telescopic front forks along with a gas-charged monoshock unit with 5-step adjustable preload at the rear. Unfortunately, it misses out on the upside down forks which could have been a welcome addition. In terms of braking, it gets a 290mm front disc and a 220mm rear disc (both are petal disc brakes). The 17-inch alloys are wrapped in IRC tyres (front- 110/70 17 and back- 140/70 17), not very desirable though. The saddle of the bike sits at 785mm.
The updated Yamaha R3 and the Benelli 302R share the same price of Rs 3.48 lakh. The KTM RC 390 gets a price tag of Rs 2.29 lakh, while the Kawasaki Ninja 300 is on offer at a price of Rs 3.60 lakh. The TVS Apache RR 310 goes the easiest on your pocket, sporting a price tag of Rs 2.05 lakh (all prices, ex-showroom Delhi).
The Yamaha R3 is what we believe leads the pack of motorcycles, thanks to its in-line parallel-twin motor that’s powerful and quite responsive. It comes packed with top-spec features and performs exceptionally well on both the track as well as urban roads.