One thing I have to hand to Zontes is that they have an extremely creative design team. They certainly have produced some good looking motorcycles recently. Now they tried their hand at an adventure motorcycle and they have hit it out the park!

Using exactly the same underpinnings as the ZT310-R and ZT310-X they had a solid base to start from. The engine is the same lively 312 cc mill that produces 26 kW and the stubby little exhausts have now become a trademark of the 310 range. On top of that sits a very aggressively styled bike. It has the obligatory ‘beak’ that has now become the norm for adventure bikes. The headlight is an elongated unit with daytime running lights and four powerful LED’s in the middle to provide the illumination.

The windscreen is adjustable through two heights and behind that sits a comprehensive LED screen. Under the screen, Zontes has included a little cubby-hole for cards and small items and there is even a USB-socket for charging devices while on the go. The bike is also fitted with substantial crash bars and a metal bashplate to protect the underside. That rounds out the rugged off-road look.

In my mind this bike was never intended to be a proper off-road machine, but rather intended to be used as a commuter with some mild off-road capabilities. To test my theory, I took the bike out on a long stretch of gravel and the suspension handled it surprisingly well. The test unit was fitted with aftermarket luggage, and again, the build quality was good. The cases are lockable and they are lined with canvas. They are easily removable and have a few anchor points to strap things to. The rest of the bike’s build quality is very good and some parts, like the mirror stalks, feel almost over-engineered. It will certainly live up to some adventuring!

The bike has keyless entry and everything that can lock or unlock is done from buttons on the handlebars. In terms of performance, the Zontes can hold its own against some serious contenders in this category. The acceleration is brisk, and the bike performs equally well in corners while the brakes are ABS assisted.

The ZT310-T is a really good looking bike, and if you fancy a small bike with off-road ability, then the Zontes makes perfect sense. The dealer network is expanding and Zontes have some more exciting models coming. If they keep on producing bikes of this calibre, Zontes is certainly heading in the right direction.

Article and Photos: Ultimate Drive Ed.54 (Brian Cheyne)

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