Apr 10, 2008

Bajaj Kawasaki Ninja 250R

Received some information about the Ninja 250R that Bajaj plans to launch soon. I've been informed that it might be priced about INR1.25+ lac. Not bad, I would say. Some competition to Yamaha R15 for sure, though each belongs to a different segment. Check the specs below:

Engine type: Liquid-cooled, 4-stroke Parallel Twin
Displacement: 249 cm³
Bore x stroke: 62.0 x 41.2 mm
Compression ratio: 11.6:1
Valve/Induction system: DOHC, 8 valves
Maximum power: 22.2 kW {30 PS} / 10,500 rpm
Maximum torque: 21.0 N·m {2.14 kgf·m} / 8,500 rpm
Fuel system: Fuel injection: ΓΈ28 mm x 2 (Keihin) Dual throttle valves
Ignition: Digital
Starting: Electric
Lubrication: Forced lubrication, wet sump
Transmission: 6-speed, return
Final Drive: Sealed chain
Clutch: Wet multi-disc, manual
Frame type: Tube diamond, steel
Rake/Trail: 26° / 83 mm
Suspension, front: 37 mm telescopic fork
Suspension, rear: Bottom-Link Uni-Trak with gas-charged shock and 5-way adjustable preload
Wheel travel, front: 120 mm
Wheel travel, rear: 130 mm
Tyre, front: 110/70-17 M/C (54S)
Tyre, rear: 130/70-17 M/C (62S)
Brakes, front: Single 290 mm petal disc
Caliper: Single balanced actuation dual-piston
Brakes, rear: Single 220 mm petal disc, Caliper: Dual-piston
Steering angle, left / right 35° / 35°
Dimensions: (L x W x H) 2,080 mm x 710 mm x 1,115 mm
Wheelbase: 1,400 mm
Ground Clearance: 135 mm
Seat height: 780 mm
Fuel capacity: 17.5 litres
Dry weight: 152 kg
Automatic Headlights On: (AHO) n/a
Complies to EU emission limits: -

The bike might be available in these colours:

Some highlighted features:

Apr 8, 2008

Why did I sell my Bullet? (will help the aspiring buyers)

I've been asked this questions many times now. Whoever knew that I rode a Bullet earlier asks the same question: Why did you sell it?! And then when they come to know that I've bought an Avenger to top it all, they give a rather amused look :). Understandably so. If I were in their shoes, perhaps I would also be amused.

But here's the story. Bullet Machismo with the AVL engine has its gear-lever on the left-hand side (as all other bikes do in India). This makes it easy for new Bullet buyers (who are migrating from other bikes to a Bullet) to familiarize themselves with riding a Bullet. However, therein lies the problem. The older Bullets had the gear-levers on the right; while one lever would help you change gears, the other would help you hit the neutral. This 'other lever' is not present in Bullets with AVL engines and that makes it extremely tough to hit neutral in certain conditions. And then, it's mighty tough to manage the bike. Let me explain with an example.

I'm riding in a traffic-prone area. Obviously I use (pull) the clutch very often. Also obvious that since I ride in the first/second gear more often, the engine gets hot. As I've mentioned, hitting neutral is tough. Now in Bullets, if the clutch stays pulled with a hot engine, the clutch rod starts losing control and then the bike just doesn't stay put. It moves even if you don't want it to :).

I'm smiling but if you have it drive day in and day out for kilometers together in traffic-prone area, you'll sweat a hell lot instead of enjoying the ride (no wonder, Bullet's meant for open roads and highways - as rightly advertised 'Trip'). That's why I sold it. This single problem! And this problem is only present in Bullets with AVL engine. Removing the 'other gear-lever' and moving the gear shift to left, while apparently seems a good user-friendly move by Royal Enfield, it could cause significant headache for the city-rider.

Aspiring buyers, take care. If you want to buy a Bullet with AVL engine, consider on an average where and how long will your ride be, and importantly how often on any given day?