The 2009 Bajaj Pulsar 220 is here. And it's no longer fuel-injected! Instead, it gets a UCAL UCD 32 venturi carburettor, the biggest seen on an Indian motorcycle till date. The camshaft now has a higher lift for a longer duration and the piston skirt is coated with a graphite-based black coating to reduce friction. Fifth gear is also taller than before to allow for a higher top speed.
But all of these changes wouldn't really have helped much if it wasn't for the changes made to the cycle parts. While the chassis remains the same, the suspension has been made stiffer and the tyres are now soft compound MRF Zappers while the front brake gets a braided steel hose.
To ride, it feels like a slightly more powerful 220...er, which it is. Throttle response hasn't suffered by much due to stepping back to a carburettor and power delivery is still smooth and linear. You immediately notice the improved grip that the 220 has to offer and it does a world of good to your confidence on the motorcycle. The 220 has now become more agile and stable which helps high-speed cornering antics.
Bajaj claim a 0-60 kph time of 3.8 seconds and a VRDE-certified top speed of 144.3 kph which makes it the fastest Indian motorcycle in the market today. Pricing is yet to be decided, but we expect an ex-showroom price of around Rs 90,000 in Mumbai. Bajaj has set its sights on reclaiming top spot on the performance podium and the new Pulsar 220 looks set to do just that. Watch out for the full test in in the July issue of BSM.