Big bike battle - The fantastic three

Go ten years back in time. Fresh out of college, it was time to find your feet in this world. You wanted the thrill of motorcycling, but there weren’t too many realistic options around then. You opted for a trusty run-of-the-mill two-wheeler and it ensured that you got things done in time. Today, you’ve made it. You’ve got a comfortable life and couldn’t ask for much more, and, along the way, you parted ways with your two-wheeled steed and opted for the safety of a car. But your motorcycling dream has always been at the back of your mind. And there couldn’t be a better time than right now to realise it. Here then, are three great options that are available in India today — the Kawasaki Ninja 650R, Hyosung GT650R and Harley-Davidson Super Low.

Kawasaki Ninja 650R

What does it have?

Black ‘Ninja’ decals on one of the most evocative shades in all of motorcycling — Ninja green. Not impressed? Well then, I’m sure those evil-looking twin headlamps and that short ‘n’ stubby tail section will win your heart. It has a host of delightful details like that offset rear monoshock, a MotoGP-inspired instrument console, petal-shaped disc rotors at the front and back and a bullet-shaped exhaust that’s slung under the bodywork. All in all, the Ninja’s just the package to get your heart racing again.

 

What does it do?

Everything you want. The Ninja’s 649cc parallel twin motor produces 71.1 bhp that can take you from 0-100 kmph in around 5 seconds and on to a top speed in excess of 200 kmph. It’s a motor that will never get tired of delivering fun by the tonne. And all that power is kept in check by the competent chassis that allows for stable and fun handling, whether you’re in a straight line or on your favourite mountain roads. What’s more, the Ninja’s sporty but friendly riding position will let you go on those cross-country trips that you always wanted to. Enough to take you 10 years back in time, eh?

How much?

Rs 4.57 lakh, ex-showroom, Delhi. For this price, performance and the friendly character it offers, the Ninja 650R is certainly value for money. What are you waiting for?

 

Hyosung GT650R

What does it have?

Full-size sportsbike appeal. Agreed, it may look like a full-sized sportsbike from ten years ago, but that might appeal to some, right? The GT650R is a handsome motorcycle and certainly has a charm of its own. It features a quirky vertically stacked headlamp design, a big full fairing, a substantial tank and a chunky tail section. And of course, a conventionally mounted fat exhaust. I’m sure it will bring back memories of the motorcycles you lusted all those years ago.

 

What does it do?

Offers you a twin-cylinder motor, but with a difference. The GT650R’s 647cc motor features a V-twin configuration, and as such it’s a very different animal compared to the Ninja. It feels gruff, while the Ninja feels smooth. And the Hyosung’s almost as quick — it does 0 to100 kmph in around 5.5 seconds and has a top speed that matches the Ninja’s. However, the GT650R has an extremely sporty riding position that feels right only on twisty roads, when you’re having fun. On straights, your back will beg for mercy. But what’s a bit of pain if it makes you feel young again, right?

How much?

Rs 4.75 lakh, ex-showroom, Delhi. More expensive and heavier than the Ninja, the Hyosung is for those who want the V-twin experience in a sporty package.

 

Harley-Davidson Super Low

What does it have?

An appeal that only Harley-Davidsons can possess. Every motorcyclist, at some point or another, wants a Harley. And the Super Low is the most affordable way to finally become part of the legend. As usual, that classic V-twin engine steals the show, assisted by those twin stacked exhausts. You almost don’t notice the tiny headlamp, the teardrop tank and the classy fenders. While it comes with a single seat, you can add a pillion seat as an option. But do you really want to?

 

What does it do?

Rocks your world. It moves, sounds and feels like only a Harley can. What it lacks in outright power, it makes up with truckloads of character and that distinctive sound. The 883cc engine (‘motor’ doesn’t do it justice!) produces 7.13 kgm of torque at 3,750 rpm — it’s not about going fast, but enjoying the scenery at a leisurely pace, letting the torque do the talking via that glorious sound. Normal rules don’t apply here.

How much?

Rs 5.5 lakh, ex-showroom, Delhi. We won’t say anything. If you want a Harley, you’ve probably made your mind up and nothing is going to stop you.

 

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