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Old 30th July 2013, 23:06   #16
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

Well my friend, I do not know about the Harley as I haven't had the chance to ride it. and duke IMO is not in the league. Bullet 500 is nice but has known problems. and what I gather from some of other posts, you don't ride your bike much. So I would also vote for THE NINJA. it is well suited for the things you are looking for.

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Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
I WAS a 6 foot 95 kilo rider. I AM now a 6 foot 87 kilo rider. Think of the huge jump in power to weight ratio for all my bikes!
Doc, I believe that your truck's average should also go up with the reduced dead weight it is carrying!
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Old 31st July 2013, 00:42   #17
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

What type of driver you are? Are you the one who drives fast like a one who is on race track? If so then only I would suggest you Ninja or any other sports bike.

At age 45 I dont think you are the above type of person. So you do need a bike which is comfortable and would be fun and easy to drive on your pleasure drives.

KTM 390 also doesnot fit into the above picture as its a screamer and you should keep it on the boil.

So the final battle drills down between Harley and RE.

Well I wont support the harley for its low ground clearance and additional money required to raise it. Simply put its not the best for Indian roads.

So you are left with RE only. Well Thunderbird 500 or 350 would be a good enough option for your regular rides. Well Enfields are still not reliable but at least the engine reliability has increased. You will have to live with RE with not so good reliability but in return you did get a good all rounder bike for your regular trips and once in a bluemoon trip to Leh.

Otherwise wait for few more months and lets see what the other manufacturers have to give. But I dont think the wait will be just a few more months.

Last edited by amit_purohit20 : 31st July 2013 at 00:43. Reason: Corrected grammatical mistake
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Old 31st July 2013, 09:38   #18
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

I don't know why people assume at 45 someone doesn't want to ride fast!

I hope the assumption is wrong because in a few years I would be there and don't want to be the old geezer who gets honked at by other people on the road to move over.
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Old 31st July 2013, 09:58   #19
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@dkaile: man, I thought I was confused!

I was tossing up between TBTS & KTM 390 (you have responded on that thread too!) having weeded out the Harley as too much of a poseur's bike.

Basically I did not see the bang-for-the-buck with a 6-8 L bike considering I barely do 500km in my car. (Travel a lot). So the bike, if I push it, will do 200 km per month, may be. So went with a 2.5 L limit, including add-ons/ gear etc.

That left only the TBTS & 390. I have booked both but will probably buy the 390. Still have not test ridden it. Why not the TBTS? - It galls me to pay 2 L for 50 year old technology.

For you, if the bang-for-the-buck principle does not apply, while Ninja 650 is the practical choice but the doctor prescribed cure for mid-life crisis has always been a Harley!

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I don't know why people assume at 45 someone doesn't want to ride fast!
Hear hear!

When I ride, I ride only fast. Get into trouble if I try to slow it down. I do believe everybody has a natural speed and anything different gets you into to trouble.

That having been said, I dont ride as fast now as 15 years ago!

Note from Support - Posts merged. Please use the Multi-Quote feature to reply to multiple posts, instead of submitting back to back posts.

Last edited by n_aditya : 31st July 2013 at 11:46. Reason: posts merged
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Old 31st July 2013, 10:10   #20
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

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Originally Posted by stormerider View Post
Doc, I believe that your truck's average should also go up with the reduced dead weight it is carrying!
he he yes man - but my funda with Bullets and Safaris is that they themselves are so friggin heavy, maybe they should shed a few klos first, before cribbing about my piddly few extra kilos!

The other day the TASS guy was explaining to me the company assumed specs vis a vis solo vs fully laden for their tyre pressure recommendations. I did a quick calculation and found out that my entire family's weight is equal to the combined weight of me and my Bullet, riding solo without any luggage. Also that me and my son together outweigh the 3 ladies of the house by 40 kilos.

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Originally Posted by amit_purohit20 View Post
At age 45 I dont think you are the above type of person. So you do need a bike which is comfortable and would be fun and easy to drive on your pleasure drives.
Quote:
Originally Posted by hsub View Post
I don't know why people assume at 45 someone doesn't want to ride fast!

I hope the assumption is wrong because in a few years I would be there and don't want to be the old geezer who gets honked at by other people on the road to move over.
I would like to introduce Amit to some 40+ friends of mine.

Incidentally, the median age of Paris Dakar rallyists is in the mid 40s last I checked.

The median age of most of the top dogs of the IBA is in the mid to late 50s.

Ditto for the crowd you find on AdvRider.

Age is in the mind. Yes speed does drop as you age. For the racer types they say you lose about a second for every 10 years of your life. When Stoner had his first kid, some ex-racer also commented that statistically you lose a second for every child you have LOL. So while the fastest teenagers and 20 somethings were doing early 36s at the Orange Days, your's truly was doing late 38s/early 39s.

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Originally Posted by sridhu View Post
When I ride, I ride only fast. Get into trouble if I try to slow it down. I do believe everybody has a natural speed and anything different gets you into to trouble.
Agree 100%. Your mind and body and reflexes are primed optimal at your natural speed. That is why group riding with expecting everyone to ride in formation at a median speed never works and the group inevitably fragments into bunches of riders with similar median natural speeds.

Last edited by ebonho : 31st July 2013 at 10:39.
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Old 31st July 2013, 11:00   #21
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

Quote:
I don't know why people assume at 45 someone doesn't want to ride fast!
In chennai the weekend riders of 1L bikes are mostly 45 plus. If you have the money 1L is anyday better. Is it practical - No, Is it neccessary - No, With no Manufacturing in India is the price right - NO,

But will a 1L bring back the smile you last had when you first got smitten by a girl. Oh Yeah

On a serious note, age has nothing to do with type of machine. I say harley because, its just fast as well as big time ownership smug that neither the Bullet or Ninja will give you. May be Ninja to an extent but Harley is a complete bike for cruising in India atleast.

I would say harley type than just call out Harley. A honda valkyrie or a kawasaki vulcon series or the indian motorcycle series or the triumph series of cruisers.

Speed has no age limit. There is age limit for only acting stupid
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Old 31st July 2013, 11:16   #22
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

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Originally Posted by VW2010 View Post
On a serious note, age has nothing to do with type of machine. I say harley because, its just fast as well as big time ownership smug that neither the Bullet or Ninja will give you. May be Ninja to an extent but Harley is a complete bike for cruising in India atleast.
I have never paid Harleys much attention because I was never a Harley type of guy. But at the IBW this year, I got to see the bikes and the riders and the scene up close and the view shared by most was that the Harley scene the way it is developing in India is a very pricey clone of the Bullet scene.

Now about the bikes, it depends of what type of riding you plan to do. Firstly, there is no Harley (or in future, no Triumph) that will come within his budget of 5-6 lacs. But even if you stretch it, I am absolutely not convinced that the Harley is the bike for India.

It is way too heavy. It is way too low. The rear suspension is way too softly sprung. And dare I say it, it is way too slow.

But yes, if its the image and the ride on perfect roads you are after, the Harley does and will get you eyeballs. And eardrums too.

Last edited by ebonho : 31st July 2013 at 11:20.
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Old 31st July 2013, 11:16   #23
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

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Originally Posted by VW2010 View Post
I say harley because, its just fast as well as big time ownership smug that neither the Bullet or Ninja will give you.
Harley has its own timeless appeal but the brand appeal of the Superlow and the 650 is nearly the same in my books, if not tilting towards the Ninja. One other thing is that in all the US Harley reviews they position the Superlow as a 'Women's' Bike!! Its only the bigger Harleys which trounce everything in their path but then they are way beyond my 'mental' budget for a bike...

Last edited by dkaile : 31st July 2013 at 11:35.
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Old 31st July 2013, 11:27   #24
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

Dkaile,
Would suggest you to go ahead with the Ninja 650, the right bike to do sports touring in India. Has a decent GC, Good Tank Distance and more importantly it is built with better quality than the KTM & RE. Put one racks and panniers you are all set to head to Leh once you have logged a few thousand kms. You cannot go wrong with the Ninja 650 at that price range.

Triumph Tiger would be a good option for touring but the more important question is when will they arrive to India? Just cannot believe that sacking of one individual will leave the company crippled for months. Quite disgusting or there could be something that am failing to read.

Leave out the RE, they do not make the cut unless you are willing to spend time with the bike and rebuilding it again. The engine seems better tuned compared to RE Classic 500 but the electricals does require a lot of efforts and time.
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Old 31st July 2013, 11:48   #25
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

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You cannot go wrong with the Ninja 650 at that price range.
At around $10,000 on the road for us Indians now ($12,000 till some time ago), is the Ninja 650 really competitively priced, or is it that it is competitively priced for us Indians once we have gotten over the traumatization of its smaller sibling's asking price? Just wondering .....

Last edited by ebonho : 31st July 2013 at 11:56.
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Old 31st July 2013, 11:56   #26
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

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At around $10,000 on the road for us Indians, is the Ninja 650 really competitively priced, or is it that it is competitively priced for us Indians once we have gotten over the traumatization of its smaller sibling's asking price? Just wondering .....
hey Doc,
Which other bike do we have to compare it with? Are we referring to Hyosung who charge 500 bucks for a test ride? Come on bro, everybody knows how well it is.

For one i am not a big fan of comparing Duke Vs Ninja. The buyer should list out what they need the bike to do apart from basic commuting and then roll out the features of the bike. Whichever runs close to their requirements go in for it.

But we Indians are always budget driven which many a times does not make sense.
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Old 31st July 2013, 12:11   #27
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

Quote:
Harley has its own timeless appeal but the brand appeal of the Superlow and the 650 is nearly the same in my books,
I wish you can take a test ride on 650 and decide. Its a great bike. A superbike and not exactly apple to apple to compare with super low.

Super low is very raw and the heat from the bike is definitely something you should consider. Not that 650 is any better, but atleast the fairing and support gives you a relative relief.

Between 650 and Superlow, i would say 650 for the experience of a superbike is quite a different feeling. Hitting those 100kms in 1-2 gears is something you can relive every day and enjoy.

I suggest Street bob for its the lowest priced big size harley and is basically a custom harley than stock harley. Has enormous torque and power and is pretty good inspite its heavy.

I have used Valkyrie weighing dry at 750 pounds. The weight is never a problem as the bike is well balance. The weight is a problem when it leans on the side. You will require few to help to set the bike straight.

And lastly the KTM390 you have included will give you as much a pleasure a 650 will give you (atleast to an extent) for it has unbelievable power for its weight, its pretty light and lastly i have booked myself one inspite of having a 500 for the last 10 years.
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Old 31st July 2013, 12:14   #28
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

My 2 cents if i may, please.

My honest suggestion to you Sir, is to ride these bikes you have shortlisted and plonk the moolah on the one that really pulls your heart strings.

Coming to your list of bikes:

Bullet:

A comfortable mile muncher. You can comfortably cruise on the highway at your own pace without a care for the world. Any roadside mechanic can fix the bike in an event of a breakdown. The downside is the attention to detail and quality. Some niggling issues might exist with the bike. Spares will be cheap and maintenance will be easy on the pocket.

Duke 390:

The 390 is a street bike, a hooligan or a brute. If your idea of a ride is mad rush of adrenalin and quick insane bursts of acceleration, this is the bike for you. If you want a relaxed long ride on the highway this bike is not going to crack it. With the absence of a windscreen and an upright position (some say weird ergonomics on the lower part of the body) munching miles for a few hundred kms might induce rider fatigue.

Harley Davidson Superlow:

A Harley Davidson is a biker's dream no matter his/her love for inline four's or otherwise. A head turner of a bike. An icon.

IMHO, the HD is akin to a bullet (pardon me if i am offending anyone), albeit with significantly better styling, attention to detail, quality and brand value.

Spares and maintenance will be expensive but it is frankly a money pit (my apologies again). Reason why i say this is that almost all the Harley owners spend a significant fortune customizing their rides to keep it unique. But these bikes perform well and are very comfortable to ride. They have an excellent service back-up too so after sales support is not an issue at all.

Finally the Kawasaki Ninja 650:

A bullet-proof machine with superb reliability, the ninja 650 will prove to be super comfy on those long highway rides. Excellent rider and pillion comfort and the ability to carry quite a bit of luggage as well, will provide for many touring opportunities. FE is decent, long term maintenance is cheaper than its smaller sibling (the ninja 250R) in the long run. Usable power in any RPM range will make this a comfortable bike for commuting as well as high speed sprints on the highways. Be sure to upgrade the headlights and brakes though (EBC brake pads with steel braided lines work well, and maybe an HID kit too). This bike is a fill it-shut it-forget it bike and the single most expensive replacement part on this are the tires (also on the 390). I am considering an upgrade to the 650 too.

Finally, like mentioned, do ride the bikes you have listed down and pick up the one that connects to your heart.
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Old 31st July 2013, 12:18   #29
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

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hey Doc,
Which other bike do we have to compare it with? Are we referring to Hyosung who charge 500 bucks for a test ride? Come on bro, everybody knows how well it is.

For one i am not a big fan of comparing Duke Vs Ninja. The buyer should list out what they need the bike to do apart from basic commuting and then roll out the features of the bike. Whichever runs close to their requirements go in for it.

But we Indians are always budget driven which many a times does not make sense.
Bro I would completely agree on the premise that out of the options available, the Ninja 650 is the most bang for buck in that performance/price range.

My point was different though. I was questioning whether it was really bang for buck when compared to similar performance/price range bikes available to bikers around the world.

$10,000 can buy you better bikes than the Ninja 650. And when you see which bikes that much money could have bought you were you abroad, you do feel a little cheated. Its natural. There does not have to be a logic to it.

When you add the Dukes to the picture, things just get worse. Because here you have international bikes which we Indians can buy much cheaper than what bikers abroad can buy them at. This is the big difference the last 2 years have brought to the price perception of Indian bikers looking for performance on a budget. And that is why in spite of the fact that the Dukes and Ninjas are different types of bikes, you cannot escape most if not every discussion of each also having the other come in.
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Old 31st July 2013, 12:29   #30
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Default Re: Which Bike? Ninja 650 vs Harley Superlow vs Duke 390 vs Bullet 500

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Bullet: Any roadside mechanic can fix the bike in an event of a breakdown.
That may have been true about the older Bulls, but these days, the moment even a puncherwalla on the highway sees that's it's a Bullet, he starts getting reluctant to touch the bike. Speaking from personal experience.

But yeah, compared to the other bikes on the list, the chances of being able to fix a Bull outside a major city are certainly much better.

Last edited by n_aditya : 31st July 2013 at 12:34. Reason: quoted post-link corrected
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