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Old 20th May 2014, 17:57   #1
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Default Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

Hi,

I am looking for an upgrade from my current ride - 2006 model Unicorn. The bike is doing good and have done more than 80K as of now, but of late I am wishing for more power and more fun. I am looking for a bike which handles at least as well as unicorn, loves corner carving and will be at home doing trail rides and an occasional table top jumps and boulder climbing. In short, the bike should be Fun to Ride.

The only bike which have caught my fancy is KTM 200, but I am not sure how good the bike will be in mud, slush and gravel. I love Impulse, but since Hero have stopped production, there is no way to get my hands on a new one. I would love to have an Impulse with a bigger engine, but I do not see it happening in near future.

I have not TD-ed any other 150 CC bikes - is there any other bike out there which can be considered, or should I bite the bullet and compromise to buy a KTM 200?

Please fish me out of this soup brothers

--Anoop
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Old 20th May 2014, 20:25   #2
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Default re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

I donot think any other bike would be as fit as the Duke 390 for your budget. It handles well, mind boggling power with very low weight and value for money. Should be easy on the pocket to maintain.

But it might not satisfy what all you want. I would not want to jump any KTM over boulders because I have heard of many KTM bikes suffering from bent alloy wheels.

I would suggest do not buy a KTM200 because for harldy a few bucks more you can get a KTM390.
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Old 20th May 2014, 20:51   #3
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Default re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

Complementing amits post.
Duke is supported by Bajaj with very good service and it gives that "Value for money" satisfaction. And its Hoot to ride.

Never heard of bent alloys in Dukes.

And what other choices do you have under 2 Lakh?
Ninja? Out
CBR250? Almost out.
CBR150? cannot be an upgrade.
Inauzma? Out of budget
R15? Cant be a great upgrade, but could be called as an upgrade.
Karizma? Yes it can be. But its not worth an upgrade, when you can get a better bike by plonking in 50-60 K more. Also, it is at the end of cycle. Hero is about to pull the plug of Karizma. And procuring spares for a karizma is pain. If hero pulls the plug off, its of zero value.

If i were in your shoe, i would go and get a Duke 390.

Last edited by gemi_kk : 20th May 2014 at 20:52.
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Old 20th May 2014, 21:33   #4
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Default re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

IMO.. Buying either of the Dukes is no compromise. Both are excellent bikes.

The 200 is a great bike for city riding. While the 390 is great overall from my personal experience of ownership.

If you could stretch your budget a bit, id recommend u pick up the 390. Even short rides are fun on it :-)
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Old 21st May 2014, 01:12   #5
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Default re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

Quote:
Originally Posted by theexperthand View Post
Hi,

I am looking for an upgrade from my current ride - 2006 model Unicorn. The bike is doing good and have done more than 80K as of now, but of late I am wishing for more power and more fun. I am looking for a bike which handles at least as well as unicorn, loves corner carving and will be at home doing trail rides and an occasional table top jumps and boulder climbing. In short, the bike should be Fun to Ride.

The only bike which have caught my fancy is KTM 200, but I am not sure how good the bike will be in mud, slush and gravel. I love Impulse, but since Hero have stopped production, there is no way to get my hands on a new one. I would love to have an Impulse with a bigger engine, but I do not see it happening in near future.

I have not TD-ed any other 150 CC bikes - is there any other bike out there which can be considered, or should I bite the bullet and compromise to buy a KTM 200?

Please fish me out of this soup brothers

--Anoop
Please extensively test drive the bike which you plan to buy. I would suggest also trying out the new Continental GT and Classic 500 from Royal Enfield. I weigh less than 100 kgs and have been riding my Classic from last 2 years. The bike has been awesome to drive with the immense torque and good built quality. Riding on the bad and broken roads of our country has not left even a single loose bolt and with the spokes wheels there is no issue of cracked alloy's.

Recently I had made up my mind to get the 390 Duke for 2 big ones but test riding it made me realize that it was not the bike for me. I use my C5 for my daily office rides and some occasional rides to my hometown. 390 Duke is for sure an awesome ride but do a comprehensive test drive to find out what suits you the best. Cheers!
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Old 21st May 2014, 10:15   #6
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Default re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

Fun To Ride Huh!?

Option 1: Little painful, but since you live in Bengaluru, you can consider hunting a good condition Yammy - the RX135. Bengaluru supposedly has a good number of skilled tuners of the Yamaha breed. Fellow BHPians can guide you on this. Also, there are many threads dedicated to the RX which can help.

RX135 can definitely hop a mountain top or two, is nimble and with a properly tuned engine, it can be a real fun to drive machine.

Considering all the possible mods, you may still be able to save a lot of Vitamin-M (though its not your priority).

Option 2: Little stretch of your budget can get you the KTM 390. A proper hooligan available freshly baked off the oven. For you mud splashing feat, you will have to consider new footwear though, as the factory fitted tyres are soft compound ones which is more suited for scorching on the asphalt.

With a power of 44 PS and a torque of 35 Nm combined with a considerably light weight of around 140kg. (which is still less than that of the Unicorn), the KTM 390 is a real fun to drive machine.

Last edited by five46 : 21st May 2014 at 10:17. Reason: Added skipped words
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Old 22nd May 2014, 16:47   #7
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Default Re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

Mod Note: Thread re-opened.

Thanks!
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Old 22nd May 2014, 19:09   #8
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It all depends on what your definition of fun is.
If it involves cruising at good speeds, consider a cruiser bike like a bullet.
If it involves extreme power, take a look at the duke.
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Old 22nd May 2014, 19:23   #9
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Default Re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

I think even the Apache RTR 180 should be taken into consideration. It has a great handling and also has enough power. It will also be cheaper than the Duke.

Take a TD and get the feel of it.
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Old 26th May 2014, 09:58   #10
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Default Re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

Quote:
Originally Posted by theexperthand View Post

I am looking for a bike which handles at least as well as unicorn, loves corner carving and will be at home doing trail rides and an occasional table top jumps and boulder climbing. In short, the bike should be Fun to Ride.

The only bike which have caught my fancy is KTM 200, but I am not sure how good the bike will be in mud, slush and gravel.

--Anoop
  • When you're mentioning trails, table top jumps and so on, the duke goes out of the picture. The duke's stiff suspension, soft compound tires makes it suitable on on long stretches of tarmac than off road. But it's the best around the corners
  • There maybe a replacement to the impulse soon. There was a rumour that it would come with Karizma's engine
  • A bullet is the best choice I can think of
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Old 26th May 2014, 11:09   #11
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Default Re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

Quote:
Originally Posted by theexperthand View Post
Hi,

I am looking for an upgrade from my current ride - 2006 model Unicorn. The bike is doing good and have done more than 80K as of now, but of late I am wishing for more power and more fun. I am looking for a bike which handles at least as well as unicorn, loves corner carving and will be at home doing trail rides and an occasional table top jumps and boulder climbing. In short, the bike should be Fun to Ride.


--Anoop
I think the best bet would be Bajaj Pulsar 200NS. It is one of the best bikes in the recent market for your requirement.

Check this thread here (Discovering India : 8407 Kms | 15 Days | 15 States | 2 Wheels | 1 Bike | 1 Soul) for what can be done on a 200NS. Hope this helps
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Old 26th May 2014, 13:15   #12
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Default Re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

Quote:
Originally Posted by amit_purohit20 View Post
I donot think any other bike would be as fit as the Duke 390 for your budget. ..
I would suggest do not buy a KTM200 because for harldy a few bucks more you can get a KTM390.
Thanks Amit, 390 is a hoot to ride - no two questions about it. But since 80% of my rides will be in traffic choked bangalore roads, I am more inclined to get 200.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gemi_kk View Post
Complementing amits post.
Duke is supported by Bajaj with very good service and it gives that "Value for money" satisfaction. And its Hoot to ride.

If i were in your shoe, i would go and get a Duke 390.
Gemi, exactly my thoughts - Otehr than the Duke twins, there is nothing worth an upgrade. But I am more inclined to D 200 since my primary rides will be inside city.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Pain View Post
IMO.. Buying either of the Dukes is no compromise. Both are excellent bikes.

The 200 is a great bike for city riding. While the 390 is great overall from my personal experience of ownership.

If you could stretch your budget a bit, id recommend u pick up the 390. Even short rides are fun on it :-)
The Pain - after going to Docs thread and going through many other threads, I think I can take duke off the road to an extent. So may be this is best of both worlds as of now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iron.head View Post
Please extensively test drive the bike which you plan to buy. I would suggest also trying out the new Continental GT and Classic 500 from Royal Enfield. 390 Duke is for sure an awesome ride but do a comprehensive test drive to find out what suits you the best. Cheers!
Sure bro - I am taking teh TDs as of now. I had a desert storm and still have a CI 350, dont want to add another bull. I did TD the thunderbird but TB and Continental GT is out of picture because I can never take them off the road.

Quote:
Originally Posted by five46 View Post
Fun To Ride Huh!?

Option 1: Little painful, but since you live in Bengaluru, you can consider hunting a good condition Yammy - the RX135.

Option 2: Little stretch of your budget can get you the KTM 390.
With a power of 44 PS and a torque of 35 Nm combined with a considerably light weight of around 140kg. (which is still less than that of the Unicorn), the KTM 390 is a real fun to drive machine.
Ah, now this is a good out of the box suggestion. I have had my taste of RX 135 in the past ( 2 of them ) and have access to a very well maintained RX 100 as of now. 390 is sure a fun to ride machine, but I am more inclined towards 200 as of now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Mod Note: Thread re-opened.

Thanks!
Thank you GTO!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ayush1434 View Post
It all depends on what your definition of fun is.
If it involves cruising at good speeds, consider a cruiser bike like a bullet.
If it involves extreme power, take a look at the duke.
Ayush - now, that is a very difficult question bro - I want a bike which sticks to corners, can do a trail run and can go over broken boulders and shallow streams with out working up a sweat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vinit.merchant View Post
I think even the Apache RTR 180 should be taken into consideration. It has a great handling and also has enough power. It will also be cheaper than the Duke.

Take a TD and get the feel of it.
@Vinit - I did TD Apache some time back and while the bike is good, I dont think it as an upgrade to Unicorn.

Quote:
Originally Posted by D4D View Post
[list][*]When you're mentioning trails, table top jumps and so on, the duke goes out of the picture. The duke's stiff suspension, soft compound tires makes it suitable on on long stretches of tarmac than off road.
@D4D: If there was an Impulse available with Karizma's engine I would have picked it up in a heart beat. I know I cant use Duke like I use my Unicorn, but seems to be teh best bet out there now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fusionbang View Post
I think the best bet would be Bajaj Pulsar 200NS. It is one of the best bikes in the recent market for your requirement.

Check this thread here (Discovering India : 8407 Kms | 15 Days | 15 States | 2 Wheels | 1 Bike | 1 Soul) for what can be done on a 200NS. Hope this helps
Thank you for the link, Fusion. I did TD NS 200 also, but liked Duke 200 more.

Thank you for all the suggetions - this is why I love being a part of this community

Did test rides of Duke 200 and CBR 250 last week.

Duke:
First went to E-city KTM, but the experience was not so reassuring. No sales person around, no bike to TD and the guy who was sitting there did not know anything much about the bikes. Went to BTM KTM and took a some what lengthy TD of Duke 200. The bike was nimble and handled well, but when I wringed open the throttle, I never felt the magic when I did the TD of 390 few days back. Sure, the bike did surge ahead with lot of enthusiasm and compared to my Unicorn, the pick up was in a different plane, but not in the league of Duke 390. But on the other hand, the 200 was much better in stop go traffic than 390, especially when negotiating the crawling in 1st gear and 2nd gear traffic and stop go traffic.

Honda CB 250 R
This was not in the picture but since the cost is about the same of Duke 390, went to see how the bike is. The bike I rode was not a TD bike, but of a guy who came to get his bike serviced - I was talking to him to know his opinion and he was all praise about the bike and almost forced me to take a TD of his bike to show me how much better is his bike over the dukes. The sitting position is much relaxed and engine felt much smoother, but sadly, this is not a bike I can take where ever I go - this is a very good bike for cruising, but just not my kind of bike.

So, as of now, my mind is heavily tilted towards Duke 200, but I am taking 2 more weeks to think and decide before I sign on the dotted line.

--Anoop
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Old 26th May 2014, 16:59   #13
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Default Re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

Quote:
Originally Posted by theexperthand View Post
Thanks Amit, 390 is a hoot to ride - no two questions about it. But since 80% of my rides will be in traffic choked bangalore roads, I am more inclined to get 200.
For just a couple of thousands you did have a complete motorcycle with you, I would still stick to my words and suggest you to go for 390 over 200. Over a period of time you will feel the need for more power and one does not change bikes very often. Go for a 390 and it still can be used for commuting although with some difficulties and if you have a RX100 at your disposal already you could use it for commuting and use 390 for the fun rides.

Quote:
@Vinit - I did TD Apache some time back and while the bike is good, I dont think it as an upgrade to Unicorn.
I strongly disagree, just test the RTR180 on a open road and wide open throttle and you will know how it beats any other bike below 1 lakh (forget Unicorn) hands down. It has superior pickup and handling than Unicorn.

Unicorn is a big heavy bike with super smooth engine, thats it nothing more to write about it. Its not powerful, its boring to drive.

Also RTR180 being light it can be used for mild off-roading very easily. Its alloys are far more stronger than many other bikes.

Other good competitor to it is Pulsar 200NS. It has superior pickup, handling good brakes and wide tyres for better traction. Do not neglect this bike if budget is limited to 1 lakh.

The advantage it has over RTR180 is vibe free engine, smooth gearbox and good top speed. I would not say handling is far better than RTR180, its equal or personally I feel a bit less. But its a potent bike not to be neglected for budget below 1 lakh.
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Old 26th May 2014, 17:23   #14
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Default Re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

Quote:
Originally Posted by amit_purohit20 View Post
For just a couple of thousands you did have a complete motorcycle with you, I would still stick to my words and suggest you to go for 390 over 200. Over a period of time you will feel the need for more power and one does not change bikes very often. Go for a 390 and it still can be used for commuting although with some difficulties and if you have a RX100 at your disposal already you could use it for commuting and use 390 for the fun rides.



I strongly disagree, just test the RTR180 on a open road and wide open throttle and you will know how it beats any other bike below 1 lakh (forget Unicorn) hands down. It has superior pickup and handling than Unicorn.

Unicorn is a big heavy bike with super smooth engine, thats it nothing more to write about it. Its not powerful, its boring to drive.

Also RTR180 being light it can be used for mild off-roading very easily. Its alloys are far more stronger than many other bikes.

Other good competitor to it is Pulsar 200NS. It has superior pickup, handling good brakes and wide tyres for better traction. Do not neglect this bike if budget is limited to 1 lakh.

The advantage it has over RTR180 is vibe free engine, smooth gearbox and good top speed. I would not say handling is far better than RTR180, its equal or personally I feel a bit less. But its a potent bike not to be neglected for budget below 1 lakh.
Thank you for the points, Amith.

The main purpose of this bike is commuting, so using RX 100 for commuting and this new purchase for fun ride will not work out for me. More over, the RX, though I have unrestricted access, is not mine - it belongs to a friend.

About RTR being not really an upgrade over Unicorn - I do agree that it offer better performance when compared to Unicorn but does it really worth selling my Unicorn and buying it? The Unicorn does 70%-80% of what RTR does so, I don't see a value in upgrading it for just the 20%. If I don't have the Duke in my radar, the NS 200 makes a strong case. But when compared with Duke, I feel Duke makes much better case.

I will do couple more TDs in different traffic conditions before I decide which duke to go for - 200 and 390.

--Anoop
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Old 26th May 2014, 22:06   #15
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Default Re: Most Fun-to-Ride Bike under 2 lakh

I would strongly recommend the Duke 200 as it is the most exciting and reliable motorcycle that I have ridden and owned( its my 4th bike). Not only has it become a tested product by now, it offers both long term savings in fuel compared to the 390 as well as wild fun. Most importantly, you can service it yourself as it has a fuss free mechanical layout. We ( my Duke 200 and I) have just celebrated our 2nd anniversary and 29000 kms together and our love affair is stronger then it was on the first day. But at the end it is your call...
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