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Old 21st March 2007, 11:28   #1
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Smile A Detailed Report on P220

I had a chance to ride with a P220 to Lavasa last saturday.

This is a review of the P220 based on my experience with it. I have compared it with ZMA wherever felt necessary.

To know the details of bike & rider check out this thread

P220, ZMA, Unicorn's Early Morning Ride to Lavasa(Lots of Pics) (P220, ZMA, Unicorn's Early Morning Ride to Lavasa(Lots of Pics))

Overview

The bike looks good & it’s stunning. It feels big when you sit on it, infact it gives you a big bike ka feel the moment you sit on it, mainly due to the clip-ons & slightly backwards footrests. BAL as again has got a winner here, the fit & finish levels are very good infact much better than HH or for that matter ZMA. The digi Speedo console looks great & the self test looks charming The first things that you notice are missing choke lever, fuel knob & a new pass beam switch along with the backlit switch panel & of course the LCD Digi console.

The Riding experience

My biggest worry was since this bike doesn’t have kick starter how good would the self be & am glad to say that the self lived up to its expectation. The bike starts very smoothly & almost effortlessly.
The gear shift is smooth & precise but still doesn’t not slot like CBZ\ZMA, some like it some don’t. I was fine with it as I had used this type of shift on my pulsar 180 but yes this one was better than the one on mine. Not a leap of change in the gear shift but nevertheless a good one. Those who like slotting gears may still crib but I was happy with it as I had no false neutrals & no wrong gears.
The engine is smooth really smooth & the bike picks up really sweetly, the exhaust note is nice but whether one likes it or not may differ from person to person. Once revved up the bike gets the typical pulsar vibes near tank & fairing though they are minimal but can still be felt on the knee touching the fairing near tank. These vibrations come around 70kph & above.
Just like its smaller siblings the RVMs on P220 become useless at these speeds as they vibrate so much that you cant make out what you see in the mirrors but since you cant see much anyways its not much of a problem. Oh that reminds me did I tell you guys that the RVMs are absolutely useless especially if you are wearing a minimalist riding gear, reminds me of classic Pulsars which had stylish mirrors but very poor visibility wrt the ones sported by DTSI versions, Yeah BAL did it again

The bike picks up really well on roll-ons, the most amazing thing was that even at 5th gear the bike picked up at 25kph, though it pinked a bit but still picked up without any jerks


Riding Comfort

I found the suspension to be a little stiffer than the ZMA while Pawan felt otherwise. The roads had no bad patches so cant say about how they would feel under bad road conditions.

The Bike has very sporty feel to it. The seats have good support & it holds you well. The bike is really good if you want to ride it fast (which of course you would ). I rode the P220 for around 10-15 kms & my right shoulder started to pain, does it make it really bad for long riding ?? To answer this, it reminds of the first two days when I had bought my 180 DTSi (which was my first bike ever) & when my arms pained like hell for two complete days  so it’s just a matter of getting used to. So does this make the P220 a good tourer ?? Or to say will it be more comfy than a ZMA for long rides ?? In my humble opinion with a guy of my height (am 5’10”)NO. Although the engine is really refined with enough power to take long stretches effortlessly the riding posture is not what you would want for such long rides. Having said that it’s still a matter of personal choice, I mean Sunny & Ken keep doing long rides on SBKs which in common perception are not good for long rides.
Disclaimer: I am not comparing it to the SBKs just the riding posture

All those who got disappointed here’s another way to look at it. Those who are shorter in height may find the bike to be better than the ZMA for riding comfort since they wont face the issue which taller guys like me faced i.e. crouched position & knees touching the fairing. So I think it can be safely put that it would be more comfy for shorter people that taller people for long rides

Handling

I took the P220 on ghats & on straights; the bike has really good handling when compared to the smaller pulsars especially because of the better swing arm & the riding posture & not to forget wider tubeless tires. The bike is very eager to lean when compared to previous Pulsars. So is this the new Handling champion ?? Sadly No here where I hated BAL the most, they have actually ruined a great handling bike into a non handling one, the reason ?? The stupid main stand aargh the mains stand scrapes at slightest of the lean I am very sure infact confidant that if the main stand is removed the bike will be an awesome handler

Ok just before some shouts that he has taken curves without scraping the stand, I will like to make it clear that the stand scraping happens when you are taking tight twisties uphill or downhill i.e. it won’t affect much on straights but then you only need the leaning aspect on such twisties

Braking

Full marks here no comments it simply rules here Excellent breaking supported by a wide profile rear as well as front tire(Yes the front tire is broader too )

Headlights

10 out of 10 or may be 11 out of 10. The lights everywhere including the headlights are superb. Let it be tail lamps or the LCD or the backlit switches

Drag Results

Frankly speaking the drags which we had were very amateurish & should be taken only as indicative & not as a proof because:

- The bikes had diff mileage on odo
- The drag was done on a strip which was barely 100-200 mtrs
- We had no timing device. And a few launches were not synchronized properly
- My ZMA is stock but has heavier & broader rear tire.

Result 1: P220 VS My ZMA

P220 won on 2 runs

Result 2: P220 vs. Modded ZMA (Vivek’s)

ZMA won 3 times
P220 won once when Vivek rode the P220 & Pawan rode the ZMA

Conclusion

Well am no journalist & this isn’t any magazine so I am really not sure what to post as a conclusion or verdict, rather I would put it as answers to commonly asked Qs

Q1: Is the P220 worth buying its price?
A1: Yes the P220 is a very good piece of machinery.

Q2: Is it better than ZMA?
A2: This is still debatable, while the engine is more powerful & has more torque than the ZMA, it still has niggling issues like poor RVMs & vibrations at higher revs which the ZMA lacks, Also the handling though very good is marred by the stupid stand which I believe can be fixed.
At the end one has to decide his priorities & go for it

Q3: Should I trade my ZMA for the P220
A3: Unless you want to go for all the gadgetry & that extra power NO. Remember the slightly mudded zap beat it in the unofficial drag

Phew that was one long write up

Here is a few comments which I had posted when I had my first brush with the 220. First Impressions

Here are a few high res pics of P220 & ZMA








I hope you guys enjoyed this report Also ask me if I have missed out on any stuff .
Techno

Last edited by Technocrat : 21st March 2007 at 11:30.
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Old 21st March 2007, 11:40   #2
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Nice review Techno. I hated the P220 for the side stand scraping at corners even when we were doing about 45kmph. Otherwise it is a good bike. Given a choice, I will still settle for a Karizma!

Last edited by moralfibre : 21st March 2007 at 11:47.
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Old 21st March 2007, 12:06   #3
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Nice comparison Techno. Though I didn't get the feeling of the P220 being a big bike when I first sat on it (I guess riding the Zed everyday blurs my judgment on that one!).

Main stand issues apart, the P220 is a better handler than the Zma?
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Old 21st March 2007, 12:06   #4
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Good review there, bhai. I feel that the P220 doesn't justify all the hype that's been built up over it, right?
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Old 21st March 2007, 12:15   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rtech View Post
Main stand issues apart, the P220 is a better handler than the Zma?
I didn't feel so. The Karizma feels more confident on the corners. I somehow never felt that the Pulsars are better handlers.
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Old 21st March 2007, 12:18   #6
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@Rtech: Lol yeah after riding the kwacker you will surely not find the P220 big. Handling seemed good esepcially because the power delivery was smooth & linear But Somehow it couldnt be thrown as easily as the ZMA, but the reason for this could be the fear of scraping the stand & also the bike being relatively new to me as I rode it for around 10 odd kms.
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Old 21st March 2007, 12:43   #7
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nice review.

only thing i dont like in the P220 (looks) is its fairing.
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Old 21st March 2007, 12:55   #8
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Wonder what a K&N and Jetting wud do to a 220
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Old 21st March 2007, 13:12   #9
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Nice review techno, you have really cleared quite a few doubts a lot of us had in mind regarding the 220
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Old 21st March 2007, 14:50   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by streetdreams View Post
Wonder what a K&N and Jetting wud do to a 220
What will you Jet in a FI bike dude ??
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Old 21st March 2007, 20:52   #11
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just a question... once the Uni filter is fitted.... F.i system should take of it right.. or is there some tuning has to be done?

also im concerned the p220 quality of parts, cause i am looking for the long run with the p220? what do u say to say bout it?
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Old 21st March 2007, 21:28   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Technocrat View Post
BAL as again has got a winner here, the fit & finish levels are very good infact much better than HH or for that matter ZMA. The digi Speedo console looks great & the self test looks charming
Indirectly you are saying that the quality on Pulsar 150/180 is better than ZMA.... since they share a lot of parts including the switch gear, tail lights and rear cowls, tank, Digital speedo, alloys and even the engine which is bored to the limit in case of P220.
Now dont tell me they are using different quality parts for Pulsar 150/180 and the P220.

@techno... hw abt the starter sound, is it same or better than the one on P180v2.

Last edited by extreme_torque : 21st March 2007 at 21:34.
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Old 21st March 2007, 21:30   #13
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Nice review there - pretty exhaustive.

What's the price difference between the two machines? Or are they priced @ par?
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Old 21st March 2007, 22:54   #14
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WOW! Techno great review.

Seems like P220 scores well on most counts except refinement (will this improve after 1st service??).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Technocrat View Post

Result 2: P220 vs. Modded ZMA (Vivek’s)

ZMA won 3 times
P220 won once when Vivek rode the P220 & Pawan rode the ZMA
Its always the rider not the ride
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Old 22nd March 2007, 03:19   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by extreme_torque View Post
Indirectly you are saying that the quality on Pulsar 150/180 is better than ZMA.... since they share a lot of parts including the switch gear, tail lights and rear cowls, tank, Digital speedo, alloys and even the engine which is bored to the limit in case of P220.
Now dont tell me they are using different quality parts for Pulsar 150/180 and the P220.

@techno... hw abt the starter sound, is it same or better than the one on P180v2.
I think the over bored block is being used in the 200 pulsar..
For the 220 they are using a variety of different components.. Cant say which ones but i know so from inside sources... Also the reason why there is a shortage of supply of P220's as compared to P200..
Cheers
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