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Old 7th November 2009, 13:32   #1
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Default R15 or the Pulsar 220 or the Karizma ZMR

hello everyone ,
i own a 2005 unicorn. I am planning to change my bike after 2 months. I am seriously thinking of either r15 or the p220 or the zmr.
what i like about each
p220-the vfm factor. i get 21 bhp for about 82k onroad cochin......but what I doubt is the pulsar engine reliability.How reliable is the 220 engine? .if I rip it for 75% of the kms its being run,will it be able to last that..I run about 1000kms a month.... May be I dont have to rip the 220 as it has got 21 bhp on tap as compared to the 13 on my uni.

zmr- after using the unicorn for 5 years and 50,000kms, I am seriously in love with the refinement and reliability of honda engines. And like the riding posture of the karizma. Should I be contented with the 4 bhp power upgrade in a zmr, while the 220 gives me the option of a 8 bhp upgrade in power when compared to unicorn.

r15- I have always loved to rip my unicorn, like taking it to 6k rpm in the first and second gears and I love changing the gears to keep myself in the power band.From the reviews I think the r15 loves to driven like that.Which of thes bikes is the most revv friendly? The more revv friendly the engine is , the greater is the pleasure I get by driving it. And its a liquid cooled engine.(got a fascination for liquid cooled engines) The doubt I have is the about the ride comfort. It weighs only 131 kg as compared to the 142 kg of my unicorn and the 150kg + of the zmr and the p220. As it is lighter will it aftect its ride comfort over rough roads? When I ride my unicorn I get some discomfort or slight pain at my back after riding continously for about 150 kms on mixed type of roads. Then I have to stop and rest. Will I get these back pains more frequently with the r15 than the unicorn? The riding posture, which is between a crouched position and a upright one is not liked by some. I haven't ridden the r15, as there is no test drive available at the showroom,Cheerans auto,Thrissur,Kerala. ( The reason they say is that r15 is a premium bike and you wont understand the power of r15 in a short test drive).Not a single person in my college is having the r15, so there is no chance of getting a test drive easily.I have read some where that the r15 chains needs to be lubricated after running it in rain. Is it true?
So which one to go if I need a reliable engine, that is revv friendly, with decent ride comfort for the occassional long drives.
Please give me your valuable advices.....
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Old 7th November 2009, 13:48   #2
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fireblade007
even am hunting for a new bike and narrowed down to Apache 180 RTR.

1>Its has best 0 To 100 Figures and even roll on figures are great .
2> Best low end torque so less gear changes.
3>Decent TOP speed
4>Amazing built quality.As karizma on bad roads rattles link anything.
5>R 15 .. Very good bike but too expensive for a 150 CC Bike.And one cannot ride bike all the day by revving it hard to get that power.Better suited for race tracks.
5>Pulser.I think best value for money.

But when i drove my friends apache 180,decided this is the bike for me.perfect fit and Finnish.breaks too good better than any bike.Headlight beam spread is spot on for night rides.
Slick gear box.
She has best handling of the lot.
Only thing am worried about is TVS Tires.
And almost saving of over 30,000 on Yamaha and will get same or more mileage.
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Old 7th November 2009, 13:54   #3
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Hi. When love to stay in the power band then definitely the pulsar is not for you, the overall quality of the 220 is not matched to its engine power requirements, I suggest you to forget about the pulsar at least for now, Now the R15 and ZMR the truth is R15 is a bit overpriced for its size, Even though the quality is excellent the price tag doesn't justifies it, so as you can see we are left with only one option the ZMR, well as you know that mill in it is the old trustworthy friend of the Honda and you can really rev it harder as long as you want, The engine is refined and smooth as butter and the quality is one of the best, so go for the ZMR.. If you are planning to add the performance upgrades to the R15 then it can even beat the 220 in straights, but wait the total cost would go beyond double, thiknk wisely and choose, best of luck..
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Old 7th November 2009, 13:59   #4
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@ parimal_g,
I will get a test drive of apache 180 before I choose. I have never thought about it before but will definitely consider it. What is meant by roll on figures?
I thought r15 was the best handler among the lot.
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Old 7th November 2009, 14:08   #5
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Rev-happy Engine? R15 no doubt! The power starts coming after 5K RPM only. So, if you like driving like that, you can rev all your way to 10.5K

7K - 9K is the sweet spot! Pure bliss.

However, be wary of:
1. There is no option to drive it in lower revvs (it is sleep inducing level boring) - In Unicorn at least you can drive it sedately if you want to.

2. Soft compound tires - Aptly called 'tires' because it is so tiring to keep fixing the punctures. I have come out of the honeymoon period with my R15 and facing stark realities. I replaced the tire once already, and the new one has 3 punctures so far. And, I don't drive in bad roads - The tire is a nail magnet. It loves to get punctured. So, keep a kit handy and know how to use it.

Technology-wise, R15 ROCKS
1. Liquid cooled engine (your favorite)
2. Dual Disc brakes
3. Aerodynamic Chassis (AWESOME) - Called DeltaFrame in Yamaha parlance
4. Stunning fuel efficiency - 40 - 45 kmpl consistently
(and a lot more)

But, if I had to buy now, it would be P220.
1. More power (you'll need it when you race it with kids driving P220, Karizmas)
2. Bigger Engine -TRUST ME - There is no replacement for displacement. I learnt it the hard way
3. You can drive it at lower revs
4. AWESOME VFM (88K vs 1.17L for R15 in Bangalore)

All said, I did some ECU remapping with R15 and I got almost 3 BHP power boost at the rear wheel (guess, it should be around 4-5 BHP at the crank-shaft - So the vehicle should be classified as 21-22 BHP) - There is no major shift in power delivery in lower RPMs, but the bike flies after it hits 4K :-)

Give ZMR a miss. (unless you are a honda fanboy)

Check out RE Classic
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Old 7th November 2009, 14:17   #6
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@sriramv.iyer.
did you get the race ECU from yamaha or did it from an independent tuner? Do you know what the high lift cams in the performance kit do? what are the high lift cams?
What is your FE after the remap?
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Old 7th November 2009, 14:38   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fireblade007 View Post
@sriramv.iyer.
Do you know what the high lift cams in the performance kit do? what are the high lift cams?
That's a lot of questions for me :-) - I am no expert (SERIOUSLY) - Take whatever I saw with a generous serving of salt.

A cam is a device that converts the rotary movement (of the engine) to linear movement.

A high lift cam, helps increase power of an engine by keeping the valve open for higher and/or longer duration to allow more air to get in.

A high lift cam basically works to increase the power output from the engine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fireblade007 View Post
@sriramv.iyer.
did you get the race ECU from yamaha or did it from an independent tuner?
I got it done from a tuner from Yamaha itself. The tuner was very secretive about it. I guess it is just flashing of new software (tuned aggressively) for the ECU. I'll upload the dyno results in my other thread on R15. There are no hardware changes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fireblade007 View Post
@sriramv.iyer.
What is your FE after the remap?
Did it pretty recently - I don't know. The tuner claimed it should be the same.
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Old 7th November 2009, 14:51   #8
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@sriramv.iyer
one more question, what about the ride comfort on rough roads and the riding posture of r15?
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Old 7th November 2009, 18:53   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fireblade007 View Post
@sriramv.iyer
1) how do you rate the ride comfort of r15 and its riding posture? is the riding posture good/bad for long rides?How does it fair on rough roads?
2) if I change the tyres of r15 to ordinary fatter tyres, will it affect its handling?(for reducing the frequency of the punctures)
3)I have read in a thread that r 15 requires chain lubrication if its run in rain.Is it true?

(Some questions from PM)

[1] You need to get used to the riding position in R15 - You really need to bend forward (This is one of the conscious design decisions from Yamaha as part of their R-series) - So, till we get used to it, we tend to put a lot of weight on our wrists causing wrist pain. Once you get a handle on this this should not be a bother. I have done 300+ km trips (one-way) in a single stretch and the bike rode like a dream! The riding comfort is pretty good. I was quite suspicious about the monocross suspension. The ride is pretty good for both pillion and driver (ZMA's ride comfort is the best of the lot)

[2] Please do not change the tire - It is one of the key parts of the bike. I recently put a sealing liquid in rear-tire to make up for small punctures - I don't know how effective it is though. Just stick to the original tires.

[3] That's something I have not done. I have driven a lot in rains too. (I esp ride my bike when it starts to rain ) - I have had issues with chain becoming loose after long drives.

The bike requires periodic maintenance. There is no escaping that.

PS:- I know I should be updating my R15 thread with my experiences. I'll do that! (I may require a kick in the *** by sammyboy as he did last time when I delayed posting my ownership report )
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Old 7th November 2009, 19:28   #10
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fireblade007, From the way you like your bikes and the way you love to ride, it should be R15 and RTR180 for you. TD both and take a decision. IF you dont mind the lack of refinement the RTR180 is a good option.
But if you are concerned about your back ache, its the Zma you should look at. Or you could look at the RE Classic 350/500?
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Old 7th November 2009, 19:35   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fireblade007 View Post
@ parimal_g,
I will get a test drive of apache 180 before I choose. I have never thought about it before but will definitely consider it. What is meant by roll on figures?
I thought r15 was the best handler among the lot.
Hi R15 may be the best handler on track but for our everyday use RTR handles best and R15 has specially built tires by MRF which are super soft which helps to improve handling.
Just test drive the 180 RTR it just loves to rev hard ,reves more than 10,000 RPM and throttle response is amazing and returns good mileage also.
Roll on figures: Achieving certain speed in same gear.e.g 30 -- 70 Km/hr in 4th Gear or 3rd gear, its useful in cities as less gear change is required
Also the instrument cluster shows your best 0 – 60 timings and shows the top speed achieved.[/COLOR]
And TVS RTR has racing DNA’s of TVS Racing Team.

Last edited by parimal_g : 7th November 2009 at 19:37.
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Old 7th November 2009, 20:44   #12
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I own a R15 and here are my views:

1. The engine loves to be revved. Below 3K RPM there is no response from engine, so forget about pillion rider. Seriously, Yamaha should have given only single seat for R15.

2. Once you go past 5K RPM it shoots like a bullet, I always love to shift the gears at 6K RPM for the same reason. No matter at what speed no part of the bike vibrates (fairing, footrests, handle)

3. You need to adjust the seating position to your comfort so that your back don't hurt every time you take the bike out. However your wrists pain after a continuous drive of about 2-3 hours. Leather gloves should help in that case.

4. Open chain is a big mess. I may be the first person who would like to have closed chain cover for R15. I run to SVC every week to get the chain clean & lubed. Today also I got the chain cleaned and when I hit the road, it started to rain immediately . Motul chain clean and lube costs about Rs.900/-.

5. Maneuverability and handling is awesome I must say. I'm tempted to take lean at every corner. Make sure the tyre's have the right pressure.

6. I sometimes feel embarrassed when all the eyes on road are on my bike, that tells about the looks department.

As I have owned a ZMA-R in the past and as ZMR is more or similar to ZMA-R, I have few more points.

1. Karizma is a no nonsense bike. It is the best touring bike. It has torque in all the rev range. The engine never feels stressed even ripped at max RPM. Just a twist in the throttle and it moves very smoothly.

2. ZMR may not match the top of whack of R15, but in initial acceleration ZMA is quicker than R15.

3. I have not seen ZMR in flesh but the saying is it looks better in flesh than in photos, of course its the same case for all HH bikes .

Never rode P220, but people say that P220 DTSi is a VFM bike and is more refined than P220 DTS FI. But I never have the courage to chose any of the Pulsar series bikes after I have had enough on my first generation P 150. No offense to anyone, thats how my experience was :(

So as a final point, I feel ZMR is a better choice. Do take a test ride and decide.

All the best and do let us know your final choice.

Last edited by Technocrat : 9th November 2009 at 20:49. Reason: Only 2 smilies per post allowed, please read our board rules carefully. Thanks
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Old 7th November 2009, 22:16   #13
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@fireblade007:

Iam a P220 DTSi owner for 4 months now. I had driven R15 for a quite a distance before turning it down for P220 DTSi.

Here are my findings:-

1) P220 - Sheer cubic capacity. 220cc is 220cc man. ZMR and 220 neck to neck.
TORQUE is the key word here, not just the 21bhp power. 19+nm is the torque for P220 which makes a lot of difference. I never noticed initially till I made a trip to my native place in Kottayam from Cochin. A climb near my native which cud be done only in 2nd gear in my esteem was done effortlessly at 40-45kmph speed on my p220 in 5th GEAR WITH A PILLION. TRY IT TO BELEIVE IT. I WAS SHOCKED!!!
On the highway you seldom need to change gears either. Always that extra power is available in the top gear gear itself. Just twist the throttle and it zooooomz. That is 220 for you.
Just realise why a 75bhp Swift diesel (with 190nm torque) became such a hit than a 87bhp Swift petrol (with 113nm torque). It was all about Torque. More torque means more driving pleasure, lesser gear changes, more power 'feel' and MORE MILEAGE.
p220 is heavy. It has adv and disadv. Adv that its rock stable on the highway. Small pothholes wont bother you much. But the handling in traffic is not that good. Then since its heavy you wont feel the 21bhp power so much as in a RTR 180 which 'jumps' initially.
PS: You dont really have to rip P220 to get the power unlike other bikes around. SO my bet is that this pulsar engine wud last more.

2) Downside of R15 - well in normal driving cirumstances revving up the engine that too upto 9k is not practical. SO THROW R15 out of the window. But still kudos to the DESIGN. I cud zig-zag with R15 at 120kmph on highway. Wont even feel the speed due to the aero design with gud braking too. But then R15 was designed for the race track and most guys who buy it will complain sooner or later.I just felt like 'Unicorn' when i drove r15 in traffic. Had R15 been a 200cc bike with a similar pricing it would have been THE BEST. But currently its underpowered and overpriced. But having said so it does cause a threat to even P220 at speeds above 100kmph when it gets into its 6th gear 'power band'.

3) Trick in ZMR - bike is all the same. Some silly things which hero honda has brought about (JUST TO COMPETE WITH P220, nothing else, more of cosmetic changes than the rest). FI yes must have improved its paltry mileage from 25kmpl to 35+ "probably". But again god knows. P220 gives a handsome mileage of 34kmpl AT FULL RIPPING and around 42 when driven without ripping.yeah but then supreme refined honda engine is on offer which has proved itself over the years in ZMR. COMFORT is FAAR better than P220. Back does pain a bit riding P220 for long distances. Not too pothhole friendly is the P220. So comfort and refinement, ZMR scores.

4) RTR180 - YES. My bet for a real competitor for P220. even rtr160 is good enuf a P220 beater in traffic due to its sheer handling and braking. P220 simply has the best braking amongst all previous pulsars but still I feel current top ranking goes to RTR. I have heard similar opinion from many guys who have tried on RTR. So just imagine with the kind of power RTR 180 offers (reminds me of P180 launched in 2003 which was a Zma beater), similarly this RTR 180 is a P220 beater. Yes dude I almost lost to a RTR 180 just bcoz I cudnt zig zag my bike as well as an RTR. Though in a straight line I simply booed him moments later when his bike was stuck at around 120kmph and I took mine to around 135kmph. final victory was mine, but moral victory was his! TVS brand is the only problem here in terms of resale and stuff, otherwise RTR rocks.

Overall P220 with its POWER, TORQUE, GOODIES is real VFM. I have heard off late that Bajaj bikes have poor quality since 2005-2006. I owned a P150DTSi (2004 model) which I used for full 5 yrs (and 35k kms) and gave me just one prob which was gear slip. So overall I cant assure P220 engine will stand good for say 7+ yrs or 60000kms, but as of now till 4 months she has been rock solid,with supreme performance with NOT A SINGLE COMPLAINT TILL DATE.

PS: Leave aside silly bikes like Zma, P200, RTR, I race with the swifts and Innovas (Thanks to its overall constant power delivery throughout the spectrum with so much torque). Now thats a league apart, offered by NONE other than the mighty Bajaj Pulsar 220 DTSi (THE FASTEST INDIAN- under production ).

Last edited by sam_sant2005 : 7th November 2009 at 22:26. Reason: typos
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Old 7th November 2009, 22:30   #14
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Quote:
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4. Open chain is a big mess. I may be the first person who would like to have closed chain cover for R15. I run to SVC every week to get the chain clean & lubed. Today also I got the chain cleaned and when I hit the road, it started to rain immediately . Motul chain clean and lube costs about Rs.900/-.
I might be the first person to fit a chain cover on P220 DTSi , YES IT ANNOYS. Who the heck came up with the idea of open chain? It does need lubrication at an interval of say a month or so.
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Old 7th November 2009, 22:36   #15
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I might be the first person to fit a chain cover on P220 DTSi , YES IT ANNOYS. Who the heck came up with the idea of open chain? It does need lubrication at an interval of say a month or so.
Yes, for our Indian road conditions, naked chains are not suitable. I believe naked chain helps in cost and weight reduction for manufacturers but at the cost of customer's maintenance.
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