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Old 28th December 2010, 21:45   #1
shridhar.s.i's Avatar
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Default Boxing out the Decade; Bajaj Boxer AT - Long Term Ownership Review

Hello All,
I dedicate this long term ownership review to a companion who has stood with our family for a Decade,
My Bajaj Boxer AT

Model Details
Manufacturer : Kawasaki Bajaj
Model Name : Boxer AT
Year of manufacture : 2000
KM on ODO : 70,000
Engine : 100 CC SOHC Carburetted

1. The Purchase Story: Year 2000
As always every vehicle in my house has a story to tell, but it all started with this bike, We had only 1 vehicle back then which was the RE STD 350 Bullet,
Now with petrol prices slowly increasing my father started looking for an alternative city bike, at those times we were not aware of Jargons like "traffic carver" or "zippy rider" and so on,
We had a very few options to consider
1. Hero Honda Splendor
2. Bajaj K100
3. The Suzuki's and the Yamaha's were out of question as they were gas guzzlers,
Splendor was ruled out as it was considered the costlier option (Around 48 K, Though i still feel splendor has a very fuel efficient and refined mill)
Now we decided to zero in on Bajaj and went to the showroom, but to our surprise Bajaj had made a very recent launch of a new bike, the Boxer
My father took a test ride on it and he felt the bike was well rounded offering and the killer was the cost,
There were 2 models,
  • Boxer AT - Without battery, electricals run directly on alternator, Rs 33 K
  • Boxer CT - With battery,Rs 36 K
Now since we had planned to run the bike mainly in day hours, we opted for the Boxer AT model as it was 3K cheaper and not having a battery meant one component less for maintenance
We also bargained further but back then it was still a seller's market with no much say for the buyer
So the deal was done and a new bike entered into our family, we never knew or even imagined that it was the beginning of a relationship that would last so long

Free Accesories provided by Seller (Gems Auto,Akurdi,Pune)
1. Turn Indicator buzzer (This was considered a safety feature back then)
2. Seat Cover
3. Front Crash guard (It was not mandatory, Strange but true!!!)
4. Brake pedal rubber pad (People might think of this as stupid but older bikes had a bigger facia on the pedal, and this helped preventing slips in rainy conditions)

Paid Accesories Added
1. Helmet lock
2. Sidebox
3. Fuel Lock

Initial reactions:
I have observed a phenomenon, whenever you buy some item, people come rushing not only to check it out but to try and find problems with it,
I got a fair share of expert comments from people who had driven TVS spark / kinetic honda their whole life, as below
"A BAJAJ, i have heard they have very poor after sales service"
"BAJAJ! very poor build quality"
"This bike will bot be able to take your weight"
"It feels so small"
"This is a new product, we dont know how reliable it is"
"No battery, how will the lights get powered"
And the best was
"I have heard BAJAJ uses second hand parts to build a bike so they can offer it cheap, my friends engine seized in first 500 KMS itself"

I know hearing such kind words does not inspire confidence, but this bike was all set to prove everyone wrong

The Run - In period (We tend to keep it upto 5000 K below 60KMPH)
Beleive it or not, my Dad and me firmly beleive in this concept, if you ride the bike within limits now, it serves you better in the long run, simple and sure

2. The Time when it earned its respect as Mr Dependable from us: Year 2002
I was in Std 12th and i had joined coaching classes in Pune, Now since i live at around 23 KM from Pune, we had very limited buses to this area and hence
My father used to pick me / drop for the classes daily, hence the bike had a daily running of (23*4 = 92 KM) for 3 months which means 92 * 90 days = approx 8000 KMS, and it did not fail even once, we still appreciate it for that

3. Mileage: Last 10 years this bike's mileage has hardly wavered below 55 KMPL

4. Pros
1. Smooth engine with firm underpinnings
2. Easy to ride and handle on city roads
3. Decent pulling power (We are a hefty family but still the vehicle never gave up on us)
4. Cheaper Spares and less Cost of ownership
5. Less fibre parts, more metal (Thanks to older generation bike building techniques)
6. Good driving posture and steady ride even on wet and gravel surfaces

5. Cons
1. Living in the shadow of Hero Honda brand
2. Instantaneous pickup is very less which means you need to plan well before you overtake a vehicle on the highway
3. Soft suspension
4. 110 mm Diameter drum brakes mean you must be really careful while trying to brake late

6. Long Trips done
1. Pune - Baramati (16 trips)
2. Pune - Satara (3 trips)
3. Pune - Nagar (1 trip)
4. Pune - Chakan / Moshi (7 trips)

7. Issues Faced
1. Worn out rear brakes - The rear brake pad had worn out, so as a precaution we replaced both pads and the liner, while fitting the new liner the mechanic made some mistake, unaware of the situation
we started riding the bike and in a few moments we felt the bike is not gaining momentum as expected and suddenly the rear wheel stuck up skidding the bike, but thankfully we controlled the skid and took it to side on the road, on checking we were shocked to see that the rear drum had become red hot for a few moments, when it cooled down we opened the assembly, the brake pads had molten at some points due to excessive heat and the liner was off, thankfully we averted an accident

2. Starting problem due to water entering fuel tank - This is a problem i have seen not only in Bajaj but also other bikes, since Boxer was kick start, it took a lot of kicking to crank up the bike, and again the bike will give you uneven hiccups as and when the water residue keeps entering the carburettor

8. Maintenance Costs: This is where the bike scores really high
The only maintenance cost i can think i have done for this bike is
1. Changing oil at every 5000 KM
2. Accelerator cable has broken once, Clutch cable broken twice - Total Cost= Rs 500 approx.
3. Brake Pad / Liner change - Rs 600
4. Rear tyre replaced at 25000 KM - MRF, Rs 900

Why do we still have it?
Answer: Well my mother hardly goes out on a bike, but say for some local travel if she does make up her mind, this is the only bike she firmly trusts to hop onto (even though we have 5 bikes) as she knows we cant go very fast on it neither will it fail

Final Thought : A fabulous bike which has run and performed worth its every penny..Respect, and i believe, if you earn the respect, you are treated well and so this bike is going nowhere until it dies on us

Thanks for reading

Note: The above opinions are solely my personal thoughts
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Old 28th December 2010, 21:59   #2
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Default Re: Boxing out the Decade; Bajaj Boxer AT - Long Term Ownership Review

A very well compiled and written long term review. This truly is a Long term report.
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Old 28th December 2010, 23:16   #3
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Default Re: Boxing out the Decade; Bajaj Boxer AT - Long Term Ownership Review

Extremely well written long term ownership. Truly, AAPKA Bajaj
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Old 29th December 2010, 01:40   #4
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Default Re: Boxing out the Decade; Bajaj Boxer AT - Long Term Ownership Review

As in the old 2-stroke scooter days, my dad would have said "You just can't beat a bajaj"

I would vouch for the bajaj M-80 electronic coz that is what i learned to ride on!!!!

I ride a bike with 6 gears now, but still the 3 geared M-80 is among my favorites
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Old 29th December 2010, 07:11   #5
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Default Re: Boxing out the Decade; Bajaj Boxer AT - Long Term Ownership Review

Nice review there Sridhar. Usually dont get to see much review of such bikes. I think when it was launched they told a mileage of about near 80, and it was considered the highest those days. Looking at the current petrol price, everyone should consider a secondary high mileage, low maintenance bike.

Last edited by Chipz : 29th December 2010 at 07:13.
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Old 29th December 2010, 12:26   #6
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Default Re: Boxing out the Decade; Bajaj Boxer AT - Long Term Ownership Review

Originally Posted by Chipz View Post
I think when it was launched they told a mileage of about near 80, and it was considered the highest those days.
I think the quoted mileage was 87 KMPL. Was'nt the boxer a rebrainded CT 100? I remember an ad with the model asking "Kyun Hero?" which was in response to its competitor Hero Honda CD 100.
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