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Comparison Shootout: Ktm Duke 200 Vs Pulsar 200 Ns Vs Cbr250R

ShootoutKTM Duke 200 Pulsar 200 NS Honda CBR250R

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#46 satyenpoojary

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 07:59 PM

Actually it isnt the biasedness, its the riders preference creeping into play.

I loved the NS for its spot on suspension. I hate the spongy suspension on the Ninja, but what it lacks on stiffness, it makes up in torque. I prefer the stiffer suspension and so LOVE the Duke200, and find the CBR a bit scary due to its sponginess and abrupt powerband, and what is sponginess to me, is "comfortable" to you!
So its just the "preference" acting up...

(Though I still maintain, we didnt have any vibes issue on the 200NS!)

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#47 rahul_rn

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 10:07 PM

 pulsurge, on 19 July 2012 - 05:38 PM, said:

Aaaah welcome Reeto :) Very well said and I agree to most of your points except the performance mods. Upjetting and K&N filter won't raise the performance by much. I know ample people who did this mod to death and the performance vs the money spend were poles apart- also reliability will definitely take a beating. In the end there is no replacement for displacement. And same goes for the CBR and the Duke too- I happened to come across a guy who spend nearly one bike's cost on modifications on his CBR- well he did have 26 bhp making at the rear wheel, but it still got whacked by the Ninjas on straights ;) The quest for power never ends...125 blokes mod their engines to run like a 150, 150 guys to a 180, 180 to a 220...220 to a 250 etc etc etc. Its a never ending loop.

Am i the only one here that thinks that performance upgrades are worth it..?
I mean forget the reliability part, what if someone is thinking just outright performance..? Joel makes super good performance mods for bikes are the bikes i feel are really flying low..  And he had claimed that with just his exhaust for the cbr performance can go up by 1.5 to 2 horses.. Though many may feel that this is still no where close to the ninja but still there are quite a lot of other mods one can do..
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#48 pulsurge

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 10:25 PM

Coming to free flow exhausts...the Akrapovic for the CBR250R costs close to some 20-25k and gives you a rise of 0.7bhp. You think its worth it? And the noise...eek I hate that. 4 cylinders, well they sound heavenly. But singles....naaaa!
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#49 arn

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 10:47 PM

Satyen you'd be the best to list one by one the PROBLEMS/ISSUES on the 200. Lets have them, one by one. If, after 6000km, somebody tells me that his bike did not have at least a few issues...lets begin.

As a pointer, you can go over my CBR review, for inspiration.

We're waiting!

#50 Reeto

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 12:42 PM

 arn, on 19 July 2012 - 10:47 PM, said:

Satyen you'd be the best to list one by one the PROBLEMS/ISSUES on the 200. Lets have them, one by one. If, after 6000km, somebody tells me that his bike did not have at least a few issues...lets begin.

As a pointer, you can go over my CBR review, for inspiration.

We're waiting!

Don't think Satyen has had much PROBLEMS/ISSUES on the Pulsar 200 NS to make a list of it (if he did, he would have been vocal about the same on this forum). None of the users till now have faced any major problems on the Pulsar 200 NS, this has been confirmed by the Bajaj Customer Service department themselves. Check the other forums like xBHP and Team BHP, none of the users of the 200 NS have any major complaint till date.

#51 arn

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 01:51 PM

Do you really expect Bajaj customer service dept to tell you about problems with their product? Seriously? Maybe, if you ask them nicely they will give you an exhaustive list of issues their older Pulsars had? I do go to xbhp for light entertainment, but not for issues where commonsense, intelligence or truth is a requirement.

I'm more than a little surprised he hasn't yet got back here with a list of issues. Anybody who says there are no issues is simply somebody who loses all credibility as regards speaking the truth, and we have to view all other statements by that person regarding the bike in that light.

I can tell you one issue by just looking at the bike. Lack of weather protection at highway speeds. There are more. But we have not heard this from Satyen. Yet.

To test the bikes as their "beta testers" did Bajaj would have had to spend BIG money to hire such people AND pay for the fuel too. They got this free. And the same people who have done this (free, and at the risk of personal inconvenience, possibly spoiling a holiday, and paying for the fuel themselves) seem to be following some kind of gag order for the "privilege" of being unpaid beta testers, and getting to use the new bike FOC.

Reminds you of the joke about Adam and Eve being Indian. Scroll down...

















They had no clothes, shelter or belongings and called the place they stayed "paradise"

And, we're still waiting.

#52 Reeto

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 03:24 PM

 arn, on 23 July 2012 - 01:51 PM, said:

Do you really expect Bajaj customer service dept to tell you about problems with their product? Seriously? Maybe, if you ask them nicely they will give you an exhaustive list of issues their older Pulsars had? I do go to xbhp for light entertainment, but not for issues where commonsense, intelligence or truth is a requirement.

I'm more than a little surprised he hasn't yet got back here with a list of issues. Anybody who says there are no issues is simply somebody who loses all credibility as regards speaking the truth, and we have to view all other statements by that person regarding the bike in that light.

I can tell you one issue by just looking at the bike. Lack of weather protection at highway speeds. There are more. But we have not heard this from Satyen. Yet.

To test the bikes as their "beta testers" did Bajaj would have had to spend BIG money to hire such people AND pay for the fuel too. They got this free. And the same people who have done this (free, and at the risk of personal inconvenience, possibly spoiling a holiday, and paying for the fuel themselves) seem to be following some kind of gag order for the "privilege" of being unpaid beta testers, and getting to use the new bike FOC.

Reminds you of the joke about Adam and Eve being Indian. Scroll down...

















They had no clothes, shelter or belongings and called the place they stayed "paradise"

And, we're still waiting.

Its a NAKED bike Mr. Arn :closed_2: , there isn't supposed to be any weather protection unless the Company offers an optional windscreen. I was riding the RE Machismo 500 AVL which had a Company provided windscreen but honestly, all it did was increase the wind drag and bring down both fuel economy and performance.  I understand you are not pro-Bajaj but just because you had niggling set of issues with your CBR250R despite paying Rs. 1.6 lakh, doesn't mean a Pulsar 200 NS (which costs 50K lesser than your Honda) has to have an even or greater set of issues. Every machine has its set of issues/niggles, it solely depends on the owner as to how he deals with it ie. some issues can be sorted and some one has to live with. After paying a whopping Rs. 1.6 lakh or a 2 lakh (ABS) for a Honda, I definitely wouldn't in the least be happy to face the issues that you have mentioned in your ownership article.

After parting with a lakh for the 200 NS, it will not hurt so much to deal with a few niggles as much as it would for the pricey CBR. Honestly the CBR250R is a good tourer but not worth the exorbitant sum Honda charges for it. I would be happy if Satyen or any other user member could give us a better picture of the 200 NS about real world riding conditions.

Personally I support Bajaj coz its an Indian Company and they build products that are pure VFM. Bajaj have their own R&D, fully localised parts and have also managed to improve their products with every new launch.

So for me and a for a lot of people out there who value their hard-earned money and wouldn't want to go blindly for a product worth Rs. 1.6 or 2 lakh just bcoz of the Honda tag, Bajaj Pulsar 200 NS is an excellent option............. :behindsofa:

#53 NikhilB

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 03:33 PM

^^

Your personal Bajaj vs. Honda feelings aside, even I would be keen to know how the bike held up during Satyen's trip.
I like 'em Naked.

My thoughts

#54 pulsurge

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 04:59 PM

Lovely debate, let me poke in too ;)

Yeah the NS is a naked bike and I whole heartedly agree. As regards the windscreen on the Machismo, I think there has to be some sense on the angle too. If its just kept too vertical- its simply killing the purpose of the screen. Anyways those screens on the Enfield are more for the style factor rather than function.


About Dr. Arnob talking about the issues on the CBR- he has been frank from the bottom of his guts and extremely critical of the bike- you will find very less people who do that. If he was fascinated just by the Honda badge- he wouldn't have bought anything to light, rather just keep mum and talk only good about the bike. For a matter for fact he owned a ZMA earlier, which as a machine was acclaimed for its relentless touring abilities and the so called "premium sports" tag and the Hero Honda "quality". He was the person who openly bought about the issues and the setbacks of the bike which wasn't digested by everyone- lead to lot of debates/arguments/online fights mostly with people who thought it was the best bike just coz they bought it. And despite all the issues highlighted- the ZMA was still leagues ahead when it came to on road performance compared to competition i.e. the P180 and latter being the 220. The ZMA being expensive and openly criticized by him didn't make the Pulsars a better performing bunch. He could have easily bought the Pulsars and thought on your lines that it wouldn't have hurt that much if it had the same set of issues jus coz they were cheaper than the ZMA. The same logic applies here too. To add figures here, your bike wouldn't have done even half of the distance that his ZMA has clocked till date. I remember seeing his odo reading over 2 lac kms when he entered the Limca Book of Records for being the fastest man on two wheels to cover the Golden Quadrilateral. Figures and experience counts when a person talks. How long/fast have you ridden the CBR and the NS?

When you say a good tourer but not worth the exhorbitant price- do you think Enfields (as tourers) are worth the price they are sold for considering their build quality, technology and performance? The CBR does look overpriced- but then definitely not in the bracket of the NS or the KTM- in todays world and specially in a country like India where you don't have much choices, you have to pay for something called as better engineering. The Unicorn in comparison to the P150 is expensive but still sells despite having no digital dash, dtsi technology, LED lights, backlight switches etc- is it just coz of the Honda badge? As for the niggles on the CBR, it has more to do with his riding style- which you, me or rather anyone would think twice before attempting. If the niggles were uniform- the same would have happened to my bike too. The only issue in my bike post 16,000 kms is that a dash bolt got loose and has fallen off.

The recent NS offering has more to do with KTM technology than their own R&D- though am not complaining. Even Hero Honda tweaked Honda engines onto their bikes and made some real good motorcycles. Even I feel proud about the Pulsar brand- but I would wish to ask you a few questions when you talk about improvement before the NS hit the screen.

1) Why do Bajaj bikes (Pulsars included) still have notchy and clunky gearboxes? From the Classic Pulsar to the new 220 DTSi, its just the same story.
2) Why are they such terrible handlers? Couldn't they design a decent chassis on their bike for 10 years?
3) The so called nitrox shock absorbers look great with all the piggyback gas canisters- but to be frank they don't even come close to the ride quality of say something like Classic CBZ shocks.
4) With age their bikes lose their handling character- they will become shaky, wobbly etc and there is nothing you can do to fix it. And for record, you don't need to have a crash- they just lose it with time.
5) Same goes with their engines- they will lose their smoothness (whatever they had) in matter of time and no matter what, you will keep replacing each and every part in the engine- but you just won't get it.

These are just a few I could point out after riding my Pulsar and a lot others. The good thing Bajaj has done is offering performance vis-a-vis the rupee factor. A P220 can smoke a ZMA in the acceleration and the top speed department- but the rider itself would know the manner in which the bike is performing. VFM definitely doesn't mean better performance.

On the concluding part- I don't think this debate is to point which bike has the most issues- bloody even the Ducati Panigale had recalls owing to technical flaws. It has more to do with people being so headstrong as to not accepting what others have experienced. For example me mentioning about the vibes on the NS have garnered enough brickbats- to the extent that Mr. Payeng who runs his own motorcycling blog loses his sense of language and exercises words like "Bull Crap" on Motoroids just coz no one is doing a censorship here- but the same doesn't happen on his blog and your comments won't get approved if you have a different opinion- no matter how sweet you talk. An NS owner writes about the vibes on his blog, but Mr. Payeng has nothing to say about it- rather he is at his humble best in use of language answering the queries of his readers. Coming back to the point- as I see it, what Doc wanted was a frank opinion on the issues that the bike had. Its certainly not for the purpose to display the bike in bad light- but someone being frank enough to talk about the issues that cropped up on the bike. I would definitely not agree if a new bike performed flawlessly- as a matter of engineering, something or the other definitely goes wrong.

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#55 rahul_rn

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Posted 23 July 2012 - 07:37 PM

The thing i noticed about the cbr250 is that Honda made a simple mistake while launching it, they were in a bit of an hurry to get the bike out soon and made a bike in that process and some of their parts were not of great quality but thankfully Honda addressed to these issue's and 2012 bike is A LOT better then the previous year's bike, not just that Honda secretly replaced parts on the  bikes which had been sold earlier FREE OF COST.. Now ask yourself how many pulsar owners got this privilege..? Forget the cheaper models, even the 220 guys did not get this..
And since Honda realized this mistake with the 250, they did not make the same one with the cbr150, they got it bang on the money with that one (p.s i din't mean the price here which is stupid though)
ABS you say is costly..? Well then let me ask you a question, What is more expensive to you, your life or the ABS..?


Me having ridden 17.5 kms on my bike din't even have a single issue till date.. I know my bike as Deepak bhai mentioned might be expensive then the p150 but it has a rear disk ( that works, unlike the one in p220 which doesn't) a monoshock which i feel is more important then having a bike with backlit switches, twin sparks etc.. But for a real world it works brilliantly, i mean a single spark plug delivers 14 real world horses then why would i need two..? and its not like i need backlit switches to tell me how to turn on the lights or honk the horn..

I like what Bajaj is doing and i like the p200, being an Indian company and i do respect that but and this is a big one it is still not the best out there, i mean TVS is also a company (though might not have anything in the performance segment) but still make really good products.. My dad owned a victor for 10 years and in 10 years only wear and tear parts were replaced, nothing happened to it, it ran without services for 8-10 months at times.. Oil change was even worse, but it still kept on going like a faithful dog.. I have never seen anyone tell that about any bajaj product..

Ask yourself how many Honda's have gone wrong..? Be it the Yuga, twister, shine, stunner, unicorn, dazzler, cbr150 or the 250..?
The same goes for Activa and Dio, they are very good.. FYI the engine in the zma is from the crf230 which is roughly 4 decades old and has not been changed since.. And almost everyone respect's that bike for the engine it still has, people in our country crave for numbers but who don't know what that baby is..

I too curse Honda for their pricing and the ASC but somehow their products work and maybe that's why you have to pay the premium, ask yourself would you pay that extra bit or would you rather miss out on holiday you had planned just because your bike broke down..? Well if you ask me i would rather pay more then miss out on the memorable moments of my life.. :)
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#56 arn

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Posted 24 July 2012 - 12:47 AM

 Reeto, on 23 July 2012 - 03:24 PM, said:

Its a NAKED bike Mr. Arn :closed_2: , there isn't supposed to be any weather protection unless the Company offers an optional windscreen. I was riding the RE Machismo 500 AVL which had a Company provided windscreen but honestly, all it did was increase the wind drag and bring down both fuel economy and performance.

Naked bike, so that's justified for a bike which is supposed to tour as well? Or isn't it?  Royal Enfield knows it's customers. To them (the average customer) show is EVERYTHING. Windscreens like what they make are just for that, as would be discernible to anybody knowledgeable at first glance.

I understand you are not pro-Bajaj but just because you had niggling set of issues with your CBR250R despite paying Rs. 1.6 lakh, doesn't mean a Pulsar 200 NS (which costs 50K lesser than your Honda) has to have an even or greater set of issues.

I'm not "pro" or "con" anybody. I write as I perceive it. And in almost all cases after I BUY it. On my own money. I give you an idea as to what it would be if you BUY it. And what you can expect from it. I know it's a very difficult concept  for some to understand, but I've no axes to grind here save to INFORM the uninformed. Compare that to the average journalist who's review sounds like the advertising material/official press handout because one negative point will have the editor on his neck like a ton of bricks because it reduces the chance of getting ad revenue. Suck up, and stay out of trouble. Or non journos with a hidden agenda of getting something PHOKAT again in future, which they'd rather not disclose now. If you'd have asked me before buying your Enfield, I'd have asked you if you really like the continuous sound of something like a tin containing loose change being rattled. Or whether you know that they are clueless as to why they have so many sprag clutch failures (they still don't know, BTW). The company and journalists did not tell you these things, They forgot, huh?

Every machine has its set of issues/niggles, it solely depends on the owner as to how he deals with it ie. some issues can be sorted and some one has to live with. After paying a whopping Rs. 1.6 lakh or a 2 lakh (ABS) for a Honda, I definitely wouldn't in the least be happy to face the issues that you have mentioned in your ownership article.

The CBR is looked upon as equivalent to the Ninja 250 in most markets and is priced the same. And the niggles are just that, niggles. If I'm moving though traffic at 4000rpm next to a KTM, N250 or an NS, and we see an opening, and whack open throttles, I know which will win this battle that happens everyday, several times a day. As regards the "issues" of which you talk, of course you'll face them and many more. You've just not faced them. And people who've ridden it seem very coy in speaking openly, so you'll find out after spending the money. Your money. Yes, on the CBR all the niggles are sorted. ALL.

After parting with a lakh for the 200 NS, it will not hurt so much to deal with a few niggles as much as it would for the pricey CBR. Honestly the CBR250R is a good tourer but not worth the exorbitant sum Honda charges for it. I would be happy if Satyen or any other user member could give us a better picture of the 200 NS about real world riding conditions.

I'd be interested to read about them too. Which for some reason he has not put up yet. Not the company handout type material, but the issues. The CBR is not a TOURER. It's an all rounder. Just because it can cruise at 125 all day does not make it a tourer, no more than a Ducati 796

Personally I support Bajaj coz its an Indian Company and they build products that are pure VFM. Bajaj have their own R&D, fully localised parts and have also managed to improve their products with every new launch.


Isn't that the same company that sold us obsolete Italian scooters for so many years and kept producing unadulterated S*** because they had a captive market and did not need to improve in the least? They did not even add indicators to it until they were forced to by legislation. Own R&D. Yes they do have a vestigial dept, after how many years of existence? What did this R&D dept give us for the first 30 years? After that, "Exhaustec", and "two spark plugs/cylinder", now three! Wow! As regards "improvements", I'd like to see them improve on Yamaha finishing and Honda reliability, then we'll talk about it.

Personally if somebody is out to loot and cheat you with the garbage they sell because you have no choice but to buy it, does it make you feel all warm and fuzzy because they happen to be residents of the same country as you? Now before you come up with "see, you are anti Bajaj", let me make a clear distinction between the company and the stuff they produce. Anti bajaj (the company)? I see no reason to be pro Bajaj, they's still be selling you chetaks and super cubs if the could, after making you wait 5 years. Their bikes. The FI P220 (not the carb bike) was a breakthrough, I'd still choose it over the ZMA for city running and SHORT 300km highway bursts since I've ridden one for 5 months. None of their other products are. Does this make me anti Bajaj bikes now?


So for me and a for a lot of people out there who value their hard-earned money and wouldn't want to go blindly for a product worth Rs. 1.6 or 2 lakh just bcoz of the Honda tag, Bajaj Pulsar 200 NS is an excellent option............. :behindsofa:

That's right, go blindly for it! Besides, I'm sure it can only be a lot better than the bike you have, anyways. The one lakh bike is priced below the 1.6 or 2L one for a reason, and it's not the name tag. Besides, if you can buy some form of RE costing a lot more than a Apache RTR (both have advantages in some performance dept), then I don't understand what you mean by VFM


#57 satyenpoojary

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 06:50 PM

Baah! Big walls of text! I just logged in after a while (have multiple projects going on!)
Havent read through all the posts, will do so later and then reply!

In a one line, if this bike would have been badged as a KTM SF200 or any other name, people would have still praised its quality! It IS that good. (Infact the eew bits on the Duke - the rearsets, the tank cap are SO much better on this machine!)

The bike is light and so riding it on the offroads was fun, but like arn says its ability in heavy cross winds really tests a riders skill. Thats a problem for most of the bikes. The only tech glitch I faced (on my bike) was the loss of power in mid range while climbing chang la. The problem was magnified for me due to a pillion... Rishabhs bike just kept going! We did the carb mod and then had NO issues in the rest of the trip.

The ONLY gripe I had from this bike was that my rear hugger broke in an accident and so it generoulsy splashed muck on to me in whole of Himachal...

That asides I seriously did not face a problem with the bike. An elaborate review would come online in a bit (and when I get the goddamn time :P)

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#58 rahul_rn

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 07:32 PM

Well that settles it, the bike is very

 satyenpoojary, on 26 July 2012 - 06:50 PM, said:

chang la.
:P.. So go ahead any buy one if you are keen to stay in the city limits..
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#59 arn

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 11:30 PM

 satyenpoojary, on 26 July 2012 - 06:50 PM, said:

Baah! Big walls of text!

We'll wait for your walls of text in some time in a different thread.

Incidentally the CBR does not require steering corrections even in fairly strong crosswind conditions. Performance drops at speed and there is some added wind noise but the bike tracks straight and there is minimal correction required after passing lorries and the like. It's only when taking a high speed corner with a strong cross wind that the bike tracks differently - not much different, but perceptible

#60 pulsurge

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 12:15 PM

 satyenpoojary, on 26 July 2012 - 06:50 PM, said:

Baah! Big walls of text! I just logged in after a while (have multiple projects going on!)
Havent read through all the posts, will do so later and then reply!

In a one line, if this bike would have been badged as a KTM SF200 or any other name, people would have still praised its quality! It IS that good. (Infact the eew bits on the Duke - the rearsets, the tank cap are SO much better on this machine!)

The bike is light and so riding it on the offroads was fun, but like arn says its ability in heavy cross winds really tests a riders skill. Thats a problem for most of the bikes. The only tech glitch I faced (on my bike) was the loss of power in mid range while climbing chang la. The problem was magnified for me due to a pillion... Rishabhs bike just kept going! We did the carb mod and then had NO issues in the rest of the trip.

The ONLY gripe I had from this bike was that my rear hugger broke in an accident and so it generoulsy splashed muck on to me in whole of Himachal...

That asides I seriously did not face a problem with the bike. An elaborate review would come online in a bit (and when I get the goddamn time :P)

That's extremely nice to hear! My gripe was based on riding two bikes- considering if one was a lemon. One of my colleague has bought one. Lets see how I feel after I ride it. My other friend whose NS was taken for the comparo had an interaction with the senior blokes at Bajaj who had come to the service centre to take feedback. In fact there were 4 owners of the NS who had fork issues (khadkhad noise going over bad roads and potholes) and engine vibes. Surprising thing was the vibes increased after their first service- so the ASC has to be blamed here and not the product. Thankfully their bikes were worked upon under the strict supervision of the seniors from BAL, hopefully the problems should have been sorted by now.
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