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Yamaha, Honda, Bajaj, TVS, Hero Honda: Street bike comparison

The mean machines, the ride em dirty motorcycles that rule the street. But which one is better? IndianDrives guides you to make the right decision when it comes to choosing the right Street Bike.

Yamaha FZ-16:

This is no ordinary motorcycle. It brought revolution in the Indian market and showed that people can choose looks over price, and performance over mileage. It has bagged the prestigious Bike of the Year Award from UTVi / Autocar, Zigwheels and Business Standard Motoring and Viewers Choice award at UTVi & Autocar India Awards 2009. Yamaha designed this motorcycle with no compromising on performance and ridability, whatsoever. Each component has been designed with careful thought to achieve ultimate level of perfection.

Everything about this bike is street- the muscular look, widest tyres in its class, diamond frame, sporty-comfort riding stance. And the heart of the motorcycle, its engine is sweet sound of Yamaha. It has breath-taking performance and gives a sense of confidence even at low speeds. The riding stance is carefully designed to give you confidence while cruising without compromising comfort.

Yamaha FZ-16

Yamaha FZ-16 gives max output of 14bhp at much lower rev than its competitors, giving it an extra edge in traffic. The broad tyres and monocross rear shocks give extra stability to this street bike.

Its digital console is rather disappointing. It is barely visible in sunlight and the digi tachometer doesn’t tempt you to push further on you limits. Another con of this bike is the short pillion seat. Its not meant for your mother or sister. Anywho, Yamaha owners are known for being possessive about their rides.

Honda CB Dazzler:

Honda has always been dazzling us with the high performance, superior mileage bikes. The Unicorn was the first Indian motorcycle to house a monoshock rear suspension that gave extra stability. The Honda CB Dazzler is a sportier and premium version of the Unicorn series.

After the success of Yamaha FZ16, there were a fleet of motorcycles with muscular appeal and hard-core performance. The Dazzler just got into this run-up. It featured sporty sticker which complimented the side body panels and tank scoops.

Honda CB Dazzler

The same 150cc Unicorn engine with minor tune-up to meet the new emission norms powers the Dazzler. And why not? This is well tried and tested for the Unicorn and has phenomenal performance and fuel economy. A new viscous air-filter is added to the intake, which was doing rounds all over the launch. This new intake upgrade gives lower maintenance.

The revised body styling and rider stance does not pay off. Dazzler does not give the comfort and confidence of the Unicorn. But keeping aside the comparison with the predecessor, the Dazzler is one of the most comfortable motorcycle under this category.

TVS Apache 180 RTR:

Many of us are not familiar with the TVS Racing Team. TVS Racing Team dominates racing in India under several categories. And the Apache follows the race instincts of TVS. From the Apache series is another variant with sporty sleek design.

It is similar to Apache 160, apart from the rear disc and the engine is now electronically fuel injected. This is favorite among racing fans and stunt riders. The new EFI engine gives better fuel economy and stunning performance. Though after the coming of Yamaha R15, Apache is no longer the best fuel injected motorcycle, but it’s still better than Karizma ZMR. And now with the upgrade to RTR technology, you get better acceleration at higher speeds. The Racing Throttle Response (RTR) technology of Apache controls the throttle of the motorcycle, giving even better acceleration at higher speeds.

TVS Apache 180 RTR

It has 2nd best in class power output. Just shift to 2nd gear in traffic and keep the rev high and Apache just dodges through traffic with no effort. There are vibrations at higher gear but there is no instance where you get a sense of losing control over the saddle.

TVS is notorious for high maintenance engines, but at just Rs 78,500 Apache160 Fi is a bargain. If you are looking for an everyday bike, which you can take to race on weekends, this is your ride.

Bajaj Pulsar 180 DTSi:

Bajaj is ruling the hearts of youth with its Pulsar series. The Bajaj Pulsar 180 DTSi is a perfect expression of stunt-crazy sports bike. Bajaj sponsored the MTV Stunt Mania, featuring the pulsar performing spectacular stunts. But is it all that fun?

The Bajaj Pulsar 180 DTSi has the largest engine in this category and is exceptionally powerful. The iconic pulsar fuel tank is a bit too bulky, and yet a crowd pleaser. Bajaj has paid equal attention to sporty appeal of the bike and its responsibility as an Indian motorcycle. The DTSi engine is brutal, it has a fierce firing. The digital console has red parking lights which goes along wit the sporty feel of the bike.

Bajaj Pulsar 180 DTS

While DTSi technology plays its part, giving you great pick-up and good mileage, the upgrade to telescopic suspension and anti-friction bushes for extra riding comfort is not surprisingly efficient.

The Bajaj Pulsar 180DTSi is cow for regular Bajaj riders. Its no child’s play to tame this biggy best. At high speed cornering, there are instances when you have no control at all over the motorcycle. And during exit from the curve, the motorcycle is simply smooth. The seats of Pulsar are super hard and not meant for long commutes. The same is observed for the pillion seat, during hard braking and acceleration its not the best place to be.

But at Rs 73,900 it is your cheapest ticket to ultimate riding experience.

Hero Honda CBZ Xtreme:

Hero Honda promises cheapest and mid range performance motorcycles to Indian customers. The CBZ Xtreme is here to change the rule. Previously seen a decade ago, the Hero Honda CBZ was the first Indian Sports bike featuring front disc brakes. Hero Honda takes a step ahead to bring the new CBZ Xtreme with front and rear disc brakes, flaunting its untamed power.

The CBZ Xtreme houses a 149.2 cc ATFT engine. The ATFT or Advanced Tumble Flow Induction Technology send the air fuel mixture from you carburetor into the engine with a swirl. This swirling action results in combustion and hence more efficiency, giving the CBZ Xtreme immense power with good fuel economy and reduced emission.

Hero Honda CBZ Xtreme

The handling is amazing and gives more confidence with the sporty-comfort riding stance. The instrument cluster houses three varying size meters for speed, rpm and fuel level, descending down in size.

This motorcycle has the best fuel economy from among the five motorcycles under study here. But this is achieved without compromising in power output. The CBZ Xtreme does a halt to 60kmph in 5.60 seconds, which is half a second faster than the Dazzler.

It has a slick shifting 5-speed gearbox mated with the 150cc engine. The power delivery is smooth with the NVH levels reduced by the upgraded vibration isolation system. The seats are obviously soft being a Hero Honda and the pillion seats are pretty comfortable even for long commutes, giving this motorcycle dominance on streets as well as highways.

Technical specifications:

CategoryYamaha FZ16Honda CB DazzlerTVS Apache 160 FiBajaj Pulsar 180 DTSiHero Honda CBZ Xtreme
Engine size153cc149.1cc159.7 cc178.6cc149.2cc
Top Speed120kmph112kmph120kmph127kmph115kmph
Fuel economy36kmpl50kmpl45kmpl48kmpl55kmpl
Gear5 speed5 speed5 speed5 speed5 speed
Cooling typeAir cooledAir cooledAir cooledAir cooledAir cooled
Fuel tank12 litres12 litres16 litres15 litres12 litres
IntakeCarburettorCarburettorFuel injectedCarburettorCarburettor
Rear discNoYesYesNoYes
0-60 kmph5.50 s6.10 s5.56 s5.10 s5.60 s
PriceRs 76,000Rs 75,800Rs 78,500Rs 73,900Rs 75,600
StabilityExcellentExcellentVery GoodAverageAverage
ComfortExcellentVery GoodVery GoodAverageGood
Pillion seatPoorGoodGoodVery GoodVery Good

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