11th Apr 2019 7:00 am
It served us well in the city, but what’s it like on the highway?
Our long-term RTR 160 changed a couple of hands before it came to me. I am not one who spends his weekends on the saddle of a motorcycle or on any saddle for that matter. I, instead, spend it sat on the floor of my garage in Dahanu, tinkering with some of my vehicles that need fixing. While my biker colleagues don’t have a problem with that, they do have one with how I choose get to my hometown Dahanu from Mumbai – the train.
The conventional halogen bulb on the RTR is more powerful than some new LED headlights.
I have always found the train to be more convenient than a two-wheeler. But my two-wheeler back then was a fuel-guzzling, remapped 390 Duke with its suspension adjusted to the stiffest setting. My colleagues, however, assured me that the RTR 160 4V is a different motorcycle altogether. It is the perfect mix of a docile commuter and sporty street-naked, and I have done enough kilometres on it in the city to tell they weren’t lying. Knowing this, and the fact that I could end up being the butt of all the ‘fake biker’ jokes, I set out on my first highway stint on the 160.
Wide mirrors on the bike impressively reflect more than two lanes.
Part of my route (from Mumbai to Charoti) includes a stretch popular among superbike owners in Mumbai, and is referred to as the ‘Charoti GP’ because of its wide, straight and smooth roads. What I realised immediately was how this 160 didn’t lose steam accelerating to 105kph, and how happy it was cruising at that speed.
The hinged fuel tank cap doesn’t close with a satisfying click.
The riding position on the RTR was spot-on for the journey. Not once did I find myself repositioning my body – something I end up doing on some bikes with very sporty ergonomics. Rest assured, this doesn’t take away from the handling capabilities of this machine; it was so confidence-inspiring that I took one of the popular high-speed corners at almost the same speed as I do on my 390 Duke, and that is high praise for a motorcycle that also doubles as a commuter. Some credit also goes to the TVS Remora tyres on the bike.
The shift-up light lights up in top gear (5th) and stays on at a cruising speed of 105kph.
The RTR did all of this while returning a fuel efficiency of 38kpl, and this means it isn’t a lot more expensive than the first-class train tickets I buy. But I didn’t take this ride for the sake of convenience (nothing beats the train in Mumbai for that). I did this to see if it would be fun, and the bike certainly proved itself by putting a smile on my face – one that was big enough to overlook everything else, like giving in and letting my colleagues know they were right all along. I am also impressed that the bike shows no signs of ageing, with even its bare-metal components remaining shiny as ever.