Having owned a Bajaj Pulsar 150 for around 3 years, I always loved to ride a two wheeler. It is so much easier than a car in Bangalore traffic.
Then had not been in India for 2.5 years and when I came back, it just seemed like a geared bike is not what I need.
Even when I had my Pulsar, it had such good pickup but the traffic was not supportive enough so I ended up having to break more frequently. This never gives a smooth ride feel.
This time around, not willing to go the same way, I thought of going for a gear less vehicle. I know once you get used to a bike, it does not matter what traffic conditions you are in, the gears get changed involuntarily. Our brain might not notice it but the legs and hands do and they start complaining soon. Hence a gear less was the way to go for me since it keeps these worries at rest.
Now, I had the following criteria to decide on a good gear less 2-wheeler:
- Decent pickup.
- Not too low in height.
- Good A.S.S.
- Quicker delivery of the vehicle (since I needed it at the earliest).
- Competitively priced.
Had a look at the following:
- Honda Activa.
- Honda Aviator.
- Suzuki Access.
Both Activa and Access had a waiting time of over 1 month. Also, I was not completely convinced about Suzuki Service as I heard some negative remarks about it.
That left with Aviator. But frankly, I liked Aviator more than the two others in the list and that was the reason for me to go for it.
First scooter to come with disc breaks and alloy wheels. It is sleek and in combination with the alloy wheels, feels lot lighter than Activa.
For this weight, the 102cc engine gives ample power and the ride is pretty smooth.
One more major factor was that the dealer (Saphire honda in J.P.Nagar 1st Phase) promised a delivery in 2 days.
Things just fell in place and I decided on Aviator.
Ever since I have been riding this, just love the ride. Pros:
- Has descent pickup and you don't need to push the throttle too much to get to a good speed.
- FE is around 42-44 and this I get consistently. I can safely consider this descent though not great.
- It is lighter meaning easy to maneuver.
- Telescopic suspension makes it easy to take on humps and pot holes.
- Disc breaks enables late and effective breaking.
- Storage is pretty big (20L) and can fit in more things easily.
- Does have a bit of starting trouble while cold engine starts. If the vehicle is kept cold over night, it might take 2-3 kicks with choke on and you get going. This is not bad considering this is a consistent behavior.
- Problem is when the vehicle is left unused for more than 3-4 days. It demands some 10-15 kicks and some effort to get it going. Solution: If possible start the engine at least once in a day.
- Height is a bit more compared to competitors though not too much. What it does not help is enable the rider to have a heavy foot on the ground. When the bike is at halt, the rider can stamp the ground lightly if the bike is kept straight. This might be a problem when we stop the bike at the edge of a road since we can easily slip. I am 5' 11'' and still face this problem often.
- A sudden increase in throttle actually reduces the power from the engine. This could be due to clogging at Air filter but this problem was seen even when it was new.
The last point can be neglected since sudden throttle is not the way to go for gear less vehicles. The fuel injection functions like capacitors. It takes a longer time to discharge than getting charged. Similarly, you give 100% throttle, the fuel injection goes high but does not reduce immediately when the throttle is got back to minimum. Instead it comes down gradually hence leaving a lot of fuel as a waste which is not combusted. This will obviously bring down FE.
If you can deal with the Cons, this bike is a joy to ride. I still prefer this bike over others for the points I have mentioned.
P.S: I will post the pics once my bike gets its right rear view mirror. It was stolen when I parked it in Cubbon park while I had been to watch the IPL match between Mumbai and Bangalore. [:(].