TVS took the covers off the RTR 200 back in January 2016 but deliveries are stated to begin by the end of June. They seemed to have taken the Suzuki route of unveiling a bike and delivering it to the masses after a longer period of testing and scrutinizing. With state of the art features and an attractive price tag, has TVS arrived with a bang? Read on, section wise.
The Looks: TVS has worked on making the RTR to be identical to the X21 Draken concept, and they seemed to have done a good job on that. The headlamp is a symmetric one as opposed to the Draken's Asymmetric one and the frame is a conventional tubular one vs the Trellis on the concept. The tank cowls, the offset fuel filler cap and many other bits seem to be inherited directly from the concept. TVS made sure every citizen can buy this without skimping on the color choice as it is available in Seven shades (5 Matte and 2 Gloss options, No extra charges based on color selection).
The single headlamp houses two LED DRL's and a powerful 60/55W halogen bulb, with a 12V 9Ah battery providing power to the full DC electrical setup on the 4V. The Indicators and the License plate illuminator houses conventional bulbs whereas the Tail light is a LED unit. The DRL's look cool and are visible in bright sunlight as well. Turning the key on turns on the white backlit fully digital console which provides the rider with a plethora of information. It has a long list of features like a Clock, a lap timer, 0-60 timer, top speed recorder and even a shift light along with the regular information. The full system check ends with "Wear your gear- Race on" on the bottom of the screen.
Parts sharing can be seen on this bike too- The Engine guard, switchgear and the footpegs among many other minor bits are lifted directly from its predecessor.
The Engine: The engine is a 197.75cc 4 valved SOHC motor which has an oil cooler, mated to a 5 speed transmission. Surprisingly the stroke length is the same as the RTR 180- 57.8 mm which suggests that the latter has been chosen to rework and modify instead of developing one from scratch. The surprisingly smooth masterpiece produces 20.5 HP of peak power and 18 Nm of torque, with loads of grunt available on tap in the lower RPM's.
The 200cc mill no longer has the Vibey feel at idle and is smooth, with TVS' trademark roar emanating from the sound engineered double barrel exhaust, which also doubles up to reduce your carbon footprint by increasing combustion efficiency. TVS claims it improves low end while retaining the sweet roar. The clutch is smooth and progressive and the gearbox is slick with smooth upshifts. *cough cough competitors*.
Riding in the bylanes tested the 4V's superior low and mid range which is one of the major positives of this machine. But on an empty stretch of tarmac this will surely throw you at the back of the seat as the low end torque is right there at the right place, waiting to be unleashed by the rider. 18 Nm of torque is available at 7000 RPM which makes it a hoot to ride in the city. Commuters looking for a easy to ride yet torquey motorcycle can consider this machine.
Rider comfort: Ride height is pegged in at 800mm, which is on the shorter side and makes it easy for riders who are on the lower side in terms of height. The seat is very comfortable and contoured for maximum comfort. Being a smooth foam seat, it's recommended to get a seat cover as it might get damaged easily by anyone (Right from your pet cat to your arch rival). The handlebars are faux clip-ons which are almost the height of a conventional flat handlebar and the rider sits upright which reduces the stress on the arms but the lack of a windscreen shall cause problems on a highway or when a tornado approaches your town.
Front suspension duties are handled by conventional telescopic forks, which soak up minor bumps very effectively and yet offering the amount of stability required whilst hard braking or cornering. The rear has a Monoshock which is sourced from KYB (The same firm which supplies high end suspension parts to Yamaha) is adjustable according to the rider's liking, both offer a relative plush and comfortable ride and uncompromised confidence for spirited riding. Braking are handled by a 270mm petal disc at the front and a 240mm rear disc at the rear. The front brake offers exceptional stopping power and provides great feedback.
The foot pegs are positioned a tad above than those on any other naked bike but the rider's triangle is more suited for daily commutes, occasional highway blasts and the rare Trackday you dream to attend.
Variants and options to choose: TVS has provided multiple variants to choose from- Carbureted, Fuel injected, ABS and Tires. The Fi variant houses a Bosch sourced closed loop system and is BS4 compliant and costs marginally higher than the base variant which houses a simple Keihin carburetor to fuel the bike. As Indian standards mandate the presence of ABS, DRL's and BS4 emission norms from 2017, The Apache 200's Fi-ABS variant shall continue to be on sale through 2017 as it ticks all the boxes mandated by the Union Government.
TVS also provides customers with an option of having Pirelli tires straight from the factory (Sport Demon 90/90 17 and Angel GT 130/70-17), opposed to the stock TVS Remora ones. The Fully Loaded variant is the one to watch out as it's one of the best value for money package in it's segment.
Priced at about INR 92,300 (Ex-showroom, for the base variant) the new Apache seems to be the best bang for the buck packages available for sale currently. We are thankful to Mr Vijay Simha (Susheel TVS) for supporting us doing this review.
Review By: Suraj
Photographs By: Sai Charan
Bike Courtesy: Susheel TVS, Hyderabad.