Naz narrates - TVS Apache RTR 180
Ashwin Ram N P, Ashwin is a guy with a slightly unorthodox perception of everything. His struggle to choose a career path, between art and automotive engineering, has landed him in the field of auto journalism, where he has paved way for himself to practise both.
After viewing endless number of TV Ads and its making, hearing people rant about its 'racing DNA' and improvements, I decided to test ride the new TVS Apache RTR 180. I have ridden Apache RTR 160, I was impressed by its performance which boosted my expectations for this new 177.4 cc bike.
The new Apache RTR 180 develops an impressive 17 bhp @ 8500 rpm, though the absence of fuel injection was a bit of a disappointment.
I got a titanium grey bike for the ride and I was set to fly. Here are my observations of the bike -
To start with, the engine of the bike felt much refined, the first twist of throttle really impressed me. I could feel the presence of that 180 cc engine down there. As soon as I released the clutch the bike was ready to take off. Wheelie lovers will never get off this motorcycle.
The pickup is really impressive, the bike's acceleration and the response to throttling at lower revs were also good and even at higher revs the engine was very smooth without any irritating vibrations, it zipped through traffic with ease and the handling of the bike was better than the 160.
The load handling of the bike was also good, I had a pillion with me while I took the test ride and I didn't feel the extra load weighing down on the bike's performance.
The brakes did their job very well. This bike has the same petal disc brakes as that of the RTR 160 FI. TVS Apache is the only bike in the market as of now which has these rotar petal discs and TVS claims that "Razor-sharp braking is guaranteed" with these. This special shape of the disc brakes not only provide solid braking but also helps the heat to dissipate from the disc pads faster.
I was very much comfortable in applying the brakes even at good speeds without much fear of skidding. No complaints here.
The gear shifts were decent, no jerks or unpleasant grinding, but I think it could have been a little smoother. Apart from this the seating position of the bike is very comfortable; it's the same as that of the RTR 160.
But since this bike has a higher capacity engine capable of generating 17 bhp it is expected to be much faster than the RTR 160 and therefore I would have wanted the seating position to be much more sportier and the foot pegs could have been positioned a little more backwards to add to its over-all fast bike looks (Like the ones in Yamaha R15).
In the end the overall experience of the bike was good and if you are looking for a bike which has style, power, performance then you can definitely buy the RTR 180. Add-ons to this bike are removable rear fender and the digital console which has the maximum speed registration and acceleration time feature.