Gone are the days when motorcycles used to be just basic commuters in India. Riders today are pampered with LED lights, all-digital LCD instrumentation, ABS to even a music system! Not long ago, all-digital instrumentations were a luxury seen only in the costliest, imported models. Fast forward to 2019, almost every mass-market manufacturer has an affordable model with this feature. Here’s a list of the 7 most affordable motorcycles with all-digital instrumentation (in ascending order) in our market.
Honda Unicorn 160 - India's cheapest motorcycle with all-digital instrument console
Originally intended to be the replacement of the once-flagship Unicorn 150, the Honda Unicorn 160 was their first product to get all-digital instrumentation. In fact, it is also the cheapest motorcycle available in India with an LCD instrument cluster. Powering the bike is a 162.71 cc single-cylinder air-cooled mill. Coupled to a 5-speed gearbox, the engine is capable of producing 13.82 bhp of power and 13.92 Nm of torque.
The Honda Unicorn 160's instrument cluster has an amber glow and has the basic information like rev counter, fuel gauge, speed, trip meter and odometer. It also features a digital clock. This model boasts a monoshock rear suspension as well.
The Honda Unicorn 160 is priced at INR 78,332 (ex-showroom, Delhi). Colour options include Matte Marvel Blue Metallic, Pearl Igneous Black, Matte Axis Grey, Pearl Amazing White and Imperial Red Metallic. The bike though is expected to be dropped from the Indian line-up in the near future because of meagre sales.
Honda X-Blade - Honda's one-stop offering in the 150-160 cc segment
The second Honda in the list, the X-Blade is a sporty offering by the Japanese manufacturer. It was the first motorcycle in its segment to feature LED headlamp. Powering the bike is the same engine seen in the Unicorn 160. The power output is slightly higher - 13.93 bhp at 8,500 rpm. The torque output is the same.
The instrument console in Honda X-Blade has a white light and has a gear position indicator and service reminder apart from the regular tricks. Colour options include Pearl Spartan Red, Matte Frozen Silver, Matte Marshal Green Metallic, Matte Marvel Blue Metallic and Pearl Igneous Black. The Honda X-Blade can be yours for INR 88,202 (ex-showroom, Delhi).
Suzuki Gixxer - Japanese warhorse
The Suzuki Gixxer needs no introduction. Unveiled in September 2014, the bike is beginning to show its age, and that is clearly evident from its falling volumes. Powering the Gixxer is a 154.9 cc engine producing 14.8 PS of power and 14 Nm of torque. The rear wheel is wrapped in a beefy 140 section tyre which gives the bike dollops of grip.
The butter-smooth motorcycle is also available in a faired version (Suzuki Gixxer SF). The standard engine is carburetted, but in the SF, it is offered with fuel injection optionally. The instrumentation carries an orange glow, two trip meters, odo, tacho, speedo, clock, gear position indicator and has a welcome message for the rider on ignition. The Suzuki Gixxer has a starting price of INR 88,941 (ex-showroom, Delhi) for the ABS trim.
TVS Apache RTR 160 4V - racing motorcycle for the masses
If you ever want to own a bike closest to a national championship winning machine, look no further than the TVS Apache RTR 160 4V. Based on the 6 times (consecutive) Indian National Motorcycle Racing Championship, the RTR 160 4V is powered by a 4-valve 159.7 cc engine which produces 16.5 PS of power and 14.8 Nm of torque. A fuel-injected variant producing 16.8 PS is also available. The suspension setup has been sourced from Showa!
The instrument console includes an alpha-numeric welcome message, lap timer, 0-60 km/h timer and top speed recorder apart from the usual bells and whistles. In fact, it is the most informative console found in a motorcycle priced below the KTMs. The bike boasts a supermoto ABS system which has been developed at race tracks also. Colour options include RR Red, Racing Black and Racing Blue. The TVS Apache RTR 160 4V is priced at INR 89,851 (ex-showroom, Delhi) for the ABS trim with rear drum brake.
Honda CB Hornet 160R - a surprising tale of rebadging
Targeting the youth, Honda CB Hornet 160R is the most premium offering by the Japanese brand in the 150-160 cc segment. The engine remains the same as the one seen in the other two Hondas in this list. However, the powerplant has been re-tuned to be at its sporty best. The engine produces 14.88 PS of power and 14.5 Nm of torque.
The Honda CB Hornet 160R has an LED headlamp, 140 section rear tyre and hazard lamps. The instrument cluster bears a cool blue hue and gets the same features as the X-Blade, except the gear position indicator. Colour options include Striking Green, Mars Orange, Athletic Blue Metallic, Sports Red and Dazzle Yellow Metallic. The ABS variant of Honda CB Hornet 160R is priced at INR 92,108 (ex-showroom, Delhi).
Hero XPulse 200T - Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde
The Impulse re-incarnate, Hero XPulse 200T is the tourer centric version of the XPulse. Powering the retro-flavoured tourer is a 199.6 cc engine which produces 18.4 PS of power and 17.1 Nm of torque. The bike has full LED headlamp and alloy wheels too. Colour options include Sports Red, Panther Black, Matte Shield Gold and Matte Grey.
The Hero XPulse 200T is the first motorcycle in its segment to get connected instrumentation with turn-by-turn navigation. Connected via a Bluetooth to a proprietary cell phone application, the cool blue-coloured console shows call alerts. Full marks to Hero for making it such an informative all-digital instrumentation console for a motorcycle. The Hero XPulse 200T has been priced at INR 94,000 (ex-showroom, Delhi).
Yamaha FZ FI v3.0 - the true Lord of the Streets
The true Lord of the Streets, the Yamaha FZ, in its third iteration, continues to carry forward the tag of an accessible muscular streetfighter motorcycle. Its 149 cc fuel- injected mill is capable of churning out 13.2 PS of power and 12.8 Nm of torque.
From the painted readings of the tachometer, Yamaha FZ’s instrumentation has come a long way. The reverse backlit unit of the present version is a rather compact unit but the layout is fairly legible. Apart from speedo, tacho, odo, 2 trip meters, fuel gauge and clock, it has an ECO indicator to enable more fuel-efficient riding. The bike has an LED headlamp, 14 section rear tyre and a short exhaust muffler which still reminds us of the original power horse. The Yamaha FZ FI has been priced at INR 95,680 (ex-showroom, Delhi) and is available in Racing Blue and Metric Black colours.