Indian bikes for 2017
The Indian manufacturer recently launched the Dominar 400 at a price that got many people rubbing their eyes in disbelief. The feature packed 400cc motorcycle at a starting price of Rs 1.36 lakh (ex-Delhi) has definitely shaken up the market, and we expect Bajaj to continue in the same vein in 2017.
We believe that Bajaj intends to spread out its range across displacements and that the company will not wait for too long before taking the wraps of a 20-odd PS version of the 200cc engine with extra torque and smart gearing with a design that mirrors the Dominar 400.
Launch: TBC (To Be Confirmed ?)
Price: Rs 1.12 lakh (ex-Delhi) (the D400 price will creep up by the time the 200 comes)
We also believe that Bajaj is not done with the 400. Their presence in each displacement or role band seems to now hinge on the two motorcycles taking flanking positions on it the competition. Hence CT and Platina, RS and AS branded Pulsars etc. It stands to reason that Bajaj have a second 400 that essays a different role altogether. What kind of motorcycle do you think this would be? Let us know in the comments
Launch: End-2017, post festive season.
Price: Rs 1.36 lakh to Rs 1.56 lakh
BMW Motorrad is taking its time with the launch of its motorcycles across markets and we expect the G 310 GS to also arrive eventually. We expect that after the G 310 R launch, the gap to the GS' launch will not be too big.
G 310 R
From the time TVS-BMW announced their partnership in April 2013, we've been eagerly awaiting to see what the alliance will come up with. Cut to November 2015 and BMW finally revealed the G 310 R. From then on it's been an endless wait. The bike was on display at the 2016 Auto Expo which led to speculation that the launch was imminent. However, a few months later we got a confirmation that the bike will not go on sale in India in 2016.
Set to make its debut in April 2017, we feel the new BMW G 310 R will serve as an ideal beginner's bike for those who do not want the frantic nature of the KTMs Also, since the G 310 R is a BMW product, expect impressive build and quality standards. We can't wait to experience the bike here in India. Keep a look out for our comprehensive road test when that happens.
Launch: Bookings April, deliveries June
Price: Rs 2.15 lakh (ex-Delhi)
G 310 GS
The G 310 GS is the adventure tourer version of the G 310 R Street naked. The GS gets a higher riding chassis and longer suspension than the G310R's, which gives it additional ground clearance. There are other GS category bits like the beak under the headlight and the rear grab rail that doubles up as a luggage rack. The bike weighs 175.5 kilograms and has a seat height of 835mm. BMW will also supply optional seats which lowers the seat height to 820mm or raises it to 850mm.
Launch: End-2017, optimistic. TBC
Price: Rs 2.45 lakh (ex-showroom)
The Indian manufacturer has been growing from strength to strength with each passing year. It has a roadmap in place and we already saw their commitment to the India market when they announced the opening of their mega R&D center called the Centre of Innovation and Technology (CIT) in Jaipur. The company launched its first in-house development, the Splendor iSmart 110 this year and followed that with the Achiever 150 i3S. And this juggernaut has bigger plans for 2017.
New Glamour 125
Hero is expected to take the wraps off a new motorcycle that will go to all its global markets including India. We are expecting this to be a small motorcycle, 125 or 135cc with a new design and upgrades. This might be branded Glamour. Expect the news to filter out post Hero's global launch event in Buenos Aires, Argentina around January 12, 2017.
Launch: Mid-January 2017
Price: Rs 58,400 (ex-Delhi)
Hero CBZ-Xtreme Update
Shown at Auto Expo 2016
Expect Hero to continue to employ the Achiever 150's excellent motor with minor tweaks to the torque spread, gearing and throttle cam to create a sportier riding experience.
Launch: Pre-festive 2017
Price: Rs 76,600 (ex-Delhi)
Husqvarna will come and take the position of a brand more premium than the KTMs. Expect similar equipment levels as the Austrian motorcycles but the tuning and gearing will be setup for a more hipster-friendly experience as it were. The brand will be retailed out of the Bajaj-KTM dealership network itself.
Vitpilen 401 and Svartpilen 401
Both bikes were introduced at EICMA 2016 and we were pleasantly surprised to see the resemblance of the production design to that of the concept motorcycle. In fact, we really like the retro-modern design that looks very appealing.
The bikes are based on the 2017 KTM 390 Duke platform, as in they share the same steel-trellis frame, suspension and engine with the orange machine. While Husqvarna says the engine produces an identical 44PS, there is no word yet on state of tune.
The Vitpilen 401 is the street motorcycle while the Svartpilen 401 is the more functional iteration, says Husqvarna. The latter gets knobby tyres, a higher handlebar and bash plate under the engine. The unique design and cycle parts makes it on our list of must ride motorcycles for 2017.
Price: 2.40- 2.50 lakh (ex-Delhi)
KTMs have redefined the price to performance ratio in the Indian market with its range of Dukes and RCs. It goes without saying that these are one of the most popular bikes in the country, which also means the 2017 Dukes and RC390 are eagerly awaited. And in 2017 KTM is pushing the bar even further. Will the competition have an answer?
The new KTM 390 Duke was one of the hottest reveals at EICMA 2016. The bike wears sharper body work , gets a revised rear subframe and an impressive list of equipment. The standout features are the full LED headlamps, and the TFT instrument panel. The bike also gets a KTM's optional My Ride feature that lets the rider pair a smartphone with the instrument panel.
Launch: Feb 2017, almost confirmed
Price: 2.10 lakh (ex-Delhi) (our guess)
For 2017, the RC390 will get a host of updates that'll make it a even more potent track tool than ever before. The bike will get the new split function WP forks and brakes from the 2017 390 Duke.
Plus all the engine upgrades - smoothness, extra torque and ride-by-wire. It will also get the new TFT screen. The RC390's belly pan was prone to scrape tarmac at certain lean angles while cornering. KTM will add a better belly pan design to stop this. KTM will also alter the design to match the RC16.
Price: 2.35 lakh (ex-Delhi)
The smaller Duke 200 will get its elder sibling's frame and sharp bodywork, albeit with a different colour scheme. Also expect updates to the brakes as well as the engine, which is expected to feature better refinement. The bike may not get the LED headlamp and the fancy TFT instrument panel from the bigger Duke.
Launch: Feb 2017, along with 390
Price: Rs 1.51 lakh (ex-Delhi) (our guess)
The Himalayan was probably one of the most important launches of 2016. A new Brand new Royal Enfield in over a decade caught the attention of the market and showcased what the company is capable of. So what's in store for 2017
The bike's engine likely to be a 670-750cc parallel twin. The first format could be a cafe racer but details are not known. Small chance India will not be on the launch market plan and the bike will come to India later on.
Launch: Mid-2017 at the earliest
Price: To be announced
Royal Enfield's Classic range has been around for quite some time and hence we expect the styling to be freshened up for 2017. Underneath expect the engines to be spruced up to meet new emissions, perhaps with the addition of fuel injection. Will RE also roll out ABS early? We hope but they may or may not.
Launch: March-April 2017
Price: Classic 350- Rs 1.34 lakh (ex-Delhi)
Classic 500- Rs 1.92 lakh (ex-Delhi)
Royal Enfield showed this motorcycle at EICMA 2016. We expect the updated Himalayan with a crisper motor and ABS to arrive at the very end of the year if at all.
Launch: Pre-festive 2017
Price: 1.59 lakh (ex-Delhi)
TVS has had a pretty strong 2016, churning out two stellar products, the new TVS Victor and the Apache RTR 200 4V. The latter is OVERDRIVE's Bike of the Year as well as the Indian Motorcycle of the year. For 2017 the bike maker will roll out one of the most awaited bikes.
Regarded as the fared version of the BMW G 310 R, the Akula looks pretty promising. Showcased at the 2016 Auto Expo in fetching carbon fibre bodywork, the Akula was hailed as one of the showstoppers. While it's obvious that the carbon fibre trim and some other bits won't make it to the production spec model, the Akula 310 will still pack in an impressive list of features.
Faired bikes are usually revered to a greater extent than naked bikes in India and that should play into the hand of the Akula. Also, given TVS' engineering prowess, it'll be interesting to see what TVS comes up with when the final production spec rolls out.
Launch: March-April 2017 expected
Price: Rs 1.9 lakh (ex-Delhi)
The update will likely feature a stylistic update plus tweaks for more ride ability, economy and better feel. The Scooty is the scooter whose development process the new Jupiter will lean on to create a superior riding experience.
Launch: Pre-festive 2017
Price: Rs 52,000 (ex-Delhi)
A few months ago, the Japanese manufacturer had announced that it is concentrating on developing products that will bring in the volumes which would help it gain market share. This left us and many enthusiasts saddened as the brand has always been associated with performance oriented machines. But there's good news for 2017
This has been one of Yamaha's best kept secrets in 2016. But we were one of the first to spot the FZ250 on test in Greater Noida. The design looks like an evolution of the current FZ. From the spy images we could make out that the 250cc motor is an air and oil-cooled unit. It may still come without ABS with an optional ABS model. Will the bike resurrect the brand in the minds of those who seek performance? Only time and a road test will tell.
Launch: January 2017, TBC
Price: Rs 1.68 lakh (Our estimate).