An adventure-touring motorcycle is actually a dual-sport motorcycle, a motorcycle that is meant for both on-road and off-road use. The bikes are designed to go long distances and enable the rider to carry some luggage too. Other than that, these bikes have high endurance engines, large fuel tanks and large ground clearance. Unlike sports bikes, in case of an adventure-touring bike, you would sit more straight and have a very comfortable riding position.
The Pulsar AS 150 is the latest bike that has been launched in the adventure-touring segment and it competes alongside Yamaha Fazer and Suzuki Gixxer SF. Let’s see how they fare against each other.
Design and Looks
All these bikes are semi-faired except the Suzuki Gixxer which is a fully faired bike. The insect style headlamps at the front, make Yamaha Fazer the most distinguishable face among the three. Only the Bajaj Pulsar boasts of a projector headlamp while the other two have normal headlamps. In terms of overall designing, the Pulsar stands out and looks sharper and aggressive.
Yamaha Fazer as well as the Suzuki Gixxer mount the rear view mirrors on the fairing whereas in case of the Pulsar, the rearview mirrors are mounted on the handlebars. The Bajaj Pulsar uses clip-on handlebars which are also the widest and should provide the best riding position, whereas both the other bikes use single-piece handle bars. The Bajaj Pulsar also uses a split seat for the pillion as well as the rider, whereas the others use a single seat for both.
Considering all-around styling and graphics, the Gixxer looks the best design followed by Yamaha Fazer and Bajaj Pulsar AS 150. The Bajaj Pulsar is attractive too but in its own unique way. However, some people may find it more flamboyant to their taste.
The Bajaj Pulsar has the most impressive ground clearance – 170mm which is 10mm more than the Fazer as well as the Gixxer which offer only 160mm of it.
Features and Engine
The Pulsar AS 150 uses an all new motor and is the most powerful bike of all three. The peak power output of the Pulsar is 16.8bhp @ 9500rpm and peak torque 13Nm @ 7000rpm. Fazer produces 12.9bhp of power at 8000rpm, 12.8Nm of torque at 6000rpm and Gixxer produces 14.6bhp of power at 8000rpm and 14Nm of torque at 6000rpm.
All bikes use a 5-speed transmission to drive the rear wheel. Unlike the AS 150 and Gixxer SF which use a carbureted engine, the Fazer uses a fuel injection system. The fuel tank capacity of all three bikes is identical – 12 liters and should offer you more or less the same range.
Yamaha Fazer as well as the Gixxer uses an all digital instrument console whereas the Pulsar AS 150 uses an analogue tachometer with digital console.
Suspension, Wheels & Tyres and Brakes
All three bikes use telescopic forks at the front and monoshock suspension system at the front. The rear shock on all three bikes is adjustable. The front tyre on Gixxer SF and Fazer is equally wide – 100mm where as the Pulsar AS 150 uses an 80mm wide tyre. On the rear too, the Gixxer SF and Fazer use 140mm wide tyre while the AS 150 use only 110mm wide tyre.
All three bikes use disc brakes on the front as well as the rear wheel. The rear disk on all bikes is 130mm wide. On the front, Yamaha Fazer, uses 242mm disc while the Gixxer SF and Pulsar AS use 240mm disc.
The new kid on the block – Bajaj Pulsar AS 150 does impress with the more powerful engine and edgy styling that it has. But has it all what it takes to be a winner? Well, Yes. It is only because it has the largest ground clearance and in some sense it gets very close to fulfilling the purpose that an Adventure Tourer should. The only area where the bike disappoints is the tyres. We would preferred wider section tyres on the front as well as the rear.
The Suzuki Gixxer which is the cheapest fully-faired bike available in India is not much of an adventure tourer mainly due to the reason that it uses a full-fairing unlike others. But the bike does manage to get close to the AS 150 in every other sense.