Bajaj Auto’s entry in to performance motorcycling in India began with the original Pulsars back in 2001 but things for the brand took new wings in 2007 when they launched the Pulsar 220 DTSFi, the first Indian-manufactured bike to house fuel injection and rear disc brakes. They later removed fuel injection in 2009 and introduced the carburetted version of the 220, surprisingly further increasing its performance. The Pulsar 220 DTSi, as it is known as, still continues to sell in great numbers and has largely remain unchanged!
With the recent launch of the Pulsar AS200 at surprise prices had made it seem that the company would finally retire the bike. Both AS200 (Rs 91,550) and P220 (Rs 86,699) are now priced very closely at a difference of under Rs 5000 on the ex-showroom Delhi prices.
Both of them are semi-faired and the Adventure 200 also sports the projector headlamp which was missing on the 200NS.
We asked Bajaj about this cannibalization and if the Pulsar 220 will be discontinued anytime soon. To this Rajiv Bajaj said, “Pulsar is a leader of the segment and it is the job of the leader to create sub segments. So the original Pulsars, the 150, the 180 and the 220 belong to one format.”
Sharing the importance of older models he added, “Just as the RS series has its own space, the standard Pulsars have their own space.” He confirmed that all the current Pulsars – Pulsar 150, Pulsar 180 and Pulsar 220, will continue to be on sale however, he stopped short of naming or mentioning the smallest Pulsar 135LS!
The Pulsar 220 has been a big sales churner for Bajaj and just for an example, it sold over 9000 units last month (including Avenger), when Hero Karizma twins sold just 10 units! (more details)
So, for now the Pulsar 220 continues to be on sale. However, we are sure Bajaj would be monitoring the success of Pulsar AS200 and if it clicks, it may go on to become the 220’s successor but there is a lot of time for that to happen!