Hello readers, this article is not really a review of the bike but it’s just my experience with the Apache RTR. Its all about what Apache is and not about what all other bikes are not. It must be made clear here that I was not a pro-biker when I bought my dream machine. I never had that bikers jeans in me in my college days, maybe I didn’t get a change to lay my hands on one. (My dad doesn’t ride a bike, no one in our family does). However it was just few month back that I rode a bike for the first time. I was already 27 when I rode my friend’s bike for the first time.
It just took me two rounds in a CBZ Extreme to realize what I had been missing the joy of 2 wheels all these time. With that I started my search searching on the net for the bikes that are available in the market. The range I was looking for was 150 to 220 CC and price should be below 75K.
Well in this range u have a plethora of bikes in the market. Yamaha FZ16, Fazer, Unicorn, GS150R, Pulsar, Apache, Avenger to name a few (I am not even considering R15 since it’s not really a good idea to run in a marathon before u even learn to walk… moreover the 1 lac+ pricetag doesnt help.
As I was someone who did not know riding and had absolutely zero knowledge about bikes, I never took a test ride on any of these motorbikes. However going through the internet you get to know a great deal about the bikes through other people’s reviews and user experiences. That’s where websites like BikeAdvice really play a very important role. Can I just take a moment to thank Deepak and others who make this website the best biking website in this country.
Deepak: Thanks a lot Shreejith! All the while I was thinking that I was helping bike buyers make a good decision, but for the past few months I started to realize that many people became bikers and also some turned from 4 wheels to 2 wheels after reading the passionate reviews from other bikers. And I should take a moment to thank all the people who sent in their ownership reviews and made BikeAdvice what it is now. I laid the foundation, you and other bikers built on it! Biking is in fact a religion, isn’t it? 🙂
Ok, back to my Apache, I must say that I was smitten by the Apache RTR’s killer looks and already developed a liking for this beauty. After that every bike that I could lay my eyes on, I ended up comparing it to the apache rtr, and to my surprise RTR always managed to be neck & neck with the best bikes in the country, if not better them.
As time flew I loved everything that Apache was, I had already decided! I had already started reading about the bike, all evening in this period of time was spent doing research on BikeAdvice.in. 30th Nov 2010 was the day I got my new and sexy yellow Apache RTR 160 Hyper Edge. This beast cost me 69K on road. As far as the specifications are concerned I am not goanna list down the tech specs of the bike because it’s already everywhere.
First thing I would want to talk about the RTR is the handling. Well it’s not a secret that this bike handles like a dream, but then even for a rider who has not ridden a bike for more than 3 kms in his life can cut through the heaviest of the evening traffic. When I brought this bike, I just had a learners license and I was very concerned by the mere thought of getting this bike from the TVS showroom to my doorsteps in this heavy evening traffic (without any scratches and dents), but things were not that difficult.
I was taking cuts already within that heavy evening traffic and with people staring at my beautiful little possession with their eyes popping out, I felt so proud ::)
The cornering on this bike is simply amazing, you don’t tend to lose confidence in the bike even in high speeds. Personally I feel that this bike looks demonic when its travel in higher speeds. The only thing which plays a spoil sport in the handling is the tyre.
The tyre grip on dry tar is good, however when riding on wet surfaces it feels as if u are riding on an ice slab. Its best to have the tyres swapped with a MRF Zapper. Personally I did not do it immediately after delivery was because I wanted my bike to be “factory fit” but I am sure I will definitely have it changed on the onset of the monsoon.
Performance is mostly the single primary reason why people choose to opt for an Apache. The below few sentences are straight from the manual.
“The Priority in every step of the RTR Development has been Performance first. Every system, every detail and every component has been studied and pared down to its essence and performance increased to the maximum. If it didn’t make the RTR 160 lighter, faster or deliver quicker lap time on our Racetrack, it wasn’t considered. For the first time Dirt racing and Road Racing technology have been combined to create a racing bike that is Street Legal, but just barely. The results are stunning”.
Yes it’s true that you do not always ride at 90s or 100s but just riding at around 60 kmpl makes you swell with pride by just knowing what you and your bike are capable off and when people around acknowledges that. There are times when you come side by side to a Pulsar on the road and the guy actually slows down to let you pass ahead and there is a “no..I-don’t-wanna-race-with-u” kinda look on his face.
This bike can do a 0-60 in less than 5secs result, you end up zooming ahead of the traffic when the signal goes green… so does the faces of the other bikers on road. The gear shifting ratios are well balanced.
The second gear can take you upto 40kmph and the third on 60+. More and more it’s possible to pull the vehicle from 23km at the fifth gear. But if u will try and do the same with a pillion, there will be engine knocking-courtesy low power to weight ratio.
No race bike is good if it does have sufficient braking prowess. The Apache doesn’t disappoint here as well. My 160 version has a drum brake for the rear and disk for the front tyre. The brakes are good enough to stop you from a speed of 60km to 0 in like 3 meters. It could be better as this also depends on the rider’s capability, response time road conditions and other stuff.
The Drum brakes are average, but it’s the disc break that provides real teeth to the braking. The application of both the brake in tandem will get u the best braking. The bike does not do a nose dive when u apply the brake and its very straight and under control under the harshest of the braking condition.
Note: Never apply disc brake when u are on a curve or when the bike is little tilted… a skid is almost guaranteed. Remember your tyres are not of top class either and they are very skid-happy.
Instrumentation and Electricals
The instrumentation on the Apache is one of the better ones available in the Indian market. You ask for it and there you have it. A lot of utilities are inbuilt on the instrumentation.
Below is what you get on the dashboard…
- Digital Speedometer with huge numbers on it.
- Digital ODO meter
- Digital Fuel Gauge
- Digital Clock
- High Beam Indicator lamp
- Neutral Indicator LampTurn Signal Indicator Lamp
- Two trip meter A and B
- Highest speed indicator : Shows the highest speed recorded on the machine.
- Shortest 0-60 Lap Time Indicator: This one brings out the racer in you
- Mode and Set Switch button: to change the setting, reset the trip meters, set clock time.
- Fuel Warning indicator Lamp
- Service reminder indicator lamp
- Battery Charge Indicator Lamp
Soo much and so on that my friend once jokingly asked…”Hey does it open Face book and Twitter as well?” 😀
Left Handle Bar
- The Left handle bar has the horn switch,
- TurnSignal lamp switch,
- Cluch lever,
- Pass By switch,
- HeadLamp low/high switch,
- Choke Lever
Right Handle Bar
- The Right handle bar houses the Electric starter switch,
- 3 position Head lamp Switch( Off, Fog Light + Dashboard light, ON),
- Throttle Grip,
- Engine Cut Off Switch,
- Front Brake Lever.
Vibrations and Riding Position
O.K. now this is one subject where so much have been already said. Believe me people the Vibrations on this new Apache are not that bad…of course its not completely elimitated.
But its far lesser than the earlier version of Apache. The Vibration creeps in when you are in 60-75 kmpl. And when u are not riding in the right gears. Riding the bike in correct gears will give far lesser vibrations.
But yes, vibrations are still there. I will not recommend an Apache if you are travelling for more than 60 kilometer a day, because the engine roar (better name for vibrations) coupled with the riding stance are sure to give you numbness in your forearms and butt. In case u are new to this riding stance, u make have backache and pain in the forearms atleast for the first 3 days.
Then you body gets accustomed to it and u feel one with ur bike and one would start disliking the usual spine upright kind of stance. This forward bends riding stance helps you to maneuver the road better and one can cut corners easily. Now a day’s more and more bikes have this forward bend racing stance and I am not complaining.
Maintenance and Servicing
Now this was the only reason why I was skeptical before buying a Apache. A lot have been said about the pathetic service you get for the Apache. But then, I was pleasantly surprised to see the number of TVS service station near my locality. I stay in central Mumbai suburbs and I have already seen around 6 TVS service station in out twin city of Kalyan and Dombivli.
The service engineers are well mannered and have an eye for details. They attend to you in a very co-operative ways and listen to you vague description of the problem, still resolve it to perfection. I did my first service in TVS Supreme and the response was very heartening. I have no issues when it comes to service aspect of TVS.
I believe it is very important to service you bike at regular intervals. Only then the bike will be able to respond to your needs. There is no point in blame a bike model if you are not servicing it properly. And yes. Another tip… don’t be bossy with the service engineer. For best results, talk to them like a friend and your bike will be in top condition always.
Looks and Styling
Another USP of this bike is the looks department. The mere stance of this bike looks so dangerous and menacing as if it’s about to take off from the road (OK..I know that was an exaggeration). I think Apache RTR is one of the better looking motorcycles on the road.
Second look is almost guaranteed. Apache looks stunning in Yellow. My choice of color, but other colors are not bad as well. Actually yellow wasn’t my first choice, I had decided to buy the White RTR, but then it was only available in the 180CC.
I think the only bike that comes close to Apache is the FZ. I liked the look of the White Karizma as well. Pulsar needs some major upgrades in this category. The Apache racing stripes are amazing and is one of its class. It runs down through the entire body length.
I remember one of my friends saying that the bike looks straight out from the Transformers movie (it had the Chevy Camaro with similar racing stripes. Beautiful crystal clear headlight, Clip on Handle Bars, the Tank Scoops, Split Grab Rails, Break Lever, LED tail lamps, the Apache Hyperedges needs to be seen to be believed. I think TVS have really pulled out something great and this bike seems to be the game changer for the company.
Well, if mileage is your primary concern then don’t opt for an Apache. You would be better off with a Bajaj Discover type’s bike. However if you want to feel the power of two wheels, want to feel the wing gushing through your hair, want to feel the pull of the acceleration, then there is no way you cud give Apache a miss. I am not saying that apaches the mileage is pathetic but it is less (by Indian standards… that is).
The average is primarily dependent on how u dealt with the bike in the run-in period. The run-in period is the one where the bike engine takes shape and gets used to “your” style of riding. As per manual, Apache run-in period is 1000km and it is recommended to keep the bike around the 50km/hr mark in the period.
Gear shift should be done very carefully with each shift done when the revving reaches 4000RPM. I know this is the most boring period for any biker, since u buy a performance bike and u are asked to keep it below 50? huh?
But once this run in period is over, all hell breaks loose and you can start with your flying lessons. 🙂
The initial average would be low (at around 35-40) but will eventually increase up to 45-48 after the first service. I did my first service when the ODO read 520KM; second service is due on February 2011 or at 2500KM. Currently as I write this review the ODO shows 1520KM.
My daily run is around 45 km (to and fro – office, 23km+23km), mostly highways, and I ride at normal speeds of 55 to 65kmph. Single seat in the morning and with pillion while coming back. What is get is around 45km per liter.
I am not sure if this is still perfect but here’s how I calculated the average. Each time the bike falls to reserve, I find the nearest gas station and fill in 1 liter of petrol, reset the trip meter A to zero and let it roll until the next time it falls back to reserve. I did this 3 time (45 + 47 +42 / 3 = 44kmpl). The tank capacity is 16 litres with 2.5 in reserve. Which means you can easily do a 700km trip in a single topup.
And now for the final words, I would like to end this review by underlining the fact that no bikes are bad bikes. All bikes are made to cater to different needs on people. Out of say 10 features, 6 may be good on one bike and 4 may be good in the other bike. So there is no single winner.
Take adequate care of you bike and it will keep you happy and take you places. Love your bike, coz its special ‘ITS YOURS’.
I am 27, well I am not that old but for all those hot blooded college kids around, remember to play cool. Do not race on crowded roads. A minute of madness can cause you your entire lifetime. Remember there are people who love you and they need u to be safe and sound. Along with the key, you need your helmet to start your bike, ride safe. That’s all folks.
Thankyou for taking time to read my review of the Apache RTR 160 HyperEdge. Please feel free to comment on the reviews and do ask question in case you have any.
For more pics please visit my FaceBook album.
Your Fellow biker