TVS Apache RTR 180 ABS Review
India's First Bike with ABS TechnologyTuesday, October 22, 2013
Design and Style
Apache RTR 180 ABS became the first ever Indian made bike to feature ABS technology. TVS hopes this variant will add more credibility to the brand Apache. Will this exclusive feature be able to impress our Indian buyers? Let’s find out.
Design and Style
Don’t look for cosmetic changes in this bike as TVS has not played with the design of regular Apache RTR 180. This variant features new animalistic face with aggressively styled headlight and visor. Its new pilot lamps combined with day time running LEDs can easily turn heads on road. The racing decals start from the tip of its front fender and goes all the way to its rear cowl. The golden finish on front forks and brake callipers adds premium touch to this bike. TVS has penned ABS on its large tank shroud which is the only difference between this bike and the regular Apache. Its black colored alloy wheels look extremely sporty with white racing strips. The bike has new engine cowl which makes it look aerodynamic. TVS has revised its rear panel which now has prominent sharp lines on it which goes well with its split grab rail which has been a unique characteristic of Apache. We wish if it had split seats also like its rival Bajaj Pulsar180. At the back, it has a sharply pointed rear fender which gels well with its clear lens side indicators and dual colored tail light.
It features a combined digital analogue meter console. The bike has a circular pod for its analogue tachometer and other LED indicators. TVS has smartly carbon finished this instrument console. It sports a full size LCD for its digital speedometer, odometer, trip meter, clock and fuel gauge which uses blue color for illumination. The instrument panel features a new switch just above the speedometer to switch off the ABS in this bike. This LCD displays last three recorded 0-60km/hr timings and top speed.
Engine and Gearbox
This variant has the same 177.4cc, 4-stroke engine. The power output from the single cylinder of this engine is of 17.03 bhp which comes at 8500rpm. This SOHC, air-cooled engine produces a torque output of 15.5 Nm which is accessible at 6500rpm. The five speed manual gearbox has a one gear down and four gears up-shift pattern.
Acceleration and Performance
As there are no changes in the technical specifications of this bike so its performance is almost similar to the regular Apache 180. This bike also pleases you with its magnificent throttle response. The five speed manual gearbox works effectively with this engine. It’s well matched gear ratios help it in doing 0-100km/hr within 14 seconds. The responsive nature of this bike is quite evident in city traffic. This engine is certainly going to impress the stunt also as its light weight and instant reaction helps it to perform most of the stunts easily. This variant also has best power to weight ratio similar to its sibling and does 0-60km/hr in less than 4.5 seconds. The major concern is related to the refinement of this engine. It feels strained when you push it really hard. TVS should have rectified this problem which further leads to vibrations at high speeds. You will notice high NVH levels in this engine which disturbs your pleasing rides. Despite this all, the bike manages to reach an impressive top speed of 124km/hr.
If you take this bike on long drives then it may return you a mileage of around 45km/ltr but in real time city conditions its fuel efficiency drops to 40km/ltr.
Comfort while Driving
It has very short but fatty clips on handle bar which fits in your palm easily and offers strong grip. Apache offers a sporty bend forward riding posture which improves its aerodynamics. Due to extension in its wheelbase, TVS has re-arranged the foot-pegs in this bike. Now, they are more convenient than before and help your knees to fold at right angle. The bike uses light weight foot-pegs and pedals which can be used easily. Unlike Hero bikes, you don’t have to fold these foot-pegs while using its kick. Its single-toe gear shifter adds sporty feel to this bike and you feel more confident with firm grip around its fuel tank.
Storage Space and Safety Features
It is a short bike which offers almost no storage space however you will notice many safety features like rear saree guard and disc brake, front leg guard and powerful headlight in this bike.
Suspension and Braking
Suspension system of this bike remains untouched. The bike shares its front telescopic forks and rear gas filled shockers with regular Apache 180. The braking system receives the biggest change and features ABS. Its front disc brake of 270mm and rear disc of 200mm now works with ABS technology and gives it an accurate and precise braking
Ride and Handling
This new bike comes with a wheelbase of 1326mm which is 26mm more than the regular Apache. This change along with inclusion of ABS has improved its ride quality significantly. The handling is still very accurate and it comes with exceptional turning abilities. It’s extended wheelbase and ground clearance of 165mm makes it much stable around corners. The best part of its riding is its braking ability which was never before experienced in its class. The ABS avoids the locking of its both wheels and thus results into controlled braking. It never skids and always gives you immense control at high speeds. It’s the best braking system ever seen in any Indian made bike.
Tyre Size, Shades and Variants
It has six-spoke mag alloys. It’s available in two shades – white and black.
We doubt if this bike will be able to convince buyers at this price as it’s even costlier than Bajaj Pulsar220 which is far more powerful than this bike. If safety is your top priority then only we will recommend you this bike otherwise we don’t feel it’s a complete value for money bike.