Delhi Dude - Bajaj Pulsar 220
2Wheels Magazine article: May 2010
What a blast! This little Bajaj Pulsar certainly is an entertaining bike to hoon about on. It plastered a stupid grin between my ears every time I wound the throttle back to the stop, revelling in the lack of power required to have a giggle. Not to say that the 220 DTS-I is a wet rag, oh no, if you were riding this beauty in India, you would be the Dude in Delhi aboard the fastest Indian motorcycle in production.
In order to dominate probably the biggest market in worldwide biking, Bajaj have discarded their fuel injection system from this updated version of the Pulsar, opting instead for the largest venturi carburettor of any bike in India, ensuring class leading performance and 10% better fuel economy. While the 220 will never challenge the kings of South African roads on performance grounds alone, it surely puts forward a flawless argument when it comes to daily commuting and running around.
For those looking to start commuting to work where freeways or longer distances are required, the Bajaj is so capable, a cinch to pilot and very importantly, looks like a Bollywood Beauty. The only drawback is a lack of storage space compared to a scooter, however if you are prepared to strap on a back pack you will be able to benefit from relaxed 120km/h cruising speeds and the ability to use our fantastic highway network.
Night time riding becomes a pleasurable experience with the powerful projector headlamp illuminating even the darkest sinkholes which seem to becoming more common on our urban roads lately. If you are unable to take evasive action though, be assured that the powerful 260mm front disc brake fed through a braided line and soft compound tyres will stop you quicker than you can say Bloody government!ı
The instrumentation is attractive enough but the thing that blew my lack of hair back was the way that the switchgear lights up in the dark with a striking blue white hue. Another decidedly non budget standard feature are the self cancelling indicators which I reckon should be gazetted as standard issue on every motorcycle built. Fantastic safety feature that.
The power plant that propels this small wonder may be tiny but with the help of technology such as Digital twin spark ignition and an exhaust that employs a torque expansion chamber to benefit low down performance without sacrificing top end power. I managed to coax a top speed of 153km/h out my blue Bengal tiger, down a slight slope on the way to Zwartkops the other day.
With a 15 litre fuel tank and a frugal appetite for the expensive stuff that you fill it with, the 220 DTS-I will prove a hit at the pumps where you donıt often see too many folk smiling as their wallets are savagely assaulted by the petroleum companies. We reckon the Pulsar should achieve economy figures of better than 40km to the litre in urban surroundings. Add to this the bargain asking price of just R22000 South African rands and you have a deal that is hard to ignore, isnıt it?
At the end of the day the Bajaj still tempts me to take it down to the shops or to that meeting that I need to be at in a couple of minutes, which when you consider the choices of metal in the garage speaks volumes for the Pulsar 220 DTS-I. Itıs all about the simple appreciation of biking.