I bought the Bajaj Avenger 150 Street Cruiser bike before about 2 weeks. After driving it for some 800 K.M, here is my review.
Advantages of Bajaj Avenger 150 Street:
- Many people have already told me that the bike has the premium look of Harley Davidson. Heck, to me, it looks even better. When I stop it in a signal or just ride it around the city, I have noticed many people glance my bike’s way. With all those black matte finishing, THIS BIKE IS BEAUTIFULLY DESIGNED 🙂 Did I say, I don’t like shiny chromes 😛
- It’s short and long. Clearly, the bike feels like it doesn’t belong to the league of regular bikes you see on the road – it stands out. It has a premium look and feel, in spite of the low(er) price. There maybe thousand fancy-looking sport bikes out there, but there will be only one Bajaj Avenger 150 Street-like bike around you. At least for now.
- The power and pickup is good enough for me. But you’ll have to understand that I had a 100cc TVS bike (which was good enough for me) earlier. So this bike easily surpassed my expectations.
- The mileage is decent. Around 50 kṁpl is good for a bike in this category, esp. when compared to its 220 Street cousin.
- The bike is easy and smooth to drive in and around the city, more than the highways it was supposedly built for. More on this in the limitations.
- There is an electric start for easy starting.
- There are indicators for low battery and low oil.
- The speedometer is analog, but odometer is digital. You can press a button to count the K.M. traveled during a single trip, but I haven’t figured out how to do that yet!
- There is a nice fuel-level indicator – at last, I can gauge how much fuel is left in my vehicle at any time!
- The front light doesn’t have a dome. Thank you Bajaj! 🙂
- The sound is much lower than an Enfield but is still different. I hate noisy vehicles. This bike is much easier to handle than a bullet. However, I am not able to do those one-handed moving that I was able to do with my TVS bike earlier!
- There is no pain on the legs – I traveled 450 K.M. on a single day and there was no pain in my legs, unlike what some people warned me. I guess being short (5′ 5″) makes a difference here.
- The 150cc engine is the regular air-cooled pulsar engine, so maintenance cost is also less.
- I just love the 12-spoke alloy wheels.
- They’ve shortened the handle bar enough (from the earlier avenger versions) not to create any trouble for neighboring vehicles. The handle bar enables good maneuvering inside the city.
- The back wheel is HUGE. I guess that’s supposed to give a good balance, but it also makes the vehicle look more premium than what it is 🙂
- You can drive this vehicle for a long distance without any gloves. I didn’t feel any pain in my hands even on my long-distance trip.
- The seat is comfortable to sit on, but gets heated up during the summer.
- The bike manual is good and offers useful information. Read it.
- Value for money bike in this segment 🙂 (Rs. 88,000 On-road price here.)
Limitations of Bajaj Avenger 150 Street:
- Frankly, this bike is more for comfortable city (and outskirts) driving, than long distance inter-city driving. Fortunately, that’s my application. I was able to drive some 250 K.M. without much strain (with a few breaks, once every 40-50 K.M. or so), but riding 450 K.M on the same day was tiring. The seat heats up my back and I am forced to stop for short breaks frequently. [Update: I installed mesh/net-type seat cover and the heat has decreased considerably.]
- The bike is long and bulky that makes parking in crowded malls or movie theaters, a challenge. You can’t park if there is space only for one bike. I even broke the tail indicator lamp housing of a neighboring bike while trying to park. Nothing broke on my bike though 😉
- Unless you wear a shoe, the leg-rest does not feel comfortable. Since the engine heats up quickly, shoes are recommended.
- The two gear levers, and even the gear is placed at such huge distances that every time you need to change the gear or apply the break, you need to move your legs so much forward and back. I guess I am sorta used to it now, but since the bike is more for shorter people, they could have placed it closer to the leg. In my TVS bike, I never felt any discomfort while changing gears or applying brakes.
- The left-right indicator display is placed over the fuel tank and is so dim that you’ll never be able to notice it during the day time. In the night you can directly see the indicator light in the front. I feel this display should’ve been on the top, along with the speedometer.
- The shop where I bought this bike says there are no accessories for this model yet. There is no space even to keep a notebook. Need to check for a tank cover with pouch for this model, elsewhere.
- The pick up is not that great, but if you are looking for that, you’d rather choose a sports bike. If you are looking for a mature bike that is comfortable for long-distance city and sub-urban riding, this bike offers you enough power. [Update: After the first service, pick up increased considerably; power/torque was good right from the start.]
- It’s difficult to push this bike with hands (when it’s off). Since it doesn’t have a kick start (only electric start) I am worried what will happen when the bike fails to start on a highway during rains or has a punctured tire. With my earlier TVS, I never worried – I could push that bike with a single hand!
- I think I need to buy and use a bike cover as the bike takes a few seconds/few attempts to start after rains.
All said, I am happy with my purchase of the Bajaj Avenger 150 Street as I do more of city driving, and I go on an occasional long-distance drive every month or so. Only, I will have to make sure to travel less than 250 K.M. per day.