Motorcycle guides

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Decided to buy a used motorcycle? Here are a few tips for you to consider.

Decided to buy a used motorcycle? Here are a few tips for you to consider.

A guide to notice the obvious elements to watch out for before you buy one.

If you are reading this, then I bet you must be a motorcycle enthusiast who is looking to get into the world of two wheels or just want to try out a new style of riding. Whichever it is, you always want to get the best without it burning a hole in your pocket.

To do that, there are multiple considerations one must take into account if you want a satisfactory ride. Of course, you cannot expect it to be as good as brand new, but then there are quite a lot of passionate bikers out there who have taken care of their ride and not ridden it like a hooligan from Mad Max.

And if you are not already a used-bike mogul, you might end up spending way too much for way too less of a motorcycle that someone wants just to get rid of. Being smart in such situations saves you, and one way to be smart is to be informed of what checks you need to tick before zeroing on one bike.

Though not comprehensive, this guide should get you through buying yourself a satisfactorily good two wheeler for your usage:

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Road rage and how not to get all wired up when it happens to you.

Road rage and how not to get all wired up when it happens to you.

We know you have been there and it is important you deal with it with a cool head.

We all do have some bad days and some good. And invariably it affects our riding styles on that day. All is well and good until you are a happy person under the sun, but on that unlucky day, your head is filled with all kind of thoughts, and in a jiffy, another distracted driver in a car is taking up your space in your lane and decides to cut you passing from behind.

All hell breaks loose in your head, and that adrenalin surge kicks in transferring all the blood to your muscles, charging it up for a big fight. That burning rage of anger will make you do some regrettable stuff including chasing that other driver at breakneck speeds, darting other road users, pounding on hoods, yelling and threatening. And if by any luck the other person is having a good day, he might end up apologising. If not, what happens next is the brutal Road Rage.

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Harley Davidson Street Rod vs Triumph Street Cup vs Ducati Scrambler Café Racer

Harley Davidson Street Rod vs Triumph Street Cup vs Ducati Scrambler Café Racer

The American has some serious contenders from Italy and Britain. Can it walk past them? Or should it just hide?

Ever since its entry into the Indian market, Harley-Davidson has become a cult name and has carved a niche among all the motorcycle lovers who ride for the pure passion of motorcycling. Within the portfolio of Harley Davidson in India, though all the motorcycles have been accepted with open arms irrespective of their high price tags and few obvious shortcomings, the most recognised motorcycle among all happens to be the Street 750. It made its debut in India at the Auto Expo 2014 and became an instant success, for the fact that it was (and still is) the most affordable way to lay your hands on a motorcycle from the iconic brand Harley-Davidson is.

The craze of the mid-weight naked is becoming more and more alive in the Indian subcontinent, and Harley-Davidson is looking at getting a bigger piece of this market segment too. To try out their luck, the iconic American brand has launched the third member of its Street family. It had more aggressive styling and improved handling above all of the Streets. That is the all new Harley-Davidson Street Rod. A little sparse, a little spare, and an exercise in understatement. The most sport-oriented version of the Street series offering an alternative to more conventional cruiser variants. This young generation of a machine is a serious effort to reach customers outside the likes of the classic Harley Davidsons’.

This strategy has been already undertaken by the British and Italian powerhouses, and each has launched their 21st-century machines to rope in the new generation of riders early on. We are talking about the Ducati Scrambler Café Racer and the Triumph Street Cup, which too are based on their retro-themed versions – the Ducati Scrambler and Triumph Street Twin. Here’s a comprehensive comparison to find out if Harley’s new baby accomplishes to stand out from Ducati and Triumph to be the most lucrative motorcycle to own. Here you go:-

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Triumph Bonneville Bobber vs Harley Davidson Roadster

Triumph Bonneville Bobber vs Harley Davidson Roadster

The tale of a British Legend and an American Blockbuster.

The influence both these people have on us is simply a matter of a little sparse, a little spare, and an exercise in understatement. We just love it when we see either of them on our streets, and without a doubt being some of the world’s oldest motorcycle manufacturers, they’ve become the jack of their trades. Both Harley-Davidson and Triumph have ever been at the neck of each other and giving us products of exclusivity at its best.

For 2017, they take the game up a notch and have sounded all bells and whistles. Having a rich heritage to back them up with their newfound designs, both Harley and Triumph have created pieces of modern art that look too good to be true. They may have in some way or the other taken inspiration from each other to give birth to what could be some of the best looking iterations of their iconic brands vis-à-vis the Sportster series and the Bonneville range.

Both these machines have been launched on our soil, both of them cost the same, both of them have similar engine sizes, and both of them are the next big thing for their family lineage. Here is our extensive though on how these two modern machines live up to their iconic silhouettes.

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How does motorcycle insurance work in India?

How does motorcycle insurance work in India?

Your guide to what every Indian motorcyclist should know

"There is no mankind known who hasn’t sensed the happiness I was feeling right now" is the thought going through every rider who is enjoying every second on his favourite motorcycle. But all is not sweet, especially when you are involved in an accident. This is where an insurance cover can make or break you. If you are insured, you are saved for the day but if you are not, then hope god saves you.

Being a mandatory issue in the country (thankfully), every motorcycle owner should carry an insurance policy for him and his vehicle. A two-wheeler insurance is an excellent cost saving method to protect yourself from shelling out money from your pocket when you have been involved in an unforeseen event like an accident, theft or natural disaster.

We here at Top Speed always promote safe riding and helping you out in understanding the two-wheeler insurance game takes the same amount of importance as wearing a helmet while riding. Read out our comprehensive handout on this and ride with peace of mind.

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BMW G 310 R vs KTM Duke 390 vs Benelli TNT 300 vs Mahindra Mojo

BMW G 310 R vs KTM Duke 390 vs Benelli TNT 300 vs Mahindra Mojo

Battle of the naked middleweights enters 2017. Get ready for a lot of flash-bangs.

Strap yourself up to your seat guys. Things are going to get wild here. 2017 saw the launch of the brand new KTM Duke 390 that is said to wipe out any competition there has ever been. Later in the year, the German brand BMW Motorrad will be launching its smallest motorcycle, the G 310 R which is manufactured here in India by TVS. These two machines will change the face of the middleweight naked sports segment which until now had the Mahindra Mojo and the foreigner Benelli TNT 300 from Italy.

We will sit down and chalk up a charge sheet to decipher the best machine you would want to invest in according to your needs and wish. Although the KTM is a notch above in all departments, we will have it here just for the sake of comparison. Mahindra is the least expensive of all and the Benelli is the only one with two cylinders and has that Italian flair that no one carries. The Beemer, on the other hand, is built for the world market and will remain to be a neutral contender in both style and performance compared amongst the rest here.

All the four motorcycles will have a condescending effect on the Indian two-wheeler market, and they have the fresh breed of entry-level naked performance motorcycles to blaze the much needed thrilling experience to enthusiasts and purists. Making motorcyclist get into a realm of more content and less bitter, here is all the help you would need to pick one for yourself:

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Do we need the Automatic headlamp On feature made compulsory?

Do we need the Automatic headlamp On feature made compulsory?

Here is a list of advantages and disadvantages of the feature.

In a bid to make Indian roads safer, the government of India has directed all two-wheeler manufacturers that sell their products in India to compulsorily feature ’Automatic Headlamp On’ (AHO) from April 2017. This is in order to make the vehicle more visible to oncoming traffic and the pedestrians to cut down the risks of negligent accidents due to poor visibility.

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How to get your motorcycle driving license in India

How to get your motorcycle driving license in India

Follow these simple step to get yourself license to ride on your favourite machine.

If you just turned 18 and are looking to get yourself a driving license, then you are at the right place folks. Just so that it is clear, a driving licence is the official document which authorises its holder to operate various types of motor vehicle on highways and some other roads to which the public have access.

We will give you a step by step procedure to get yourself licensed to ride around in your favourite machine. It is a fairly simple procedure that you must follow that will have you fill applications, necessary document papers and finally to give your theory and practical examinations. As it is a valid document issued by the government within the country and can, therefore, also be considered as valid proof of identification in non-driving contexts (e.g. when opening a bank account) or age (e.g. when applying for a mobile connection).

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What are the most underrated mass oriented bikes of India?

What are the most underrated mass oriented bikes of India?

The list includes a model from almost all the manufacturers from India. We ought to give them some slack.

In our number of stories, we have repeatedly said that the Indian two wheeler market is one tough field to study. The kind of demands we Indians do ask from two-wheeler makers are quite hard to conquer, as we want literally everything in one product.

Keeping in view of such demands from a very competitive market, the manufacturers too are doing a tremendous job by offering products which are offering a good blend of all the traits in one single package. Out of all these products, some do hit the sales charts with massive popularity, while some of them end up being average or low sellers, despite being a brilliant piece of engineering and design.

In this feature story, we are going to throw some light on the latter category of motorcycles and scooters, ones which are not selling as expected despite being wonderful in one way or the other. Here’s a list of all such unfortunate and underrated motorcycles and scooters, and we seriously wish that they do post impressive numbers for their makers:-

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Deciphering the Bajaj Pulsar line-up for 2017. Which is the one for you?

Deciphering the Bajaj Pulsar line-up for 2017. Which is the one for you?

From commuters to the apex knee benders, Bajaj has got it covered to satisfy all strata of riders.

Born in 2001, the Pulsar was destined to be a superstar from the word ‘go’. Not only it spawned a host of motorcycles ranging in versatility and performance, but also introduced a long list of industry-first features and technology, making the Pulsar a pioneer among the performance motorcycles in India.

Now, in 2017, after many generations of updates and many new models added to the line-up down the line, the Pulsar series has got a BS-IV motor running under the belly along with yet another updated edition. Let us have a look at our 2017 Pulsar models. And Bajaj has made one for every kind of rider in the country, be it a commuter or a hard-core street guy.

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We take a deep look into the 2017 KTM Duke model range

We take a deep look into the 2017 KTM Duke model range

There is the all new 390, the updated 200 and a brand new 250.

When the first Duke hit the streets a few years ago, it was not here to make friends. The bike changed the game and re-wrote the rule books. A bold call to all to head to the straight narrow and embrace the life that lives at the very limit. In 2017, a whole new face hit the streets starting with the 1290 Super Duke R, the Beast Mode 2.0.

Today, KTM India officially launched the next iteration of the Dukes that are ready to take the streets and rule them. The all-new 2017 Duke 390, updated Duke 200 and a brand new model in the Duke lineup, the Duke 250.

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Best commuter motorcycle to carry things around

Best commuter motorcycle to carry things around

So that you don’t actually have to look for jugaads!

Yes, I know. The title is quite redundant in itself. But not in India. People use anything and everything to transport people and goods around. And India being filled with narrow roads and streets, two-wheelers make the most efficient way to transport all kinds of things around as motorcycles occupy a much smaller “footprint” than the average automobile.

India is a land of 1.25 Billion people. And to transport them, there are roughly 155 - 160 million two-wheelers plying on the road at any given time of the day. Out of which, expect just a handful of them to obey rules and regulations and ride with only a pillion at the max. The rest of them carry anything and everything under the sun. Free from stuff like a roof, windows or doors, you can carry some surprisingly tall, long or wide objects on a motorcycle. Maybe a nuclear warhead even?

According to a TOI article in 2015, "owners of two-wheelers can fit a box in their vehicles to carry any goods or immediate medical aid. These vehicles will be fitted with light-weight boxes for carrying goods. According to sources, two-wheeler goods vehicles will have to be 550 mm long and the allowed width will be 510 mm and the weight of each box would be 30 kg." But this holds good on paper more than on actual application. And abusing this rule is not a difficult task to do by.

Putting too much weight on your motorcycle compromises handling and can overtax some components. But for some, it could be their daily bread and butter. And such people go in to buy motorcycles at the very low end of the market, meaning, they will all be commuter motorcycles and fortunately, India has some of the largest manufacturers of commuter motorcycles – Hero MotoCorp, TVS, Honda and Bajaj.

People carrying goods make use of motorcycles that lie within the 50cc-125cc category. They consist of both motorcycles, and off late, scooters. So we decided to give a rundown of which 5 amongst the commuter two-wheelers to use when you have some hauling to do:

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Feature – Key points to remember after facing a road accident on a bike

Feature – Key points to remember after facing a road accident on a bike

In today’s day and age, the two wheeler market of India is at an all time high. Various new models are now rolling out of showrooms, with the numbers only increasing after each passing day. Out of these motorcycles being sold at the current day, the ratio of performance oriented motorcycles has shot up in the recent years. With the rise in the numbers of performance motorcycles in the country, the concern of safety while riding on the roads too has risen up. A large chunk of these bikes are ridden in an unsafe manner, either in improper riding gear or are ridden at uncontrollable speeds. This has led to a huge rise in road accidents in recent times.

As much as we do our best to avoid them, traffic accidents do happen from time to time. And not only performance motorcycles, even commuters are subjected to this issue. With the rising number of two wheelers on the roads, and at the same time the sense of road safety being ignored by most of them, the number of road accidents have rose to alarming rates. And when it comes to serious injury or fatality, bikers are considerably more exposed than most other vehicle users – not having the luxury of crumple zones to help protect them. After getting your license and driving on the open road an accident is the last thought in your mind, but every rider should be aware. If you were to ever have a motorbike-related accident, whether you’re a biker yourself or otherwise, here are some pointers as to how to handle the situation.

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Oleaginous face off - synthetic oils v/s mineral oils

Oleaginous face off - synthetic oils v/s mineral oils

With the passage of time, the synthetic oils have managed to make their impact over a wide span in the field of automobiles. Their over-growing popularity is obviously due to their technological advancements and superiority over the predecessor oils which were used when there was not even a sign of their inception. It is this finesse of synthetic oils which have also made the lubricating oil manufacturers to achieve the tough targets of growth and claw-impacts on their respective market shares even in the tough times, owing to the higher performance and efficiency traits that the synthetic oils carry in the volume per drum to cost ratio. Not to forget, the synthetic oils have managed to comply with the ever-increasing strictness of the environmental safety and emission or pollution norms.

Which brings us to the debate of the hour – what actually makes the synthetic oils a more mature and profitable proposition over the age old conventional mineral oils. Basically, both the oils are same as far as chemical compositions and elements are concerned. So at this time of prospect, we decided to dig out the natural and obvious changes which separate out the dissimilarities between them it’s important to get a brief introduction of the two kinds of oils. Here we go:-

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How to select a high performance engine oil for your bike

How to select a high performance engine oil for your bike

The cycle of times is revolving consistently, and it is moving very fast. It seems like a matter of only yesterday that we were beginning to think of choosing a contemporary synthetic oil over a conventional mineral oil. Call it the effect of increasing competition, or the rather fast pace of development of brains of mankind, that we are now getting even better versions of the engine oils, making even the modern synthetic oils a thing of past. There were, and even today in some instances, times when the premium price of a synthetic oil over a mineral or crude oil was considered as a waste of money, even after realizing the fact that they come with the umpteen number of advantages which the mineral oil just simply can’t match. And now, with the passage of time, now we are getting is an even more lucrative deal and an attractive proposition in the form of high performance synthetic oils. Yes, just like the OS upgrade of an android smartphone, the synthetic oils too have gotten a major grade in terms of performance, which promises not only a substantial boost in the bike’s performance and efficiency figures, but also enhance the longevity of the engine in a whole.

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