TVS’ on a roll!
Behold, the new generation of the TVS Apache RTR 160 4V
THOSE OF YOU WHO LOVED THE old TVS Apache RTR 160, it's time to rejoice. A new generation version of the motorcycle has been launched at a tasty `81,990 (ex-showroom, Delhi). Based on the IMOTY winning RTR 200 4V from two years ago, the new RTR 160 4V packs in all the goodness of that bike. It even gets Showa suspension, front and back. Three variants are up for grabs. While the base gets a carb and a rear drum, the middle one gets a rear disc and will cost you `84,990. The range topping future-ready bike gets FI and a rear disc at `89,990. All prices, ex-showroom Delhi. Strangely there's no ABS to be had as of yet but is expected soon.
IT NOW SEEMS THAT EVERYTHING TVS touches, turns to gold. From the RTR 200, to the stunning RR 310, and more recently the NTorq, TVS is making other manufacturers sit around in a circle with their notepads out. While others sit and rack their heads over how the manufacturer equivalent of King Midas works, we were invited to try out their brand new RTR 160 4V.
I cannot stress enough on how wrong you would be if you thought that this was just the old Apache 160 post plastic surgery. You’ll understand what I’m talking about as you read, but let me tell you this. With established players such as the Pulsar NS 160 and FZ-S in this segment, the RTR 160 4V certainly has a lot to live up to. And boy does it pack in the arsenal it needs to fight it out.
Everything. It would help you more if you saw this as a small RTR 200 4V, than a re-done RTR 160. The RTR 160 4V derives a lot of elements from its elder sibling including the double cradle frame and the engine’s four-valve head. The split seats from the 200 haven’t been carried over which meant a slight modification to the sub-frame. However, the frame still weighs the same as the 200 and the weight distribution hasn’t been altered either. The instrument cluster has been carried over as well but the carburetted variants get amber backlight (white on FI) and no gear indicator.
The air-cooled engine is a bored down unit of the 200’s and retains the oil cooler as well. TVS claims class-leading figures at 16.56bhp for the FI variant and 16.28bhp for the carburetted variant. The torque figure remains unchanged at 14.8Nm for both. All this adds up to a top speed of 114kmph for the FI variant and 113kmph for the carb variant. The FI variant is slower to the 60kmph mark by 0.07 second at 4.8sec, though the gap widens to almost a second by the time it hits 100kmph in 16.6 seconds.
One of the biggest USPs of the RTR 160 has to be its suspension. The front telescopic forks and the rear monoshock are exclusively developed and manufactured by Showa. In terms of rubber, you get TVS Remora tyres with the same dimensions (rear disc variants) as on the RTR 200 4V, which means switching to stickier Pirelli Angel Citys shouldn’t be a problem. The base variant gets thinner rubber at the rear with a higher profile. What is not a variable is that there is absolutely nothing
that is shared between the new Apache RTR 160 4V and the aged RTR 160. This, is indeed an all-new motorcycle.
Quality. With TVS Motors having dialled the quality game up by several notches in the recent past and the Apache RTR 160 4V too feels like it has been built to last. It is finished very well too.
Does it feel powerful?
Of course! It’s got a compression ratio of 10.15:1, which is higher than the RTR 200’s. There’s a subtle wave coming in at around 6000rpm when the engine wakes up and gargles all the way to 9000rpm. Post that, mild vibrations can be felt in the fuel tank, but nothing alarming as you accelerate the engine to its limiter at 11,200rpm! In fact, the motor is so refined, you’ll end up thanking the shifter light.
Fast, but agile?
Like most of the recently launched TVS products, the RTR 160 4V is excellent in this department and stays true to TVS’ racing legacy. It is the sharpest of the lot but may not be the most agile; however, we will have to ride it back to back with its competitors for a final judgement on that.
The seat is slightly taller than its adversaries and the rider’s triangle is definitely the most aggressive of the lot. The knee recesses on the tank are perfect to lock your knees while the handlebar is comfortable for both upright and crouched down riding positions. Thus, the RTR 160 4V will keep you happy everywhere, be it on track or on road. The braking however, felt spongy and lacked outright feel.
The best out there?
TVS Motors has three variants to offer – carburettor with front disc, carb with an addition of rear disc and FI with rear disc, each of which retails at `81,490, `84,490 and `89,990, exshowroom, Delhi, respectively. The Apache RTR 160 4V looks good, offers great ergonomics, a powerful motor and is an ace handler too. We’ve ridden it only at TVS’ Hosur track but are certain about its potential on the road as well. The characteristic RTR note is gone and the brakes are unpredictable as well, but the package remains extremely potent, and surely among the best out there. We cannot wait to pit it against arch rivals and see how it fares.
1: All-new rear cowl and mono seat. 2: Most powerful motor among the 160cc naked class. 3: The FI gets a white backlight while the carb gets amber. Go figure. 4: Doesn’t sound as bassy as its elder sibling