First, there was the INS Vikrant. Then, came the Bajaj V15. And now, there is a V12
WWhat is it? For starters it isn’t a V-twelve. It’s a V-one-two. And, it’s a motorcycle in the “mileage segment” according to Bajaj, which makes it a commuter. However, like the V15 before it, it is meant to make the consumer feel like he’s a part of a larger more illustrious legacy.
All-new? The 125cc engine of course. You’d have to be a dolt to not figure that one out but there are other aspects too. There are a host of cost cutting measures on this bike (compared to the V15) – thinner forks, thinner tyres and the shroud around the instruments is plastic instead of aluminium.
Back to the engine, Bajaj has worked on refining the long stroke engine itself but over and above that, it has revised the engine mounts so that vibrations are better dispersed. As a result the engine feels smoother than the unit in the V15.
Fun to ride? Well, commuters aren’t exactly built for fun but it handles well enough. In fact, the V12 feels slightly more flickable than the V15. Bajaj said that a lot of this has to do with the thinner tyres and the thinner forks. The bike’s ride quality too feels plusher than what we felt on the V15, which Bajaj says can be attributed to the altered spring rating at the rear on account of the lower unsprung masses.
Efficient? Instead of confusing the consumer with unrealistic ARAI test data, Bajaj claim a far more realistic 50-55km to a litre, which is par for the course for a 125cc bike of this kind.
Value? The V12 is built to a purpose – commuting. And to that end, the bike feels well sorted. It handles well enough and ride quality is pliant. The engine has a lovely bottom and mid-range, which translates into a nice tractable machine that’s easy to ride through town. The only chinks in the bike’s armour is the lack of an engine kill switch and disc brake (though Bajaj says that the latter is en route). At `56,283 it’s as good value as any other bike in its class. L
1: Console may be the same as on the V15 but the aluminium shroud around it has been replaced with plastic. 2: The thinner tyres aid flickability but lack of a disc is unwelcome. 3: The 125cc engine is torquey and packs all its punch at the bottom and...