Kawasaki comes up with Ninja 300, Honda responds with CBR500R

Ok, no ‘vs’ in the title there. I am not doing a comparison anyway. It isn’t fair to compare two bikes with completely different displacements.

Just a few months back, when I was looking for an affordable bike to buy, the options were limited – I could only narrow down to the Ninja 250 and the CBR 250R. I somehow found the look of the Ninja 250 quite dated, and cludgy. The CBR in comparison looked sleek and new. (partly because it was).

The CBR 250R promo video was also pretty well made,

I hadn’t seen anything on the Ninja 250R, but found this ok, but not-so-great video,

Now, Kawasaki announced the Ninja 300 just a few months back, and although I might have wanted to go for it, I couldn’t wait, and went in for the Honda CBR 250R instead. I am pretty happy with the CBR 250R – would have just preferred the Ninja 300.

The Ninja 300 promo video is mind-blowing,

Just a few days back, Honda announced a few new bikes – of which I found the CBR500R the most appealing. However, the promo video is a complete let down. It feels like it’s a video from the 90’s. Two decades back.

YAWN!!

This other video is slightly better,

Of course, this post has nothing to do with the merits of the bikes themselves. 😀

On a closing note, the Pulsar 220 ad still seems to best all of these. The bike itself looks a little puny when you look at it now. 🙂

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Cramster Turtle-Magnetic Tank Bag-Reviewed

I recently bought myself a “Cramster Turtle” – a magnetic tank bag. I thought I’d write a review of it, since the original Website itself has missing information, and most other sites where I searched before buying the bag, had the same information copy pasted there – verbatim. Well, that’s not a review.

For the basic information, you should check out the Cramster website. I have no intentions of re-posting whatever information you can already find there.

I have a few cribs with the “Cramster” folks – not with the product itself. I am really really happy with the bag. They simply don’t have enough information and photos on their website – which is really sad considering that they have a good product lineup and good products.

Basic Information:

  • Cost: ~1500 Rs. I bought it on ebay and was charged a shipping of 100Rs I think.
  • Color: Black (although other colors are available)
  • Has Scotch reflective material in some places.
  • YKK Zippers. (Well, brands like Louise Phillippe and Allen Solly use it too. So, it must be good I guess.)
  • It has a sling, to put on your shoulder. (detachable of course)
  • There are also four pegs at the extremities of the bag – just in case you want to secure your bag to your bike with say ropes, maybe you could do that too.

Dimensions, Pockets …etc:

  • Dimensions (Before Expanding): 13.5″ l x 11.5″ w x 7″ h
  • Dimensions (After Expanding): 13.5″ l x 11.5″ w x 9.8″ h
  • (Some space is taken up by the rain cover which is inside the main compartment.)
  • Map pouch Dimension: 11″ x 9.5 ” (Has a transparent sheet, and a zipper) The map pouch is present on the inside of the flap.
  • Mesh Pouch Dimension: 9.5″ x 9″ (tapers towards the end – 9.5″ x 8″) The Mesh pouch is directly below the flap. The flap sticks to the bag using Velcro.
  • There’s also a key holder between the Map pouch and Mesh pouch.
  • Side pouches (x 2 on either side)Dimensions: (8″ l x 3.5″ w x 1.5″ h ) Tapers Downwards. Should be enough to fit sunglass cases, spectacle cases, a small water bottle (500 ml), a digital camera …etc.
  • You could also put knick-knacks inside the rain cover pouch.
  • Has a rain cover, which has elastic lining, and covers the bag fully. Not sure how effective it would be during rains.

Where Do I Plan on using it:

I own a Honda CB Unicorn Dazzler. As anyone might know, motorbikes have issues with storage, compared to the scooters. Mine has a tiny compartment under the seat which can all but hold the first aid kit, the toolbox and the bikes papers.

I do a fair bit of travelling on weekends, and on the weekend that I don’t go on trips, I go shopping – for essentials of course. I love my Samsonite backpack, and it mostly suffices be it trips, carrying laptops or even bringing back juice cartons and biscuits. But sometimes, it cannot hold everything on the weekend shoppings, and on the trips, if you have a pillion rider, then your backpack is an issue. I find wearing it on the front cumbersome, and even slightly risky to be honest.

Welcome the Cramster Turtle. It looks stylish and snazzy to be carried around malls. It managed to get a few stares – not what I bought it for, but still, pretty cool, eh ? 🙂 It also fit in all most of the stuff I bought, and was really easy to ride back home with it mounted on the tank.

Note: If you are that person who is used to hanging covers from the handlebars, then you should really consider the Turtle. Not only are the plastic bags irritating – they are also risky! I find my control on the bike compromised, when I hand anything from the handlebars.

So in short, I plan to use it for,

  • To office maybe (when I have to carry some small stuff, and my bikes cover)
  • To the mall – when I go shopping
  • On trips, where my pillion will not complain. 🙂

FAQ’s:

You should first go through the FAQ’s on the Cramster website.

The below are based on my experience so far, and I take no responsibility for any inaccuracies. If you do find inaccuracies, do comment, and I shall have it taken down.

  1. Does it fit well on the  tank ? At high speeds will it hold ? A: It fits very well on my bike. You need a metal tank of course. I did decent speeds of 60-70 in the city, and didn’t for one moment think it might come off. I’ll report back after my trips where I expect to do more than 70 😉
  2. Is it roomy enough ? A: Yes. In fact I think it is roomier than maybe required in most cases. You can also expand the bag by approximately 2 and a half  inches of height. I always like expandable bags – like my Samsonite backpack. Only, in this case, I would have liked the expand to be like say 2 – 2.5 inches and the normal height of the bag to have been a little lesser, so that it appeared sleeker.
  3. Will I have problems controlling the bike with the bag mounted on the tank ? A: Most probably not. On my bike, I did not face any kind of discomfort, and I had it fully loaded. Also, the handlebars do not really come anywhere near touching the bag, unless when titled to the maximum on either side (see pics below.) – which is not all that much of a problem, and even lesser so since you don’t expect to turn the handle to the extremity all that often.
  4. Can I see the Instrument Panel, when the bag is on my tank ? A: Well, I could while driving. It did not come in the line-of-sight at all. But then, I am not sure if that might be an issue with other bikes. Some bikes like the Avenger have the fuel level indicator on the tank itself, and you might not be able to see such things. My room mate has an Avenger. Maybe I could try it on that, and see if it hampers visibility.
  5. Will it affect aerodynamics ? A: 🙂 Well, if you are really into aerodynamics, and are calculating the solution to some problem, maybe yes. I didn’t feel it adversely affect the aerodynamics.

Photos (Off the bike):

a little later

Photos (On the bike):

Minor Cribs:

  1. I feel – and just my opinion this, that the bag is a little bigger than maybe required in most cases, unless you are into serious touring of course. As mentioned above in the FAQ’s, I would have liked the bag to have been a little sleeker when the ‘Expand zipper is fastened’
  2. It would have been very nice if the bag also came up with some kind of a provision where it could have been used as a Backpack. Yes, I know it’s asking for a little too much. Plus, it’s probably for the best – most people might already be carrying a backpack, and wouldn’t want this to serve that purpose as well.
  3. The material feels a little thin. While I am sure it would be durable, I would have liked it to be just a little thicker.
  4. They could have had one extra compartment, or a place to put small things like say strips of medicines, your pens…etc. Most backpacks have this.

Your Say:

The poll should have read – “What do you think of the Cramster Turtle

I also bought a pair of Twister Gloves, the review of which I plan on writing soon.

Honda CBR 250R

For all you Pulsar owners, and R15 owners – here’s news if you haven’t already read about it elsewhere – Honda CBR 250R.

The first articles I saw on this, was when I was randonly browsing the internet and chanced upon it. I was thrilled to say the least. Of course, there weren’t those many pictures available then ( some three months back ?), but there are plenty of pictures now.

Bike India Magazine (if you don’t alreay read it and are a bike enthusiast, I suggest you check the magazine out), ran a cover story in their December2010 issue. Old news then ? Not really. The bike is not yet out in the Indian market.

Now, unless you are a ‘Cruiser’ type guy, just the news should be enough to send a tingling sensation through your spine. In my opinion, the looks/styling are fantastic. The seat looks really comfortable. I am not the kind to go into details like split grab rails, and such, but the bike looks functional and stunning. The bike is expected to have a top speed of 150 kms +. On good roads, thats simply awesome. Well, yes, inside the city or even just outside, that’s not going to come in handy ever – not unless you have a death wish.

It comes with dual disc, and even an ABS option – which can be a blessing on good roads. I am not sure if it has options to disable the ABS, change settings …etc hich some high end cars boast of. If it doesn’t, then braking on bad terrain will be a problem.

I am pretty sure this is going to kick Karizma, P220and even R15 in the crotch and easily get away with it. The Ninja would definitely be in the same league – maybe even slightly better, but the CBR 250R is expected to be priced at around 1.5 Lacs.(INR)Music to the ears of people who could never afford a Ninja which comes at 3 Lacs.(INR)

Official Video:

Some commentary:

Some Pics:

You can also read about it here and on the Official Site.

P.S:

If the bike had already released, I would have definitely gone in for it. I recently bought a Honda Unicorn CB Dazzler. I hope to pen down a review on it soon.

Chevrolet Aveo U-VA Advertisement Makes Limca Book Of Records

Seriously.

Now look at the numbers. A football team is comprised of 11 members. Right ? And your normal car can seat how many ? 4 fully grown people (Children and dwarfs are not incuded), 5 at the most including the driver. This car seats an entire football team and Saif Ali Khan of course. That makes it 12. Now, sources close to the organisers of Limca book of records tell me that this is indeed a new record.

Here’s proof:

If you haven’t seen the video and are wondering what on thunder this is, here’s the video so that you can see this feat with your own eyes. Also, you will find a very original unveiling at the end of it which is unprecedented in the world of advertisement. They might just get another award for that.

P.S: The 2007 is an obvious give away. 😉

 

Traffic Boards-02

This is in continuation to my post Indian Traffic Boards

Traffic board

(click on thumbnail to enlarge)

If you think the bags are funny, it’s not about that. Did you notice the unit of speed ? Km/Ph. Well I have heard of Kmph and Km/hr. Km/Ph is Kilometers per per hour. That’s acceleration you jerks 😉

Chennai Centric-01-Adyar Depot Traffic Signal ?!?

Have been wanting to post this for a while now, but at first I did not have a camera phone and then I did not go out for a while.

I am sure a lot many of you who live in an around Adyar, Thiruvanmiyur and Besant Nagar would have noticed this by now.

Adyar Depot Traffic Signal

(photo shot on my phone cam.)

On the way to Thiruvanmiyur from Adyar, the traffic signal that is supposed to point straight, points left instead. So if you want to go to Thiruvanmiyur, you will have to go to Besant Nagar and then come round about. 😀 This is how wonderful India is. I was there the first day this was repaired (it used to be alright earlier) and we motorists were still waiting for the forward signal to switch ON. To our agony, it never did. Then a traffic policeman comes and asks us to go explaining how someone screwed it up when repairing it. Ah, how beautiful.

When will these incompetent idiots learn ?

Bajaj Pulsar 220 New Advertisement – Pulsar Mania

Note on 25-Feb-2010: It’s nearly been two years since I wrote this post, and the advertisement still amazes me, still makes me want to go out there and ride hard. But in this time, the competition has changed – Yamaha, Honda and Suzuki have entered the Indian marrket with really good offerings. Not to take anything away from Bajaj, but these bikes are good.

If you are considering the P220, maybe you should also look at the Honda CBR 250R. (I myself own an Honda Unicorn CB Dazzler – fairly recently purchased.) Just saying. 🙂

 

Bajaj Logo

Shankar, my junior in college had this video on his Orkut list of videos.  Awesome Bike!! Awesome video!! Awesome stunts!! Awesome Ad!!

Bajaj Pulsar 200Pulsar220

(pic: Pulsar 200)   (pic: Pulsar 220)

Here’s the video:

Definitely Male and

Distinctly Ahead

I wanted to buy a Pulsar once I started earning, but then thinking about it, maybe I won’t buy anything. (For the salary I’ll get, I doubt if I can afford bikes and laptops and stuff. 🙂 )