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Thread: RE Thunderbird 500 Vs HD Iron 883 Vs Ninja 650

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    Addicted gouravkatyal's Avatar
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    Default RE Thunderbird 500 Vs HD Iron 883 Vs Ninja 650

    Hi Guys!

    I currently own a Ninja 250R and am looking for an upgrade. I have been using the Kwacker for my daily commute (about 60Km a day); subjecting the bike to Bangalore traffic/Roads. I am looking for a bike that would (in priority order)
    1) Be comfortable for daily use and also for the pillion. My biggest issue with the ninja is the lack of comfort for the pillion due to which I really can't use it when I and my wife are planning a road-trip.
    2) Reliability - I hate going to the service center repeatedly - especially if it is for the same item that was "fixed" during the last service. The Bajaj service used to be pretty good but lately it has become an issue ( a negative for 650r and also for RE based on the ownership threads). Also, spare availability is something I need to consider based on the way bajaj is handling the situation for Ninjas...
    3) Performance - I have had my share of traffic light GPs, but my primary need now is low end torque ( for use in slow moving traffic) and a decent top end for highway cruising at say prolonged use at 110 - 120
    4) Running Costs - I know the mileage will be low for all the listed bikes above. Could you guys give me an idea on the running costs i.e. ( Periodic service cost + service intervals + Fuel costs/mileage + spare parts cost)
    5) Should be able to take enough abuse - I tend to be aggressive with the throttle and breaks Also, with Bangalore rains and roads the bike should be capable of running with limited pampering

    Budget wise the 883 is the about the max I can get to, have thought about the super low but that have concerns with its low ground clearance...My Apologies, if this looks like a matrimonial advert but hell a new bike is almost a new relationship nai?

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    somen1984
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    Quote Originally Posted by gouravkatyal View Post
    I currently own a Ninja 250R and am looking for an upgrade.
    1) Be comfortable for daily use and also for the pillion.
    2) Reliability - I hate going to the service center repeatedly
    3) Performance
    4) Running Costs running costs i.e. ( Periodic service cost + service intervals + Fuel costs/mileage + spare parts cost)
    5) Should be able to take enough abuse
    HD Iron 883 / Ninja 650 / TB500
    Remove 883 from the list, it has low ground clearance and that would be a problem in India for high bumpers.
    As per your bold points, RE would be best to pick!! Affordable bike with affordable maintenance!! If taken care then it's like normal bike, but still may, you have some time you have to visit SVC as a bonus.

    BTW would you be ridding it in city or highway ?? or mix ?? If mix then what percentage upto??

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    Quote Originally Posted by somen1984 View Post
    BTW would you be ridding it in city or highway ?? or mix ?? If mix then what percentage upto??
    I'd say 60-70% in the city... I do try to work around the peak hour traffic by getting to office early in the morning. Evenings are a different matter though. For the 883 the difference between the GC is not a lot from the ninja I guess...would it be a problem even when there is a single rider?

    Thanks for the reply

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    Tending to be aggressive with the throttle and breaks is never good for an RE.You will have more chances to visit service center.First bike that came to my mind when reading the requirements was pulsar 220.Great low end torque,neat performance,running cost real low when compared to others,pillion comfort I am not sure.My friends were fighting to get pillion seat of my splendor on a road trip with pulsar 220.

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    somen1984
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    Quote Originally Posted by gouravkatyal View Post
    I'd say 60-70% in the city... I do try to work around the peak hour traffic by getting to office early in the morning. Evenings are a different matter though. For the 883 the difference between the GC is not a lot from the ninja I guess...would it be a problem even when there is a single rider?

    Thanks for the reply
    Personally i think we should ride something which is way comfortable with easy in traffic like any commuter but your choices are in high budget modules!!

    883 is like a complete cruiser style which won't be that easy to tackle Indian traffics. Ninja would be better as it's a Sport Tourer style, so handling in traffic would be easy compare to 883. On other Hand RE TB500 is suggested because it's low in cost and made for India type. Why don't you think on some thing very feasible like FZ/Dazzler/Unicorn/GS150r/P180/P220/Karizma ?? These are proven City/Traffic/Highway bikes with pillion comfort. 60-70% is much for a high rev engine in traffic!! You won't enjoy a bit of 883 or Ninja in traffic or City!!

    If you ask me then it's better to keep your Ninja250 and buy something from above rather than those monsters!!

    A person can ride any bike for daily purpose/traffic/city, but that doesn't mean that SBKs or Cruisers or Sport Tourer are for daily/city purpose!!

    Still it's your choice mate!! I could have suggested you CBR 250 which is more practical in city/traffic than Ninja any given day due to it's balanced low/mid range for city. But you already own a Ninja. If possible then think for CBR250 again for daily use and pillion comfort if you don't want 150cc commuters.

    I am sure Ninja650/883/TB500 won't bring any big difference compare to Ninja 250 in city or traffic.

    I am little confuse ?? Is it for just upgrade or daily use ??

    And pillion comfort is for tour or daily use or every weekend ??

    If you are thinking for daily use then you can consider above lines, if pillion comfort is for touring only then 883/Ninja650.
    Last edited by somen1984; 10-27-2012 at 11:27 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gouravkatyal View Post
    Budget wise the 883 is the about the max I can get to, have thought about the super low but that have concerns with its low ground clearance...My Apologies, if this looks like a matrimonial advert but hell a new bike is almost a new relationship nai?
    Ninja 250 R is pretty much the ideal bike for weekend tours and such, so I'd add to the suggestions of keeping the kwacker and getting a new bike for commutes.

    Big bikes with bulky fairing or weight are a big headache for city traffic, I'd suggest the Duke 200 for your purposes if you can skip the pillion requirement. You can use the kwacker for rides with pillion. Duke is well under your budget, reliable, cheap, and loads of evenly spread torque and lightweight (flickable) to make city ride fun. The posture is ideal for city ride too - not sporty so as to induce pain in your wrists.
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    Quote Originally Posted by albyjose View Post
    Tending to be aggressive with the throttle and breaks is never good for an RE.You will have more chances to visit service center.First bike that came to my mind when reading the requirements was pulsar 220.Great low end torque,neat performance,running cost real low when compared to others,pillion comfort I am not sure.My friends were fighting to get pillion seat of my splendor on a road trip with pulsar 220.
    he looking to upgrade from a ninja 250 .. how is it a comparo to this...

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    i think you should go in for the iron 883 , as you have already experienced the ninja 250 go in for a different kind of biking now ...HD would be my pick.
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    Quote Originally Posted by albyjose View Post
    Tending to be aggressive with the throttle and breaks is never good for an RE.You will have more chances to visit service center.First bike that came to my mind when reading the requirements was pulsar 220.Great low end torque,neat performance,running cost real low when compared to others,pillion comfort I am not sure.My friends were fighting to get pillion seat of my splendor on a road trip with pulsar 220.
    Running cost is not a primary consideration, i just wanted to get a ballpark figure... Not sure how it is for the pillion though...

    Quote Originally Posted by somen1984 View Post
    Personally i think we should ride something which is way comfortable with easy in traffic like any commuter but your choices are in high budget modules!!

    883 is like a complete cruiser style which won't be that easy to tackle Indian traffics. Ninja would be better as it's a Sport Tourer style, so handling in traffic would be easy compare to 883. On other Hand RE TB500 is suggested because it's low in cost and made for India type. Why don't you think on some thing very feasible like FZ/Dazzler/Unicorn/GS150r/P180/P220/Karizma ?? These are proven City/Traffic/Highway bikes with pillion comfort. 60-70% is much for a high rev engine in traffic!! You won't enjoy a bit of 883 or Ninja in traffic or City!!

    I am little confuse ?? Is it for just upgrade or daily use ??

    And pillion comfort is for tour or daily use or every weekend ??

    If you are thinking for daily use then you can consider above lines, if pillion comfort is for touring only then 883/Ninja650.
    Yup the pillion comfort is primarily during touring, I don't think i'll have too much trouble with the traffic as I tend to skip the rush hour most times... A bike just abt ok in the city but really comfortable on long drives is what I was looking at...

    Quote Originally Posted by sumeshpremraj View Post
    Ninja 250 R is pretty much the ideal bike for weekend tours and such, so I'd add to the suggestions of keeping the kwacker and getting a new bike for commutes.
    Kwacker would be ideal for short tours had I been travelling alone...trust me, it is a pain for the pillion! City driving is something I am ok to live with even if it is not very comfortable...

    Quote Originally Posted by captain View Post
    i think you should go in for the iron 883 , as you have already experienced the ninja 250 go in for a different kind of biking now ...HD would be my pick.
    Hmm, I am leaning towards that my self now

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