Before the second wave of Covid-19 decided to disseminate any plans manufacturers had for 2021, a whole list of bikes was set to hit the showrooms in India. Needless to say, those plans aren’t exactly back on track, but there’s still some hope that they will eventually make their way down here sooner or later. Which ones would you fancy from this list?
Honda — CB500R, CB500F
As most of you know, the CB500X has already been launched in India. Although pricey, there’s no denying the fact that it has opened up a new avenue for the other motorcycles based on Honda’s 500cc platform to make their way down here as well. Namely, the CB500R and CB500F – both of which are unique in their own special way. The ‘F’ is naked, while the ‘R’ is the faired one. Both, obviously, are powered by a 471cc, parallel-twin motor capable of producing 47-bhp and 43-Nm of torque. Who knows, we might even get the Rebel 500 at some point if Honda is in the mood.
KTM — 890 Adventure
Those who’ve enjoyed the company of the 390 and 250 Adventure, will certainly see this as good news. It’s even better news for those with a nose for touring, looking to upgrade from Duke’s or RC’s. It’s powered by an 889cc, twin-cylinder engine churning out 103-bhp and 100-Nm of peak torque, and is the entry point in the 890 Adventure range. It sits below the 890 Adventure R and 890 Adventure R Rally, which are most likely to never make it here. Pity. Fun fact – the crankshaft on the 890 is 20 percent heavier than the 790.
Yamaha — YZF-R3
Apart from the hyped FZ-X arrival, the R3 could be another model sure to make its way to our shores pretty soon. Given Yamaha’s shift towards the premium end of the market, we could see a lot of big Yamaha bikes, which is good news. Rumours suggest the first of these could be YZF-R3, which if you don’t know, comes with a 321cc, parallel-twin capable of producing 42-bhp. It’s widely regarded as one of the smoothest in its class and its return to India would certainly get a lot of petrolheads excited.
Ducati — Panigale V4, Diavel, Monster, Supersport 950, Multistrada V4
After recently launching the Streetfighter V4 and V4 S, Ducati has well over 10 models to bring to India, this year alone! At least that’s what the plan was before this deadly wave of Covid-19 struck once again. Just to recap, Ducati currently sells the Panigale V2 and updated Scrambler 1100 series in India, apart from the aforementioned Streetfighter. The list of upcoming models includes the Multistrada V4, XDiavel, Panigale V4, Hypermotard 950, Monster, Supersport 950 and then some. Long story short, they’ll all come with the mandatory BS6-update and a few changes besides. The Hypermotard 950, for example, just got an update that added a new MotoGP-inspired paint job and a slightly tweaked gearbox.
Aprilia — Tuono V4, RSV4, RS 660, Tuono 660
Aprilia has been steadily growing its portfolio in the country for some time now. Recently, the brand launched the SXR 125, which is basically an SXR 160 but with a 124.45cc, single-cylinder motor. There’s also the beloved SR series of scooters, which is quite a fan favourite. However, a recent development on the company’s Indian website raised a lot of commotion, in a good way, of course. That’s because Aprilia has listed the RS 660, Tuono 660, RSV4, RSV4 Factory, Tuono V4 and Tuono V4 Factory.
Firstly, the RSV4 is powered by a 1,099cc, V4 engine putting out 215-bhp and 125-Nm of torque. The Tuono V4 gets a 1,077cc, V4 motor that makes 173-bhp and 121-Nm. On the 660 siblings, there’s a 659cc, parallel-twin motor – but the Tuono gets a slightly detuned version in comparison to the RS version. However, the curb weight remains the same on both bikes (183 kilograms).
Suzuki — V-Strom 1050, SV 650
Other than the cult-classic Hayabusa and the venerable V-Strom 650XT, no other big Suzuki motorcycle is on sale in India. That again is quite demoralizing since Suzuki has one of the most extensive ranges of motorcycles in the world. However, some whispers suggest Suzuki could bring about the V-Strom 1050 and SV 650 to our shores soon. The V-Strom is powered by a 1037cc, V-twin motor producing 105-bhp and 100-Nm of peak torque. The latter gets the same engine as the V-Strom 650XT, which is a 645cc, V-twin motor, but with a slightly different state of tune. Recently the V-Strom 1050 and 1050XT got a bunch of new colours in Europe, while the SV 650 still maintains that 90s-inspired looks with a bunch of new techs. Could we perhaps see a smaller V-Strom come to our market as well? We’re speaking of the V-Strom 250, of course. Perhaps.
BMW — F 850 GS, F 750 GS
BMW Motorrad India has quite an impressive range in the Indian market. It’s got everything from the range-topping M 1000 RR to the entry-level G 310 R. However, what’s missing right now are the two middle siblings from the GS pack. One is the F 850 GS, while the other is the F 750 GS. Not too long ago, the updated F 850 GS was launched in China and featured changes like a smaller fuel tank and a few design updates.
It’s still powered by an 853cc, twin-cylinder engine making up to 78-bhp of maximum power and 90-Nm of peak torque. The F 750 GS gets the same motor, so don’t let that badging confuse you. Again, like other manufacturers, BMW Motorrad has a couple of gems it doesn’t sell like the C 400 X and C 400 GT. How about it then? Don’t forget to Google both those models to see if you agree.
Kawasaki — Ninja 400, W175
Last, but not least – we have a brand that takes localisation very seriously – and gets the results too. Kawasaki, too, boasts an extensive range, including the Ninja, Z, W, Versys and Vulcan. And these are just the different range of products they have on sale, within them lies more model breakdowns like the Ninja 300, Vulcan S, Versys 1000, Z650 or ZX-10R. However, there are quite a few bikes that are still missing from the Indian stable, which could get a place here soon. There’s the Ninja 400, which still hasn’t got the Euro 5-update yet, but does have a couple of new paint schemes.
It still gets the same 399cc, parallel-twin engine, which is among the best in the business. The other model we’re hoping makes its way down here soon is from the ‘W’ series. Right now we have the W800, which is priced at Rs 7.19 lakh (ex-showroom). That’s quite a lot for someone looking to get that retro-feel from a Kawasaki. That’s why the W175 could make a lot more sense, with its 177cc, single-cylinder, air-cooled motor which makes around 12-bhp and 13-Nm of torque. It’s even got the classic Kawasaki logo on the tank for that special feel overall.