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It was just about three weeks ago that TVS Motors sent the Apache 200 4V race Edition 2.0 to be part of DriveSpark's long-term test garage. The motorcycle has been ridden for a distance of a little over 1,000 kilometres since then.
How is it to live with the motorcycle? What sort of fuel efficiency figures did we manage to get? Were there any niggles? Most importantly, how much fun was it to ride? We answer all your questions. Here are our thoughts on the Apache RTR 200 4V Race Edition being a part of the DriveSpark long-term garage.
If one thought that the Apache 200 4V itself was an attractive motorcycle, wait until one rides the Race Edition 2.0. Our motorcycle, decked in Black with Red graphics was the centre of attraction at a traffic signal. One can expect stares from the average scooter user, commuter motorcycle riders and even riders of the older Apache models.
After riding the Apache 200 Race Edition 2.0 for a few days, you get used to random people questioning you about the price and fuel efficiency of the motorcycle. In the first few days of using the motorcycle, I even had to give on-demand joyrides to seven kids from my community. Yes, I counted because I wanted to gauge the attention being received by the Apache, and it turns out to be, a lot.
We received the motorcycle with 1,489 kilometres on the odometer and a few of my colleagues immediately took turns riding the motorcycle before it finally got into my hands. The bike was taken out on a few shoots as well, covering the quintessential Bangalore biker destination - Nandi Hills.
The Nandi Hills ride helped us judge the cornering abilities of the Apache 200 4V Race Edition 2.0. The motorcycle has been set up brilliantly, and this makes it a great motorcycle to ride in the twisties. The riding position is pretty upright and that generally is not supposed to be good for cornering.
However, the rear-set footpegs and clip-on handlebars combined with the brilliantly set-up suspension and chassis makes it fun-to-ride especially when it comes to corners. Completing the fun-to-ride package is the torquey engine.
The Apache 200 4V Race Edition 2.0 is powered by an air and oil-cooled, 197.7cc single-cylinder engine. With a maximum power output of 20.21bhp and a peak torque output of 18.1Nm, it is a pretty quick bike.
However, the peak torque comes in at 7,000rpm and peak power at 8,500rpm and this could be a bit of a downer if you like high-revving motorcycles. The moment I whacked open the throttle on this motorcycle for the first time, I expected more acceleration but was disappointed.
But then I realised that my expectations might have been set rather high, coming back from a race weekend in which I rode the same motorcycle. That motorcycle though, was tuned by TVS Racing, and featured a race-tuned intake, carburettor and exhaust. It also had a camshaft with a higher lift and optimised ignition timing, allowing for a peak power output of 23.6bhp at 9,300rpm.
Maybe that was the reason I was expecting the road-going motorcycle to rev better and produce a higher power output at higher rpms. This also brought me to think of the capabilities of this engine. It can be tuned to produce more power and yet not lose any of its reliability.
The very same engine is being used by TVS Racing in their roadracing and rally racing motorcycles and it has been performing very reliably. In fact, it has been bringing in quite a few trophies, making TVS very proud indeed.
As history has taught us, anything that has proven its mettle in motorsport will perform much better in everyday usage, and this is exactly what the Apache has done. The robust nature of the Apache's engine can be felt right from the moment one thumbs the starter button.
Yet another character of the bike that wins everyone over is the exhaust note. The bassy rumble brings a smile upon one's face and that smile turns into a grin after listening to the crackles and pops let out by the exhaust upon downshifting.
Having ABS on the motorcycle turns out to be life-saving. Quite literally. Just a week into having the bike as my daily ride, I had a close call, as a woman walked onto the road without looking while I was doing speeds above 70km/h on the Apache.
Hitting the brakes hard made the bike stop in a straight line without any fuss whatsoever. It also helps that the bike comes equipped with TVS' A-RT slipper clutch that prevents the rear wheel from locking up due to aggressive downshifting. All the aforementioned characteristics make the Apache RTR 200 4V Race Edition 2.0 ABS a delight to ride.
We managed a 0-100km/h time of 9.9 seconds and a top speed of 133km/h, both recorded on the instrument cluster. This of course is indicated speed and hence is higher than the 12.1 seconds and 129km/h quoted by TVS.
Were there any negatives? Well, nothing substantial. The rubber bush that holds the front disc brake caliper in place was somehow missing on our bike from the time we received it.
A short visit to a spare parts shop and then a local garage fixed the problem and costed us a total of Rs 40. But this is nothing to be worried about, as this is a one-off problem. The rubber bush usually doesn't come off unless someone pulls it out by force.
There also seemed to be an issue with the starter button - sometimes just refused to work. The gear position indicator too was faulty and showed neutral on the instrumentation even if the bike was in first gear. These issues though were minor and would soon be sorted out when the bike went in for its second service due between 2,500 and 3,000 kilometres.
Thoughts On The TVS Apache RTR 200 4V Race Edition
The Apache has definitely won my heart over and we were looking to clock in a few more thousand kilometres on the motorcycle. However, all good things come to an end and the Apache's time in our garage too has come to an end though I would have liked to spend more time on the bike.
The Apache RTR 200 4V ABS Race Edition retails at Rs 1.11 lakh (ex-showroom, Bangalore). This price is Rs 13,800 more than the non-ABS variant. Is it worth the extra cost? As explained earlier, ABS is a life-saver and a huge boon in terms of safety.
- Distance Covered: 1,021km
- Fuel Efficiency: 38km/l (Average)
- Acceleration (0-100): 9.9 seconds
- Top Speed: 133km/h
- Great engine
- Ride quality
- Exhaust note
- Moody starter button
- Malfunctioning gear position indicator (test ride bike alone)