Aug 15, 2007

2 Readers vote The Bajaj Pulsar as the "Bike which Defines India's 60 years of Independence"

Readers of "The Bike Chronicles of India" vote the Bajaj Pulsar as "the Bike which defines 60 years of India's Independence"

Bajaj Pulsar Wallpaper

Wallpaper of the Bajaj Pulsar along with the Indian flag colors as the background

Opinion PollREsults Details of Opinion Poll Results:

    >> Total no. of votes: 230

    >> Maximum number of votes have come from India

    >> Second highest number of votes have come from USA

It must be stated that the results of the opinion poll represents only a very small percentage of the population. Moreover since the Bajaj Pulsar is the current flavour of the new generation of bikers, it isn't surprising that it has received the maximum number of votes.

Here are my thoughts on the bikes featured in the poll..

Bajaj Chetak Scooter:

    The “Hamara Bajaj” TV Ad in the late 1980’s summarized the essence of the Bajaj Scooter. During those years the Baja Chetak Scooter was virtually the family vehicle and the symbol of the Indian middle class.

    Piaggio of Italy provided the technological knowhow to Bajaj during the intial years. Production began in 1961 and the Chetak was the Indian version of Piaggio’s Vespa. The “license raj” that existed prior to economic liberalization (1940s-1980s) in India did not allow foreign companies to enter the market. Local Manufacturers were subject to a very stringent capacity licensing process, and imports were tightly controlled. This regulatory maze created a seller’s market, with customers often forced to wait 12 years just to buy a scooter from companies such as Bajaj. All these ensured that Bajaj auto remained the numero uno two wheeler maker of India for more than three decades.

    During those years motorcycles in India meant big capacity bikes like the Enfield Bullets, Yezdis and the Rajdoots. It isn’t surprising that during those years the scooter was more popular than the motorcycle as it was easier to handle and maintain them. Scooters were also extremely utilitarian. It could carry your wife on the pillion seat and your little kid along with your weekly groceries on the floorboard as well.

    "The Bajaj Scooter was responsible for putting the Indian middle class on roads. It therefore remains a very important model in the two wheeler history of India."

Hero Honda Splendor:

    Hero Honda Splendor

    In 2001, Hero Honda put India on the Manufacturing world map by becoming the largest manufacturer of two wheelers in the world. The Splendor, launched in 1995 also went on to become the largest selling model in the world during the same time. The Splendor spearheaded the change of popular mode of transportation of the common Indian from scooters to motorcycles.

    During the mid-eighties the Japanese big four bike makers were allowed to enter India via Joint Ventures with Indian companies. Kawasaki-Bajaj, TVS Suzuki, Escorts-Yamaha and Hero Honda formed Joint ventures and started manufacturing small capacity 100 cc motorcycles. Among them only Hero Honda started their innings with Four Stroke motorcycles. These new Indo-Japanese motorcycles were more reliable than the bigger capacity Enfield Bullets or the Yezdis. They were also easier to maintain and more fuel efficient. But it wasn’t till the late 90’s that motorcycles overtook scooter sales.

    Soaring fuel prices and pollution norms sounded the dealt a death knell to the two stroke motorcycles and scooters in India. All the bike makers now turned their attention towards cleaner and efficient four stroke engines. The Switch from scooters to motorcycles also marked a change in the attitude among the Indian two wheeler customers. The Indian two wheeler buyer was getting younger and the scooter was now considered passé. The 100 cc Hero Hondas engines were and still are among the best in India. Hero Honda cashed on this opportunity and has gone on to become the largest two wheeler manufacturer in the world replacing Bajaj Auto in the process.

    "The Splendor spearheaded the motorcycle revolution in India and gave birth to a new generation of Indian bikers. It therefore remains a very important model in the two wheeler history of India."

Bajaj Pulsar:

    If the Bajaj Chetak Scooter was the symbol of the Middle Class India during “License Raj” days and the Hero Honda Splendor represented the emerging India post economic liberalization (1991), the Bajaj Pulsar embodies the spirit of the Confident, Global and Young India of today.

    Bajaj Pulsar
    The Pulsar was the bike responsible for the rebirth of the performance oriented bikes. Hero Honda was in fact the first manufacturer to come out with India’s first 150 cc 4 stroke, the CBZ in 1999. But it was the Pulsar (launched in 2001) which actually went on to set the benchmark of a 150 cc 4 stroke motorcycle.

    The Pulsar developed indigenously by the R&D dept of Bajaj has been the model which has marked the emergence of Bajaj into a major motorcycle manufacturer of India. The Pulsar has dominated the 150 cc segment since its launch in 2001. During the initial years the Pulsar did suffer from a few quality issues. But over the years Bajaj has been continuously improving the quality and adding new and innovative features n the Pulsar.

    The Pulsar coincides with the emergence of India as an important economic power. Apart from dominating the domestic sales charts and the hearts of the new breed of born again Indian bikers, the pulsar has also made the “Made in India” tag proud on foreign shores. The Pulsar is a very popular two wheeler in countries like Colombia and Mexico. Recently Bajaj made its foray in the Indonesian market with its 180 cc Pulsar.

    "Apart from helping Indians graduate from 100 cc to 150 cc bikes, the Pulsar also marks the emergence of a Confident India which is now ready to make its mark in Global Markets. Therefore is earns its place as a very important model in the two wheeler history of India."

Royal Enfield Bullet:

    The Bajaj Chetak Scooter, The Hero Honda Splendor and the Bajaj Pulsar represent revolutionary models which have made a deep impact in the two wheeler landscape of India at different time periods. The Royal Enfield Bullet has been the lone two wheeler model which has survived the test of time. The “Bullet” commands the same respect today as it had enjoyed five decades ago when it landed on Indian shores from its original factory situated in the U.K
    Royal Enfield Bulet

    According to me it is the Royal Enfield Bullet which captures the spirit of India’s 60 years of Independence. I list a few points justifying my choice of the “Bike which Defines India’s 60 years of Independence”, The Royal Enfield Bullet.

    • Like the English language and the game of cricket, the Royal Enfield Bullet Represents India’s colonial legacy

    • After independence, India has been able to carve a place for itself on the world map all by itself. Similarly Royal Enfield has survived in India even its parent company shut down in UK.

    • India was stubborn to change for a long time; similarly the Royal Enfield Bullet didn’t change much for over five decades.

    • Today India is slowly but surely changing for the better. Similarly in the last few years, the Royal Enfield Bullet has improved in quality.

    • Like the timeless beauty of India the bullet has retained its charm over the years.

    • Royal Enfield Bullet have given birth to "Real" Bike Lovers and the “True” Bike Aficionados of India.

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This is to remind that the Views or Opinions in the blog are entirely mine unless explicitly stated. The Views and Opinions published in this blog should in no way be related to any other person or organization associated -- directly or indirectly -- with me.



Nice post! Reveals the quality of this blog....

Anonymous said...


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