Mar 27, 2008

34 Bajaj Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi bags the First IMOTY (Indian Motorcycle of the Year) 2008 Award..!!

Bajaj Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi bags the the first IMOTY (Indian Motorcycle of the Year) award.. What do I as an owner, think about my bike..??

2008 Indian Motorcycle of the Year Award

Five of the top Auto publications of the country came together for the very first time to set up IMOTY (Indian Motorcycle of the Year) federation. The objective was to pick the "Most Remarkable Motorcycle launched in India" in the previous year.

The very first IMOTY award (for 2008) goes to Bajaj Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi..!!

[The news about the IMOTY 2008 award has been taken from the April 2008 Issues of Overdrive and Autocar India (Yes, they are out).

Photo scanned from Overdrive April 2008 issue]

Of late every publication having a decent readership in the country had been giving away its own version of the "Bike of the Year" awards. Infact even private TV News Channels had joined in the fray. Like they say "too many cooks spoil the broth", the purpose of selecting the most remarkable motorcycle was getting lost in the process..

I hardly used to care which motorcycle "this" or "that" magazine gave the award to. But the IMOTY award makes sense to me. Five jury members representing the top automotive publications come together to wreak their brains and decide upon a single Motorcycle as the winner.

The following publications have setup the IMOTY Federation

  • Autocar India

  • Bike India

  • Business Standard Motoring

  • Overdrive

  • Top Gear

The contenders for the IMOTY 2008 award were: TVS Apache RTR 160, Hero Honda Hunk, Bajaj XCD and the Bajaj Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi.

In the end the Bajaj Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi won the very first Indian Motorcycle of the Year award.

Ok, the Bike Gurus have given their verdict. But.. What does a "Biker next Door" who also happens to be a Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi owner think about his bike..??

Payeng on Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi

Of course I had fallen in love with the Pulsar 220 and that's why I had bought it in the first place. But that was like "Love at first sight" or rather "Love at first Test-Ride"..!!

Now that the intial honeymoon period is over, how do I rate the Pulsar 220..??

What do I like about the Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi..??
  • Fuel Injection: This is a feature not just to brag about to your friends.. but to appreciate this technology, just bring the bike to a speed of about 30-35 Kmph at top (5'th) gear and then open the throttle. The way the bike pulls away without any fuss will explain a lot more than I can write in here.

  • High Speed Highway Handling: Push the Pulsar 220 through some high speed manoeuvres on the highways to realize that you are smiling from ear to ear inside your helmet.

  • Pulsar 220 Headlamp
  • Projector Headlamps: Mind you, these aren't just fancy show pieces on the motorcycle but are infact the Most Powerful headlights currently available on any Indian Motorcycle..!! And the fact that they do not depend on the engine speed to glow at full intensity will make you appreciate it even more.

I could go on and on but let me list a few negatives too..

What do I do not quite like about the Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi..??
  • Riding in traffic: Thanks to its length, negotiating slow moving traffic inside the City is a pain. You can no longer cut and weave through traffic like you would on a 150 cc motorcycle. It took me some time to get used to the length of the bike. Infact there had been two instances when the exhaust on my bike had brushed other vehicles when trying to squeeze into empty spaces in the traffic.

    With the Pulsar 220, its better to ride like a civlilized rider in traffic.

  • Ineffective Rear View Mirrors: The fairing mounted Rear View Mirrors look sweet. But they aren't that functional as they do not provide a proper view of the scenery behind you.

  • Pulsar 220 Rear Disc Brake
  • Weak Rear Disc Brake: The rear disc brake is supposed to be one of the selling points of the Pulsar 220 as it is the first Indian bike to feature a disc brake at the rear.

    But sadly the rear disc brake on the Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi doesn't have much bite in it. This is totally in contrast to the front disc brake which has enormous bite (thankfully).

    In fact the front disc does the job of bring the bike to a halt almost single-handedly. Also after using it for sometime, the rear disc starts making some annoying squealing noises.

I have also had a few parts replaced so far. Although these parts have been replaced free of charge due to the 5 year warranty on the engine, considering that this is a premium product from Bajaj, Quality Control could still be improved.

Bajaj Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi

So would I rate the Bajaj Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi as the bike of the year 2008..??

I would rate the Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi (4/5). And yes, the Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi definitely deserves the IMOTY (Indian Motorcycle of the Year) 2008 award. 15-20 years down the line when someone might reminisce about the First Indian Motorcycle of The Year, I can proudly say that, "That was my bike..!!"

Future Improvements that i would like to see on the Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi:

  • A better rear disc brake

  • Properly designed Rear View Mirrors

  • A 4 Valve, "Sprint" version of the Pulsar 220 DTS-Fi belting out 25 Ps of Power..!!

    (If the Bajaj XCD "Sprint" can make 3 Ps more with its 4 Valves, then why not an Pulsar 220 "Sprint" variant with 5 Ps more..??)

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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.


Anonymous said...

2 things i like to ask: -
1) Is it true if the bike has less then 3lt of petrol in it... it wont run?
2) In the winter all the bike eng get cold so and mostly u have to kick start them since the self start won’t work
How does bajaj solve that problem?

Cé$âr said...

you should be thankful that the rear disc lacks bite.

Payeng said...

Since the Pulsar 220 is a Fuel Injected Motorcycle and there is a fuel pump in the tank.. a minimum quantity of fuel needs to be in the tank for its proper functioning..

I believe that applies even for Fuel Injected Cars

There has been no starter issues on my bike so far.. one of my close friend has even been to LEH-LADDAKH on his Pulsar 200 (which also has Elec starter only)..

In fact none of my friends who have Pulsar 200 has ever had any problem with the electric starter on their bikes.

In case of extreme cold sometimes a little bit of choke does the job on the Pulsar 200..

while on the Pulsar 220, since it is fuel injected there is no choke and the fuel injection takes care of the cold starts.

There hasn't been any problem with the starter on my bike.. Touch Wood.


I would have preferred a little bit of more bite on the rear disc dude..

ashes_dad said...

it is the very first time when bajaj has used rear discs,fairing mounted rear views,fuel injection and the 220cc block

so some sought of problems are there.

but bajaj is recognizing them and correcting them.for example the first pulsars(2001) had countless problems and poor quality but now the pulsar are nearly perfect.similarly it will take some time to work and solve these problems.

i dont think apachefi will have these sought of problems because tvs has a lot of experience in recing and has used these technologies in concepts and racing bikes.

even yamaha will not have problems in r15 cause they are doing it for decades.i think their bikes are perfect.

Gary said...

Yam R15, in here V-ixion, has a lot of issues. From its clutch, injector problem, overheat and into engine noise problem.
So, not every big manufacture has a perfect motorbike. There are always cases for the bikes since it is mass production.

Sajal Chakraborty said...

Very rightly said Gary dude!!

All I know that the P220 and P200 are great machines to own, from the stabels of an Indian Bike maker.

If look more closely, with P220 and P200, this is first time ever that an Indian Bike maker has steped in to incorporate sports class technology in bikes (I won't count Karizma because the technology comes from a foregin player - Honda). So, by those terms if we go by history of even the R1, it also faced major changes over the period, so that today it's seeing it's position as one of the world leaders in biking.

Payeng said...

For your Info:

Sajal is a Pulsar 200 owner and an Ex- Hero Honda Super Splendor Owner..

Visit Sajal's blog to know how he and his Pulsar 200 survived the Delhi Winter without any Electric starter issue.

Visit Sajal's blog to know how in 1998, all the Yamaha R1's were recalled in its first year.

Anil Kumar said...

Hey Payeng.I drove the p220 yesterday and now I think I know why there is a lot about it on your blog.If I need to describe it,I would probably write an essay,so i would tone down my description to 2 words,"simply awesome".There is no other bike in India like the p220.All hail the king and congrats for owning one.But still,would you do a personel shootout or atleast a comparison between the Karizma and p220 to let everyone know why the p220 is the king.Cheers to Bajaj.

srinidhi said...

I too got to ride my friend's P220 yesterday.This was the second best bike I rode in my life(the first being RD350).Block out those negatives and it's one gentle beast.Just loved the way it rides.Lucky owners.

Payeng said...

@ Eyeryone,

I was actually well aware of the Rear View Mirror and the Rear Disc brake issue of the 220 before making the purchase..

Inspite of this, I found the 220 an irrestible package.

Hope Bajaj brings out a better rear disc brake and wider rear view mirrors soon.. so that I can retro fit them too.

ashes_dad said...


i have nothing against bajaj or any other indian bike maker and why should i have anything against them afterall i am a proud indian or u could say punjabi.

but we can't deny the fact that japanese technology at this time is the one can match their perfection.

yamaha wants to make a comeback in indian market and they are working really hard on R15(payng has posted a video) and do u think they are fools that after making so many major changes to vixion's body,engine and looks to make it R15 they will forget to solve the little issues that u have mentioned.

i just said that yamaha is making bikes for decades and now their bikes are nearly perfect(sajal's blog about r1 can clear ur doubts).but bajaj or for that matter any indian bike maker at current time is learning.

Ravi said...


if you really are a proud Indian then at least show some respect and be proud of what Bajaj has done for the country instead of trying to find its faults.

both the sales figures of Yamaha and TVS will tell you a lot about them

was Yamaha daydreaming that Indians will buy their products blindly just because they happen to be a Japanese brand?

I don't think the Yamaha R15 will even touch 18 BHP. the rear tyre on the R15 is a big turn off.

also like Payeng says, I also belive that Bajaj can easily comeout with a 4 valve version of the Pulsar 220. I don't think that Bajaj will surrender the crown of being the performance leader so easily.

Sajal Chakraborty said...

Payeng Dude!!!

I've got a dhasu idea about the rear view mirrors....... came to know about it when I was @ my home town last week....

Will discuss it with you sometime!!

BORДT said...

This Bajaj bike is Niiiiceee.. I l like it!

ashes_dad said...


will u please do me a favour and tell me where have i mentioned anything against bajaj.

in my first comment i have just stated the negatives given by PAYENG in his post and i have even said that they are minor issues and can be solved.

and d u think that only bajaj is an indian product and not TVS which against u have raised ur voice.

and will u give me some answers

1)which toothpaste do u use?pepsodent,colgate or BABUL

2)which brand's clothes do u wear?
reebok or LOCAL MADE

3)which shoes do u wear?
addidas nike or LOCAL

i hope now u understand.

now about R15 yamaha has already stated that it is going to be one of te fastest bikes in india so before making any comment about its BHP i will better wait for official announcement.

and let me tell u that R15 is better in looks than all the current bikes in market.

and so why dont u read my comment carefully and then make any further cojmments.

Anonymous said...

Attn: Borat

Borat!! Lolz.. that's a great idea!! I even forgot about him!! HIs face makes me laugh!!

Cé$âr said...

hi payeng, the reason i said that abt the rear discs is that powerful rear brakes is potentially dangerous

at high speeds locking the rear wheel can be catastrophic.

Payeng said...

@ Ce$ar,

You are right.. in fact combined with the front and rear discs, my 220 brakes quite well..

but a little bit more.. just a little bit.

Gary said...

Yamaha Indonesia already produced about 20,000 units of V-ixion here. Half of them are has a lot of issue that I mentioned before.
Lets say like this, if Yamaha Indonesia still using parts from Japan not local, they will cannot make a sales in here. It will be overprice.
I respect Bajaj Pulsar in term of quality, performance and value. Its Value for Money.
Most of my friends who used to be use Japananese motorcycle now is slowly changing into alternative motorcycle brand (like Bajaj & TVS). Why??? Because the engine and quality is above of Japanese. Thats true....:D

Anonymous said...


Go to a book store and bu Bike India March issue (in case anybody has not!!!!!)
There is an article about the hi tech stuff used in the Yamaha R15...Any guess which will be best bike of the year 2008-2009????
Yamaha R15!!!!!!!!!
It is here to revolutionise motorcycling in India..Yamaha was and is the trend setter in India!!!

Payeng said...


Is it really true Gary bro..??

Bajaj and TVS bikes are slowly being preferred for their quality over Japanesse bikes in Indonesia..?? Wow..!!

I would definitely like to come down to Indonesia someday to see it with my own eyes..


@Anon (name please),

The stuff mentioned about the R15 in Bike India March 2008 Issue can also be found here on my blog: Whats so Special about the Yamaha YZF-R15..??

Yes, looks like the R15 would become the Bike of the Year 2008-2009.

Sajal Chakraborty said...


seems like there's a war going between brands!!!

but the question here is are we brand ambassadors??? we visit this blog to know about bikes. we all have our favorite brands but above all we love bikes and bikes are not brand specific, they are biker specific. In other words, if I like Pulsar 200, that does not mean that Pulsar 200 is the best bike in the world and other bikes are crap. I like Pulsar 200 because Pulsar 200 suits me in many ways (some explainable and some not)

So, let's worship the machine and enjoy our ride..... because brands come and go..... but the sprit always remains!!!!

bambang said...

yamaha is too quiet about R15... my sixth sense says R15 will be disappointing

Gary said...

Thats right bro....:D You should come here. Japanese bike is slowly decreasing its performance. Japanese bike in Indonesia is big because of their "Bebek" bike, not "male" bike like Pulsar & Apache. Thats why when this two brands from India came in, they are speechless in term of price, quality and performance....

Agree with you bro....:D Brands are just trademarks and is not always define the good one....:D

ashes_dad said...


i completely agree with u buddy.

Anonymous said...

hi guys, i'm going to purchace a new bike, and it may be pulsar 220 dts-fi, but there are some questions in my mind.

* is the self start working properly
* is there any problem in relays
* is there any problem with rear disk brakes
* what is the mileage in city roads & highways
* is there any problem with tubeless tyres
* is there any problem with speedometer

please any 220 owner's give me the reply for these questions, wheather u have facing the above problems.

can any 220 owners suggest my to take 220, or karizma or yamaha R15.

waiting for reply...

Abdul Khadeer,

Payeng said...

@ Abdul,

* Yes the self starter is woking perfectly.. once it started giving some grinding like noise.. the ProBiking service guys replaced it with a new one immediately

* No problems with relays.

* I replaced the rear disc pads at around 10,000 kms.. cost around Rs. 180-200.. Let me tell you that now I feel that the amount of bite in the rear disc is more than enough.. more bite at the rear disc would be dangerous under hard braking

* I get a Mileage of around 38-42 in Gurgaon Traffic

* The Tubeless tyres are a life saving feature.. every bike should have them

* No problem with the speedometer display.. but I did get the speedometer cable replaced once under warranty.

Overall I am very satisfied with my P220.. moreover the engine of the P220 has 5 Years-Unlimited Mileage warranty.. so there is peace of mind as well.

Anonymous said...

thaks for ur reply payeng...

i'm planning for the bike nov-dec this year. as soon i purchased it i'll get back to u.

and what is ur opinion about r15, how is it.

Abdul Khadeer.

Payeng said...

@ Abdul,

I just had a brief test ride of the R15.. so I can't tell about it as much as I can tell you about my P220..

ABhimanyu said...

r15 is a big big turn off to me coz of its thin(ugly looking mag wheels) and the front and read tyres..the bike is for those who wana feel a yam R1 without paying the money for it..

Anonymous said...


Do you want to BE LIKE the japanese or SING PRAISES TO the japanese ??? Choose between the two. And if you choose to be like the japanese, you know you will not be so in a short time or few attempts alone. So while you are trying to reach their level of perfection proud indians will be buying your product and others like you will be coming and singing praises to japs. For those who shoot down nationalism, just ask yourselves do you want to see India burdened debt of $9 trillion like US due to IMPORTS or Export-ban (like on HH) or foreign brands repatriating profits home???? Think

Anonymous said...

wel m nt technicaly wel versed wth bikes..all m intrested in is the looks n speed...n pulsar 220 dts fi meets both n that too beyond expectations..i ve spent almost a year wth my bike n its been complaints as such..just rear disk brake issue, bt now that also seems to b over now..just rode at a speed of 133 kms per hr n it doesnt woble at all...freaking control dudes...simply m proud to b the owner of black sexy machine...kudos to bajaj..

BORДT said...

This Bajaj bike is Niiiiceee.. I l like it!

ashes_dad said...

it is the very first time when bajaj has used rear discs,fairing mounted rear views,fuel injection and the 220cc block

so some sought of problems are there.

but bajaj is recognizing them and correcting them.for example the first pulsars(2001) had countless problems and poor quality but now the pulsar are nearly perfect.similarly it will take some time to work and solve these problems.

i dont think apachefi will have these sought of problems because tvs has a lot of experience in recing and has used these technologies in concepts and racing bikes.

even yamaha will not have problems in r15 cause they are doing it for decades.i think their bikes are perfect.

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