Bajaj Auto has a lot of options in the 150cc segment. Earlier they had the Discover 150, which was available in few variants. They have the Pulsar 150, the Avenger 150 and recently the Bajaj V15. Now they are lunching the Pulsar NS 160 which is the replacement to the Pulsar AS 150.
Now why are there so many 150cc bikes from Bajaj Auto? Well, Bajaj Plusar 160 is going to compete with the Suzuki Gixxer and Honda CB Hornet 160R.
In terms of styling, the Pulsar 160 is identical to the Pulsar 200 NS but if you look lower down that is below the perimeter frame you will realize that Pulsar NS 160 gets smaller wheels, a smaller disc while the rear misses out on a disc brake it gets a Drum unit. In terms of styling, yes it is beffy and muscular. The dimensions are identical to the Pulsar 200 except the length which is shorter by 5mm. Meanwhile, the width is almost the same. The height has reduced marginally due to the smaller tires and overall this is a motorcycle which is big, brawny and gives that muscular appeal in the 150cc segment bikes.
The instrument cluster is the same as on Pulsar NS 200. It have an analog tachometer which takes center stage we really like it but this one gets an orange backlight unlike the NS 200 which gets a blue backlight.
The Pulsar NS 160’s engine is drawn from the old Plusar AS 150. This is the new unit, it displaces around 160cc and Bajaj claims it to be the most powerful bike in it’s segment producing 15.5 BHP of power and 14.6 Newton Meters of Torque. Like most pulsar, this one lacks the botton and it doesn’t feel responsive.
Now the surprising part is, the motorcycle is very refined in fact more refined. It does vibrate when you are near red line which a bit diappointing because this motorcycle edgs to be pushed hard because of the nature of it’s engine. What you get here is a traditional pulsar sound which you get in all other pulsar bikes. It’s throaty, it’s loud.
The Pulsar NS 160 is underpinned by a perimeter frame. This frame gives a very good ride handiling balance but what disappoints are the tyres. Yes, they offer good grip but not the same level of grip in japanese level offers with the wider tyre. The suspension has been beautifylly set up. It has very good ride quality. In terms of handling it’s lack a bit. It doen’t feel that either and it doesn’t inspire confidence to go hard and fast around the round corners.
What Bajaj Auto has done in terms of cost savings is a rear drum brake but they do say that they are going to add a rear disc as an option later but this motorcycle with the smaller front disc compared to the NS 200 doesn’t have the same level of braking performance as some of it’s rivals. Yes the brakes are good enough but they could have been better. The reason for the smaller tyres is ofcourse mileage. Pulsar NS 160’s mileage is around 45 to 48 kilometers per liter.
In terms of comfort, they have nailed it will the Pulsar 160. The seat is quite comfortable. Even though the Pulsar 160 gets a split seat in terms of pillion comfort it’s not that great. The clutch is mediocre and the gear does offer smooth shifts but not really butter smooth.