Twenty years ago, Bajaj launched a brand name that would become synonymous with the Indian sports bike and would in many ways change the way India looked at two-wheel machines. The name Pulsar not only changed the fate of Bajaj Auto from Humara Bajaj to the World’s Favourite Indian but also opened the metaphoric floodgates for India’s sports bike movement. Two decades of history made it all that more epic to be staring down at the cockpit of two brand new Pulsars set to carry the brand name into the future, the Bajaj Pulsar N250 and the F250. Now, these two are no upgraded Pulsars or even detuned platform shared KTMs but brand new quarter-litre motorcycles in their own right with a mission to democratize performance(for a second time).
If it wasn’t already clear, of the two quarterlitre twins, the N250 is the naked streetfighter while the F250 is the spiritual successor to the bikini faired 220F. Although at least for the immediate future both bikes will be sold alongside each other. Aside from a few cosmetic differences at the front, both bikes are nearly identical mechanically. Before we jump into the juicy ride and performance bits let’s take a quick look at the new design language on both these motorcycles.
What a lot of people will probably take for granted is how both these motorcycles look fresh and new but are still instantly recognizable as Pulsars. Sure, two decades have changed the definition of “muscular design” from the more rounded form of the original Pulsars to the more sinewy sharp lines that you see on both these motorcycles. Bajaj has played a smart game of contrast on the body panels using blacked-out panels to give the body painted panels a more floating, clean appearance compared to some of the busier designs we’ve seen on Pulsars in the past.
On the N250, the headlamp arrangement continues the triangular design that is identifiable with the cluster on the NS. On the N250 though, the lights are exposed and are complemented by a set of angular DRLs. If the team at Bajaj design had got a memo listing recognisable, unique and in line with the general global design language for 2021 as their goals, they’ve managed to achieve exactly what they set out for. This ethos is instantly recognizable on the bikini fared F250 as well. The fairing itself is now sleeker and lower making up for it with a tall(ish)visor. Overall both the N250 and the F250 have the presence to be shoulder to shoulder with the front runners of the quarter litre segment. Build, though improved drastically, retains some scope for improvement. The new tank mounted USB charger gets a cover that has a premium click to it, something that can’t be said of the remaining switchgear. That said, it shouldn’t be a make or break for anyone looking to pick from what are perhaps the most value for money motorcycles in the segment.
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