Commuter bikes 101

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  • Commuter bikes are known for having efficient and frugal engines. So they give better mileage and save money. Also, they provide you the comfort of travelling on your own accord a bike that delivers more power along with better handling
- Ankit Tuladhar
Commuter bikes 101

Mar 17, 2015-

A commuter bike belongs to a category of motorcycles primarily used for daily riding from point A to point B in the most economic and efficient way possible. Most of the bikes that run in the streets of our country belong to this kind.  Since our public transport is erratic and unreliable and since not everyone can afford to own a car, most people prefer bikes to other vehicles.

But the benefits of a commuter bike do not end there. Bikes belonging to this category are known for having efficient and frugal engines. So they give better mileage and save money. Also, you have the comfort of travelling on your own—-you don’t have to wait for a public transport in a busy bus stop or squeeze into a packed vehicle.

But before going for a commuter bike, it is better to keep certain things in mind.  

One of the main concerns while choosing a commuter bike is the type of riding you have to do with it. If you have to commute within the city, then most commuters available in the market will suit you; but if you have to commute in the highways or on off-road tracks, then you’ll have to choose a bike that delivers more power along with better handling.

So, first make sure that you are comfortable with the bike you plan to own. See if the bike fits into your riding category (off-road, highway or city) and see if its seating position, gear location and handling suit your body.  Also, don’t forget to check its fuel economy and maintenance cost. You don’t want a bike that blows your precious money on gas or demands a lot of maintenance. Nowadays, some companies are selling their bikes at a cheaper price than their competitors. But beware of such marketing gimmicks,  because such bikes often have a higher maintenance cost.

Also, don’t expect a commuter bike to be feature-rich. First, bikes in this category compromise on numerous add-ons to suit your budget, so they can’t compete with premium bikes when it comes to features. Secondly, these sturdy horses are meant to make your daily commute as easy, efficient and cheap as possible, so features don’t really matter.

Reliability is yet another important factor to be considered while going for a commuter. It’s important for a commuter bike to be reliable because you have to use it day in and day out and if that entails spending a lot of money on its repairs, then that bike is missing the point of a commuter bike.

The best way to know about a bike is to consult the people who own, or have used, the bike and ask for their feedback. Don’t jump to conclusions straight away. Also, reading / watching reviews will help you narrow down your choices.

Lastly, you must know that a majority of commuter bikes are not meant for speed. From tyres to ergonomics to riding position, everything is designed for easy and efficient commuting. So riding it fast through the traffic is really risky and you will be putting yourself and the rest of the people using the road in harm’s way by doing so.

Among the bikes available in the Nepali market, Honda Shine, Bajaj Discover 125 ST, Hero Splendor and Suzuki Hayate are economy-oriented, while bikes like Yamaha SZ-R, Hero CBZ Xtreme and Pulsar 150 are for those of  you who want performance-oriented beasts.

And to conclude the column, whichever company you choose, make sure that the bike has a good brand value.  This guarantees you satisfying cashback in case you want to sell it in the future.

Ride safe! Happy riding!

 

Published: 18-03-2015 08:42

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