TVS Apache declared Bike of the year 2006 by BS Motoring
It's been a dreadfully slow, deadpan year. Motorcyclists who were waiting with baited breath for new launches have had to either resign themselves to asphyxiation or mark 2005 off their calendars as a zero year. While the motorcycle business boomed in commercial terms, we saw consolidation of existing models and the launch of a series of cosmetic variants. The only people who were excited by this year's motorcycle crop were the chaps who deal in stickers.
The Bajaj Wave was the only launch - plus the delay of the Hero Honda Pleasure - and we did not think it moved the game on significantly. We were expecting the Bike Of The Year Award to go the same way, when towards the end of the year, we tested the Bajaj Avenger, Hero Honda Achiever and the TVS Apache in staccato succession.
All the three products are based on previous models to some extent, but feature significant engineering work to create what amounts to almost-new products. The Avenger still wears the clothes of the Kawasaki Bajaj Eliminator, but sports a lightly modified chassis and a re-tuned version of the Bajaj Pulsar 180 DTSi motor.
The TVS Apache is the successor to the Fiero F2 and FX, but only in a chronological sense. In ever other way, the Apache is leaps and bounds ahead. TVS based the motor on the old F2's unit, but stretched it taut and created a motor that's fast, entertaining and still frugal enough to be widely acceptable to 150cc buyers.
Further, they created an all-new chassis to create what is easily one of India’s best corner carvers and added in their usual engineering excellence to leave the BSM jury looking for an excuse to take points away from it. So thorough was the Apache, that even the usual TVS Achilles' heel - styling - left us falling over each other with compliments.
Even naysayers who thought it looked like the current market leader in the photographs fell silent when they first cast eyes on it. Ladies and gentlemen, the Business Standard Motoring Bike Of The Year 2006 is the superb new TVS Apache. Congratulations, TVS!