Who’d have thought that TVS and Royal Enfield would make bikes which might be direct rivals.

It’s fairly clear from simply the design and specs that the TVS Ronin was particularly created to take a chunk out of Royal Enfield’s pie. But I guess TVS by no means imagined that Royal Enfield would value the brand new Hunter this low. In truth, on this color scheme, the Hunter 350 prices Rs 4,000 lower than the top-spec Ronin we’ve right here and each top-spec fashions in any other case value an similar Rs 1.69 lakh (ex-showroom). This goes to be an fascinating story.

EASY ON THE EYE

When it involves a easy, simple design, the Hunter is nicer on the eyes, with a greater sense of proportion and no few fussy or strange-looking design particulars. The Ronin, in the meantime, catches your consideration with its funky LED headlamp and its gold USD fork, however the primary factor you’ll discover whenever you have a look at each bikes collectively is that the Ronin positively seems to be the bigger bike. 

That’s primarily right down to the Ronin’s taller, wider and unusually formed gas tank. Its thicker upside-down entrance suspension fork and wider seat additionally assist. In comparison, the Hunter is decrease and slimmer and its extra petite dimensions will definitely attraction to newer, much less assured or smaller riders – though present RE followers definitely received’t take care of it. 

Oversized chain cowl appears to be like a bit pressured.

While the Ronin seems bigger, it additionally has some unusual design touches, like the large chain cowl which is making an attempt to appear like a belt-drive system on a cruiser bike. Look at it via the opposite facet of the wheel and also you’ll see simply how unnecessarily massive it’s. The Ronin additionally has no actual off-road skills, nevertheless it nonetheless comes with blocky sample TVS Rambler tyres. On the opposite hand, the Ronin additionally has some good issues just like the adjustable levers, the fashionable mirrors, funky LED indicators and the cool-looking LED strip brake lamp.

While the Hunter is sort of small by RE requirements, the bike will match most riders properly and I discover the using place simple to get together with. It’s positively a extra sporty using place, with mildly rear-set pegs and a slight lean right down to the handlebar. 

In comparison, it’s really the Ronin that seats you such as you would anticipate an RE to. It feels loads like a Classic 350 in the best way your toes are ahead set and also you sit absolutely upright. The Ronin’s seat can be wider and softer, and general, this bike has a extra comfy using place.

CHILDREN OF THE CITY

Both bikes listed below are designed to excel inside city confines they usually have engines that attempt to supply beneficiant quantities of low-end efficiency. .

The TVS will get a brand-new, 225.9cc, four-valve, oil-cooled engine that produces round 20hp and 20Nm of torque. The most important determine to notice is that the Ronin produces its peak torque at simply 3,750rpm, which is even decrease than the Enfield. 

Meanwhile, the Hunter makes use of the identical 350cc engine because the Classic and the Meteor, with the identical gearing and energy figures. 

It is tuned barely otherwise although and produces a barely extra raspy sound out of its shorter exhaust pipe. Power-wise, the Hunter is nearly precisely the identical because the Ronin, however the bigger engine is ready to produce a a lot greater torque determine. 

There are similarities within the energy supply, however the massive variations are available in how the engines sound and really feel. The Ronin has a clean revving motor with a peppy exhaust sound and it’s very a lot what you’d anticipate from a TVS engine. The RE motor feels very totally different, with a gradual, thumpy beat at low revs, though it smooths out because the RPMs go up. In truth, at greater RPMs, the Enfield engine really produces much less vibration than the TVS. When it involves the 5-speed gearboxes, as soon as once more, the RE has the crisper, extra exact shifts. 

The TVS engine is short-geared and you may virtually at all times carry one or two gears greater than the Hunter, nevertheless it sounds and feels prefer it’s revving fairly excessive when you cross 80kph. While neither of those bikes are actually meant for prime speeds, the Hunter feels extra relaxed at a 90-100kph cruise. 

We put each bikes via our complete testing process, the place it seems that the Ronin is the faster bike in each measurable parameter, however the variations usually are not massive. 

As for gas effectivity, the short-geared Ronin beats the Hunter within the metropolis (32.31kpl vs 30.61kpl), however the latter has the benefit on the freeway (36.62kpl vs 39.84kpl). Those figures are respectable, however we did anticipate a bit extra from the lighter Ronin with its smaller engine. 

While there isn’t that a lot of a spot in outright efficiency and even effectivity, one factor that places us off the Hunter is its heavy clutch. Now, that is one thing that RE clients would anticipate or settle for with a Classic or a Meteor, however the Hunter is aimed toward newer riders and folks shopping for their first Enfield, and I’m undecided how they’re going to just accept this – it could possibly get painful when you’re caught in a visitors jam. 

EASY RIDERS

The Ronin, in the meantime, has a particularly gentle clutch motion and comes with a slip/help clutch. Speaking of sunshine, the Ronin additionally weighs practically 20kg lower than the Hunter, even though the latter is at the moment the lightest RE you should purchase. You really feel the distinction for positive, however to be honest, the Hunter is agile, gentle steering and simple to trip. Both bikes have sub-800mm seat heights, which additionally helps. Weight isn’t one thing to essentially be involved with right here, however there’s one other subject we’ve with the Hunter – its suspension.

RE’s rear shocks are a little bit too agency.

The entrance fork is sort of comfortable and it’s really reasonably underdamped on the rebound stroke, however the twin rear shocks are unforgivingly agency – they usually come set on minimal preload from the manufacturing facility. If you reside in an space with dangerous roads, this may get disagreeable, particularly for lighter riders. In comparison, the Ronin’s 41mm USD fork/monoshock set-up feels supple and plush. 

A number of of us expressed concern on-line concerning the Hunter’s 150mm floor clearance, however we haven’t confronted that subject to date, even with the load of a pillion – that’s in all probability one space the place the laborious shocks are a profit. Speaking of, neither bike has wonderful pillion consolation, however the Ronin’s seat, seize rail and foot peg placement are a little bit higher than the Hunter’s.

As for dealing with, the Hunter is unquestionably the extra enjoyable and related machine. In comparison, the TVS feels gentle and simple, however its raked-out entrance finish isn’t as communicative and the foot pegs can scrape extra simply. As for brakes, each are nearly satisfactory by way of energy and really feel, though the precise braking distances in our exams had been practically similar. 

VALUE CHAIN

 

And lastly, we transfer on to the world of options, the place, as you’d anticipate, the TVS completely takes the win. The Hunter comes geared up with a neatly designed USB port as customary and also you get dual-channel ABS on the highest fashions of each these bikes. You may possibility RE’s tripper navigation show as an additional, together with a lot of different well-designed equipment.

Hunter’s show appears to be like good, much like Meteor.

However, the TVS has rather more to supply as customary, together with its LED headlamp, extra detailed digital instrument console, two ABS modes and an entire bunch of options enabled through Bluetooth connectivity and a devoted cellular app. 

Hunter’s show appears to be like good, much like Meteor.

On high of that, there’s additionally the slip/help clutch and TVS’ Glide Through Technology, which permits the bike to softly creep ahead in gradual shifting visitors with none throttle enter. All of this comes collectively to make the Ronin a a lot simpler and nicer bike to trip throughout the metropolis.

As for the Hunter, it seemingly has a variety of positives and solely two actual points going towards it. Unfortunately, each are not possible to disregard as a result of you must consistently cope with them – and there isn’t any simple or low-cost repair.  

I do just like the Hunter fairly a bit, I feel it has a way more characterful engine and I feel it appears to be like higher as properly. There’s additionally little question that there’s rather more pleasure of possession related to the RE badge. However, there’s simply no getting round the truth that the Ronin is the higher worth for cash deal, and it’s the nicer bike to trip in our situations. To us, it’s the higher bike right here. 

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