There’s something about the Bonneville that makes you feel it’s going to work just fine. From its looks to the exhaust note to the ride – there’s admiration guaranteed. It’s not remotely flashy, but that classic styling is sure to catch the attention of many. And with g its overload of chrome, the all-new Bonneville T100 is a timeless beauty. The last-gen T100 wasn’t perfect-the motor wasn’t the best among 800cc engines of its time, it didn’t sound all ş that great and felt front heavy.
However, this new-generation T100 addresses all those issues. Don’t fret about the pillion backrest and shiny crash guard.
They do not come as standard fitments just like the panniers and the sump guard.
The T100 looks beautiful enough for you to ignore the side dishes and just ride it out of the showroom in stock avatar. The overall stance, the beautiful dual paint job, the wire spoke rims, the chrome tailpipes and that gem of an engine – you would struggle to find faults in the T100. It’s a big bike alright but it’s far from intimidating. Ergonomics are spot on and while the seat may look slender, it’s extremely comfortable, even for long hours. Being 213kg (dry), it isn’t going to be as agile as a naked bike, but it’s nimble enough for you to enjoy a set of twisties.
And then there’s that beautiful 900cc parallel twin motor that’s made riding the T100 a pleasurable experience. With 54bhp and 80 New tons, the T100’s motor isn’t going to make its rivals sweat, but the manner in which it puts power down is a lesson for others. T here’s adequate power from the word go and the motor pulls cleanly from as low as 50kph at 2000rpm in fifth. Oh, that is its top gear as the T100 makes do with a five-speeder, which is fine when in the city, but an extra cog would definitely help on the highway.
Anyway, this parallel-twin motor is butter-smooth, highly refined and comes with drive ability that’s difficult to match. It’s all very calm and composed; no sudden acceleration and no excessive knocking. Not to suggest the T100 can’t accelerate fast enough to leave the traffic behind. That it surely can and has enough juice to take you past the 150kph mark without excessive drama. We only wish its brakes had better bite and feel. Overall, the T100 is a motorcycle that’s hard to criticise. Its looks would offend none, its ride wouldn’t break your back and the 900cc engine doesn’t throw any tan trums.
It’s a big bike that feels equally at home both in city and highway conditions. However, at 7.78 lakh, ex-showroom, Delhi, you’d be paying 78 grand more than a base Street Twin (featured elsewhere in this magazine) that is 15kg lighter, gets an all-black theme and has near identical real-world performance. Nevertheless, just like the Street Twin, this chrome-lashed Bonnie is the best thing you could indulge in if you’re going through a mid-life crisis. That’s our top consumer advice for this month.