Text: Faisal A Khan; Photographs: Viraja D Vakada
Bike tested: 2011 Hyosung GT650N
Price OTR Mumbai: Rs. 4,45,000/- (with discount)
Garware Motors’ third bike in India is a naked streetfighter. Such bikes are very popular globally. Not only are they cheaper to buy and easier to ride, they are also insanely fast and practical too. The latest naked in town not only looks the part but goes the part too. Known as the GT650N and based largely on the GT650R, this new Hyosung is the cheapest superbike on sale today and can easily be the stepping stone to bigger bikes for many. Currently Garware Motors is aggressively pushing the Hyosung GT650N by offering a discount of Rs. 60,000/- on the bike. But is that enough to cut the mustard? We put the GT650N through our road test to find out if it hits the right spots.
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Styling – The Hyosung GT650N is a definite looker. They are two types of styling which are hugely popular among bikes. One is the full fairing lot, while the other is the naked streetfighter. The GT650N is the latter and proves a point with the muscles it flexes. The headlight is inspired from the MV Agusta Brutale, which is a good thing. Hyosung has used colours very smartly with half the bike being in black and the other half being in the colour you chose (in this case white). When viewed side on, you won’t miss the fairing at all, because you can see the monster of the V-twin motor in all its flesh, along with the large exhaust. The subtle rear tail light and a fat 160 mm tyre adorn the rear. The rear is not any different from the GT650R. Any which way you look at it, the Hyosung GT650N is a looker and grabs eye balls where ever you take it.
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Instrument Cluster and Switch Gear – The instrument cluster on the Hyosung GT650N is similar to the one found on its elder sibling the GT650R. However the appearance looks different due to lack of a front visor on the Hyosung GT650N. Due to this, light tends to reflect at times, making reading the meters difficult at some angles. The usual data is present on the speedometer such as digital speedometer, odometer, twin trip meter, fuel meter, temperature levels and current time. The usual hazard indicators are present along with reset buttons for the trip meters. The switchgear is made of good quality with the layout being the usual turn indicators, lights, pass-by, engine kill, electric start and horn switches.
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Performance and Gearbox – Admit it, we are all power hungry and the Hyosung GT650N is just the tool to quench our thirst for power at an affordable price. The Hyosung GT650N uses the same 650cc, DOHC, V-twin engine which does duty on the GT650R. This 8-valve motor produces a mammoth 72 BHP of peak power at 9000 RPM and 60.9 NM of peak torque at 7500 RPM. The performance is quite similar to the GT650R but with slightly less vibrations. Yes, these V-Twin motors produce alot of vibes but the slightly upright seating position makes these vibrations less obvious to the rider. The heat which we encountered in the GT650R is completely missing in the GT650N, which seems to operate at cooler levels thanks to the lack of full fairing.
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This liquid cooled motor can fool quite a few. At low revvs (read below 5500 RPM), progress is quite laid back. But once you cross that point, the silence breaks and the Hyosung GT650N comes into its own, making progress so quick that your eyes pop out in your helmet. There is no two ways to it, the Hyosung GT650N is quick and quick is an understatement here. The bike roars and is absolutely vocal about the thrust it is encountering. The way this motorcycle performs at high revvs is something which can only be felt and the GT650N is everything but sedate past the 7000 RPM mark. Yes there are way too much vibrations at those engine speeds but you seem to lose the sense of touch and feel when the V-twin motor growls in anger, blurring the scenery around you quicker than you can blink or breathe!
If you are still wondering how quick the Hyosung GT650N is, then here are some figures. 0 – 100 kmph is done and dusted in less than 6 seconds, while a top speed of around 210 kmph is what it will be happy to do. Mind you, usually its the rider who runs out of gas before the GT650N does. We did not face any issues with the gearbox, no false neutrals and gears engaged smoothly.
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Ride, Handling and Braking – The biggest difference when it comes to riding the GT650N, against the GT650R is the riding posture. The GT650N features a softer suspension setup at the rear. This results in a more pliant ride and the 41 mm upside down telescopic forks along with 5-way adjustable monoshock suspension ensure that the GT650N takes in all the bumps with aplomb. Never does it feel unsettled with rough patches on our road. The 208 kgs weight ensures the GT650N is stable at high speeds and even with that mass, the bike is quite flickable in the corners. The lack of full fairing ensure that the GT650N is more agile than the GT650R, lending ample confidence to the rider. The brakes are very strong too and the GT650N stops right in its track, owing to the large discs and sticky Bridgestone tyres.
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Usually sport bikes are not very rider friendly and the Hyosung GT650R is proof of that. But with the GT650N, Hyosung has managed to make a very practical machine. Case in point is the raised handlebars, forward shifted footpegs and upright seating position. This makes the GT650N a very rider friendly machine. Riding the GT650R can be exhausting if you are doing large distances at once. But astride the GT650N, the rider feels comfortable and confident. Your back does not hurt and you are able to enjoy all those angry horses which are sitting right below you, waiting to be unleashed.
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Conclusion – We bikers are craving for performance motorcycles, which are fast and don’t burn a big hole in our pockets. This is where the Hyosung GT650N steps in and makes a very strong case for itself. At the current discounted price, nothing even comes close to the value proposition Garware Motors is offering with the GT650N. Its faaaaast, practical, aggressively priced and a looker from every angle, you can’t help but gawk at it. The Hyosung GT650N is then, brutal aggression at a mouth watering price.
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* Brutal Performance
* Streetfighter Looks
* Aggressive Pricing
Whats Not So Cool
* Pillion comfort
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