Bajaj could retail the Pulsar 200 NS via KTM dealerships in the US. The motorcycle will be produced in India and will be exported through Semi-Knocked Down (SKD) kits.
Going global, Bajaj Auto has commenced exports of the flagship Pulsar 200 NS to the United States from its Chakan based facility. The models have been sent across as Semi-Knocked Down (SKD) kits that need minimum assembly infrastructure. While Bajaj does not have presence in the US as yet, the automaker will be using resources of its Austrian partner KTM that already has an established set-up in the country and retails a range of high performance offerings, while the made in India Duke 390 and RC 390 are scheduled for a 2015 launch.
The Bajaj Pulsar 200 NS for the US market will be a fuel-injected version and is also on sale in Indonesia and Turkey. The model gets a minor bump in output but continues with the same 199cc single-cylinder motor producing 24.4 PS of power and 18.3 Nm of torque, mated to a 6-speed transmission. The street-fighter motorcycle will also get mild tweaks for the US market with ABS being offered as standard.
While the US has always been a high performance, big-block loving market, the recession and financial downturn has opened new doors for smaller and middle-weight performance motorcycles in the country. Apart from Bajaj, Hero MotoCorp is also looking forward to capitalize on the growing affinity towards quarter-litre offerings with the HX250R that was unveiled earlier this year. Hero will be selling its new flagship, the HX250R via partner EBR’s dealerships and could also badge it as an EBR product considering the brand popularity and recognition in the market.
Hero did showcase the HX250R along with a range of new models in the US sometime back and the response has been rather positive for the sports bike that has impressive specs on paper. The HX250R is powered by a 250cc, single-cylinder motor with fuel-injection that produces 31 PS of power and 26 Nm of torque, paired to a 6-speed gearbox. However, what makes the model impressive is the light weight of just 139 kgs that will offer an impeccable power to weight ratio. The HX250R is also likely to get ABS as standard not only in the US, but in India as well.
With a strong Indian lineage, both the Pulsar 200 NS and the HX250R will be representing the growing breed of Indian performance bikes when they go on sale next year in a market that has seen it all. The motorcycles will be competing against the likes of Honda CBR300R, Kawasaki Ninja 300, Suzuki GW250 (Inazuma in India) and the Yamaha R3 that is also set for a US launch next year. The success of the 200 NS will also open doors for Bajaj’s upcoming high performance Pulsars in Uncle Sam’s country.