The good people of Sweden do know a thing or two about automotive design. Take Volvo cars for example and on the two-wheeled side of things, there's Husqvarna. It is an all-new motorcycle brand from Sweden that made its India debut earlier this year, with the launch of the Husqvarna Svartpilen 250 and the Husqvarna Vitpilen 250. While Preetam rode the Svartpilen, I had the opportunity to savour the Vitpilen 250. Keeping everything aside, I have to say that the Vitpilen is perhaps the best-looking 250 cc bike on sale in the country right now! Well, here's our first impression of the motorcycle.
Watch Our Review Of Husqvarna Svartpilen 250 and Vitpilen 250
The design on the Husqvarna Vitpilen 250 is fresh, distinct and creative. If the term 'neo-retro' had a text book definition, this motorcycle would be it. In Swedish-speak, Vitpilen means 'white arrow' and this motorcycle is an urban cafe racer. Properly chic and hipster! One look and the motorcycle evokes a warm, happy feeling inside of you. The round LED headlight and the brushed metal finish add a lovely old-school charm while the lines, panel designs and the stance is modern and minimalist. We quite like the interplay of the old and the new because it is balanced and done well. The single-piece seat and the side panels are nicely done. The only eyesore is the moped-like grab-rails at the rear, which completely mars the look of the motorcycle. The good news is that you can get it removed and get it replaced by silver badges, which look better than those ugly grab rails. And the best part is that the motorcycle makes you look good too, on the move.
Also Read: Husqvarna Svartpilen 250 Review
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That is because the Husqvarna 250 Twins, the Vitpilen in this case, is based on the same 250 cc engine platform as KTM 250 Duke, which is also shared by the Bajaj Dominar 250. Plus, the upcoming KTM 250 Adventure will have the same engine as well. So, it is a smart move from Bajaj, having so many options in the 250 cc segment and leaving little room for other brands.
The Vitpilen can go really fast but the way it delivers power does not exactly make you go wow! The in-gear acceleration feels a little flat and that rush of torque you expect isn't quite there. Although, the engine is strong enough to do 100 kmph+ speeds all day long and if it is entertainment you are looking for, you will find it higher in the rev range.
Thanks to its compact size, the Vitpilen is easy to manoeuvre through traffic and will be up for corner carving as well, in case you happen to find roundabouts or clover leaf turns. The motorcycle does have a stiff suspension setup but doesn't get uncomfortable on regular speed bumps and potholes. Oh! And the brakes on the Vitpilen are solid, with a good bite, which we found out when a lost motorist wandered on to the main road in front of us without any notice or indication! The engine is butter-smooth and even at the very top you hardly feel a buzz through the handlebars or footpegs. Overall, the performance of the motorcycle is quite likeable.
Well, I may not be as fit and lithe as the college going youth of today but I figure that riding the Vitpilen for long hours is likely to tire you out. The riding position is sporty and committed, like it should be on a cafe racer, with low-set clip-on handlebars and rear-set footpegs. At 842 mm, the tall seat height could be a problem for shorter riders. While short, intra-city commutes will be fine, long distance commutes or the occasional highway run could be a problem, unless of course you are fit! Also, when you are riding hard or cornering hard, the fuel tank feels too narrow to grip with your knees. Although, we are nit-picking here and it is not exactly an actual problem.
Keeping true to the neo-retro styling, the Husqvarna Vitpilen 250 gets a round instrument console which is fully digital and offers a whole lot of information. The display itself could have been slightly bigger, offering a better view. The motorcycle also gets all LED lighting, dual-channel ABS and side stand engine cut-off as standard. You can also turn on the 'Supermoto' ABS mode and perform brake slides, if you want to!
As we dropped off the motorcycle back at the KTM/Husqvarna dealership, we engaged in socially distant chatter with the manager and he said if 10 Husqvarna bikes are sold, 8 of them are the Svartpilen. We think that metric is quite believable too. The Husqvarna Vitpilen 250 is definitely the better looking of the two motorcycles but when it comes to comfort, the Svartpilen edges out its sibling.
But, at a price point of ₹ 1.85 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) it is more affordable than the KTM 250 Duke which costs ₹ 2.09 lakh and significantly more expensive than the Yamaha FZ 25, which is the most affordable 250 cc motorcycle, priced at ₹ 1.52 lakh. For the price and performance, it does well as a daily ride and add some swagger to your commute!
Engine specifications and cycle parts
|Specifications||Husqvarna Vitpilen 250|
|Max Output||30 bhp at 9,000 rpm|
|Peak Torque||24 Nm at 7,500 rpm|
|Ground Clearance||149 mm|
|Seat Height||842 mm|
|Kerb weight||166 kg|
|Front Suspension||43 mm WP USD|
|Front Brake||320 mm Disc (ABS)|
|Rear Brake||230 mm Disc (ABS)|
|Rear Suspension||WP Monoshock|
|Front Wheel Size||110/70-R17|
|Rear Wheel Size||150/60-R17|
|Fuel tank Capacity||9.5 litres|