From three-wheeler public transport to two-wheelers ripping through urban and rural India, TVS has achieved an assured grade for their products that can survive anything from the toughest terrains of northern India to the dampest roads of Goa. And for their newest addition to the list of motorcycles, we tested the TVS Ronin on the wettest roads of South Goa.
TVS Ronin review
Slithering through traffic
As soon as you twist the throttle, the TVS Ronin punches out a good amount of power without making you wish for anything more. The new 225cc engine has a level of refinement that is very rare to find on a first-generation motorcycle. It’s got buttery smooth power delivery on all gears but especially on the lower gears. You can zip through city traffic without any hiccups.
Part of that is also due to its lightweight construction and shorter wheelbase. The TVS Ronin is extremely nimble and smooth up to 80kmph. You can easily zip in and out of traffic without breaking a sweat. The front USD fork suspension is positioned almost like a cruiser which gives the Ronin a planted stance but the rear end is shorter and shaped like a scrambler which makes the bike agile. It’s a weird concoction that really makes the Ronin hard to pin into a motorcycle category. But we’ll get to the aesthetics in a bit.
The scrambler-like appearance is not just for salad dressing. It’s got block tread tyres that deliver a surprising amount of grip even for the wettest days on the road. A little bit of offroading is also acceptable here but don’t go competing with Redbull athletes on this. The rear monoshock suspension seems good at absorbing all the nasties from the Indian roads. Although we really didn’t get to relive a Mumbaikar’s pothole-filled life in Goa. The roads during our first ride were suspiciously smooth which made the Ronin a pleasure to ride.
So it’s easy-going and lightweight but TVS hasn’t cut any corners to make this happen. In fact, the TVS Ronin is built with good quality materials. The use of durable plastics and well-cut metal construction will leave no room for complaints.
It pretty much looks like a love child of a cruiser and a scrambler. TVS says it’s a neo-retro design and terms like ‘unscripted’ were thrown around to make the Ronin seem unruled by motorcycle class and category. It may confuse many but the overall design isn’t a problem for the Ronin. In fact, it's the feature set that TVS has added here that instils a sense of distinct character which we really like, especially the T-shaped headlight and the flavourful exhaust note. It also has a very clean and uniform design language thanks to the chain cover, nine-spoke alloy wheels, muffler design and that thin and curved LED taillamp. It all comes together well enough to make the Ronin look unique.
There are also quality-of-life features to make your ride as safe and easy-going as possible. There are two ABS riding modes — Rain and Urban along with a three-step adjustable lever for easier hand operation. Although you get these and the smart connectivity options only in the top-spec version.
We did get irked by the offset digital instrument cluster but that’s just down to personal preference. Although it’s a smart block of tech in the top-spec version. It works with the TVS SmartXonnect App to give you ride analysis, turn-by-turn navigation and incoming call alert. However, we didn’t get to test these features out on our first ride mostly because the app requires you to add the bike’s chassis number.
Well then, what is the Ronin? The design is very scrambler-like but the front looks like something borrowed from a cruiser. It's a confusing look but it's a look that we don't have any issues with. Especially when the starting price is ₹1.49lakhs and the ride quality feels as comfortable as a cruiser but also as agile as a scrambler.
The seating position is an upright position but has a phenomenal centre of gravity and the engine response in any gear is smooth and easy, this makes city traffic a thriving spot for the TVS Ronin. Going from 10 to 60kmph on the third gear is acceptable on the Ronin. It doesn’t punish you for it by stalling or faltering. The 225cc engine is refined and the exhaust note is delightfully pleasing to hear. It’s not too harsh like a KTM and neither is it too bassy like an Enfield. It’s smack in the middle. Just don’t expect high-speed performance from this.
A city cruiser that’s agile, comfortable, easy-going and forgiving.
|Engine:||Single Cylinder, 4 Stroke, 225.9cc|
|Cooling System:||Oil Cooled|
|Max Power:||15.01 kW (20.4 PS) @ 7750 rpm|
|Max Torque:||19.93 Nm @ 3750 rpm|
|Clutch Type:||Assist & Slipper Clutch|
|Fuel Tank:||14 ltr|
|Kerb Weight:||159 kg|