Bajaj has introduced an 180cc version of the Avenger, and christened it Avenger 180 Street. Positioned below the Avenger 220, which was launched in 2016, the Avenger 180 Street adds to the line-up of affordable cruiser bikes in India. Replacing the Avenger Street 150, the new bike, however, doesn’t look any different. The overall shape, the cruiser orientation and the silhouette looks much the same. The front head lamp is also similar. Only at closer inspection, the difference is apparent.
The skull-shaped head lamp is laced with a new nacelle and LED daytime running lamps. The lone instrument pod above the head lamp contains the speedometer with a digital trip and odo at the bottom. The fuel gauge is part of a unit on the tank, which also includes the tell-tale warning lamps. The Avenger logo on the tank is different. The use of chrome limited to the logo and the inner front fork tubes, the Avenger 180 Street employs an all-black theme where the only contrasting colour is that of the tank and the side panels.
The seat has a carbon-fibre texture to it. Unlike the Avenger Street 150, the Avenger 180 gets a backrest. The rear portion adorns a new tail lamp. Hop on the bike and the rider will realise that though the tank mounted fuel gauge console goes well with the bike’s styling, it is not in the rider’s field of vision. Thumb the starter, and the 178.5cc air-cooled single-cylinder engine comes to life and settles down to an idle. The switchgear, of which the starter button is a part, has a good tactile feel to it and is of good quality, which has been carried forward from the Avenger Street 150. There is however room for betterment.
Producing 16.8bhp at 8500rpm, the Avenger 180 Street moves away smoothly, and with a feeling of being quite refined. The same engine powers the Pulsar 180, and is differently tuned. That is perhaps the reason why the Pulsar does not feel as refined. Showing no signs of hurrying, or of accelerating as eagerly as the Pulsar 180, the Avenger 180 Street, typical of an urban cruiser builds speed in a linear and sustained manner. It attains speeds in the region of 50-60kmph in the city to easily keep up with the traffic. Out on the highway, it carries itself at cruising speeds in excess of 60kmph with certain ease. It feels fairly refined at speeds up to 100kmph on the highway. Push further, and an amount of vibes set in. The engine too starts to feel strained. The five-speed gearbox supports precise and positive shifts. The clutch is light. Riding in the city is not demanding, except for very narrow lanes and thoroughfares where manoeuvring can call for some more effort. While the 13-litre tank should give the bike a range of close to 600km, the bike has a tight turning radius.
With the low seat height and flat handlebar, the Avenger 180 Street feels quite agile. The travel of the rear suspension has been increased thus offering a better ride than the Avenger Street 150. Rough surfaces are better tackled. The longer wheelbase and low stance presents the bike with good straight-line stability, which is typical of a cruiser, making for a relaxed and comfortable ride on a straight or winding patch of road. Brakes, consisting of a disc at front and drum at the rear, are effective in decelerating. ABS is not on offer. Priced at Rs 85,498 ex-showroom, Delhi, the Avenger 180 Street looks distinct. Gaining in power over the Avenger Street 150, the new Avenger makes a good, affordable and urban cruising machine.