The neo-retro segment has been gaining steam since the past few years and for good reason. A bike with a classic silhouette to evoke nostalgia but which underneath has modern reliable underpinnings and packed with new-age features. What's not to like? In India too we have quite a lot of the said modern retro bikes of offer and here are the top 5 ones you can buy. Let's start with the most affordable one.
Honda CB300R (Rs 2.41 lakh ex-showroom, Delhi)
Honda did well to get a proper neo-retro bike in a segment dominated by sport nakeds. That's not to say that the CB300R isn't sporty. It gets a lightweight frame, Showa upside down fork and Nissin radial calipers, all of which are decidedly sporty components. The 286cc liquid-cooled single-cylinder motor delivers 30.4PS and 27.4Nm, and the CB300Ris quick as it has to lug just 147kg. It's round headlamp gets all LED lighting while the tail lamp and turn indicators are LED units as well. You get a small rectangular digital instrument console as well. Its USP is a fantastic design and quality of components.
Triumph Street Scrambler (Rs 8.55 lakh ex-showroom, India):
This retro looking scrambler is the only bike of the lot which you can take off-roading without the worry of breaking something. In its latest avatar, the new Street Scrambler gets a mild cosmetic makeover for a more retro look and a spunkier engine tune. To conquer most off-road terrain, it gets long travel suspension, spoked wheels and dual-purpose Metzeler Tourance tyres. It has a modern liquid cooled parallel twin-motor designed to look like an old-school air-cooled unit. This 900cc powerplant makes 85PS and 80Nm. Underneath that tough, old-school look is an array of modern electronics like ride-by-wire, switchable traction control and switchable ABS. You also have more than 120 Triumph official accessories to choose for this bike.
Triumph Speed Twin (Rs 9.46 lakh ex-showroom, India):
The most dynamic bike among Triumph’s Bonneville lineup has been the Thruxton R. The Cafe Racer impresses greatly when it comes to handling, but, is too committed for everyday use and is also the most expensive Bonnie. So the Speed Twin is the next best thing. This roadster has nailed the retro looks just like the Thruxton, on which it is based on It gets Triumph’s 1200cc ‘High Power’ engine. This liquid-cooled parallel-twin motor makes 97PS and 112Nm of torque. It gets ride-by-wire, 3-riding modes, switchable traction control and high spec kit in the form of Brembo brakes and Pirelli Diablo Rosso 3 tyres. This is the one to go for if you want retro looks but the modern-day performance and handling traits.
Ducati Scrambler Cafe Racer (Rs 9.78 lakh ex-showroom, India):
The most affordable Cafe Racer on this list (the other one costs almost 6 lakhs more), the Ducati Scrambler Cafe Racer has been updated for 2019 and gets a host of modern updates and safety aids. When it comes to looks, Ducati has got most of it right, down to the ribbed single seat. Powering the bike is an 803cc air-cooled L-twin motor that makes the right noises and delivers 73PS and 67Nm of torque. This Cafe racer is a hoot to ride thanks to its lightweight and compact dimensions.
BMW R nineT Racer (Rs 16.65 lakh ex-showroom, India):
For a more authentic retro cafe racer experience, there is nothing like the BMW R nineT. Attention to detail on this bike is immaculate and it will look fantastic even parked in your living room. Like the others in the list, it does not come with LED headlamp but gets modern safety features like traction control, ABS and LED tail lamp. In true BMW fashion, the 1170cc motor is an air-cooled boxer twin that delivers 110PS and 116Nm. It gets a single hydraulically actuated dry clutch and a shaft drive for that old-school ride experience. We especially love the bullet fairing and vast customisation options the bike comes with.