India got its first glimpse of American bike maker UM at the Auto expo last year. Known to make cruisers the company showcased three bikes, one of which they’ve launched now. In addition to the Renegade Commando Classic the company in association with Lohia Auto has also launched the special edition Renegade Commando Mojave in the market. These bikes fit well and truly into the cruiser segment and with this expansion of portfolio UM is now offering a bigger range to its buyers to choose from. The company is still trying to find a strong footprint in India and is hoping for these new bikes to do the trick.
The Renegade Commando Classic was much appreciated when it was first showcased and thats because of its unique looks which makes it stand out from other bikes in this segment. It’s laden with chrome all around and the backrest along with saddle bags add to the cruiser traits. It also gets a windshield which the Mojave misses out on. The 2-tone paint job on the mudguard and the fuel tank make the machine look distinct. Quality of materials isn’t right up there but the two machines certainly look and feel more premium than the Renegade Commando launched earlier. As the name suggests the Mojave is inspired from the Majove desert in North America, and has a unique desert coloured matte paint and also the Mojave desert logo. So if you’re looking for exclusivity within the brand this is the bike to go for. Both are different in terms of how they look. The cruisers are also equipped with features like USB charging port, premium seat covers, and oversized leg guards.
Both these bikes share almost similar specifications. Both are powered by 279.5 cc single cylinder liquid cooled EFi engine with 4 stroke, 4 valve spark ignition. It is the same engine that was seen on the Commando and Sports S. It delivers a maximum power of 25 PS and a peak torque of 23 Nm. It is a refined mill and only at high speeds you might feel some vibrations which also come from the foot pegs. The handlebar is devoid of any vibrations something which is a boon for long rides. The engine is mated with a 6 speed transmission. It isn’t the smoothest gearshift you’ll see on a cruiser and shifting gears can certainly be smoother. Fuel Tank Capacity of both the bikes is 18 litres. They also weigh similarly at around 179 kgs which means they aren’t exactly light.
Ride & Handling
The beautiful thing about cruisers is that they offer a very good ride position. And even on both these renegades you can go for long cross country rides without getting tired. The ride and handling characteristics’ are also pretty impressive. They’ve got a good suspension setup which helps in taking to the bumps pretty well. Hydraulic shock absorbers at the rear also do a good job. Because of the relaxed ride position and low centre of gravity handling is also taken care of. The agility of the bike is surely one of its highlights. There is a 280mm disc on the front which aids in effective braking.
When UM Motorcycles first came to India there were some quality issues with their motorcycles but slowly they have become a noticeable brand. And a fully functional manufacturing facility in Uttarakhand, where the most stringent procedures are followed has only made things better. The Renegade Commando Classic is priced at Rs. 1.89 lakh (Ex-Showroom) while the Mohave special edition is a little cheaper at Rs. 1.8 lakh (Ex-Showroom). This means the company now has 4 bikes in the Indian bike space. The brand has ruled the international markets but with the launch of these two cruisers they have certainly given themselves a strong chance to do well in our country.
Shams Naqvi is an anchor/producer for the News X motor show Living Cars