FIRST RIDE: 2020 Modenas Pulsar NS200 ABS

The folks from Modenas and DRB-HICOM recently organised a media test ride to Port Dickson and Melaka for media members and influencers to test out their latest 2020 Modenas Pulsar NS200 ABS. Launched earlier this month, the NS200 now comes with an added enhanced safety feature that is the front ABS (anti-lock braking system).

Priced at RM9,655 (basic price without road tax, insurance & registration), we were curious to see if the addition of a front ABS unit makes any positive difference for the already popular Modenas model brought in from India thanks to their partnership with Bajaj Auto. We’ve already tested the first-gen Pulsar NS200 together with its full-fairing brother, the RS200 in the link, below.

TESTED: 2017 Modenas Pulsar RS200 & NS200 – “The Dynamic Duo”

First and foremost, the 2020 Modenas Pulsar NS200 ABS is about RM400 more compared to when the first model was launched back in 2017. We’ve also been informed that everything else about the 2020 model is the same as the previous-gen, apart from the addition of the front ABS unit.

With that being said, we quickly got on the road to see for ourselves. Starting with the engine, its 200cc single-cylinder DTS-i engine has enough power to move around swiftly. Despite having a bit too linear torque range, the NS200 is peppy at the throttle and quick to go through the gears despite having only 200cc to play around with.

The underbelly exhaust is a nice touch to its overall façade and we understand why the model is very popular here in Malaysia as it carries a very ‘big bike’ aura thanks to its design and dimensions. However, it is a bit too quiet as you are only drowned by the sound of the engine revs most of the time.

Going through trunk roads from Sepang to Port Dickson was quite fun, to be honest. The stock MRF tyres paired with its telescopic front forks and rear Nitrox monoshock gave a fun and confident riding throughout the day (and it got better as the day got hotter). Some folks would feel that the tyres might be a bit too stiff for their liking but for us, it’s fine.

We managed to push the NS200 ABS close to its top speed when the roads cleared up and we got around 145km/h with all our gears in tow. That’s pretty impressive for a 200cc street naked bike but somewhere above 130km/h, the front end started to get a bit ‘floaty’ and slightly sketchy. We figured that this can be remedied by simply adjusting the rear pre-load to your desired riding situation.

Moving on the only new part of the 2020 Modenas Pulsar NS200, the front ABS. Having ABS is a good thing to have in case of emergencies where you need to brake hard and fast. The system will avoid your front tyres from locking up, ensuring that you slow down fast enough in a safe and manageable manner. The Modenas R&D team were gracious enough to demonstrate that for us (you can see it once we upload our full video soon).

All in all, the 2020 Modenas Pulsar NS200 ABS is still one of the best entry-level street bikes that you can buy for under RM10,000. Paired with a good design, tough engine, and enjoyable riding experience, it’s definitely a good deal. A lot of folks will agree, just ask any of the thousands of NS200 owners here in Malaysia.

Why I prefer the Modenas Pulsar NS200 – A Personal Perspective

A passionate individual when it comes to anything related to two wheels (or sometimes more), he enjoys the chaotic and magical world of motorsports as much as riding leisurely to the shops on his beloved Vespa. With an education-based background, he is always eager to learn and share about the poetic arts of motorcycling.

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