It has been just over a year since UM rode into the country via a partnership with Lohia Auto, showcasing their first models at the 2016 Auto Expo. The Renegade brought in a viable option for those who wanted a small capacity cruiser at an affordable price. With two variants, Sport S and Commando, UM started its expansion in the country. To bolster its portfolio, UM has brought in two variants of the Commando to offer a more varied experience to the Indian customer. Presenting, the Renegade Commando Mojave and Classic.
First off, the Renegade Commando Mojave is a tribute to the Mojave Desert in America. The Mojave is identical in all respects to the standard Commando with its sand colour scheme, in matte finish, merging along with the extensive use of the colour black for the mechanical elements such as the engine, exhaust and suspension elements.
As the name suggests, the Renegade Commando Classic brings in the whole Americano flavour of motorcycling with oodles of chromium finished parts that are accentuated thanks to the two-tone copper-cream colour theme. The black leather bag and mobile case on the tank are worthy accessories that further complement the bike’s appeal which is rounded off by the presence of a large windshield. The company has improved greatly on the build quality front with more attention to detail on loose wires and panel gaps which are evened out.
Powering both motorcycles is the same 279.5cc single-cylinder water-cooled fuel-injected engine that makes 25.15PS of power and 23Nm of torque. The six-speed gearbox continues to bear the taller gear ratios which do make for great highway runs but is a major hindrance during slow speed situations as there is very little low-end torque.
The suspension setup is on the stiffer side right from the early motorcycles and that has not changed one bit. There were several crater sized potholes that appeared out of nowhere on our test location, a few of which caught me out and the suspension failed to absorb the impact greatly. Particularly, the rear twin shocks which were of the one setting above softest, offered very little travel causing great discomfort. With the rear loaded, the situation did improve to a certain degree.
Braking power is adequate enough to stop the bike with little to no fuss thanks to the 280mm disc up front. I wish we could have had a disc option on the rear as well as the 130mm drum brakes offer little assurance. There is no ABS provided, even as an option.
The two bikes are now on sale at Rs. 1.8 lakh for the Mojave and Rs. 1.89 lakh for the Classic, both prices ex-showroom Delhi. It is a premium product in comparison to its competitors and offers a slice of American open-road motorcycling, which others cannot boast of.