Go Back   Team-BHP > BHP India > Motorbikes


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 3rd September 2010, 18:34   #1
BHPian
 
rajushank84's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: California, USA
Posts: 861
Thanked: 350 Times
Default Long-lasting, comfortable commuter with good service network in south Chennai

Bid goodbye to my Std 350 Bullet six months back because I couldn't bear to see rust forming in front of my eyes, only one service centre in whole Chennai, carb had to be adjusted way too often and I just dont have the time to spend on maintaining a Bullet. Loved the bike but unfortunately no, I dont have what it takes to be a "Bulleteer", if that means spending a whole lot of time maintaining it and kickstarting it.

Anyway... I am straying from the topic. Bid goodbye to the Bull 6 months back, thinking I am done with bikes. Unfortunately, a twist of events (meaning org changes and team changes at work) now mean I now go to office at 9.30AM instead of 11AM as I used to, therefore I am struck in thick traffic which takes me close to one hour(!) to cover these eight kilometers from home to work. And that is one hour of riding the clutch of my Figo . Hence here I am, thinking about bikes again. Just thinking, not decided yet

So.. have a few queries:

1. Is the old Karizma R still being sold? (the one without full fairing) I can still see it on the Hero Honda website.

2. How is Yamaha SZ different from FZ? I mean, I have read the spec sheet and all. How different does it feel? Peak torque seems to come in early looking at the spec sheet, but I know how misleading spec sheets can be.. so can anyone who has ridden SZ comment on it?

3. How good are Honda's, Yamaha's and Suzuki's service networks in South Chennai? (particularly Medavakkam and OMR area)

4. Is the old Unicorn still being sold? (not Dazzler)

My priorities in this order are: long-lasting build & parts quality, good service network in Medavakkam and/or OMR area, smooth running (esp gearbox - with minimal false neutrals), excellent handling and stability, "just decent" acceleration will do, comfortable seat & posture, good braking, "OK" looks will do.

Bikes in my mind right now (in that order) are:
1. Karizma R (is it still available?)
2. HH Hunk (its a Hero Honda. will probably satisfy my needs for service network and long-lasting quality)
3. HH CBZ Xtreme (same as above)
4. Suzuki GS 150 (got very good feedback but there seem to be very few service centers aorund my place)
5. Yamaha FZ (service network in my area? how long will that huge tyre last?)
6. Yamaha SZ (looks good. service network in my area? )
7. Honda Dazzler (Honda seems to have a LOT of service centers in north Chennai but very few in the south).
8. TVS XL Super (yes, I am seriously considering this as an option ). Dealer quotes 26k on road including registration, will probably suit my need to a T, long-lasting, plenty of spares available, and any mechanic can service one of these. Probably least stressful in crawling traffic because of no clutch & gear.

Why I am not considering 100cc and 125cc bikes is, I dont think they are value for money. I don't mind paying 65k for a 150cc bike that gives me thrills, or 25k for a moped that just does the job. But I think 100cc and 125cc bikes are "neither here nor there", they look like and cost most of what a 150cc bike costs, but feel like a moped to ride. (sorry its just my perception). So I would rather pay up and go for 150cc and get its worth, or pay less and ride a moped. Same reason why Scooty, Activa etc are ruled out. I'm not interested in electric bikes yet because their service network don't seem to be very wide, the bikes are not exactly cheap, and I don't know how long they will last.

What I DONT need is a powerful touring bike. I plan to use my car whenever possible. This bike is going to be only for this crazy ridiculous eight kilometre commute that takes 1 hour in the morning.

Please give me your suggestions.

Last edited by rajushank84 : 3rd September 2010 at 18:53.
rajushank84 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd September 2010, 22:22   #2
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 2,534
Thanked: 984 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
Why I am not considering 100cc and 125cc bikes is, I dont think they are value for money. I don't mind paying 65k for a 150cc bike that gives me thrills, or 25k for a moped that just does the job. But I think 100cc and 125cc bikes are "neither here nor there".....

Please give me your suggestions.
We both think alike in this aspect. I too dont like the 100/125cc bikes as they are neither here nor there..

Coming to the bike of choice for you, and assuming you want the best bang for your buck, Yamaha FZ16 would satisfy most of your needs but at a steep price compared to competition. Good build quality and long lasting parts. Only suspect is the Service network in your area which I am not aware of. Positives of FZ are light weight, easy to handle in mad city traffic, relaxed sitting posture, good grip with the wide tires. Negative would be less mileage in crowded traffic and the service support.

ZMA R (not ZMR) though is a good highway tourer, you might get fed up if you encounter heavy traffic as you have to manage the quarter fairing and would be difficult to maneuver and handle a big bike in traffic.

And coming to your final shortlist of TVS XL, its seriously a very practical decision since you are not going to use it a lot. But not sure how far you can make it work.

Last edited by abhinav.s : 3rd September 2010 at 22:23.
abhinav.s is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd September 2010, 23:25   #3
BHPian
 
rajushank84's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: California, USA
Posts: 861
Thanked: 350 Times
Default

Thanks Abhinav. Yes, TVS Excel makes sense to the head but the heart wants more

I have become mature enough not to go for sheer acceleration and speed (P220 or RTR180), but go for quality, long-lasting build, smoothness and service quality. But I don't know if I have become that mature (old?) to go for TVS Excel. I don't want to be looking at the moped 1 year down the line and saying "oh man. what was I thinking."

Just spoke to my friend who got an FZ a few months back. He's got only good things to say about the bike, and that there is an authorized service centre on OMR, so it fits the bill.

But I still want to know if Karizma R is still on sale, how good is Yamaha SZ and whether old Unicorn is still available, before making a decision.
rajushank84 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 3rd September 2010, 23:47   #4
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Sheel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Purnea(Bihar)
Posts: 5,204
Thanked: 4,819 Times
Default

Honda Dazzler/Honda Unicorn/Yamaha FZ(naked)

I don't think anything else would come close as an indestructible Motorcycle.
Sheel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2010, 01:12   #5
BHPian
 
rock18's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Chennai
Posts: 310
Thanked: 54 Times
Default

Why don't you try for something like activa,pleasure,etc. It will be very comfortable when compared to TVS XL for short trips.
In bikes, Yamaha gladiator,Honda unicorn, suzuki GS150 are the best bets.
Suzuk GS150 has a very comfortable driving position and also pillion rider will find it comfortable.
Since you are using your figo for long trips,i will suggest you to buy something like activa,aviator,rodeo as scooters are convenient for local market shopping also.
rock18 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2010, 11:18   #6
Senior - BHPian
 
sajo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Pune
Posts: 2,556
Thanked: 815 Times
Default

Since you have considered the FZ, why not the Fazer itself ? It looks worth paying the premium for.
Also, as someone here suggested, if its convenience and utility you are looking for, nothing can beat a scooter. They are reliable, reasonably fast, and everyone in your family can use them. Aviator would be my choice here.
Buttt.......since you spend over 1 hour driving to work, we can assume you will need to ride atleast 40-45 minutes everyday. And that in my personal opinion and experience is not comfortable on a scooter, good though it might be.
sajo is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2010, 18:14   #7
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Sheel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Purnea(Bihar)
Posts: 5,204
Thanked: 4,819 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by sajo View Post
Since you have considered the FZ, why not the Fazer itself ? It looks worth paying the premium for.
I certainly do not think so.

You are made to pay 7000 more, for what?
Sheel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th September 2010, 21:03   #8
BHPian
 
rajushank84's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: California, USA
Posts: 861
Thanked: 350 Times
Default

rock18 and sajo: thanks! Yes I too considered a scooter but what's making me rethink is that I am too used to bikes, and feel really unstable on a scooter. Just now tried riding my friends Activa, felt scared with the dynamics pobably because of the small wheel. I ode my friend Super Excel a year back, it didn't feel scary becaus the wheel is big, I guess. And the fact that it's a 2-stroke almost made up for it's lack of power - at least felt that way when it was brand new

i rule out GS150 because there doesn't seem to be any Suzuki service centre around... Same with Honda too in fact.

I personally don't lik the looks of Fazer. Sorry

Looks like my option are boiling down to FZ, Hunk and Super Excel. Getting more confused more I think about it. Trying to convince mysel i'll be fine on an Activa. Isn't the short wheels a problem?
rajushank84 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th September 2010, 11:09   #9
Senior - BHPian
 
aargee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: KATN
Posts: 4,694
Thanked: 2,115 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
Trying to convince mysel i'll be fine on an Activa. Isn't the short wheels a problem?
Yes it is a problem. I ride an RX & Activa for several years now, Activa gives immense pleasure only on smooth roads, on potholes roads, God only save your back.

If you're not in a hurry, wait for Wego from TVS. I heard some good reviews on it. Sad to see TVS hasn't launched Wego here yet when they've a factory in TN.

Last edited by aargee : 5th September 2010 at 11:22.
aargee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th September 2010, 12:13   #10
BHPian
 
parimal_g's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: MUMBAI
Posts: 435
Thanked: 174 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
rock18 and sajo: thanks! Yes I too considered a scooter but what's making me rethink is that I am too used to bikes, and feel really unstable on a scooter. Just now tried riding my friends Activa, felt scared with the dynamics pobably because of the small wheel. I ode my friend Super Excel a year back, it didn't feel scary becaus the wheel is big, I guess. And the fact that it's a 2-stroke almost made up for it's lack of power - at least felt that way when it was brand new
Just check the wego, its awesome for a scooter, great handling, may be due to 12" Wheels and really good for bad roads.
OW you can also consider Jive its really nice bike, with no clutch.

Even am impressed with TVS Excel Super, One of my friend has it, and its really VFM product, except the looks and it has 35 watt headlight, we removed the stock dome and refitted with Samurai dome and the change was very good.

I think you should Try Wego, on xbhp one owner of wego, who also owns a P220, felt wego better than his 220 when it comes to handle bad roads.
So its a huge compliment.
parimal_g is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 6th September 2010, 14:29   #11
Senior - BHPian
 
sajo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Pune
Posts: 2,556
Thanked: 815 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheel View Post
I certainly do not think so.

You are made to pay 7000 more, for what?
I meant to say its "looks" are worth paying the premium over FZ.

General question : How comfortable is it (the FZ/Fazer) for the pillion rider?
sajo is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 6th September 2010, 14:39   #12
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 2,534
Thanked: 984 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by parimal_g View Post
Just check the wego, its awesome for a scooter, great handling, may be due to 12" Wheels and really good for bad roads.
+1.. Wego should be on your list of choices since its more practical and soon you would see yourself taking the wego to the local market/mall for the weekend shopping instead of the car. Gearless scooters in general offer storage space and convenience. But at the cost ride comfort in some cases.
Wego seems to have a good suspension and bigger wheels compared to competition. So give it a try. Else you alway have the TVS Excel
abhinav.s is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 6th September 2010, 18:49   #13
BHPian
 
rajushank84's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: California, USA
Posts: 861
Thanked: 350 Times
Default

Sorry friends! For some reason I am not getting the notification emails on this thread, so I thought no one has replied on this thread.

Update:
1. YAMAHA: Tried riding my friend's FZ yesterday and liked it very very much especially the stability and the way the bike loves to be chucked around. He says he gets between 35 to 40. Only fly in the ointment is, I asked him to ride it and rode as pillion to see the comfort, and find that the footpeg is very high set just like Unicorn. It will make pillion rider's sitting position uncomfortable. Apart from this I think this bike is just perfect as a city bike.

Went to Yamaha showroom in OMR today. Disliked the SZ on as soon as I saw it. It looks HORRIBLE from the front view. Dealer said they have tie ups with a private company for loans, and will get back to me about the interest rate etc. They can deliver the FZ in about a week's time. They have a service centre in the same place (which my colleague who has an R15 for a year gives good feedback about) and the place is quite close to my office.

So... FZ-16 is Option One.

2. HERO HONDA: Called up the "big" Hero Honda dealer Srinivasa Automobiles to ask if the old Karizma is still in production. Was answered by a rude voice saying that they are not accepting any bookings for any bikes, for 3 months . I had to repeat my question, to get an answer that yes, the Zma R is still in production.

3. HONDA: Called up Lodha Honda. Was answered politely (unlike HH) that Unicorn is still in production and not discontinued at all, and they have bookings till the end of the year, so if I book Unicorn now then I will get it around beginning of 2011. Looks like Unicorn has more demand than Swift .

So that makes things easier. Honda and Hero Honda are out of the equation, so it makes it that much easier to decide.

4. BAJAJ: Deep procrastination and meditation about my priorities in life has led me to think about the Pulsar 220 "Naked" Streetfighter bike. Called up the ProBiking centre with a sinking feeling to hear about a long waiting period, but was pleasantly surprised. They have a bike in the color I want (red), so if I book quickly I can get it. Loan processing + registration + other formalities will probably take a week to ten days' time. The bike costs around 80K on-road. Hmmmmmmmm.....

So... Pulsar 220 is Option Two.

Haven't had any success convincing myself to go for a scooter (yes I tried! Looks like I am much better at convincing other people, than convincing myself.. hehe). Another ride in my colleague's Activa didn't help things. Looks like I depend too much on body dynamics for leaning, cornering and things like that (I wonder if that makes sense at all?!) but the scooter seems to be "handle with care". Maybe its a question of getting used to it.

Knowing my own impulsive nature, I would probably end up doing a booking for either the FZ or a Pulsar 220 tomorrow. FZ is tempting for its superb dynamics, top-notch quality and the fact that the service centre is quite close to my office. And the fact that it is a YAMAHA. The Pulsar 220 is tempting because of the fact that it is the fastest, handles quite well too, and the Streetfighter looks take away the only reason why I have stayed away from the 220 in the past - that fairing which I don't like. AND the fact that the pillion is more comfortable on the Pulsar than on the FZ, so I can take my wife on a ride here and there if I want to.

So... FZ vs P220 it is!

Last edited by rajushank84 : 6th September 2010 at 18:54.
rajushank84 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 6th September 2010, 19:05   #14
BHPian
 
rajushank84's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: California, USA
Posts: 861
Thanked: 350 Times
Default

By the way, there is a guy in my office selling his 8-month-old yellow Yamaha R15 which has covered 5400kms. He says he is a "passionate biker" so he has done service and oil changes religiously. Quotes around 90k but says it is negotiable.

Is it worth taking a look at, if he comes down to say 85K?

What's making me hesitate is that loan processing would be cumbersome, and if I go for a personal loan the interest rates will be high.

Just thinking... thinking...
rajushank84 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 6th September 2010, 19:12   #15
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 2,534
Thanked: 984 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
So... FZ vs P220 it is!
Both are equally good in their own way. It depends on how you like your ride!!!

I owned the P220, the fairing one for 6 months and trust me, my wife was happiest in the pillion. She did not complain of any aches or pains. We did quite a few long rides as well and she was quite comfy.

The fairing was a nightmare for me in the city. Plus i found the bike a bit heavy and difficult to maneuver in the chaotic city traffic. So opted to sell it off and picked up an RTR. I was getting about 42-46 km/l during running in and later around 38-40 km/l

But i am not sure of the long lasting quality you are looking for in Bajaj bikes. Maybe long term owners can comment as I have not had it for a long enough time to have a say

FZ on the other hand oozes of build quality and is a treat to ride in the mad city traffic. The vibration-free ride coupled with good handling and light weight make rides in the city a breeze.

So all the best and may you choose what is best for you soon!!

Edit: Regarding the R-15, worth looking at if you are getting it for 82-85k, given that the pillion seat is comfortable if that is a criterion for you.

BTW if he is a passionate biker, why is he selling his ride so soon?

Last edited by abhinav.s : 6th September 2010 at 19:13.
abhinav.s is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Which are the most comfortable cars to drive long distances in? mclaren1885 The Indian Car Scene 271 10th October 2017 20:04
Most comfortable car/SUV for long journeys (under 12 Lakh) mohan41 What Car? 71 13th September 2016 22:08
Are Hyundais cars long lasting? RX135 The Indian Car Scene 57 3rd March 2015 13:39
Long lasting diesel car for 8-10L determinus Sedans 49 25th January 2008 17:05


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 19:24.

Copyright 2000 - 2017, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks