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Old 14th March 2023, 00:25   #1
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Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

Okay second time here we go! (I messed up the first time trying to post).

Greetings! a long time lurker here, like 13 years long time. Grew up sitting beside my dad as he browsed the site when I was 9 and now I am the 22 year old browsing as his dad sits and watches beside him.

Well let me start off by giving some context to you all. We have always had a bunch of vehicles numbering close to absurdity, though Covid-19 hit my dad's collection hard and we ended up selling a lot of them off but things have changed and now we need another two-wheeler. Why? well for one our total daily usage between my dad and I is pretty high, almost 100+ km per day minimum and can be as high 200km and the bikes we do possess right now are not really economical. Let me elaborate.
we currently own
  • Kawasaki Ninja 300: Exclusively used for highway runs.
  • Yamaha RX100: A legacy piece with over 1.5 lakh km on the odo. Not used much owing to old age and has been mostly retired from service
  • Aprilia SR150: The daily work horse and honestly the only bike which can be used daily.
As you can see, the less I say about the mileage we get from our vehicles the better and when my dad takes the SR150, I am forced to ride the Ninja around in Bangalore traffic which is about as horrendous as it sounds.

So here is our conundrum. We need a bike, a scooter, anything with two wheels and an engine and the major requirements are that

It has to be robust, reliable and really REALLY good mileage.

This bike is primarily going to be used by me for the daily office commute and occasional luggage lugging during any modelling gigs I get. I am tired of getting a mileage in the 20s and want something different for once.

We have been looking around the entry level commuters for example Splendor, Platina etc and scooters like the Activa and Access but the sheer number of options coupled with the lack of solid reviews regarding the bikes in this space have left us confused.

There you have it! Any thoughts and suggestions?
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Old 14th March 2023, 11:55   #2
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

What I essentially decode is:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nayra View Post
It has to be robust, reliable and really REALLY good mileage
Reliability + good FE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nayra View Post
This bike...daily office commute and occasional luggage lugging...tired of getting a mileage in the 20s
Workhorse + good FE

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nayra View Post
entry level commuters for example Splendor, Platina etc and scooters like the Activa and Access...Any thoughts and suggestions?
Commuter

Reliability + good FE + workhorse in commuter, so removing the word performance from the equation which essentially focuses on < 125 cc segment. If a slight performance is required 125 & if FE is not a criteria it has to be > 125 cc segment. If I can add low maintenance then it will be one from Japanese stable (HMSI or Suzuki), otherwise Indian (Hero, Bajaj or TVS). Having this as base criteria, let's see the models now based in the order of criteria: Reliability + good FE + low maintenance cost + workhorse

Japanese brands - Scooters - RayZR/Fascino/Access (again these are 125, not 110 CC & hence yield 60+ Kmpl); Motorcycles CD110/Livo for highest FE. Yamaha & Suzuki have moved away from commuter motorcycles, so there're limited options here.

Indian brands - Scooters - Pleasure/Zest (that yield lower FE than above); Motorcycles Hero HF100, Bajaj Platina & TVS Sport - all of them 110cc

Presented from the list of workhorses above, its quite evident that 110cc yield good FE due to light weight & obviously has lower maintenance cost. Reliability or not depends on the brand & my personal faith with HMSI > Hero > TVS > Bajaj in terms of reliability & quality of automobiles.

If you're looking details on scooters, here're two posts to confuse you further

Let us know what you've bought finally please. Thanks
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Old 14th March 2023, 11:58   #3
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

Check out the Suzuki Burgman. My 3 yr old scoot has been ultra reliable except once during covid time I changed oil at a shell pump and they cross threaded the bolt and there was some oil leak, fixed it at the auth service centre for peanuts. Another time a rubber tube going from air filter to carb had a little tear and it won't start. Fixed for under 20 buks.

It's super comfy due to the stretched out position, can put your legs forward like a cruiser and this ensures you don't slide forward under braking. I fill up the tank and forget for about 2 weeks. My running is not so high but still I guess it gives between 50-60 kpl. Rear suspension is hard but so are all scoots with small wheels. For outright comfort and efficiency and for blore's amazing roads id suggest xpulse 200, nothing comes close. Fix a top box and you have an unbeatable, practical and comfy commuter

Newer burgmans come with fi and blueteeth with turn by turn nav. Not so keen on the BT but fi will ensure zero cold starts and even better performance and mileage than mine.

All the best.
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Old 14th March 2023, 11:59   #4
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nayra View Post
It has to be robust, reliable and really REALLY good mileage.

This bike is primarily going to be used by me for the daily office commute and occasional luggage lugging during any modelling gigs I get. I am tired of getting a mileage in the 20s and want something different for once.
Here are a bunch of options that come to mind:

Raider 125 - Good bike. Period.

Aerox 155 - It's liquid-cooled, has a CVT transmission, and is a Yamaha so good looks as well as reliability. Besides, people have even done intercity rides with this little monster and come out very happy. The only con I can think of are its stiff suspensions.

MT-15 - The Aerox's streetnaked brother, this one is also a looker while being a reliable workhorse. It is very good for highway runs as well, and I honestly can't think of any con at this point. Yes, Yamaha.

Hornet 2.0 - I own this one and it is pretty much tuned for the city. It's got great mileage, great torque even at lower revs, and is a Honda, so you've got reliability right there. The negative is that given this was not a part of Honda's BigWing line-up, getting it serviced can be taxing on the person's patience because you'll be stuck behind a long line of commuters that are there to be serviced before you. Also, stiff suspensions.

TVS Ronin - Very tractable motor, very comfortable ergos, fat handlebar with adjustable brake lever (to the best of my knowledge). From what I've heard, it has good mileage too but can't confirm about that. It is also very good for luggage lugging.

Xpulse - Very good off-roader, can function well in the city as well. Tall and comfy seating position.

Hunter 350 - Kind of obvious. Extremely VFM, has great torque, and the J-platform is kind of like a modern ol' reliable at this point. Besides, the Hunter is a very pretty boi.

Other options - Duke 200 (even though it is often the choice of squids), Duke 250, Scram 411, Gixxer 150 and Gixxer 250, Dominar 250, the RTR 4Vs (160 and 200). All of these will give you good mileage and good to great reliability. However, I will always be a bit biased towards the Yamahas despite being a Honda fanboy.
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Old 14th March 2023, 12:04   #5
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

Considering that you also need to haul luggage along with fuel efficiency consideration, it would be best to stick to scooter. You can have a look at Honda Activa, Suzuki Access or Yamaha Fascino.

Or if you can use your existing Aprilia when you need to carry luggage, you can look at bikes like Honda Livo/Shine or Hero Splendour/Passion.

All are pretty fuel efficient, especially the bikes and won't pinch your pocket .

Take a test ride and decide.
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Old 14th March 2023, 18:08   #6
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nayra View Post
Okay second time here we go! (I messed up the first time trying to post).

It has to be robust, reliable and really REALLY good mileage.

This bike is primarily going to be used by me for the daily office commute and occasional luggage lugging during any modelling gigs I get. I am tired of getting a mileage in the 20s and want something different for once.

There you have it! Any thoughts and suggestions?
My thoughts would be to get a bike over a scooter any day if your commute extends beyond 10km per day. They are infinitely more comfortable and you can figure out storage on a bike vide the many solutions (top box etc).

My Suggestion would be to pick the TVS Ronin. My friend who commutes around 40km per day in BLR traffic, averages 40-45kmpl mileage. For storage you can get a top box/panniers and this would make for a great city motorcycle and an occasional touring motorcycle as well!
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Old 14th March 2023, 18:32   #7
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

So an update.

We thought we were most probably going to take the second hand route but read aargee and nitro.1000bhp's comments and decided to go visit Hero, Honda and Suzuki's showrooms nonetheless and we think we have decided which vehicle we would end up with.

Hero


The first showroom we checked and and it was such a bad experience that I do not believe we would want to ever touch a bike made by them. Walked into the showroom which felt less like a showroom and more like a warehouse but still fine, as it looked like they were mainly catering to the commuter class of vehicles. Saw row of Xpulses parked in front of the showroom and was checking it out while dad was parking his car. A sales person comes out and tells me to not touch the bikes and asked me what I wanted. Thought it was fairly rude but figured this is how Hero showrooms worked. Told him I was looking for a Splendor or any high mileage bike so he calls me inside.

Walked in and He gives me a bunch of brochures, walks away and starts gossiping about some coworker with another sales person. Wah! how polite and welcoming.

Dad enters now and I told him what had happened and let him take the lead. He starts by asking for a test ride of a Splendor Xtec to which both the guys start laughing and tell him no one takes a test ride of a Splendor, they just buy it. Dad is not really the best most composed guy so I figured it is best we walk away to avoid an escalation. Never again.

Honda


A much better experience. Polite and the employees actually seemed interested to sell their vehicles. Took the test ride of the Honda Activa and well, perhaps the Aprilia has spoilt us but it felt extremely weird to ride? Oddly light and toyish. Dad is a bike guy who hated the dynamics so much he turned back 50m into the ride and cancelled the bike instantly.

So I guess scooters are out of the equation for now. (or so we thought).

Asked him about other commuter bikes to which he said they do not have any test ride bikes at the moment but can arrange on requesting beforehand.
A funny incident though, parked my Ninja right in front of the showroom and there were a bunch of sales people standing outside. They saw my getting off the bikes and one of them went "Sir this is not Bigwing franchise". He looked fairly confused when I told him I knew and wanted to check out commuter bikes

Suzuki


A brief and to the point visit with no shenanigans. Was on the Access within 10 minutes of entering the showroom and while it felt much better to ride, the uneasiness of the small wheeled scooters did not dissipate.

Saw the Burgman and though I was thought it was swell but my dad said he would rather walk around than be seen riding that. To each their own

Upon asking for any commuter bikes we were informed that they had only 1 bike named the Hayate at the moment. The only commuter bike which had a test ride and it was much better than riding scooters but the drop in power relative to the Ninja was something I had not considered. Perhaps because I had ridden it back to back, it felt even more lethargic, almost like I was towing along heavy boulders. Regardless, much better than scooter dynamics and our focus was going to be on bikes.

Ather


The wild card entry. We passed by the Ather showroom while returning home and figured why not? Walked in and my god what a breathe of fresh air which I guess comes with the much higher price point of the products they sell but more than anything what I noticed was the respectful nature of every person. I told him straight up it is outside my budget but I am curious to which his demeanour did not change. Sat my down, explained every aspect of the vehicle from top to bottom and answered the 100 queries my dad and I had and offered a test ride even though we did not ask for it (LEARN HERO MOTOCORP).

We test rode the Ather 450x and it felt like I was riding a spaceship around. A hardcore gasoline sniffing, 2-stroke loving, mechanical engineer smitten by a glorified appliance with wheels, the heresy I thought to myself. It was absolutely fabulous. Felt extremely close to the dynamics of the SR150 without the weird weightless feeling we got from other scooter. Clean, cheap energy coupled with the solar panels we have in our home, its not just cheap but almost free. The range was adequate and barely any components to break so reliable too. The perfect vehicle for our needs. Well almost perfect since it was a clear 1 lakh over my budget.

It was my dad's turn to take it for a spin and I half expected him to turn back halfway through and hate it but no, he rode and kept riding again and again, gets off the bike and just goes "Yup this works" and as they say parents know best so who was I to tell him otherwise. Went inside inquired about the booking amount and variants and told him we will book the bike on Thursday due to auspicious reasons. The wonders good and respectful sales associates can do.

We (mainly me) are still a bit confused about whether EV is the way to go especially considering how absurdly over budget we went but I think our usage case does make a good argument but it is still unnerving. We have zero experience with EVs because it us straight up sacrilegious in our household. "Internal combustion is the heartbeat of modern civilization" as my dad says.

After riding the Hayate, I know for a fact that if we had been able to test ride the Splendor, we would have certainly bought it if it was anything like the Hayate but Hero does what it does and we do what we do. Customer experience takes precedence for my dad and if we are treated like a nuisance and mocked before buying the bike, I do not want to think about the experience if problems arise after buying the bike.

Well there you have it! Ather 450x here we come (for now).

Last edited by libranof1987 : 14th March 2023 at 20:08. Reason: Two smileys/post. Minor post formatting.
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Old 14th March 2023, 19:25   #8
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

Good choice. I have never felt range anxiety given the nature of use of my 450X. I always face anxious moments when I postpone filling diesel/petrol in my cars and it shows DTE as Zero

With not having to go to a bunk for filling up and anytime where you can just plug in, its almost been just ride and worry about nothing
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Old 14th March 2023, 20:09   #9
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

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Originally Posted by Nayra View Post
We (mainly me) are still a bit confused about whether EV is the way to go especially considering how absurdly over budget we went but I think our usage case does make a good argument but it is still unnerving.
If you promise me not to go over the arduous task on the BIG math behind EV & Fossil fueled scooters ownership cost, then: for a 22 Km everyday (or on an average), Ather 450+ makes a breakeven from 3rd year onwards (even if the battery costs Rs 50K & replaced at 7th year) over the highest FE yielding RayZR. Anything upto 17 Km average, better to opt for petrol scooter (not NTorq kind of low FE scooter) & anything between 17-19 Km average petrol scooters are OKish for a 15 year period.

So, the guideline above only based on ownership cost (not experience), so as to make an informed financial decision. Also it is assumed the scooters, be it fossil or EV are purchased outright without loan (just ex-showroom + RTO) & excluding the cost of insurance.
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Old 15th March 2023, 16:33   #10
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

If your top priorities are luggage space, good mileage, and reliability, then the Honda Activa is a great option. With proper maintenance, you can expect good fuel efficiency and the scooter is spacious enough for long rides without any problems.

However, if luggage capacity is not a major concern, you should also consider the Bajaj Discover. It is easy to maintain and offers good mileage, although it's reliability is largely dependent on proper maintenance.
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Old 16th March 2023, 10:24   #11
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nayra View Post
1. We have zero experience with EVs because it us straight up sacrilegious in our household. "Internal combustion is the heartbeat of modern civilization" as my dad says.

2. We (mainly me) are still a bit confused about whether EV is the way to go especially considering how absurdly over budget we went but I think our usage case does make a good argument but it is still unnerving.
Welcome to TBHP, greetings to your father for being there

I was about to say consider Ather or iQube due to your usage and focus on economical running but your second post was comforting.
Ditto on the Activa.

1. I am of the same thought process but the scooters are where EVs shine. My ideal garage would have have a touring motorcycle and an EV scooter so that both vehicles are being used where they thrive. I currently use an Access 125 and every time I ride I know its a torture on the vehicle but its better suited for this than a motorcycle IMHO.
Like your Ninja's 11000rpm peak power isn't meant to be explored in traffic but the regenerative braking of EVs is.

2. If you look at the economics you'll end up saving money per year soon with your usage
Just look at the numbers : Credits to Providers : TVS iQube
Name:  iquve_savings.png
Views: 437
Size:  82.6 KB

Your decision to go with Ather 450X is excellent. I would've asked to check out the TVS iQube too but since you're based out of Bangalore and your father likes the Ather I would prefer the Ather over the iQube in your case too.
Plus the whine of the belt-driven Ather is still something to listen to over the eerie silence of the hub driven iQube.
The iQube might have more comfortable suspension and if that's an area of interest for you guys, do check it out. It has an adjustable suspension with soft and hard preload settings which in reality translate to solo and pillion. I found it useful for my average build.

Good choice gentlemen, keep us posted with your delivery and ownership.
Have fun.

Last edited by shancz : 16th March 2023 at 10:29. Reason: added adj susp
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Old 16th March 2023, 11:16   #12
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nayra View Post
Okay second time here we go! (I messed up the first time trying to post).

Greetings! a long time lurker here, like 13 years long time. Grew up sitting beside my dad as he browsed the site when I was 9 and now I am the 22 year old browsing as his dad sits and watches beside him.

Well let me start off by giving some context to you all. We have always had a bunch of vehicles numbering close to absurdity, though Covid-19 hit my dad's collection hard and we ended up selling a lot of them off but things have changed and now we need another two-wheeler. Why? well for one our total daily usage between my dad and I is pretty high, almost 100+ km per day minimum and can be as high 200km and the bikes we do possess right now are not really economical. Let me elaborate.
we currently own
  • Kawasaki Ninja 300: Exclusively used for highway runs.
  • Yamaha RX100: A legacy piece with over 1.5 lakh km on the odo. Not used much owing to old age and has been mostly retired from service
  • Aprilia SR150: The daily work horse and honestly the only bike which can be used daily.
As you can see, the less I say about the mileage we get from our vehicles the better and when my dad takes the SR150, I am forced to ride the Ninja around in Bangalore traffic which is about as horrendous as it sounds.

So here is our conundrum. We need a bike, a scooter, anything with two wheels and an engine and the major requirements are that

It has to be robust, reliable and really REALLY good mileage.

This bike is primarily going to be used by me for the daily office commute and occasional luggage lugging during any modelling gigs I get. I am tired of getting a mileage in the 20s and want something different for once.

We have been looking around the entry level commuters for example Splendor, Platina etc and scooters like the Activa and Access but the sheer number of options coupled with the lack of solid reviews regarding the bikes in this space have left us confused.

There you have it! Any thoughts and suggestions?
As a person who drives 40kms everyday in Bangalore traffic on a scooter . AVOID SCOOTERS

Now you might be confused on why I am telling you to avoid scooters. Scooters don't have clutch so it must be easy to drive through traffic right? Yes that's true but if you are a tall person you get horrible back pain in return.

My suggestion is if your commute is less than 10 Kms you can go ahead with an Electric scooter [Ather, TVS iQube]. Anything more than 10kms it is better to go ahead with 110-150cc Commuter bike.

If you want a simple bike to get you to point A to B get a bare bones commuter [Splendor, Unicorn]. But if you want something modern The TVS Raider is a very good option.
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Old 16th March 2023, 13:00   #13
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

I would suggest a scooter but taking 100 kms as approx daily usage, its better to stick with Commuter bikes

If mileage is the prime criteria, do look into Shine 125 or recent 100 which has been launched. These are tried and tested commuters and you cannot go wrong with them.

The age-old unicorn is another safe bet if you are looking to 150 cc. The new Pulsar 160 is also a good commuter as per the reviews, do take a test ride to check it out.

Have stuck to safe options since your primary requirement is a no-nonsense commute bike with good mileage.
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Old 16th March 2023, 14:56   #14
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

You may choose Platina 110 with ABS. Among 125cc I will recommend you to get a Shine or CT125x. With Aprilia SR150 at home I don't think you will love to ride any other scooter. If budget is not a concern and mileage of 45 kmpl is accepted why not try W175?
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Old 16th March 2023, 16:37   #15
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Re: Already have 3 motorcycles | Need a 4th bike that is fuel-efficient & reliable

Would echo the thoughts of fellow BHPians. With that sort of running(100kms a day), scooter would be a torture to the back in the long run.

Yes EV scooter's value proposition is unbeatable but you have to consider health as well. Bangalore roads aren't the smoothest(putting it mildly) as we all know, so something with great suspension would be my top choice. And when you talk about suspension first bike that comes to mind is the Xpulse 200. I understand your experience at HERO showroom was horrible but don't let go of the excellent product because of that one showroom experience. Try out a couple more I would say.

If not Hero, something like a Raider 125 would be my 2nd choice. It looks great, power is decent, feature loaded and still returns good FE being a 125cc.

Last edited by SoumenD : 16th March 2023 at 16:39.
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