The 125cc scooter segment has gotten more crowded with the entry of the TVS NTORQ 125 and the Aprilia SR 125.
The last time we pit the Honda Grazia 125 against the Suzuki Access 125, it was the latter that emerged as the winner of that comparison, however, now there are two more rivals that the best in the segment has to deal with. Just over 3 months of the Honda Grazia’s launch in Asia, TVS and Aprilia have entered the 125cc scooter segment with the NTORQ 125 and SR 125 respectively. So, how do the two new kids on the block fare against their competition? Read on to find out.
Design and Looks – Of the four, the TVS NTORQ 125 and the Honda Grazia 125 look traditional (read similar) while the Aprilia SR 125 and the Suzuki Access 125 look distinctive and different. The Aprilia is a sportier (race) scooter with bike-like styling elements while the Suzuki is a retro-inspired machine. The clean design, chrome elements and tall stance highlight the practical and functional aspects of the Access 125 while the Grazia 125 is sharper and modern looking thanks to the creases and various design elements.
Looks are subjective. The two newbies in this comparison are performance-focused scooters while the other two are your regular scooters. Among all the four, it would be tough to pick a winner, so, between the NTORQ 125 and SR 125, our pick would be the latter and if we had to choose between the Access 125 and Grazia 125, hands down we would choose the Grazia 125.
Dimensions – In terms of sheer dimensions, the SR 125 is the longest, widest and tallest scooter in this comparison. But just being longest, widest and tallest isn’t enough. At 1346 mm of wheelbase the SR 125 is the toughest scooter to maneuver around the city roads. The NTORQ 125, Grazia 125 and the Access 125 get a wheelbase of 1285 mm, 1260 mm and 1265 mm respectively. The Grazia not only has a shorter wheelbase but it also has the lowest seat height of 766 mm, thereby making it accessible for shorter riders as well. That said, when it comes to comfort, the large footboard and the flat seat on the Access 125 makes it a more comfortable choice.
Features – This is where the battle gets fierce but we should give it to the NTORQ 125 here. In addition to the front disc brake (standard on the Aprilia and optional in the Suzuki and Honda), alloy wheels (standard on the Aprilia and optional in the Suzuki and Honda), USB charging socket (optional DC socket offered on the Suzuki), telescopic front forks, fully digital instrument console (digital-analogue offered on the Suzuki and only an analogue in the Aprilia) and split grab rails (Aprilia and Suzuki get a single-piece grab rail), the NTORQ 125 also offers a pass-by switch, engine kill switch, petal disc brake, riding modes and a Bluetooth enabled instrument console that shows information like engine temperature, lap timer, top speed, average speed, incoming call alert, incoming SMS alert, Last Parked Location Assist and Navigation Assist.
Though Grazia’s full LED headlamp and instrument console with tachometer (only scooter to get it in this comparison) deserve a mention here, it is the TVS NTORQ 125 that takes the cake in the features department.
Powertrain – The NTORQ 125 draws power from a 124.79cc motor that puts out 9.3 HP of power and 10.5 Nm of torque while the Aprilia SR 125 comes powered by a 125cc mill which produces 9.5 HP of power and 9.9 Nm of torque. The Suzuki Access 125 is powered by a 124cc engine which puts out 8.58 HP and 10.2 Nm and on the other hand, the Grazia’s 124.9cc mill is shared with the Activa 125 and produces 8.52 HP of power with 10.54 Nm of torque. As obvious, Aprilia SR 125 has a slight upper hand in peak power figures while the NTORQ 125 outputs a higher peak torque. The higher peak power of the NTORQ, though, is delivered at a slightly higher RPM. What helps Suzuki’s case is its 102 kg kerb weight which is 5 kgs lesser than the Honda’s, 14 kgs lesser than the TVS’s and a whole 20 kgs lesser than the Aprilia’s. This makes it more agile and gives it zippy performance off the line. However, the Aprilia SR 125 also gets a very slight advantage in tank range with its 6.5-litre fuel tank.
Verdict – No matter what features a scooter offers and no matter how powerful an engine it has, it all boils down to the price and we’ll not beat around the bush and let’s get straight to the matter. At Rs. 57,850/-, the TVS NTORQ 125 is the most value for money scooter in the 125cc segment and undercuts the Suzuki by a slight margin and the Honda and Aprilia by a huge margin. Clearly then, the NTORQ 125 is the jack of all trades here offering sporty performance yet being a practical scooter. That said, if price isn’t a constraint and motorcycle-like riding and handling characteristics are what you seek, look no further than the Aprilia and in case you don’t find the NTORQ 125 to your liking, the Suzuki Access 125 is the scooter you should be putting your money on.