Top 5 Scooter Launches Of 2018
Modified On Mar 20, 2019 By Mallikarjun Pillai
From redefining the benchmark to setting the way for the future, this year saw some interesting launches in the Indian scooter space. Here we pick our top five of 2018.
Scooters in India are evolving from their strictly commuter origins to machines that offer a more wholesome riding experience. And in this continuing journey, each of the scooters featured below (in no particular order) has done its fair bit. So without further ado, here’s what we think are five of the best scooters launched in 2018.
TVS NTorq 125 – Rs 59,712 (ex-showroom Delhi)
TVS got a lot of things right with the NTorq 125. It offers a sharp yet pleasant styling, a refined engine that is equally at home in the city as well as on the highway, a comfortable ride yet sporty handling and unheard of features like a Bluetooth-enabled digital instrument console. And it wasn’t just us, the critics, who loved the overall package that the NTorq offered, as evident from the one lakh sales mark the scooter achieved within six months of launch. The scooter game is slowly moving towards 125cc engines and with the NTorq 125, TVS has let everyone know who’s the new boss in town!
Ather 450 – Rs 1.30 lakh (on-road Bengaluru)
The Ather 450 dispelled a lot of popular notions about electric scooters. For instance, it looks premium, is well-made, has sprightly performance and sports a hefty price tag too. However, that price looks a lot more reasonable when you factor in the free home charging point installation and the one-year Ather Service subscription that the company is bundling with the e-scooter. In our first ride review of the Ather 450, we came away impressed with how the company had built an electric scooter that could actually offer a serious alternative to conventional scooters in the urban space. It wouldn’t be a stretch then to say that Ather have set the way for the future of electric scooters in India.
Suzuki Burgman Street – Rs 68,345 (ex-showroom Delhi)
The Burgman Street is not the first maxi-scooter to be launched in India; that honour belongs to the short-lived Kinetic Blaze. But with the Burgman, Suzuki has definitively answered the question of whether the Indian market is ready for maxi-scooters. Unlike the larger Burgman’s 650cc engine, the Burgman Street makes do with the smaller but proven 125cc powerplant from the Access. The refined engine offers a good balance of peppy performance, in-city rideability and fuel economy. However, where the scooter stands apart from the crowd is in the styling department, comfort and storage space. As we concluded in our review of the Suzuki Burgman Street, it’s a great buy for those who like their style with substance and don’t mind paying a premium for it.
Hero Destini 125 LX – Rs 54,650 (ex-showroom Delhi)
The Hero Destini 125’s intentions are clear right from the outset. It doesn’t aim to be the fastest 125cc scooter out there, or the sportiest, or even the handsomest. And as our first ride review of the Destini 125 showed, the scooter is happy being the faithful sidekick instead of the flamboyant protagonist. But talk ergonomics, and the Destini 125 comes out with flying colours as the most family-oriented 125cc scooter, period. Are there any chinks in the armour? Yes, the lack of LED lights and a disc brake option, for example. That apart, we think Hero’s first foray into the 125cc scooter segment is a job well done. Oh, and did we mention it’s also the most affordable 125cc scooter you can buy in the country!
Aprilia SR 150 ABS – From Rs 80,850 (ex-showroom Mumbai)
Back when it was launched in 2016, the Aprilia SR 150 had no direct rivals. Although that is still the case today, there was no denying that the scooter could’ve used an update. And that is precisely what Aprilia did by launching the 2019 SR 150 in September this year. The updates brought with them visual enhancements like new colour schemes, a new windscreen, adjustable suspension and a Bluetooth-enabled semi-digital instrument console. And in the last week of 2018, Piaggio silently updated the SR 150 with ABS in keeping with the upcoming change in safety regulations. In our books, the addition of ABS and a refreshed feature set have made the Aprilia SR 150 the scooter to beat when it comes to outright performance.