Top 5 Scooters That Changed The Indian Two-wheeler Industry From 2000-2023
From ICE Activa to EV Ather 450X, these all had the largest impact
What are two-wheelers? A machine for daily commutes, an escape, family or even a companion. There are many roles a two-wheeler would play in your life, irrespective of whether it's a bike or a scooter. So to break that barrier between bikes and scooters, on World Motorcycle Day 2023, we look back at the top five scooters that changed the Indian two-wheeler industry in the last two-decades.
Honda Activa: Launched in 2001
Honda Activa, or also known as the most iconic scooter of all time, debuted in India at the start of the century. And 22 years later, the Activa is STILL the best selling scooter in the world. What Activa did was give the customers a two-wheeler that anybody could ride without hassle, thanks to its bulletproof build quality and neutral design that appeals to everyone. Taking that trust, and moniker ahead, Honda is planning to launch an Activa Electric in 2024.
Honda Dio: Launched in 2002
Identified as the OG sporty scooter of India, the Honda Dio kickstarted the sporty segment in the country. It featured the same 110cc engine as the Activa, wrapped in a snazzier, more youthful package. The Dio taught us that riding scooters can also be cool and fun. It also played a key role in kickstarting the trend of affordable, sporty scooters in the Indian market.
Suzuki Access 125: Launched in 2007
Launched in 2007, Suzuki Access 125 was one of the very few 125cc scooters in the Indian market. It pushed auto-manufacturers to venture out to the 125cc segment for scooters and not be stuck in the 110cc zone. Just like the Activa, it first had a neutral styling which then turned into a retro-style design in the subsequent years. The Access has consistently been the best-selling 125cc scooter, and in a bid to replicate its success in other formats, Suzuki used its platform to bring out the maxi-style Burgman Street 125 and the sporty Avenis 125 too.
Ather 450X: Launched in 2018
If we ever talk about scooters that really had an impact on the auto industry, we can’t skip Ather 450X. This electric scooter was the Tesla among EVs, with tech that were years ahead of its time. It not only redefined the sporty e-two-wheeler segment in the country, but also gave proper performance-oriented petrol-powered scooters a run for their money when it came to outright acceleration. With subsequent updates, the current Ather 450X remains to be one of the best in its segment. The debut 450X compelled other auto manufacturers to enter the performance electric scooter territory.
Ola S1 Pro: Launched in 2021
While Ather initiated the advent of EVs in India, Ola S1 Pro popularised and made it more accessible. At a more affordable price and a much more generous claimed range figure, Ola gave the riders a premium e-scooter that came packed with performance and features, and the promise of a greener future.
In 2016, Aprilia brought the SR150 to India, and introduced the Indian audience to a really sharp and sporty 150cc scooter. In several ways, it was the spiritual successor to the OG performance scooter, the Kinetic Blaze, albeit in a much sleeker package, with the distinct Italian flavour. The SR150 was launched at Rs 65,000, ex-showroom, a steal for what it had to offer, in terms of performance and handling. It gave way to more sporty and performance scooters for years to come in India, including the famed Yamaha Aerox 155.
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