Yamaha Saluto road test review
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The Pros: The impressive design equipped with all basic features, having good acceleration along with nice fuel economy.
The Cons: Handlebars position makes handling quite tough and bike vibrates as you go high rev range, braking capacity is not so effective also.
The Crux: The bike seems to be an effective commuter and slightly better than 110cc segment bikes.
In a country like India commuter motorcycles are a major segment. Many manufacturers are trying to add more features and style to these workhorses but the one deciding factor that still plays a major role is fuel economy. Yamaha have listened to what the public want and have given us the Saluto.
Design and features: Yamaha have learnt from their previous models and have done a good job on the styling of the Saluto. The sleek headlight fairing of Yamaha Saluto complements the new tank design and the minimalistic stickers look neat. The two tone side panels and the pointed taillight complete the package lending the Saluto a very modern look. The analogue instrument console is basic but has been well designed. It gets a quirky looking pilot lamp and even a pass switch. But apart from that the Saluto is pretty bare.
Performance: The engine in the Saluto is all new and based on the Blue Core technology that the FZ models have. This allows for the Saluto to have more low down torque. Its 125cc engine produces 8.3PS at 7,000rpm and 10.1Nm at 4,500rpm. Now Yamaha already have the SS125 but to give the Saluto a leg up against it, they’ve said that the Saluto will give a rather impressive 78kmpl. However when we tested it, it only returned a combined figure of 64.3kmpl. Now that’s not bad at all plus it managed 0-60kmph in 9.4s and maxed out at a top speed of 88kmph.
Ride and Handling: Once you sit on the Saluto you plop right into your typical commuter riding position. But once you thumb the starter and get going, you can feel that this isn’t a regular commuter. The low end grunt and smooth gearbox are a delight while the light clutch and the motorcycles light weight make it a joy to ride. Unfortunately the handlebar position seems to be pulled back a bit too much leaving the motorcycle tougher to steer than it should be. Also like most commuter motorcycles, there are vibrations as you go up the rev range but their manageable.
The suspension setup is basic, with telescopic forks in the front and adjustable swingarm mounted tubular shock absorbers at the rear, but they do a decent job on bumpy roads. The drum brakes both at the front and the rear feel weak with very little bite and coming to stop can be scary if you’re riding at a fast pace.
Verdict: The Yamaha Saluto is a very basic no frills no nonsense workhorse machine. It is slightly better than a 110cc commuter and it costs a bit less than its competitor the Honda Shine at a price tag of Rs. 52,000(ex-showroom Delhi).