Yamaha FZ25: Is it a worthy upgrade?

What’s appreciable about the bike:

-Low end torque which helps the bike to pull in higher gears as well.
-A responsive, never-breathless engine can let you ride above 110 kmph all day long.
-Bassy exhaust note.
-Distinctive white Led headlight and a pilot lamp which looks premium.
-Excellent suspensions which provide a plush ride over the rough patches.
-Very comfortable pillion seat.
-Beefy design gives a big bike feel.

What could have been better:

-A low fuel efficiency of 27 kmpl overall.
-Minimal information in the instrument console.
-Lack of ABS on such powerful machine.
-The illumination produced is low and the range of light throw isn’t adequate which makes the night rides difficult.
-The O2 sensor wire and engine heat detector are revealed and look way out of place.

The Yamaha Fz series has been one of the favorites in the 150 cc  segment since a long time now. The USP of this series was the muscular looks, high end performance and the wide tyre, which was unmatched by any of its competitors at that time. It had the bullet proof reliability, excellent fuel efficiency and low maintenance. But recent years have seen launch of some excellent bikes from Bajaj, KTM and Honda. The launch of a quarter litre bike from Yamaha was much awaited by the Yamaha fans who were keen on an upgrade. Finally, Yamaha came up with the FZ25 which was launched at a surprisingly affordable price of INR 1,19,335 (ex-showroom Delhi). So to find out how well it competes against KTM 200 Duke and the Bajaj Pulsar series, we took it for a spin and here’s our opinion of the bike.

Looks & Aesthetics

The bike certainly is a looker and comes in 3 color variants to choose from- Knight Black, Ballistic Blue and Warrior White. It measures 2015 mm in length, 770 mm in width and stands 1075 mm tall. The FZ25 has a wheelbase of 1360 mm and a ground clearance of 160 mm which are sufficient to clear most of the bumps. In the smaller (150 cc) siblings, the scraping of exhaust and catalytic converter was an issue which has been neatly dealt in FZ25. It weighs 148 kg only and this light machine is quite manageable. The bike gets a bigger and stylish fuel tank with a capacity of 14 litres which makes it capable of mile munching without any fuel breaks. The Led headlamp along with the 2 tone color schemes gives the bike a premium appeal. The AHO featured headlamp is the striking feature of this bike but it’s the other way round in the night. It has enough intensity but the range / spread is very poor and angled very near to the bike. The tail light is very pleasing to the eyes but the indicators look outdated and they could have been sleeker.

 

The handlebar is a single rod assembly which is good for upright rider position and the switches are very well accessible, but the grip quality could be better. The instrument console is a fully digital unit which is so basic that it lacks gear position indicator. It displays minimal information which are present in the commuter segment bikes. In short, it appears pretty boring. A windshield will definitely help if you are planning to use this as a tourer. The quality of the switches is so-so as compared to those mounted on R15. It is really surprising that the instrument console does vibrate at times which shows hints at the poor plastic quality used. The mirrors are stylish but the design and small size create a blind spot occasionally. During the ride, the vibration of mirrors at times at reminded us of the Royal Enfields.

 

The seat assembly is very well designed for the rider as well as pillion. The split step seats are very well cushioned and spacious to carry a pillion but the seat cover could be of a better texture to avoid slipping. The grab rails are very well placed and are very comfortable to hold on. The footpegs are placed in a comfortable position but they lessen the confidence of the rider to lean the bike as they are not rear set. However, the riding posture is pretty upright and comfortable for touring. The ground clearance could be a concern if you are carrying a pillion with you. The exhaust is similar to its smaller siblings.

Engine Performance & Ride Quality

The FZ25 has a 249cc, single cylinder, air-cooled, SOHC fuel-injected engine mated to a 5 speed gearbox. The engine churns out a power output of 20.9 bhp @ 8000 rpm and a torque of 20 Nm @ 6000 rpm. The bike has a very limited torque band which starts from 4,500 rpm to 8000 rpm. It means that it is basically a power commuter than a straight out sportsbike. The power output is relatively low compared to other bikes of the quarter litre segment. The throttle response is excellent and the power delivery can be felt at the slightest throttle. Yamaha has ensured that it lives upto the expectations it had raised with its ad campaigns. The engine is very well refined and vibration free. The bike is capable enough to cruise at 100+ kmph speeds tirelessly. The engine shows no sign of stressing at any point of time unless you try to push it beyond 130 kmph. The sound of the engine and the exhaust note are pleasure to ears.

The power increases smoothly and the pillion will not feel the sudden pull which will make the ride very pleasant. But when riding it on the highway ,the need for the sixth gear is felt very significantly. The bike picks up pace initially upto 120 kmph but it takes a lot time to reach greater speeds. It has a 282 mm 2-pot caliper single disc in the front and a 220 mm single pot caliper at the rear. The bike provides good stopping power but the absence of ABS is prominent.

It has a 41 mm telescopic suspension at the front and a monoshock at the rear which are noticeably plush and perfectly suited for the Indian Road Conditions. The FZ25 comes with 17 inch alloy wheels both at the front as well as the rear with a 100/80 section and a 140/70 section nylogrip tyres respectively. The tyres have poor grip and do not give the confidence to lean the bike even slightly. Overall the riding feels like it’s a power commuter which means it is best placed for city commuting and long rides.

Our Verdict

This is a bike for someone who commutes a lot everyday with a pillion and is not interested in racing around. It steals the show with its looks and performance both as a street fighter and a tourer. It does not qualify on the sportsbike aspects. The lack of 6th gear and inability to reach high speeds is bit embarrassing for a 249 cc bike like this. But overall, the bike is a sweet package. It is perfect for commuters who are looking for an upgrade from 150 – 180 cc bikes. It has the perfect style quotient, unmatched performance and is quiet tamable. Even though it may lack the speed like its rivals, but it successfully delivers a rich ride quality and the joy of riding.

Specifications

Dimensions Length 2015 mm
Width 770 mm
Height 1075 mm
Wheelbase 1360 mm
Ground clearance 160 mm
Kerb weight 148 kg
Fuel capacity 14 Litres
Engine Type Air cooled, 4-stroke, SOHC, 2-valve
Displacement (cc) 249
Max power 20.9 PS @ 8000 RPM
Max torque 20 Nm @ 6000 RPM
Clutch Wet, multiple disc
Gearbox 5 speed
Braking System & Tyres Brakes front* (mm) 282 dia disc
Brakes rear* (mm) 220 dia disc
Tyres front 100/80-17M/C 52P
Tyres rear 140/70-17M/C 66S
Chassis & Suspension Frame Diamond
Front Suspension Telescopic, 41 mm forks
Rear Suspension Swingarm (Monocross)
Electricals Battery 12V
Headlamp Full LED with Auto Headlamp On (AHO)
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