Aprilia SR 125

The Aprilia SR 150 may have been a hoot of a scoot, but it’s fair to say that it didn’t set the scooter mar­ket on fire. Will the down­sized 125 achieve what big brother couldn’t?

Bike India - - CONTENTS - FIRST RIDE APRILIA SR 125 STORY: HARKET SUCHDE PHO­TOG­RA­PHY: SAU­RABH BOTRE

Will the down­sized 125 achieve what big brother couldn’t?

coot­ers in in­dia are of­ten seen as ver­sa­tile, con­ve­nient, and fam­i­lyfriendly. a jack of all trades that dad can take to the bar­ber’s for a shave, mum can take to the mar­ket for a shop­ping stint, and the kids can take to col­lege. re­li­able, de­pend­able, and typ­i­cally bor­ing even when dressed up in a youth­ful and ur­ban guise. aprilia flipped the script with the sr 150, though — a scooter that is flashy, dy­namic, and in your face. But, maybe, also a lit­tle ahead of its time — from what the aprilia in­dia team said, the 150 may have been a lit­tle too fast, a lit­tle too fuel-thirsty, a lit­tle too on the nose, ac­cord­ing to cus­tomer feed­back. the sr 125 is the brand’s an­swer to all these con­cerns. as the name sug­gests, the sr 125 comes with a smaller en­gine, but that’s not all that’s changed. Looks wise, you’d be hard pressed to find these dif­fer­ences that set the two apart, though. the sr 125 has the ex­act same plat­form, body, and styling cues as the 150. those sharp lines and lithe, ag­gres­sive ap­proach are clas­sic aprilia, and still pack as much ap­peal as be­fore. the sr 125 comes in two ex­clu­sive paint schemes that set it apart, though — the shiny sil­ver one i rode and an equally eye-catch­ing blue op­tion. the sticker job on the new 125 is also ever so slightly sub­dued as com­pared to the 150.

The big change, how­ever, is the seat. This again is a re­sult of cus­tomer feed­back as per the Aprilia reps at the ride. They said that there were com­plaints about the seat, par­tic­u­larly pil­lion com­fort, and that this new de­sign should ad­dress those. As the pic­ture in­di­cates, the seat on the 125 is nar­rower in the front, wider at the back, and slightly longer than the one on its el­der sib­ling. The nar­row front end means that riders whose heels couldn’t quite make con­tact with the tar­mac may now see their feet planted flush, and the wider rear end will al­low for, er... wider rear ends of pil­lions to fit com­fort­ably too. The seat is now monochro­matic as op­posed to the dual tone on the 150 and comes with a seat strap for pil­lions to grab on to. The split grab-rail has been re­moved and now a more prom­i­nent one-piece grab-rail is avail­able as an op­tional ac­ces­sory. There’s also a new sari­guard in­cor­po­rated into the scooter’s aes­thetic. Leg space is still a lit­tle cramped, es­pe­cially when rid­ing two up, same as its sib­ling.

Start up the bike and both the lay­out and switchgear will look fa­mil­iar, and the qual­ity of said switchgear, which was a com­plaint on the 150, is car­ried over to this model too. Thumb the starter and fire up the en­gine, and the first thing you’ll no­tice is that it isn’t as loud as its pre­de­ces­sor. Bor­rowed from its Vespa cousin, the air-cooled 124.7cc sin­gle pro­duces 9.52 PS at 7,250 rpm and 9.9 Nm of torque at 6,250 rpm. In­ter­est­ingly, the Vespa 125s pro­duce 10.06 PS and 10.60 Nm of torque, so the Aprilia ap­pears de­tuned on pa­per. How­ever, one twist of the throt­tle is enough to con­firm that what it lacks in out­right fig­ures over the wasps, it sure makes up for in punch off the line. The Aprilia 125 hasn’t lost any of the pep and zip that made the 150 so pop­u­lar among en­thu­si­asts, but what has changed is the ex­haust note, which is less gruff, and the re­fine­ment, which is much im­proved. I’m itch­ing to com­pare the 125’s 0-60 km/h time to its el­der sib­ling, be­cause they might just be closer than we think — it was that im­pres­sive in the ac­cel­er­a­tion de­part­ment. It also pulled com­fort­ably to 90+ km/h and seemed to have more legs on it too; sadly, traf­fic and traf­fic lights played spoil­sport.

The 125 is no slouch in the han­dling de­part­ment ei­ther. Since it sports the same chas­sis, has 14-inch wheels wrapped in sticky Vee Rub­ber tyres and sus­pen­sion set up as that in the SR 150, its be­hav­iour around cor­ners is ex­actly iden­ti­cal to the big­ger SR — and that’s a very good thing. The 125 cor­ners like a champ with the scooter stay­ing planted even when cor­ner­ing at speed. That taut front tele­scopic fork/rear monoshock setup still feels a lit­tle too much on the firm when tak­ing on road un­du­la­tions and sud­den pot­holes, though. Brak­ing me­chan­i­cals, too, are iden­ti­cal, with a ByBre unit con­sist­ing of a 220-mm disc with twin-pis­ton caliper up front and a 140-mm drum brake at the rear. The SR 125 is sharp to a stand­still and its brak­ing per­for­mance leaves no cause for com­plaint.

Aprilia reps also claim that the SR

125 of­fers sig­nif­i­cantly greater fuel ef­fi­ciency, al­though you’ll have to wait for our road test for of­fi­cial con­fir­ma­tion of that. If it is more fru­gal, though, then that, cou­pled with the gen­er­ous 6.5 litres of fuel hold­ing ca­pac­ity should of­fer up a size­able range. Un­der-seat stor­age is lim­ited to the point where a half-face hel­met will fit, but not much more. Over­all, the SR 125 is a slightly more prac­ti­cal vari­ant of its sib­ling with the meatier en­gine and has quite a few im­prove­ments on the 150 with­out los­ing out on what makes the range fun and sets it apart from the throng. And priced as it at Rs 65,626 (ex-show­room), it should def­i­nitely form part of your con­sid­er­a­tion, should you be in the mar­ket for a 125-cc scooter.

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