2021 Yamaha RayZR 125 Fi-Hybrid First Ride Review | Has Yamaha's sporty scooter gotten better with the addition of hybrid tech?
Yamaha has given its 125cc scooters -- The RayZR 125 and the Fascino 125 a mid-life update. For 2021, the brand has updated them with a hybrid tech, a few cosmetic updates and connected tech to help them keep up with their rivals like the TVS Ntorq 125, Honda Activa 125 and the Honda Grazia 125. The new Hybrid engine promises more performance along with greater efficiency. So do all these changes translate into the real world? Let's find out.
You can read about what's new on the Fascino 125 here. So let's see what its sister scoot the RayZR has to offer:
Yamaha RayZR Hybrid Designs
The RayZR has always stood out in its class, due to its sporty and sleek styling. And for the 2021 model year, Yamaha has given it new graphics and a bunch of new colours which make it appear sharper than before. Upfront, it gets a new LED headlight, with DRL that is mounted high up on the handle. When it comes to quality on the RayZR 125 Hybrid, nothing has changed and it continues to feel well built. Available in two variants — the standard and Street Rally, there are seven colours to choose from. The Street Rally variant, as the name suggests, gets knobby tyres, handguards and metal plates at the front and back.
Yamaha RayZR Hybrid Engine
Yamaha gave the RayZR a 125cc powerplant last year and now, this engine can be had with hybrid assistance — a small electric motor which Yamaha calls Smart Motor Generator (SMG). The single-cylinder 125cc fuel-injected engine produces 8.04bhp at 6500rpm and 10.3Nm at 5000rpm. And while the power outputs from the engine remain unchanged, the electric motor adds in 0.7Nm more torque, which provides boots from a standstill and while tackling a steep climb. This addition might seem minor on paper, but it has resulted in making the RayZR 125 feeling quicker while twisting the throttle from a standstill. The RayZR's engine feels refined and I managed to get the bike to a speedo-indicated top whack of 96kmph. But it did take a while to get there. The scooter will comfortably stroll up to 75kmph and then will climb up from there at a slow pace. On our test, we managed to squeeze out an average of 50kmpl from the RayZR Hybrid with mixed riding conditions, that should ideally give it a total range of approximately 250km on a single tank of fuel.
Yamaha RayZR Features
Speaking of the features, the new RayZR is equipped with a fully digital instrument cluster, which, while being a welcoming addition, omits practical stuff like a clock. It displays your speed, the odometer, fuel meter and that's about it. Also present is Yamaha's Bluetooth Connect X connectivity, which offers features like remote hazard light and horn activation, locate my bike, and riding history. But, like with the Fascino 125 Hybrid, this system misses out on the important stuff like turn-by-turn navigation and incoming call/message notification functions. The SMG also makes possible a start-stop system that cuts off the engine if left idle for more than 3 seconds to save fuel.
The lack of an external fuel filler is one thing we missed on the RayZR which should've been present when almost every other scooter in its class gets it now. The RayZR gets a side-stand engine cut-off function which is a good safety feature and large 21-litre under seat storage compartment which can be equipped with the optional phone charger.
Yamaha RayZR Hybrid Ride and Handling
The Yamaha RayZR's low kerb weight has been its biggest advantage. Tipping the scales at just 99kg, the RayZR feels agile and extremely flickable. It's short length makes it easy to move around in parking or in traffic jams. The RayZR has a fairly stiff ride which adds to its sporty character, but its front end is a bit too stiff and this is particularly troublesome while navigating the sharp bumps or potholes that our roads are riddled with. The same stiff setup comes handy when you come across a set of twisties .The RayZR feels very spirited and you can have a good amount of fun round the bends. As for its brakes, the RayZR gets the same setup as its sibling, the Fascino 125 Hybrid, with a Disc brake up front and a drum brake at the rear. While this configuration does a good job of stopping the RayZR in a balanced manner due to its UBS (Unified Braking System), it does lack the initial bite required.
The RayZR's turning circle isn't as good as others in the class and it is quite noticeable if you are a tall rider. Its footboard is spacious but you will hit your knees on the sharp bits present around the key slot which will become bothersome over the long term.
Yamaha RayZR Hybrid Verdict
The Yamaha RayZR 125 Hybrid is a good choice if you are looking for a scooter that blends practicality and fun. It’s lightweight and flick-able nature makes it a breeze to ride and it’s practical features like a big-boot and the start-stop system make it a good companion in the city. But yes, there are a few aspects where it could've been better, like more connected tech and a smoother ride. With prices starting at Rs 76,800 for the base variant without a front disc brake, the RayZR is Rs 3,800 more expensive than the base variant of the TVS Ntorq, it’s main rival. However, that is a good deal considering the fact that the RayZR gets a hybrid system that gives it better mileage. But if outright sportiness is what you’re looking for, the TVS Ntorq 125 is still the one to get.