Nowadays Bike enthusiasts are waking up from silent dream of the Fuel Efficiency. And every Biker wants his machine to satisfy him in terms of Performance. Young blood is flowing… err Revving with the changing trend in bike industry.
150cc bikes are balanced machines which try to give you a descent mileage with a higher cc performance. There was an era when a bike meant a HH Splendor, But nowadays higher capacity Engines are making their statement.
We look at this segment as a segment of opportunity as various Brands are making various experiments to churn out that extra revv you always wanted in your machine along with some healthy fuel efficiency. Youngsters and many commuters find this segment opt for them.
We will be putting a total 12 machines head to head in this shootout. We have purposely kept R15 Out of this shootout, as it belongs to a different class, it would’ve been a clear winner if it was included here, obviously.
Our Contestants Are:
Hey! For your convenience I have added anchor links for each of the bikes, click it and you will be taken to the review part directly! – Deepak
- Bajaj Pulsar 150 DTS-i
- Bajaj Discover 150
- Honda CB Unicorn
- Honda CB Unicorn Dazzler
- Hero Honda Achiever
- Hero Honda CBZ-Xtreme
- Hero Honda Hunk
- Yamaha FZ16
- Yamaha Fazer 150cc
- Yamaha SZ-X
- TVS APACHE 160
- Suzuki GS-150R
1. Bajaj Pulsar 150cc
One of the oldest 150cc bike in indian biking scene, legendary machine with legendary sales so far. Bajaj is an innovative company having number of technologies which were debuted by the brand in india. Pulsar makes 15.06 Ps @ 9000 rpm with Max. Torque 12.5 Nm @ 6500 rpm with its 149.01cc Engine, which is tempting if you want a powerful machine.
Though it lacks some midrange grunt and you have to keep shifting gears to keep it in the power band. Pulsar is able to touch top speed of 115km/h which is satisfactory for a 150cc machine. The gearshift quality has been improved by several notches over its earlier versions. Pulsar is equipped with Digital console, LEDs, Clip Ons, tank flaps, Nitrox suspension etc. Maintenance and reliability is what you need to worry about. Bajaj bikes cost you less but costs you more in maintenance. Bajaj can still improve in engine refinement and quality of spare parts.
Pulsar is recommended for you if you are a performance freak, if you like stunting, can compromise engine refinement and maintenance, and is ready to ride a machine which is found almost everywhere, and has lost its uniqueness upto certain extent. If performance and power lures you, Pulsar might be your next bike!
You may be interested in Bajaj Pulsar 150cc Ownership Review
2. Bajaj Discover 150cc
Discover brand is familiar for 100cc commuters being highest selling bike in the segment, Discover 150 is Bajaj’s smart move to pull its commuter-customers into 150cc segment. Bajaj Discover is cheapest 150cc bike which looks exactly as its younger sibling Discover 100.
Discover makes 13.0 PS @ 7500 rpm with Max Torque 12.75 Nm @ 5500 rpm with its 144.8cc Engine. The price you pay for these figures is very competitive. The bike is equipped with analog console which surprised us as even its 100cc sibling offers a digital console! Nitrox suspension, LED tail lamps, All black engine theme adds to its looks, though we still havent mate anybody who loves discover’s looks. Being a Bajaj product, bike lacks in Engine refinement and aftersales maintenance. We have to wait and watch, if Bajaj’s strategy works, Discover might be the next best selling 150cc commuter!
If you want to test out 150cc revvs without compromising fuel efficiency, and can compromise maintenance, refinement and most importantly ‘Looks’, then Discover 150 is for you.
You may be interested in Bajaj Discover 150 Comprehensive Road Test
3. Honda CB Unicorn
CB Unicorn is ruling this segment for last 5 years in terms of engine refinement. Unicorns have seen many cosmatic changes in these years. Honda CB Unicorn oozes solid engineering brilliance and top notch build quality, but with its aging looks, the refined marvel is lagging in the competition.
Unicorn makes 13.3bhp @ 8000 rpm with max Torque 1.3 kg-m @ 5500 rpm with its 149.1cc Engine. It touches top speed of 111km/h.The performance is basic but is enough to tackle day to day rush. 3D Emblem on Fuel tank is the only Style element you can spot though with black engine treatment and high quality paintjobs, Unicorn poses its classy looks in its unique way. Unicorn features maintenance free battery, TuffUp Tubes and viscous air filter to minimize maintenance. India’s first mono-suspension works like wonder even on bumpy roads. Honda’s knee placement adds to the comfort and ergonomics of the bike. Absence of Digital console, LEDs and average power figures puts this machine behind in competition.
If you are looking for High quality stuff with almost no maintenance and Engine refinement, and can compromise on Style factor, Unicorn might find its way to your Home!
You may be interested in Honda Unicorn Ownership Review by Manish
4. Honda CB Unicorn Dazzler
When Honda finally listened to its loyals, Dazzler was born. It was first showcased as the Unicorn ‘Sport’ concept at the Auto Expo 2010. Honda gave us almost no chance to complain with the machine which was superior in looks, power, performance and style.
Dazzler is equipped with same engine is unicorn but is tuned to produce 14bhp @ 8500rpm with torque 1.3 kg-m @ 6500rpm. It registers an impressive top whack of 118km/h. Dazzler features Digital console, Rear Disc (Optional), Sporty looks, Floating panels featuring Honda Emblem, 110/80 Tubeless tyres, Maintenance free battery, Viscous air filter and the list continues. Its one big step above Unicorn. All these comes at slightly high price which might make you jump into higher cc segment to satisfy your perfomance thirst!
Honda Dazzler is for you if you want trusted engine of Unicorn and cant compromise on built quality but want a competitive perfomance machine.
You may be interested in Honda CB Unicorn Dazzler: A Comprehensive Roadtest
5. Hero Honda Achiever
Achiever is old commuter from Hero Honda stable which recently got a botox treatment to sustain the competition. Achiever comes with basic looks which justify its competitive price. It makes 13.4 bhp@8000 rpm with Torque 12.8N-m@5000 rpm with its 149.1cc Engine, borrowed from Unicorn.
Achiever features basic aesthetic elements. TuffupTube is only a worth mention feature which helps you in minimizing maintenance.
If you want a basic looking reliable 150cc, better than discover in looks but cheaper than Unicorn, Then Hero Honda Achiever is for you.
You may be interested in Hero Honda Achiever Review
6. Hero Honda CBZ – Xtreme
Biking community was obessed with CBZ Mania many years ago. All new CBZ Xreme promises you to deliver optimum power and mileage with its upgraded avatar.
CBZ Xtreme makes 14.4PS@8500 rpm with Torque 12.8N-m@6500 rpm with its 149.2cc engine, borrowed from Unicorn.
It features Analog console, LED tail lights, Split grab rails, Dual tone rear cowl with body tone alloy wheel which adds to its style quotient.
CBZ is a healthy mixture of Looks, Performance, and Mileage. CBZ still can improve in areas like Suspension, Ride quality and a Digital Console.
You may be interested in Hero Honda CBZ Xtreme Atft Ownership Review
7. Hero Honda Hunk
Hunk is a mascular mean machine from Hero Honda stable. It features semidigital console, LED tail light, Rear Disc (Optional), Muscular design, Tubeless tyres, Hero Honda’s first gas-charged shock absorbers etc.
It makes 14.4PS@8500 rpm with Torque 12.8N-m@6500 rpm with its 149.2cc Engine, borrowed from Unicorn. It touches the top speed of 107km/h. Hunk immediately impresses with its brimming midrange torque. It’s handling is on par with its peers with the ergonomic riding posture aiding considerably.
The Hunk is practically the CBZ Xtreme in a more stylish and muscular costume. The bike’s build quality is trademark HH – robust and solid. The bulging tank scoops shout for attention from every angle. It still remains a worthy overall competitor to high ranked bikes in the segment.
You may be interested in Hero Honda Hunk Ownership Review by Russel
8. Yamaha FZ 16
FZ revolutionised the 150cc segment with its mean looks and perfomance. It completely changed how the 150cc bike ‘can’ look. Its naked street bike design inspired from its international 1000cc sibling, the FZ1, makes it one of most attractive deals on two wheels in India currently.
FZ makes 14ps@7500 rpm with Torque 14Nm@6000 rpm with its 153cc Engine. It features Eye-raising 140/60 rear tyre, Rear Monoshock suspension, Mascular Fuel tank and Digital console but we found it almost useless to look into while driving. With its Street fighter looks, Yamaha built quality, Highclass Performance FZ-16 Stand tall to find its place somewhere in top ranks.
Its soft seat and a wide almost flat handlebar give you a comfortable riding stance even during long rides. Uncomfortable seat, Little space for pillion, Poor console, Low mileage figures are the few drawbacks worth a mention. FZ-16, Though is relieble in maitenance with features like tubeless tyres, still needs to work in service areas as many complain about aftersale services. Most of the FZ Owners honestly confess us that buying decision was taken solely considering looks.
If you want to look Mean, want a real performer at the cost of low mileage, FZ-16 plays the role. It is available in one more avatar called FZ-s which features some graphical upgrades and nothing interesting in terms of performance upgrades.
You may be interested in Yamaha FZ16 Ownership Review by Rahul
9. Yamaha Fazer
Yamaha’s tricky machine for those who want R15 – similar aesthetics but at a competitive price.
Fazer is a Semifaired FZ featuring some graphical upgrades over FZ.
With Exactly same engine as FZ, we wonder how Fazer manages to be a ‘Touring Spirit’! Fazer is for you if you wanted a FZ, but can’t hide your love for Faired machines!
You may be interested in Yamaha Fazer 153cc Ownership Review by Masum
10. Yamaha SZ-X
SZ-X is latest bike from Yamaha, which is priced aggressively to heat-up the competition. It makes 12.1PS@7,500 rpm with Torque 12.8N.m@4500 rpm with its 153 cc Engine. Though it surely looks appealing and unique, no feature is worth a mention. SZ features both Drum Brakes which might be a disappointment for many.
It does not feature a tachometer. Ride quality is appealing though not as expected to survive the competition. Its a overall package but a little compromise on performance being an entry level machine.
SZ-X can be a good choice if you admire Yamaha, if you want a unique machine as not much SZs found on roads, and if you want an entry level overall package.
You may be interested in Yamaha SZ-X Comprehensive Road Test Review
11. TVS Apache RTR 160
Performance is the key to success of this bike. Ever since Apaches hit the indian road, TVS have made a new statement in the biking scene. TVS Apache scores high in the segment in terms of performance.
It makes 15.2bhp@8500 rpm with Torque 13.1N-m@6000 rpm with its 159.7cc engine. These figures are enough to satisfy performance freak! Apache goes on all the way to a top speed of 118km/h. It features digital speedo, LED tail lights, Clip-On handle bars, Gas charged MIG shocks, Engine Cowl, Aerodynamic airscoops and the list continues! There is even a 0-60km/h timer and a top speed recorder on the LCD display. Running racing stripes, dual petal discs and rear set footpegs are some of the highlights of the bike’s design angles. Apache has one of the best power-to-weight ratio in the segment. TVS still needs to work on engine refinement, Service centre networks and Mileage.
If you want a sheer performer and can compromise on comfort and mileage, Book one and you won’t regret.
You may be interested in TVS Apache RTR 160 Review by Anand
12. Suzuki GS150R
Suzuki’s first ever 150cc for India, Featuring 6 Speed gearbox, unique in its segment. GS150R gives you big bike feel as its biggest in its class. It features Digital console, LEDs, Gas charged shocks etc. It looks simple, and promising. Console also specifies which gear you are currently in. Bike lets you choose between three different modes. 149.5cc engine is smooth, making 13.8bhp@8,500 rpm with Torque 13.4Nm@6,000 rpm.
The ride is comfortable and fuel efficient. Suzuki needs to improve its service network though.The GS features the widest seat of the segment. It touches 108km/h at ease. Though its not the fastest but it is supremely comfortable and dependable.
If you always wanted that extra gear, with overall balanced features and ok with basic looks, Suzuki just made it for you!
You may be interested in:
- FZ rules Design and Looks department, and continues to be Lord of the Streets.
- Engine and Performance crown is shared by Unicorn siblings and Apache. Unicorn siblings feature most refined engine and Apache outperforms the competitors in the segment.
- Comfort and Ergonomics department coined by Hondas, HeroHondas and GS-150R
- Maintenance and Reliability is ruled by Dazzler which stands still with Honda quality and Tubeless tyres.
- Fuel Efficiency finds a clear winner in Discover 150
Above analysis might find give you an idea of clear winner, but all high ranked machines takes handful of money out of your pocket.
Top 3 can be summedup as: If the Yamaha FZ16 is all about looks and the Honda CB Unicorn Dazzler is about engine refinement and a superior suspension, it’s the TVS Apache RTR that redefines performance in this segment. Hero Honda Hunk achieves overall balanced ratings.
Honda CB Unicorn Dazzler looks like the overall winner!
We hope you enjoyed our 12 bikes shootout! We would like to say that personal choices may differ over some subjects in the shootout. Kindly comment below about the article and your opinions.
Thanks & Regards
- Pranav Kelkar & Deepak Raj