• Photos: Neelanjan Chakraborty
  • Text & Tester: Syed Shiraz

Gixxer-vs-FZ-S-v2-FI-Pic

You must have read our review of the Yamaha FZ-S FI and we recently also tested the Suzuki Gixxer upon popular demand. So, ideally, going through both the reviews, one should be able to make his mind up when it comes to deciding between these two motorcycles. However, nothing clears up the doubts like a crisp comparo-shootout does, so that is what we did for all you folks out there who might still be in a dilemma as to which one among these two is more worthy of your hard-earned money. And keeping in mind that most of you would have already gone through our detailed reviews of both the motorcycles, I would keep this one really, really precise!

Design, instrumentation, and build quality

Gixxer and FZ-S

I have said this earlier and would say it again – ever since the first FZ-16 came out six years ago, everyone including me had believed that it would be next to impossible for a manufacturer to make a motorcycle in this segment as good looking as that one. And then the Version 2.0 happened…

No, the new one does not look better than the original (still on sale) – that was a flawless design! But neither can it be termed as an ugly bike by any stretch of imagination. In fact, it still looks handsome, and you won’t mistake it for any other bike, but while the owners of the previous FZ could click their pride and joy from any and every angle (and post it on their Facebook walls…), the owners of the new bike would slyly avoid shooting (no pun intended) the posterior of their new Yamaha. No such problem with the Gixxer! This Suzuki looks gorgeous from every angle. Oh yes, the tail light on the new FZ still does not have LEDs while the cheaper Gixxer sports a beautiful LED unit.

Gixxer vs FZ-S

Also, it’s the Gixxer that you can buy in five single colours whereas the FZ-S can only be had in dual-tone shades. There are four options to choose from and, as I had mentioned in the FZ-S review, the Molten Orange (our previous review bike) and Cyber Green are the colours to buy if, er.., Black is your favourite. However, I would like to add here that the FZ-16 FI (not the FZ-S FI) can be chosen in a single shade of paint, and two options are available – Red and Black, which happen to be the only colours available on that bike.

FZ-S vs Gixxer

Also, while the previous FZ-S’s fly screen looked like a chicken’s comb, the latest one’s has been superbly integrated. Now, in isolation, both the Gixxer and the FZ-S FI look great, and I did mention in the Gixxer review that it is the best-looking motorcycle in the segment. And my verdict hasn’t changed a bit. However, it’s only when you park both the bikes together that you can make a few more observations… The FZ-S FI ‘looks’ bigger, has more presence, and viewed head-on, the front-end looks more substantial than the Gixxer’s.  But again, it’s the Gixxer that decidedly looks more dedicated and its sportiness becomes more evident when one looks at both bikes in profile!

FZ-S and Gixxer

Yamaha gave the fuel-injected FZs an instrument console that is better in form and function than the carb FZs’ but…

FZ-S Instrument Cluster

it’s the Suzuki that trumps the FZs when it comes to the information displayed in their all-digital units. Other than the usual speed, tach, odo, etc., readouts, the Gixxer’s display shows you the time of the day and also the selected gear. And while the Yammie has an Eco-mode indicator, the Suzuki warns you through a white flasher that you either need to shift up or slow down.

Gixxer Instrument Cluster

Also, the Gixxer gets a kicker as well in addition to the electric start, but the FZ-S doesn’t.

Gixxer Kick Starter

Both the bikes are well put together but the build quality of Yamaha is superior. It might just be due to the fit & finish and plastic quality of the Gixxer’s switchgear, which is certainly a notch below than the Yamaha’s, but the FZ-S just ‘feels’ more premium.

Engine, Gearbox, and Performance

Yamaha FZ-S versus Suzuki Gixxer here means that it’s 149 cc versus 155 cc, 13.1 PS versus 14.8 PS, 12.8 Nm versus 14 Nm, 132 kg versus 135 kg, and fuel-injection versus carburetion, respectively. So while the Suzuki’s engine capacity, power and torque figures are slightly higher, the Yamaha weighs a shade less and is fuel-injected. Contrary to what you may have expected looking at the Gixxer’s spec sheet, it’s a close call…

Gixxer

Both bikes employ near-perfect gearboxes in terms of smoothness and precision; however, both could do better with six-speeders. The best part here is that both the Yamaha and the Suzuki are amazing at urban crawling while being equally rewarding when given the beans. One can actually ride these motorcycles between 30 km/h to 100 km/h-plus all day in the 5th gear; the Suzuki, even more so! Both motors are smooth units but the one under the tank of the FZ-S is more refined and its response to throttle inputs is something that the Gixxer can’t match until it gets fuel-injection as well…

FZ-S

Traffic light GPs will see both the bikes being neck and neck in the 0-60 km/h sprint with perhaps the Yamaha’s front wheel getting alongside the Gixxer’s front footpeg from there on until the finish, which happened at 115 km/h for the FZ-S and 116 km/h for the Gixxer on their respective speedos. Yes, that is how close they are in the real world. Also, both the bikes would see a couple of more kays on their digital displays given a longer (and empty) stretch of blacktop. Still, all said and done, it’s the Gixxer that is quicker and is faster, but only just.

Ride, Handling and Braking

The Gixxer and FZ-S in this department together form a perfect example of how similar two rivals can get and yet remain quite different! No, that’s not a cliché, and I’ll explain the first part, er, first – both have an identical wheelbase length of 1,330 mm; both get 100/80 (front) and 140/60 (rear) section rubber on 17-inch alloys; ground clearance of 160 mm is also common, and so is a 12-litre fuel tank; both get a front disc-rear drum combo (the Yammie’s disc is a mm bigger though); both employ 41 mm front forks and a monoshock at the rear, and both offer a similar (and comfortable) riding position too. So both should ideally perform in a similar manner, right? Not necessarily!

Gixxer vs FZ-S

If you have read my aforementioned reviews of these motorcycles, you would be able to conclude that both these motorcycles are evenly matched when it comes to handling. And you would be correct, however, they both FEEL different. The Gixxer handles beautifully and so does the FZ-S – they both would dive into a corner without a second thought and would remain rock-solid in a straight line – but the Yamaha feels even more reassuring almost everywhere!

Gixxer and FZ-S

Mind you, the Gixxer never gets nervous, be it in corners or on straights; it’s just that the FZ-S feels meatier of the two. But the Suzuki fights back by being the easier one to manoeuvre in tight spaces, despite being three kilograms heavier! It’s more effortless of the two when it comes to turn-tilt-crawl-turn-crawl to come at the front of the line at a jam-packed traffic signal. Both the bikes offer low saddle heights with Suzuki’s 780 mm high perch being 10 mm lower than even the Yamaha’s.

Gixxer and FZ-S front

It’s not a different story in the braking department too.  The front brakes of both the motorcycles provide great bite and feel while the rear drum of the Yamaha is half a notch better than the Suzuki’s in feel while offering a similar (and sufficient) bite. Therefore, good brakes coupled with phenomenal tyre grip in both the bikes result in confidence-inspiring braking even in the wet!

FZ-S & Gixxer Seats

The only area where you can perhaps pick one over the other would be the suspension. It’s not too different again, but it’s the FZ-S that would never bottom out with even a 100 kg pillion, whereas the Gixxer did with around 60 kg of weight on the rear seat. Conversely, the Suzuki is more comfortable for a solo rider over a cratered stretch of road!

Gixxer & FZ-S seats

Oh yes, the separate pillion seat of the FZ-S is more comfortable than the Gixxer’s. Also, despite no romantic inclination of any sort, the pillion on the Gixxer kept sliding forward, and no, she wasn’t wearing leather pants… The texture and angle of the seat is to be blamed then.

Verdict

I have not missed the section on fuel efficiency because it can be discussed in a line or two here. Both bikes, in a mixed cycle, will go on for around 50 km in a litre of fuel and careful riding can add approximately 8-10 km more to that figure. Yes, despite being fed through a carburetor, the Gixxer matches the fuel-injected FZ’s consumption habits.

Gixxer vs FZ-S

Now, to summarize, while the overall build quality of both motorcycles is on a par, the Gixxer’s switchgear plastic quality and finish could have been better. Also, the Yamaha feels more substantial and is also more comfortable for the pillion. But that is it!

The Suzuki does everything else in as good a manner as the Yamaha while also boasting of the best-in-class instrumentation. It also feels lighter despite being heavier, and still does not compromise in the handling department – in fact, as I had mentioned earlier, you’d be happier on the Gixxer in maddening rush hour traffic. Moreover, we finally have a motorcycle that looks better than the FZ, and it’s not only because the new FZ is not such a cohesive design that its original iteration was!

Still, it would have been a really close call, but at INR 79,809 on-road in Delhi, the Gixxer is around eight thousand rupees cheaper than the FZ-S FI and around six thousand rupees cheaper than the FZ-16 FI. That makes the Suzuki a terrific value for money proposition and also the winner of this comparison shootout!

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  • Arnold Seva

    There is a gross error in the power and torque specifications of FZ V2.0. The actual figures are as follows :
    1. Power – 13.1 PS (While you have mentioned 14PS).
    2. Torque – 12.8 Nm (While you have mentioned 13.6 Nm)

    What has really happened is that you have mentioned engine capacity of FZ V2.0 but torque and power figures of FZ V1.0. Please correct the mistake.

    • Thanks,
      Corrected

    • Syed Shiraz Shah

      Error rectified. Thank you for pointing it out Arnold 🙂

  • Kishore Agarwal

    Error !!! Error!!!
    The power and torque figures of FZ v2 are incorrect !!

    • Thanks, corrected

    • Syed Shiraz Shah

      Thanks Kishore! It has been corrected 🙂

  • Reeto

    Shiraz most websites are claiming the FZ V2 engine to be not as refined as the Gixxers’. Also the FZ V2 struggles post 80 kmph and the going gets slow post that, whereas the Gixxer breaches the 100 kmph mark quite comfortably. What’s your take on that?

    • Syed Shiraz Shah

      Have not read what others have written on the subject Reeto, but, as I have mentioned in the article, the FZ V2’s engine is certainly more refined of the two! And both these bikes do around 92-95 km/h comfortably, post which the progress does get slow – but that’s in both the bikes! Again, I have mentioned above that the Suzuki is quicker and faster, but it’s simply not a make or break factor here 🙂

      • Ben

        Hi, the performance figures quoted in the review are wrong for FZ version 2. FZ hardly touches 109 Kmph while Gixxer manages a healthy 116 Kmph. Also nearly there is a difference of 2.5 sec for the 0-100Kph acceleration timings. At around 95 Kmph vibrations creep in the Yamaha but the gixxer is smooth all the way to 110 Kmph. Clearly Gixxer is a step above FZ even in the real world performance let alone the calculated figures. I think you tested a brand new Gixxer. Please complete the break in period and let the engine free up and then test the beast out of the Gixxer.

      • Syed Shiraz Shah

        Ben, I think the figures you are quoting are from another publication/website. For that, check my reply to Asheesh above where he has mentioned the difference as 5 seconds.

        And no, the FZ V2 certainly goes beyond 109 km/h; my colleague, Neelanjan, saw 112 on the speedo WITH A PILLION! Of course, I saw 115. Solo. And btw, the Gixxer that we tested was a fully run-in sample 🙂 Again, the Gixxer is a quicker and faster machine but the difference is not much to write the Yammie off!

        Let me tell you something else too; when the details of the FZ-V2 first came out, I was majorly disappointed to learn about the drop in power. But when we tested it comprehensively we realized that nothing is amiss! 🙂

      • Ben

        Did you do a V box test or normal speedometer recording as the speedo has errors? Also the old FZ has a top speed less than 110 kmph and I don’t think version 2 is any faster than it. But I agree FZ is faster in the low end of the power band but as revs climb you can notice the brisk acceleration which the Gixxer makes and clearly ahead of FZ in each passing second. Also FZ is nearly saturated after 95 Kmph. That is clearly evident from the 0-100 timing in which itself Gixxer is clearly a couple of seconds faster. After 100Kph FZ is nearly Feedback less and manages it’s top speed with a great strain. That is the reason why the dynos have just given it 13Ps of power else will any brand downsize the power knowingly? FI has it’s own drawback right from the computer controlled valve timing to fuel supply. Nothing happens by natural means in a fuel injected bike. With injector cleaning every six months, I don’t think FZ will have consistent fuelling in the long run to keep up with Gixxer in real world performance. No offense to Yamaha fans! Also your review was excellent. Hats off.

      • Arnab Sanyal

        I can make out from this post that Shiraz has a soft corner for the Yammy. Gixxer is faster than FZ in 30-80 as well as 0-100 roll-ons and beyond that. It is very difficult to push FZ beyond 95.

      • Syed Shiraz Shah

        Yes, that is why the Gixxer won. 🙂

  • Pradeep

    If the result of the final shootout is based on the price, I see no reason why the comparison should be done with FZ version 2.0 instead of version 1.0. Please do a comparison with FZ version 1.0 and give your decision

    • Syed Shiraz Shah

      The result of the shootout is not “based” on the price Pradeep; please read the article to understand the verdict better. And let me just tell you that beating the first-gen FZs would be a walk in the park for the Gixxer 🙂

  • mukesh kumar

    any one suggest me which bike is better in power, comfortable , better ridding ,uses for long time purpose and cheap and low and easily provide spare parts in market option :- suzuki gixxer , bajaj discover 150 f. tvs apache rtr 160

    • Savio Tavadia

      Bajaj 150 takes the cake here in terms of economy so if u are looking for something with excellent midrange power its the 150F. Post that with a 105 topper, well it does fit here. As far as this comparo goes I can rate gixxy below only below the 200s.. KTM n ns. It has a decent ground clearance with rideability of the other two.. If I ever downgraded its gixxy. The fz2.0 is a joke, yes 1.0 had what it takes thus the gixxer does makes a worthy successor to the FZ 1.0

      • mukesh kumar

        pls suggest for long time bike tvs apache 160 rtr or gixxer 155 c or discover 15 f which one is better pls pls

      • Ben

        Gixxer or Apache. But Apache is filled with vibrations and you can’t corner like a Gixxer. The technology is outdated and the rear twin suspension with pathetic tyres will scare in some enthusiastic drivings. Better wait for the TVS-BMW bike or just get the Gixxer. Discover could be discontinued according to latest reports on the internet.

      • 01685905772

        please suggest me what should i buy ……1.suzuki gixxer and 2.fzs V-1…….what will be thye best pls guys inform me

      • Ben

        Gixxer anyday!

      • Ben

        Go for the Gixxer.

    • Savio Tavadia

      Discover F it is. You may also consider the AS150. And if you a looking for a streetfighter look then Gixxer gets my vote.

  • Sam KBose

    GIXXER performance beast

  • Ashish Pandey

    The review was good overall but the performance comparison was just…meh….Gixxer is definitely faster by a bigger margin than fz v2.I have driven both and fz v2 still loses breath quickly like fz v1. If you have doubts please check the powerdrift comparo in youtube…..gixxy is a full 5 sec faster than fz v2 in 0-100 kmph run, I just cant see how that can be marginal…:p

    • Syed Shiraz Shah

      Thanks Ashish. Please refer to my reply to Reeto below to better understand how both the bikes fare in acceleration runs. Now, so much hue and cry over my not unnecessarily glorifying the Gixxer’s acceleration, viz a viz the FZ V2’s, prompted me to glance over Autocar’s comparo of these two – they found out that the FZV2 is quicker by .01 sec. up to 60 km/h and slower to hundred by 2.5 seconds. So, if figures taken off state-of-the-art equipment can vary so much (you quote PD as saying it’s 5 seconds) I am better off relaying the seat-of-the-pants feel to my readers 🙂

  • Prabakaran Selvamani

    Whatever the result of shoot out. go with Yamaha engine, in this shootout you cant judge about the engine depreciation and how the bike will behave when 3 or 4 years old. better opt for FZ version 1, lot better than V2 in performance, Aggressive looks etc.

  • Good comparison. The Gixxer’s cornering ability, riding on roads filled with traffic is a Thumbs Up… Haven’t taken FZ for ride.. so cannot comment on it… In our locality, I see more of Yamaha FZ than Suzuki Gixxer

    • Syed Shiraz Shah

      Thank you GaadiKey 🙂 Much appreciated 🙂

  • 01685905772

    so what should i buy?

  • 01685905772

    please suggest me what should i buy ……1.suzuki gixxer and 2.fzs V-1…….what will be thye best pls guys inform me

    • Syed Shiraz Shah

      Test ride and buy what appeals to you more. You can’t go wrong with either of these wonderful products 🙂

  • Subham Kumar Bisoyi

    For a long term use which bike is gonna last.. As I’m not a fan of power.
    Which will have less maintenance regularly?
    Plz reply

    • Syed Shiraz Shah

      You won’t be going wrong with either Subham; however, the Gixxer is yet to prove its mettle in the longer run. It should be as trouble-free as the other Japs, but only time will tell. Plus, in my personal experience the Yamahas are almost maintenance-free, so I would recommend the FZ to you 🙂 Hope it helps!

      Regards,
      Shiraz

      • Subham Kumar Bisoyi

        Thanks a lot for your reply. Really appreciate it.

  • Chandan Singh

    the article says that u can ride at 100kmph all the day long on both the bikes. is it true as both are just air cooled engines and will get heated immensely and so may damage the bike.