18000 Kms 1.5 Year Long User Review Yamaha FZ-S: Arun Describes His Killers Killing Instincts!

Arun has submitted this review in our Ownership Review Contest No 13, ensuring himself an assured prize. The contest also offers a chance to win Riding Jacket, Helmet and more…Here are all the details.

Hi guys, this is Arun, 20 years old, doing B.E.Mechatronics. I’m here to write up my very first ownership review of my beloved FZS. Probably my love story! 2nd August 2012 was the happiest day in my life and which can’t be expressed by words. My love to that machine made some of my friends even to store my contact number as “Arun FZ”. It’s my symbol of freedom and success.

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PASSION TOWARDS BIKING

Since my childhood I was fond of bikes and travelling. I was grown up in a village by my granny because of schooling. In that place what we can see is only TVS 50s, Splendors or some rich people will go for Bullet or RX100. Every weekend my parents ‘ll come for me on that time I ask my dad for a spin in his BAJAJ Cheetak.

Later he switched to SUZUKI MAX R100. At the age of 10 I learnt bike riding in MAX R100. Then experienced the speed with my dad’s Yamaha G5 (still running). Then I came with my parents for higher secondary school, Coimbatore. Here I am exposed to all kinds of automobiles. They bought me Scooty Streak for schooling & tution. I had some worst feelings with that. I managed to finish the school and joined B.E in a reputed college. Days passed and I came to 2nd year. Now I needed a bike for college immediately. So my love story starts here.

FZ was launched in 2009 and when I happen to see it for the first time in news paper, I was like “which idiot will buy this kind of bike?”. Later I am one of those bunch of idiots! Lets get to the story….

BULLET TO FZ-S

As a bike enthusiast I wanted a bike which suits my requirements (proud of owning, reliable, looks, decent mileage). My dad was a fan of REs and me too, so to stand out of the crowd we went to Royal Enfield showroom for enquiry (Thunder Bird TS). It costs 1.27L with 6 month waiting period.

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Me & my dad were really disappointed on hearing. I took a test drive of TBTS. I liked it very much, also am 6.2 ft. So I handled it easily. I can’t wait for that much long. So hunt for a bike that suits me begins…

my choices were R15, FZS, and UNICORN…

As I have to drop my mom regularly, she felt difficult with R15’s saddle and she didn’t like me with a racing bike. So now it’s between FZS & UNICORN. Both are from a stable company, refined engines.

My dad insisted me to get Unicorn (hassle free bike) which gives 50+ average. Approached the nearest showroom and the feedback was not satisfied and more over I am not interested in driving a uncle’s looking bike. I just wanted a refreshing looker, head turner to make it simple a bachelor bike.

Next day went to Yamaha showroom to take a test drive on FZ and also SZR because of same engine. I felt uncomfortable on SZ-R due to my height. I can’t place my legs perfectly. Then the “beast” came. Took for a spin. Whoa what a pick up?? I just twisted the throttle bit it flew with a butter smooth engine. I doubted whether I am riding a Honda engine:-P. With no other thoughts in mind booked it on 30th July 2012, a white bull with blue tattoos.

DELIVERY

Then the sleepless nights continued till 2nd Aug 2012 as I planned to take my toy home on that auspicious day in southern India. On that day I had college and I barely slept 2 to 3 hours.  Got up early & went to college, gave attendance for 2 hours then bunked it. I rushed to the showroom, there my dear KILLER was waiting for me.

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Completed all the paper works and done PRE DELIVERY INSPECTION. Fitted a crash guard and tank cover in their authorized service centre. And now its ready to roll on the streets.

From my childhood, my dad, whom I was holding him back tightly as a pillion and a person who taught me how to ride became my 1st pillion on my 1st ever bike . We started to move to the nearest gas station and I was in a excitement, that made me smile like a child all the way towards the home.

FIRST CRUSH:

I named this beast “killer”, for its looks and performance. For few weeks I noticed lots of heads turning and few approached for enquiring about its price and some to warn me that my rear tyre seems flat. Most of the people misjudged the low profile tire for puncture. Days went and started knowing all the nooks and corners about the killer and the bond started to develop.

Here comes the technical part

DESIGN

On stance it looks like a raging bull, waiting to unleash its raw power. The YAMAHA team tried to make a naked street bike to roll on our streets and they accomplished by their aggressive looking design. I can say it gives a new definition to naked style bikes in India.

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Big monocross suspension, wider rears tire in its segment, beefy fuel tank protector, diamond type frame, triangular & sharp looking head light dome. It resembles their elder brothers FZ6 and FZ1 proudly introduced as brutal beauty.

It is a compact and bachelor’s bike so that it occupies less space also you can park it in your hall as a showcasing machine. Now FZ series comes with dual tone colours and YAMAHA constantly upgrades its colour. Paint quality is at top notch.

It has fully digitalised console, has a tachometer, odometer, speedometer, 1 trip meter, fuel gauge, hazard light, high beam etc. The name FZ was born by the posture of rider sitting in it. And also the rear tyre equipped here is “specially designed” and manufactured for FZ series by the MRF with the help of Yamaha design team. This 140\60 fatter tyre not only adds looks also its handling.

The handlebar is a single piece wider one that allows the rider to get the commuter level comfort and reduces the back pain. The seats were much comfortable for the rider and not much for the pillion on long rides. If the person is heavy he has to climb to top and starts cursing the person responsible for it. Yamaha is always a miser in this part. Other than this all the things were done with ergonomics.

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Being a naked style bike it finds bit hard to reach its top end.

PERFORMANCE

The heart of this beast is an air cooled, 4 stroke, SOHC 153 cc mill, which churns out 14 BHP (brake horse power) which comes at 7.5K RPM and a healthy torque of 13.6 Nm. But it was a city centric bike tuned for low end & mid range thrust helps you to manoeuvre through any kind of traffic and zip through small spaces. It is very agile and a good bike for beginners.

It is a carburettor engine and gear ratios are well spaced for city commuting. It helps you to overtake quickly with less effort. So does the name “LORD OF THE STREET” suits perfectly.

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Being a street a bike I managed to push her up to 121 KMPH (odo indicated) which is my personal best. It reaches 90 KMPH with ease and then it takes some time to cross the triple digits because of lack in top end punch. These figures are just a namesake. The sweet spot for this machine was 60 to 80 KMPH for cruising on highways. Its exhaust note was very silent but on ripping hard it gives grunt loud note. I’m satisfied by its performance even when its rivals have more power and mileage.

HANDLING

Its a nibble free bike and easily handles in all kind of worst situations. The reason behind the magic is,

DIAMOND FRAME: A robust and rigid frame capable of holding a 250cc mill was equipped here and the centre of gravity & weight distribution was made to act almost centre. Along with the mid-ship muffler it always keeps you in traction.

SUSPENSIONS: It was equipped with 130mm telescopic type on front and 120mm mono suspension on rear helped to damp and makes ease to overcome the potholes. Done a bit off roading and the feedback were good.

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TIRES: Front are 100/80 and rear is 140/60 radial tyre (both are tubeless) gives a superb grip even on wet tarmac. You can feel it literally. This makes this beast, to corner at high speed with fun. It won’t let you down and it can challenge its rivals on corners and almost FZ gains advantage. Once I encountered a corner with 85 KMPH and it was a fun-filed moment that you wanna do all the time with it.

BRAKES: To make this macho to rest front was fitted with BYBRE (INDIAN VERSION OF BREMBO) and rear with drum type. Most users feel rear was not that much responsive (even I too) so a combo of both brakes makes the bike halt quickly.
Its a vibe free and well planted bike even at high speeds, it follows strict straight line path with no hands on bar. Kudos to the team yammie.

RIDES

With killer I spent lots of time commuting to college and few trips to nearby tourist spots. After finishing the 1st service at 550 KMS, went to a nearby dam of 160 KM stretch with much care and trying to limit the speed because it is still in run-in period. It was very hard to control the adrenaline on a open highway with no traffic, anyway had a good ride and I didn’t rip it hard.

After finishing the run-in period and 3rd service planned to trip to queen of hills (OOTY) on Christmas. It was really fun in taking those hairpin bends and enjoying the chill climate. It performed well in all aspects.

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My recent rides were Marudhamalai, Valparai, Tirupur. Now my killer has clocked 18000+ kms in these 1.5years. From these years we (me & killer) faced and enjoyed and came through all the ups and downs.

LOVE AFTER CRASH

On 5th January 2012 evening I was cruising at a speed of 55KMPH on an un-explored route, that’s the worst day in my life . That was a sunny day and the rays falling in front of me caused an illusion that I ran into a speed bump. A sudden and unexpected pop up wheelie made me to pull the disc brake, & things turned worst.

Front wheel locked and I kissed the mother earth with huge impact leads to a fracture in my left hand. My beloved bike was taken to service centre and myself to hospital. Next day a surgery was done and doctor advised me not to ride bike for 3 months. My parents were totally upset of my fall. In my mind I decided “I may fall, but I will bounce back higher”.

Those days were really pain for me without my bike and asking my friends to drop me at college. I missed her each time when I have to travel and seek for move. My love bond towards killer was day by day increasing and I’m longing to meet her.

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Everybody started giving advice to me to ride safe that was a real headache moment. Meanwhile killer got his parts replaced and my digital console was new, so again staring from 0 KM. 30+ days passed by, I can’t resist myself to drive. Had a small spin to friend’s home with a supporting bracelet on my hand.

Days passed by and I recovered quickly and also killer was restored to stock condition and this time with more precaution and more fun to shout.

MILEAGE

Being a 150cc mill with 14bhp it gives an average of 40 to 45 KMPL. It is low when comparing to its rivals. But I recorded a figure of 59kmpl as highest during and after few months of break in period. Nobody in my area is ready to accept that. It is not the fact that Yamaha bikes won’t give efficiency. It needs patience and most important is control of your adrenaline.

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After taking it nearer to red line it gradually decreased and now its 45kmpl. And I’m ok with that.

Cons/wish list

  • Over priced for its features
  • Mileage
  • Pillion seat comfort
  • Stock headlights were ok for city and for high way it needs more power. Same applies for the stock horn. it’s like a lion with cat voice
  • LED tail lamps and turn lamps for better look and as battery saver for the next year model ‘ll be good
  • Rear view mirror doesn’t suits the style here. For fazers its ok. They need to look here, nothing wrong with the vision
  • Yamaha should consider upgrading the mechanical parts rather than changing to funky colours
  • 6th gear for high way cruising
  • Stock tyre faces uneven wearing after 14k (its the problem with tyre and not bike)

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Pros

  • Stylish macho , a head turner
  • Yamaha ‘s reliable engine its refined and smooth
  • 14 bhp and 13.6 Nm
  • Comfortable seating posture for rider
  • Wider tire and better handling
  • Big monocross suspension on maintaining centre of gravity
  • Maintenance and vibe free
  • Good service network
  • Paint job and fit and finish at top class
  • Choke – i never used it.. and my killer always wakes up with a single crank
  • Exhaust muffler and note
  • Lord of the streetzz

UPGRADES

Apart from the crash i have replaced some parts,

  • a torsion spring inside gear box
  • new lock key set
  • MRF zapper C on rear due to problem with puncture magnet mrf revz
  • altered my front number plate and fixed it below the head light as i didn’t like it on top

Future Mod Plans

I have some future plans to do with my killer,

  • a seat cover with sponge to ease on long rides
  • K&N filter after 25K kms
  • HID & Projector set up light
  • Saddle sore attempt i.e 1600 kms within 24 hours
  • Taking my killer to bikers pilgrimage (himalyas)

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Suggestions

  • Never speed within city limits
  • Do proper run-in
  • Use safety gears always
  • Invest on safety gears that will save your precious life
  • Warm up the engine on morning
  • Do not over load
  • Service at proper intervals , for me it costs 500 per service and I use motul semi-synthetic oil

A small suggestion that, anybody having an idea of getting an FZ and confused by others for its cons, please go by your heart. Each bike has its own character. This one won’t let you down. And it’s a perfect one for beginners.

VERDICT

In this 1.5 years and munching 18K+ kms I enjoyed true spirit of biking and my purchase didn’t let me down. It gave me an identity and a key way to make birth a biker in me. I’m happy with my killer and waiting for the next part of our love story.

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Thanks BikeAdvice for giving me this opportunity and my knowledge on Automobiles credits is because of this blog only. Thanks to my parents and friends who supported me always and my mechanic Mr. Gnanam for helping in maintaining killer.

With regards,
Arunkumar

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