TVS Jupiter MillionR vs Honda Aviator: Comparison Review

08 September 2016, 04:08 PMRanjan R. Bhat

Introduction

Scooters have grown from becoming simple point A to point B modes of transport to instruments of convenience. With a rapid evolution in the definition of ‘convenience’, today’s educated customer expects his scooter to do a lot more than just be easy to use. Every manufacturer is trying to lure customers with more and more creature comforts, and the sales figures indicate that this formula is working quite well. 

Honda on the other hand has a different perspective. ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ seems to be their motto, and the company doesn’t mind selling ageing scooters for years at end without any significant technological updates. Well, the company has already sold over three lakh scooters in this year which shows that they don’t really need to stay updated after all. They have a cult following which doesn’t care about creature comforts as much as reliability. This is a luxury only Honda can afford. 

So what happens when you set an old-school slugger against a modern day swarmer? In the purple corner, we have the TVS Jupiter MillionR, a special edition rolled out to commemorate the sale of 10 lakh Jupiter scooters on the road. In the white corner is the Honda Aviator, ageing but an appropriate exemplification of ‘tried and tested’. Both are 110cc scooters, both get a front disc brake and are priced very close to each other. It’s time for a showdown!

Looks & Styling

Quite honestly, the Aviator fails to impress on the styling front. You can take a step back and admire its elegance and paint quality, but that is about it. It might have seemed remarkable when it first came out but in today’s age of distinctive and loud styling, the Aviator fails to stand out. To the naïve spectator it just looks like an Activa, which is not something an Aviator owner who has paid around Rs 10,000 more for this scooter would be able to digest very easily. The bland white paint scheme doesn’t help its case either, though you do have the option of three other brighter shades.

The standard TVS Jupiter is no charmer either. But the Jupiter MillionR comes in a flashy purple (royal wine, according to TVS’ nomenclature) with beige floorboard and interior panel. This does add some zing to the otherwise dull styling. It even gets the right amount of chrome bits on the side panels, mirror and the exhaust shield which contrast with purple bodywork. This colour is exclusive to the Jupiter MillionR and there is no way you are going to confuse this scooter for the standard Jupiter. Don’t like the colour? Too bad, because the Jupiter MillionR is offered only in a single paint scheme for now.

TVS Jupiter MillionR – 5/10

Honda Aviator – 4/10

 

Ergonomics & Quality

The TVS Jupiter MillionR gets a compact riding position which keeps you in control of the scooter at all times. It comes with a unique soft touch fabric for its seat cover, which makes the seat an utterly delightful place to rest your buttocks on. Even the pillion gets abundant space to sit, with the convenient footpeg positioning and large grab rail offering a lot in terms of reassurance. Switchgear quality and overall fit and finish is top notch.

Taller six foot plus giants though, will feel more at home on the Honda Aviator. It gets a higher set handlebar and a spacious seat which make for an even more comfortable riding position. The seat might seem to be on the firmer side initially, though its benefits come to light during longer highway runs. The switchgear and plastic bits all feel solid and leave little to complain about.

TVS Jupiter MillionR – 6/10

Honda Aviator – 6/10

 

Features & Technology

The Honda Aviator is a seven-year-old scooter and this becomes evident when you go through its brief features list. Even the instrument cluster gets a very basic and no frills design. The fuel cap is positioned below the seat which makes a normal task like filling fuel look bothersome. When it comes to cycle parts though, the Aviator is quite sorted. The front wheel rides on telescopic forks, and gets a 190mm disc brake with Nissin calliper. While a passing glimpse might tell you that it is two-pot calliper, it actually is a single-pot unit with the secondary pot being a part of the combi braking system (CBS).

The TVS Jupiter MillionR on the other hand gets a decent list of creature comforts, including a USB charger, external fuel lid, two storage hooks and rear brake lock. The instrument cluster might seem basic, though it gets a contemporary design which will make you overlook the lack of a digital display and trip meter. These small things add to make a big difference, giving the Jupiter MillionR a whisker of an advantage. Cycle parts are similar to the Aviator, though the Jupiter MillionR misses out on a syncing brake system.

TVS Jupiter MillionR – 6/10

Honda Aviator – 5/10

 

Engine & Performance

Honda engines have always been benchmarks as far as refinement is concerned, and this 109cc unit is no different. The smooth and vibe-free 8 horsepower engine makes riding the Aviator a pleasant experience, with the seamless CVT transmission serving as cherry on top. Whack open the throttle and the Aviator surges forward purposefully with no lag of any sort. It is significantly quicker than the Jupiter MillionR off the mark and more fun in terms of outright performance.

 

The Jupiter MillionR also gets a 109cc engine which makes 7.8 horsepower. The power delivery is linear, though the fuel economy-focussed tuning comes in way of entertainment. The Jupiter MillionR might find it difficult to keep up with the Aviator under flat out acceleration, but it does come very close in terms of refinement and smoothness. 

TVS Jupiter MillionR – 5/10

Honda Aviator – 6/10

Ride, Handling & Braking

In the city, the taller handlebar and immediate throttle response of the Aviator gets you in touch with your hooligan side. In no time, you get used to accelerating hard and then braking hard just for the heck of it. Exercise some self-control and the Aviator makes for a perfect city commuter that will filter though the traffic without any effort. Helping its cause are the brakes. The 190mm Nissin unit delivers good initial bite and progression, though it could do with some more feedback. The Aviator comes with combi braking system, which is a handy feature for beginners. The Jupiter MillionR matches the Aviator in terms of stopping power, though a rich world of feedback inspires trust and makes it the preferred choice for the sane minded. The initial lag can get annoying after some time, but that is just my nit-picking hooligan side talking. 

The Jupiter MillionR’s softer damping is better at absorbing unruly potholes, though this affects its highway manners. As speeds rise, the bumps and potholes get more pronounced and the front forks keep sending muffled jolts every now and then. It is the other way around for the Aviator. The slow speed ride might seem compromised and bumpy because of the stiffer suspension setup, but this has resulted in quite impressive highway manners. 

TVS Jupiter MillionR – 6/10

Honda Aviator – 6/10

Fuel Efficiency

Despite being the sprightlier of the two, the Honda Aviator outdoes the Jupiter MillionR when it comes to fuel economy. The Aviator’s frugal engine returns close to 60kmpl while the Jupiter MillionR manages about 56kmpl. 

TVS Jupiter MillionR – 5/10

Honda Aviator – 5/10

Price & Warranty

The Honda Aviator retails for Rs 71,161 (on-road, Mumbai) and comes with a 2 year or 24,000km warranty. The TVS Jupiter MillionR on the other hand, comes with a marginally lower price tag of Rs 68,500 (on-road, Mumbai) and a similar warranty. The difference in price might not be enough for a customer to switch his preferences, but it is still interesting to note that the TVS is more affordable, despite being better specced and being a newer product than the Honda. 

TVS Jupiter MillionR – 6/10

Honda Aviator – 5/10

Desirability

The Indian customers have a thing for special edition vehicles, which automatically bumps up the TVS Jupiter MillionR ahead of the Honda Aviator. The Jupiter MillionR might be Rs 5,000 pricier than the standard version, but then this also guarantees exclusivity. Even if you go strictly by their features and the styling, the Jupiter MillionR feels more desirable than the ageing and conservative Honda Aviator.

TVS Jupiter MillionR – 6/10

Honda Aviator – 4/10

Verdict

Honda Aviator – Rank 2

Final score – 53/100

Price, OTR Mumbai - Rs 71,161

Go through the scorecard and you will notice what a close fight this was. The Honda Aviator might be an old scooter, but that doesn’t mean you can straightaway discard it from your shortlist. Yes, it does need a few updates to get it in shape to ward off the competition. But with a few nips and tucks, the Aviator would be good to go for a couple more years. Speaks a lot about the way Honda’s products are engineered. 

TVS Jupiter MillionR – Rank 1

Final Score – 54/100

Price, OTR Mumbai - Rs 68,500

The modern day swarmer has won the fight by a whisker. True, there isn’t anything extraordinary about the TVS Jupiter MillionR (apart from its loud paint scheme), but it has again proved that that you can’t go wrong with a Jupiter. Be it comfort, performance, efficiency or utility, the Jupiter MillionR strikes the perfect balance. And this is what makes it an ideal scooter for a tech-savvy Indian buyer. 

Photography by Kapil Angane

Final Scores

 Parameters/Models  Max Points TVS Jupiter MillionR Honda Aviator Disc
 Rank    1  2
 Looks & styling 10 5 4
 Ergonomics & Quality 10 6 6
 Features & Technology 10 6 5
 Engine & Gearbox 10 5 6
 Performance 10 5 6
 Ride quality 10 5 5
 Handling & Braking 10 6 6
 Fuel Efficiency 10 5 5
 Price & Warranty 10 6 5
 Desirablility 10 5 4
 Total  100 54 52
 Price (OTR, Mumbai)   Rs 67,884 Rs 69,100

Specifications

 MAKE TVS Honda
 Model

Jupiter MillionR

Aviator Disc

 POWER TRAIN    
 Engine Type Air-cooled Air-cooled
 Capacity 109.7cc 113cc
 Max Power  7.9bhp 7.1bhp
 Max Torque  8Nm  8.1Nm
 Gearbox CVT CVT
 CYCLE PARTS    
 Chassis Under bone  Under bone
 Supension F  Telescopic Telescopic
 Suspension R  Mono shock Mono shock
 Brakes F 220mm disc 170mm disc
 Brakes R  130mm drum 130mm drum
 Tyre F 90/90-12 Tubeless  90/100-10 Tubeless
 Tyre R 90/90-12 Tubeless  90/100-10 Tubeless
 MEASURES    
 Fuel Tank  5 litres  5.2 litres
 LxWxH 1834mm x 650mm x 1165mm  1820mm x 700mm x 1115mm 
 Wheelbase  1275mm  1270mm
 Kerb Weight  107kg  103kg
 COST    
 Price (OTR, Mumbai)  Rs 68,500 Rs 71,161 
 Warranty 2 years/24,000kms  2 years/24,000kms 

 

Ex-showroom, Mumbai

 53,056
25 Used TVS Jupiter bikesstarting at 24,000

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