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Yamaha Fazer 25 First ride review

19 December 2017, 08:18 AM Charles Pennefather

What is it?

Why I would buy the Yamaha Fazer 25

All the benefits of an FZ25 – low maintenance, good real-world performance, and a full fairing!

Why I would avoid the Yamaha Fazer 25

It isn’t pretty, and there’s another great fully-faired Yamaha at almost the same price…

The Fazer 25 is the fully-faired sibling of the FZ25. It is to the FZ25 what the Fazer is to the FZ16. So the company markets the FZ as the city bike, and the Fazer as the touring machine. As such, it gets the fairing and, drum roll, a two-tone horn!

How does it ride?

Just like the FZ, it rides well, but we’d still want more travel at the front – this is more pronounced because of the excess weight (an extra 6kg) of the fairing. The handling, as befits a Yamaha, puts a smile on your face, and the limiting factor in city traffic is usually the mirrors, which stick a mile out on either side. Still, that means they offer great visibility. There is nothing mechanically different about the Fazer compared to the FZ25, so let’s run through the list quickly: a 250cc air-cooled, fuel-injected single-cylinder mill that puts out 20bhp and 20Nm. This is a two-valve head in a four-valve generation, which is why the low peak power output, but it also means fewer shifts of the five-speed ‘box. This flexibility allows you to relax your left foot, whether in the city or out on the highway. 

Yamaha Fazer 25

Yamaha Fazer 25

  • Displacement249 cc
  • Mileage - Owner Reported40 kmpl
  • Max Power(bhp)20.3 bhp
  • Kerb Weight148 kg
  • ;

Last known Avg. Ex-showroom price

₹ 1,43,724

Speaking of which – the Fazer rumbles along at roughly 6500rpm at 100kmph in top gear, and while the chassis, suspension, brakes and the expansive seating position all allow you to think you could hold that speed all day, it is surprisingly the engine that is the party pooper. It is a relaxed unit in top gear at 60 and even 80kmph, but feels strained at the ton. In comparison, the R15’s driveline sits at 7000rpm at 100kmph and feels a lot more relaxed. This impression is reinforced when you twist your wrist to accelerate from 100kmph – the response isn’t as enthusiastic as it is 1000rpm lower. The brakes are good at their job, but ABS isn’t available in any form, and the company has gone on record to say that this safety feature will not be made available until it is required by law. 

Anything else I should know?

While the FZ won’t win any beauty contests, there is a brutish charm about it that grows on you. The Fazer will find it hard to even enter any of those contests, thanks to the proportions of the headlamp to the fairing. 

The FZ’s engine vibrations disappointed us, because we’ve become used to a certain minimum level of refinement from Yamahas. The Fazer seems to correct a lot of that – the vibrations remain, but they are well in check. 

The ‘twin horn’ seemed a lot like a marketing gimmick to us at the launch, but out on the highway, the loud horn managed to get the attention of whoever was in front of us, so it really does seem like a value addition now. 

Of course, the low running costs, simple mechanical setup and reliable driveline mean that the Fazer will actually be a good tourer for a country like ours.

Should I buy one?

The Fazer 25 doesn’t serve any single purpose well. It is marketed as a touring machine, but it feels strained at 100kmph. The mirrors are too wide for it to be a great city motorcycle. It doesn’t look drop-dead gorgeous, and the specs aren’t going to win any spec sheet wars. As such, it is a good upgrade for owners of the 150cc Fazer, and if you don’t fancy a Royal Enfield Classic 350 or Bajaj Dominar – products that are marketed as ‘touring capable’ – then you’ll have to have a look at the Fazer 25. 

Where does it fit in?

At Rs 1.28 lakhs, ex-showroom Mumbai, Yamaha wants a premium of Rs 10,000 over the FZ25, which is a very reasonable amount. However, it will have to compete with the Bajaj Pulsar RS200 (Rs 1.24 lakhs), a similarly fully faired machine. There is also the YZF-R15 (Rs 1.19 lakhs) from its own stable. Naked alternatives include the Bajaj Pulsar NS200 (Rs 97,000), TVS Apache RTR 200 (Rs 93,000) and KTM 200 Duke (Rs 1.47 lakhs). In the tourer/cruiser segments are the Bajaj Dominar 400 (Rs 1.42 lakhs) and the Royal Enfield Classic 350 (Rs 1.38 lakhs onward).

Gear check

1. HJC FG-15 A comfortable, affordable street helmet from HJC, the FG series is light, yet stays stable at speed, and in crosswinds. Price: ₹ 13,500 (FG-17)

2. Scorpion Hat Trick Mesh/Textile jacket Although not on sale for a while now, the Hat Trick is a jacket that is protective yet allows decent airflow. The fleece liner keeps you warm enough, and the waterproof liner makes it truly impermeable, even in a Mumbai monsoon. Drying it out takes a while, though. Price: ₹ 15600 (Scorpion Phalanx) 

3. Royal Enfield Spiti riding gloves Made for comfortable touring, these short-cuff gloves offer a lot of comfort right from the first ride. Price: ₹ 3200

4. Joe Rocket Phoenix 2.0 pants Mesh is a wonderful thing in our heat, and the Joe Rocket Phoenix mesh pants manage an ideal combination of protection via the removable armour and airflow. Price: ₹ 9600 (Phoenix Ion)

5. Royal Enfield long riding boots With a little inspiration from both off-road boots and touring boots, the RE long riding boots are comfortable and yet protective. Price: ₹ 11,000

Photos: Kapil Angane