The 2020 iteration of the MT-125 gets a new look, more features and a Euro5 compliant engine
- It’s powered by a 124.7cc single-cylinder engine with VVA (Variable Valve Actuation).
- Features include a full-digital instrument console, USD forks and a cast-aluminium swingarm.
- Dual-channel ABS is offered as standard.
Yamaha has finally unveiled the 2020 MT-125 in the European market. It gets a new look, extra tech and is Euro 5-compliant. From a design standpoint, the MT-125 features the same styling as its elder sibling, the MT-15, with an aggressive front face, a sculpted fuel tank with tank extensions and a stubby tail section.
It’s the mechanicals where the 125 differs from the 150, for obvious reasons. It is powered by a Euro5 compliant 124.7cc, single-cylinder engine with Variable Valve Actuation (VVA). In its current state of tune, the motor produces 14.7PS at 9,000rpm and 12.4Nm at 8,000rpm, mated to a 6-speed transmission.
Other changes come in the form of a premium upside-down fork, a cast aluminium swingarm and dual-channel ABS. The MT-15, on the other hand, comes equipped with a telescopic fork, box-section swingarm and single-channel ABS.
But will the 2020 MT-125 make its way to India? Highly unlikely, and here’s why.
It all boils down to feasibility in a price-sensitive country like India. The Japanese bikemaker already has the MT-15 which retails at Rs 1.36 lakh, just a smidge over the KTM Duke 125 which sets you back by Rs 1,32,400 thanks to the recent price hike. Sure, the MT-15 misses out on premium equipment, but it still offers thrilling performance, something the 125 Duke lacks. For just Rs 3,600 over the KTM, the MT-15 offers 4.8PS and 2.7Nm more. Throw the MT-125 into the equation and you have a bike that produces as much power as the 125 Duke but costs as much as the MT-15.
Also, don’t think for a moment that its lack of upside-down forks would mean that the MT-15 is a lazy handler by any margin. In fact, it’s sharper and less forgiving, requiring a more cautious approach than the 125 Duke -- and that’s high praise.
Furthermore, India doesn’t abide by European regulations which warrant riders of 17 years and above to ride under an A1 certification. Essentially, new riders who hop onto a motorcycle or scooter have to limit themselves to an engine capacity of up to 125cc and a restricted power of not more than 15PS.
Yamaha tried its hand in the entry-level motorcycle space with the Saluto 125 and failed miserably. It needed a way out and fast. The answer was to shift its focus on performance-oriented motorcycles and scooters above the 125cc space.
Taking everything into account, it's pretty evident that a 125cc Yamaha won't make much sense for the brand. The lack of performance means that you’d outgrow the 125cc pretty fast.