We compare the updated Gixxer 250 against some of its toughest competitors
[Update: Yamaha FZ-25 and FZS-25 BS6 prices out! Head here for more details]
Suzuki has updated its entire lineup to BS6 norms except for the Gixxer 250 twins. However, it has revealed all specifications of the new motorcycles except for pricing. The naked Gixxer 250 does not get anything else apart from a greener motor but is a fairly new motorcycle being launched in May last year. The Gixxer 250 BS6 impresses with quality and refinement but faces quite a bit of competition in the 250cc segment. Here’s a paper comparison to show where the updated Gixxer 250 stacks up when compared to its competitors.
Engine and performance:
Here both the Husqvarna Svartpilen and KTM 250 Duke BS6 offer the most amount of power and torque. The Bajaj Dominar 250 shares its motor with the KTM and Husqvarna but has been tuned for better rideability hence makes less power but at more accessible rpms. However, it is substantially heavier than the other two, which would put a dent in its performance.
The Suzuki Gixxer 250 BS6 gets a unique oil-cooled motor with power outputs closer to the Dominar 250. It is a quick-revving motor and given its comparatively lower kerb weight, is expected to be quicker than the Dominar 250. The Yamaha FZ 25 BS6 has the simplest engine architecture here and offers the least amount of power and torque. However, the BS4 variant was quick to 60kmph owing to its shorter gearing and we expect the BS6 motor to carry forward the same traits.
Again the Svartpilen 250 and 250 Duke lead the pack by offering premium components for the frame, suspension and brakes. Here, the KTM impresses even more with the split trellis frame it shares with the 390 Duke BS6. This frame allows for easy serviceability and is affordable to repair in case of a crash. The Husqvarna gets dual-purpose MRF tyres to help it offer better grip in off-road conditions.
The Dominar 250 too impresses with its frame and suspension components that it shares with the larger Dominar 400 BS6. However, to save costs, it gets slimmer bias-ply tyres instead of radials. The Dominar 250 BS6, Svartpilen 250 and 250 Duke BS6 are the only ones to offer radial calipers. Both the Gixxer 250 BS6 and FZ 25 BS6 get similar frame and suspension components and are more inclined towards comfort than sportiness.
The Dominar 250 BS6 is easily the largest motorcycle here thanks to it sharing its underpinnings and bodywork with the larger Dominar 400. However, that means it is also the heaviest, weighing a whopping 27kg more than the lightest motorcycle here. The Gixxer 250 BS6 too is a substantial-looking motorcycle but manages to keep its weight in check. It also has the highest ground clearance here, which should help navigate large speedbreakers easily. The Gixxer 250 BS6, FZ 25 BS6 and Dominar 250 have more accessible seat heights.
Given their sporty nature, the 250 Duke BS6 and Svartpilen 250 get tall seats. Given that it is an off-road focussed motorcycle, the Svartpilen 250 disappoints with its low ground clearance, the lowest here. The FZ 25 BS6 impresses in terms of seat height, ground clearance, low kerb weight and fuel tank capacity.
Pricing and verdict:
The KTM 250 Duke BS6 is the most expensive motorcycle here and also the sportiest. It is feature-packed and impresses with its performance. The Husqvarna Svartpilen 250 massively undercuts the KTM and offers a different style of motorcycling but is a compact motorcycle and will disappoint with its lack of space. The Dominar 250 should make for a good tourer given its features like a bright LED headlamp and an upright seating position. However, its added weight could spell trouble given the motor’s linear power delivery.
The Yamaha FZ 25 BS6 gets a new look and a brighter headlamp. It even gets a new FSZ 25 variant that gets a larger windscreen and knuckle guards. However, it still carries the same underpinnings and a tweaked motor and should be more suited for city commutes. The Suzuki Gixxer 250 BS6 impresses with its refinement and quality. It works well in the city for touring and is sporty enough to keep up with the KTM. Though it is expected to get a substantial price hike, the Gixxer 250 BS6 manages to carve its own niche here. We would reserve judgement about real-world performance until a comprehensive comparison review.