How do the 160cc motorcycles stack up against each other now as each of them adheres to BS6 emission norms?
Indian two-wheeler manufacturers have been active in recent months, getting their existing product lineup to meet BS6 emission norms. Suzuki made a big show of it at Auto Expo 2020, revealing its entire BS6 portfolio. Hence, with the arrival of the Suzuki Gixxer BS6, how does it now fare against other BS6-compliant rivals like the Yamaha FZ-S Fi V3 BS6 and the TVS Apache RTR 160 4V BS6.
The TVS offering continues to be the most powerful unit amongst the three. While the power deficit between the Gixxer and the Apache was less in the BS4 era, the Japanese bike does lag behind by a bit now. Still the Gixxer produces more power than the FZ, which has been heavily retuned to be a lot more economical.
There are no changes to the suspension tune on all of the bikes. Hence, we can safely assume that the Apache will still continue to be a brilliant handler, capable of holding its own while commuting as well as when riding spiritedly. We wished for better stopping power from the Apache RTR 160 4V BS6, as that is the one area where the others are better. A lack of radial tyres is another miss on the Apache. The Gixxer continues to be stiffly sprung, which means that even though it will be great in the twisties, it will be hard to filter out sharp bumps on our roads.
The FZ’s welcoming dimensions help its cause immensely while commuting. It is the lightest and has the lowest seat height amongst these three. The extra litre of fuel that you can carry on-board should help you increase your ride time in between fuel stops. The Gixxer is equally inviting. The slightly sporty stance and sharper dimensions allow it to be nimble enough to carve through city traffic. Despite being the heaviest of the lot, the Apache is quite an easy motorcycle to handle. The supple suspension setup combined with high ground clearance helps it clear most obstacles that you find on the road.
Currently, the BS4 Gixxer is priced at Rs 1 lakh. Given that the engine was already BS6-ready and would not need a lot of change to meet the BS6 norms, we estimate that a price hike of Rs 5,000 is in store for the bike. That makes it marginally more expensive than the Apache. If you’re on the lookout for a no-fuss, easy-going, frugal motorcycle, the FZ-S FI does make sense. However, the FZ is no longer the fun and exciting motorcycle that it once was. That mantle has been taken up by the other two bikes here. Whichever one you choose, you would not regret it.