Suzuki Slingshot Road Test Review


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Akash

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Suzuki Motor Corporation is a Japanese multinational giant, which is primarily popular in manufacturing compact cars, 4x4s, Motorcycles, All-terrain Vehicles (ATVs) etc. The company commenced manufacturing motorcycles in 1952, with the first models being motorized bicycles. Suzuki shared a 19-year long relationship with TVS Motors which targeted towards the development of motorcycle exclusively for Indian market. Under the brand name of TVS-Suzuki, several models such as the Suzuki Samurai, Suzuki Shogun, and Suzuki Fiero gained popularity soon. However, the differences in opinion finally led to an end to this partnership in the year 2001. There was also a 30-month law period during which Suzuki promised not to enter the two-wheel market of India, but thereafter when they did, unfortunately none of their bike could set the sales chart on fire. Now, with the launch of Slingshot, Suzuki is all set to try another innings in the 125cc segment. Let us find out whether this ‘shot’ targets correctly or not. :smile:
 
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Akash

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Suzuki Slingshot Looks and Design

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Suzuki’s commuter motorcycles, which we have had in India until now, wore a dull makeup. Be it 125cc Zeus or the big brother GS150R, none of them has an attractive visual appeal, but the Slingshot breaks this ritual because it appears to be the trendiest Suzuki till date. Even though there are better looking bikes such as Honda Stunner CBF and Yamaha SS125 in this segment, which in a way are more stylish, but still, Suzuki’s attempt to add a style statement to this bike is definitely worth the appreciation. The headlamp sports an antagonistic appearance due to its unique shape, this renders to a bold face that is good to look at. Over the doom, you can locate the Speedo cluster, which is naked due to the absence of a proper visor. Although the absence of visor is quite disappointing since it has many utility purposes, it does add a sporty spirit to the overall facade making it stand apart from others.

The instrument cluster looks very small. It has analogue display consisting of speedometer, fuel gauge and gear indicator. While the gear indicator isn’t very common in the segment, the most common, and loved Tacho meter is surprisingly absent on-board. We wish Suzuki had added a tacho, which would have made the cluster look bigger and more alive. The quality of plastics is average and the panels have the analogy as that of all the bikes, but the addition of engine kill switch is a nice touch. The fuel tank gels well with the front adding a flow to the alluring design. Slightly bulging muscles look good. Addition of minor graphics adds an appealing look as well. The engine compartment, silencer, and alloy wheels sport all black finish adding to visual appeal of this bike. Yet, what makes this bike strikingly different from others is unique alloy wheels design. The multi-spoke design looks nice and a lot better than customary 5/6 spoke wheels. Overall, features like these, formulate into an interesting side profile of Slingshot.

While the front and side profiles of Slingshot leaves us impressed, the rear profile left us thwarted. The metal grab handle looks too outdated to say the least. The small tail lamp lies deep within the rear fender, making it difficult to spot. Even the shape of the lamp looks ages old. Comparatively bigger side indicators, however, compensate the rear making it look average if not ugly.


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Akash

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Suzuki Slingshot Engine and Gearbox

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Suzuki engines have been praised for their silent actions. The GS150R, the elder sibling of Slingshot was highly acclaimed for its smooth engine and the Slingshot is no different. The Slingshot is equipped with a 124cc engine that churns out maximum power of 8.5BHP @ 7500RPM and a torque of 10Nm at 3500RPM. When it comes to power, it is a far lesser than its rivals, which have at least 11BHP at their disposal.

Prior to the launch of this bike, we were highly disappointed with the specifications, which looked too inferior for a bike of this segment. The company launched this bike with the same specs that were released prior to the launch, and this was another disappointing move. However, when we tested this bike, there was a certain amount of surprise waiting for us. After having a look at the specifications sheet, we assumed this Suzuki to be a Lethargic commuter, but that is certainly not the actual case. The engine is smooth and highly responsive in low range. There is enough torque at riders’ disposal to help him make his way through chaotic traffic.

The midrange is decent and just acceptable for a 125cc segment. For a daily commuting, Slingshot is capable but when it comes to comparatively high speeds of 80 - 90kmph, the engine feels to be working under huge strain. It easily runs out of breath on highways if pushed too hard for some time. This is certainly not expected from a bike of this segment. The 125cc segment is designed for the section of buyer who wants a good mid range and a decent high range performance without compromising on the fuel efficiency. Absence of any one of this factor leads to failure of the product. We wish Suzuki did some tuning to its engine in order to make it a better performer for a little high speeds.
 
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Akash

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Suzuki Slingshot Performance and Handling.

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The performance of 125cc bikes is basically based on their behaviour at average cruising speeds. They are not expected to be fast on highways, but at the same time, it is expected to do cruising speeds of 80 - 90kmph with ease. Suzuki Slingshot is a good performer in city. The 0-60kmph mark can be easily crossed within 7 seconds. Although this is not an outstanding figure but still decent enough for the engine generating meagre 8 BHP! When the speed enters the 80-90km range, the engine feels to be working under certain amount of stress. The engine does run out of breath when doing these speeds for a long time. In addition, the high engine noise irritates as if it is an alarm to slow down. The absence of disc brakes is highly felt in the Slingshot. The drum brakes dispirit the confidence to speed up and lack the feedback.

Speed without good handling is as worthless as a wild horse without a reign. However, stability is not an issue here. Within the city limits, Slingshot does its duty with obedience, but on highways, the ride is lifeless. The tires on slingshot provide decent grip but that is nowhere close to its rivals. While other manufacturer bikes come with MRF or TVS shoes, this Suzuki wears CEAT shoes, which perform in an undesirable manner. The riding posture is good and ensures fatigue free ride. The well cushioned saddle and slightly stepped up pillion seat adds to better comfort levels for both rider and the pillion. The suspension setup is traditionally similar to the other bikes. Telescopic coil spring at the front and Swing arm Coil spring suspension is oil damped are good at work but are unable to digest uneven patches of roads.
 
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Akash

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Suzuki Slingshot Fuel Efficiency and Verdict.

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Apart from decent performance, a 125cc bike is expected to deliver good fuel efficiency. Does Slingshot fulfil this expectation? The answer is YES. Suzuki claims that Slingshot is capable to deliver a fuel efficiency of 60 kmpl, which is a respectable figure. Slingshot is probably the first bike from Suzuki after so many years which definitely raised the eyebrows with its decent styling that has been absent in its previous range of bikes. The Slingshot competes with some of the most stylish bikes like Honda Stunner CBF, Yamaha SS125 that perform as beautifully as they appear. Definitely, the success path for Slingshot will not be a cakewalk. With some upgrades like better performance, we can expect some good sales for Suzuki. Slingshot may be a worthy substitute of Hero Honda Glamour / Super Splendour, but still it will have to face the heat from the Honda and Yamaha which have the perfect combination of style and performance along with them.
 
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Akash

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Suzuki Slingshot Likes, Dislikes, and Ratings.

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We Like in Slingshot: [thumbsup]

  • Comfortable ride

  • Alloy Wheels Design

  • Smooth and Silent engine

We Dislike in Slingshot:
[thumbsdown]

  • No Tachometer

  • Missing Parking Lamp

  • Lacks High Speed Refinement

The Automotive India Star Ratings:

  • Design and Quality:
    (7/10)

  • Comfort Levels:
    (8/10)

  • Performance:
    (7/10)

  • Ride Quality:
    (8/10)

  • Handling:
    (9/10)

  • Fuel Efficiency:
    (9/10)

  • Safety:
    (7/10)

  • After Sales:
    (7/10)

  • Value for Money:
    (8/10)
 
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Akash

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Suzuki Slingshot Price and Specifications.

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Price:


  • Rs. 45,911/- onwards (Ex. Showroom, Delhi)
Color Options:

  • Metallic Mustard Yellow
  • Candy Antares Red
  • Pearl Nebular Black
  • Metallic Fox Orange
Specifications:

  • Type: Air-cooled, 4-stroke, 1 cylinder, SOHC
  • Bore x Stroke: 53.5 mm x 55.2 mm
  • Displacement: 124 cc
  • Compression ratio: 9.6:1
  • Carburettor: VM18
  • Starting: Kick start/Electric start
  • Air cleaner: Non-woven fabric element
  • Lubrication system: Wet sump

Dimensions:

  • Overall length: 2,035 mm
  • Overall width: 770 mm
  • Overall height: 1,075 mm
  • Wheelbase: 1,265 mm
  • Ground clearance: 160 mm
  • Fuel Tank: 12lts (2.1lts Reserve)
  • Kerb Weight: 128kg

Transmission:

  • Clutch: Wet multi-plate type
  • Transmission: 5-speed (1 down - 4up)
Suspension:

  • Front: Telescopic, Coil spring, Oil damped
  • Rear: Swing-arm, Coil spring, Oil damped

Brake:

  • Front: Hydraulic Caliper, Single Disc type
  • Rear: Mechanical, Landing trailing, Drum type

Tire size:

  • Front: 2.75 -18 42P
  • Rear: 3.00 -18 52P
Electricals:

  • Ignition type: CDI
  • Spark plug: NGK
  • Battery: 12V, 5Ah
  • Headlight: 12V 35/35W

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Road Test Credits:

  • Road Test & Photography: Akash
  • Edit & Format: 350Z
(C) The Automotive India. All rights reserved. The content can not be reproduced in any form without written permission of our authority.
 
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Good report Akash! I somehow don find this bike to be appealing at all! The speedo console looks boring and the bike is not a great looker either!


BTW looks like you are first one to grab that bike!
 
Thread Starter #11

Akash

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Good report Akash! I somehow don find this bike to be appealing at all! The speedo console looks boring and the bike is not a great looker either!
Thanks Dhaya. I agree, Slingshot looks pretty boring, however compared to other Suzuki's it looks a lot better. I really wonder why a company which manufactures the super stylish Hayabusa can build commuter bikes half heartedly!

BTW looks like you are first one to grab that bike!
I didnt get you buddy!
 
Thread Starter #13

Akash

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nice review Akash again!
Thanks typer. It is the encouragement from people like you which makes me perform better.

this bike looks quite macho. is it? how big is it for about 5 ft 7 in people?
For people of that height, Slingshot wont be a problem.

I meant to say you are first guy to drive that bike since the ODO reading is just 2KMS!
Oh, i just noticed that.
 
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Thanks for the Review Akash. The bike though looks promising, needs better Marketing.

Also, I cannot see any feature that makes this bike stand out.

I hate the TV ad for the Slingshot. Talks nothing technical or anything about the features.

Remember the Bajaj XCD ad where the engine was shown first ? Superb marketing helped it achieve the numbers.

The world rides on Suzuki but India needs better bikes.
 
Thread Starter #15

Akash

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I hate the TV ad for the Slingshot. Talks nothing technical or anything about the features.
Add me to that list. I too hate that TV commercial.

Remember the Bajaj XCD ad where the engine was shown first ? Superb marketing helped it achieve the numbers.
Bajaj tvc's have always been great. From the Pulsar ads to those of Avenger, all were really good.

The world rides on Suzuki but India needs better bikes.
I wish Suzuki guys read this statement of yours. Even i wonder why Suzuki commuter bikes are made as if the people involved have done their work half heartedly!
 
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