The year was 2008 and Yamaha India had introduced the FZ16, a motorcycle that gave a completely new meaning to the 150cc segment, and the aspiration to dream of something fresh and different from the rest. It was a motorcycle that ticked all the boxes — muscular looks, agility, ergonomics, and lastly, a healthy dose of torque. All together they delivered a very engaging experience every time you thumbed the starter. The FZ16 was a solid, well-engineered motorcycle, and it was only obvious for Yamaha to make the best of it, which worked well for the brand.
Even today, 15 years and several iterations later, the FZ-series continues to be a successful portfolio for Yamaha in the 150cc motorcycle segment. Now, the company has updated its popular motorcycle portfolio with a few updates for the year 2023. We got to sample the 2023 edition of the FZ-X, the scrambler-ish version of the FZ, in the Pink City (otherwise known as Jaipur) in Rajasthan. Here’s what we have to say about the new updates.
At the first glance, the 2023 FZ-X looks nearly identical to the previous generation. And that is true because Yamaha hasn’t changed anything on the motorcycle in terms of looks, except for the turn indicators, which are now LED units. Besides that, the colour palette consists of a new shade — Dark Matte Blue with gold-finished rims. Moving on to the other updates, the motorcycle is equipped with a switchable Traction Control System (TCS), while the engine is now E20 fuel compatible. As far as the need for a TCS on a 150cc motorcycle goes, in my opinion, it is more of a safety feature than a feature for stability. That’s simply because considering the power and torque figures that the FZ-X’s powertrain produces, there isn’t a need for the TCS.
Instead, what would have been a more relevant upgrade is the ABS, upping it from a single-channel system to a dual-channel system. The chances of the rear locking up due to panic braking, or braking on a low-traction surface, is a lot more in comparison to the rear wheel spinning and losing control. Even with the RDE compliance, the 149cc motor continues to register the same power figures of 12.2 bhp and 1.35 kgm. The motor continues to be mated to a slick 5-speed gearbox. On the mechanical front, otherwise, the FZ-X has undergone no changes, as it continues to ride and handle as it used to, neutral yet agile, and frugal yet torquey.
In addition to the updates for the 2023 edition, it would have been nice for Yamaha to consider a few more additions for the FZ-X. The first one is the consideration for dual-channel ABS instead of TCS. The second is the inclusion of the gear position indicator, and the third is the overall quality of materials, which can be improved.
In conclusion, at Rs 1.37 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) the FZ-X with the minor updates, is about Rs 1000 more expensive than before. For the added features, the FZ-X, which is based on the successful FZ series, is a comfortable and rugged-looking 150cc commuter, and it sure is a motorcycle worth considering.
MOTODATA2023 Yamaha FZ-X
12.2 bhp@7250 rpm
1.35 kgm@5500 rpm
Type: Diamond type
F/R: 282-mm disc / 200-mm disc
F/R: 100/80 R17 / 140/60 R17
Rs 1.37 Lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi)