2023 Yamaha FZ-X first ride review

Christopher Chaves Updated: February 28, 2023, 11:14 AM IST

Yamaha Motor India recently updated four of its lower capacity motorcycles that are on the menu in India, namely the FZ-X, FZ-S, MT-15 and R15M models. We recently had a chance to ride the updated 2023 Yamaha FZ-X in and around the Jaipur, Rajasthan for a brief amount of time. The quirky-looking 2023 model gets a new paint scheme, traction control and LED indicators. Here's what we came away with after riding it about for a bit.

In terms of design, the Yamaha FZ-X remains fairly unchanged, apart from the inclusion of new LED turn indicators. So this means that the bike gets all LED lighting with the projector LED headlamp with circular LED DRLs and LED taillight â€" features that the bike housed before the update. The FZ-X continues to exude a rugged appeal something of a crossover between a mild-offroader - meets retro-styled commuter with its fork gaiters, a shapely muscular fuel tank, a metal bash plate, a two-step single-piece seat and a stubby exhaust. The bike also gets a new shade of matte paint that helps the aesthetic appeal along with golden rims. Although the bike's scrambler-ish, neo-retro with sprinkles of ADV aesthetic might divide opinion, all said and does, undoubtedly, this colourway does make the bike appear a bit upmarket.

In terms of its power mill and underpinnings, the Yamaha FZ-X continues to be powered by the 149cc, single-cylinder, air-cooled, fuel-injected engine that also powers the FZ-S. It develops 12.4PS of power and 13.3Nm of torque. The engine comes mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox. News here is that this motor is that it now compatible with the new E20 fuel. Now if you're not sure of what E20 is, it's the new fuel that's a blend of 20 percent Ethanol and 80 percent petrol, which is aimed to decrease costly oil import prices in addition to reduce carbon emissions.

The engine, mated the same 5-speed gearbox as before, performs well in the city given the chaos around the place, and should be fine for your daily commutes. And the way the suspension is setup in addition to the well-padded seat, this has to be one of the most comfy 150cc motorcycles around. The way it took to battered roads was just lovely. It protects you from sharp bumps and irons out most of the small undulations. As far as its handling is concerned, the FZ-X feels light and nimble and making it easy to navigate through the urban jungle. But if you're in a hurry to get somewhere quick, you will feel this bike to be a bit lackadaisical. Up to around 80kmph, feels just about alright, but try to carry out overtakes at that speed will require some calculations for time and distance with other road users on your part. Have enough time and space and you will cross the 100kmph mark on the digital dash.

In terms of features, the FZ-X gets the same reverse LCD info screen that comes with Bluetooth connectivity and lacks navigation capability and a gear position indicator. Big news here is that this 2023 model is the traction control indicator light. Yup, the 2023 FZ-X gets traction control in addition to the existing single-channel ABS. A first in this segment. And I know what you're thinking, the big question is, does this 150cc motorcycle need something like traction control? Given its humble power and torque output, it might come across as a bit of an overkill, but if you're a new rider and are setting-off over a loose surface or are faced with tricky road conditions, the system can be quite helpful. There's just two settings to it â€" on and off â€" and after testing this feature out, you'll definitely want to have it off when you're in sandy terrain to avoid any unwanted throttle cuts when taking on a steep incline in the sand. Yes, some will argue that a better option would have been to throw in dual-channel ABS instead. But that, like the gear position indicator could come in the form of an update later on, maybe.

At Rs 1.36 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi), the FZ-X may not be the first option you look at when you are considering a 150-200cc bike. Yes, the bike still feels a bit underpowered for a 150cc motorcycle, but to be completely honest, if you're not the kind who fancies riding fast (above 70-80kmph) and prefers unstressed comfort over and are happy with the way this bike looks above anything else, this the Yamaha FZ-X makes good sense. Unfortunately not all will be able to comprehend this decision, because there are other tried and tested options out there. Still, Yamaha's reliable engines and good service and dealer network around the country should work in this bike's favour as well.

Price (Ex-Delhi)
Starts Rs 1,16,800
Max Power(ps)
Max Torque(Nm)