First Drives

01 December 2011

Mahindra Duro 125 DX driven

Not completely new, but now comes with some much needed changes to keep up with the competition

Abhishek Mishra
Car image

Winners never quit, and quitters never win. This seems to be the message from Mahindra’s two-wheeler division at the launch of the new Mahindra Duro 125 DX. Now if you are a bike enthusiast and have been following Mahindra’s two-wheeler division, you know that things have not been all hunky-dory.  The Stallio was recalled because of technical glitches and the Mojo still awaits production.

So while Mahindra might not be fairing very well in the bike segment, it has managed to penetrate the gearless scooter market with the Rodeo and Duro. Both these products have slowly and steadily been selling in decent numbers.

Mahindra being Mahindra, is in the habit of constantly updating its products in a year or two and this healthy practice has also been picked up by their two-wheeler division. The new Mahindra Duro has gone through the same drill. On the whole the product remains the same but to notice changes you have to look closer.

The Duro now comes with a broader headlight, for better visibility in the night. Mahindra also claims that the handle bar has been raised to allow better seating for tall riders. This coupled with broader seats has added to the ergonomics of the scooter. Decals have been used to the minimum with a few Duro badges on the front and side.

The Vanilla looks have been a sore point with us, mind you; we are not saying the Duro is not good looking. The problem is, it s too understated for its own good. It does not stand out in the sea of gearless scooter on sale today. The whole flamboyant Mahindra design which has attracted buyers to their SUVs has been given a skip here. Having said that fit and finish is good overall, but we did see a few panel gaps here and there. Though no one has asked us for suggestion, might we say that dual tone colours which were a big hit on all cars and scooter in the 60’s and 70’s, would help out here.

The Duro now rides on telescopic front suspension with dual rated coil spring. What it basically means is that the ride is better even on bad roads. The Duro’s wheelbase comes in at 1270mm which is the longest in this segment. The long wheelbase aids ride this surely will make the Duro a proper mile cruncher.

The engine is the same 125cc motor but now comes with digital ignition. Mahindra says this has improved the power of the vehicle but the spec sheet still show power rating of 8bhp and 9Nm of the older Duro. The limited time we spent riding the Duro it did feel peppy, though the engine did not feel as refined as the competition, we do feel we need to ride it for some time before giving a verdict. The Duro did not show signs of stress even with a pillion rider and the higher ground clearance gave us extra confidence on bad roads.

With these changes in place and to add to that a good Mahindra service network the Duro 125 DX does make a strong case for itself. We are waiting for the price to be announced which according to us should be similar to the current Duro.

Rating: 14/20
Abhinav Mishra

Tags: mahindra, duro



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