Review: New Suzuki Access 125
The first-generation Access 125 worked well for Suzuki in terms of establishing the company's competency in the scooter segment. Given its rather uninhabited class, the competition was close between its main rival, the Honda Activa 125, and now, possibly from the new Mahindra Gusto 125. But Suzuki now wants to better its chances and has giving the Access 125 one serious makeover. After recently riding the new scooter around Pune, we can concur that this one certainly has the potential to head its class.
It's not really one to make you drool in awe, but the all new Access does look more sleek and contemporary than the older model. It looks more toned and dynamic than before with new body panels and there are even some chrome and other bits like the clear turn indicator lights that appear quite tasteful on this scooter. In fact, the new version is around 10kg lighter than the older model. There's even a 3D 'Access' logo on its flanks, and an aluminium grab rail.
The display is all new too, but comes across as a rather bland effort at bettering the competition. It is rather simplistic in design. The dominant analogue part gives clear indication of speed, the tiny digital display section reads out odometer, fuel gauge, service reminder and two trip meter figures.
But what is really nifty is the fact that the scooter now comes with a couple of handy features like the ignition slot doubling up as a boot release, a useful front pocket, and even a mobile charging socket available as an add-on. Switchgear and fit and finish levels are good and on par with the rest in the business.
As soon as you set off on the new Access 125, it becomes apparent that Suzuki preferred to focus on making this scooter ride better than simply look outstanding. It's the first time the company has used a 12-inch wheel up front and if you thought the previous Access was flawless, which it pretty much was, this one's an even smoother customer. The suspension doesn't throw you off when you hit sharp bumps and is much more pliant and comfortable than the current competition. Wheelbase has increased by 15mm and this coupled with the 12-incher up front make for a very stable ride on the highway, while a good chassis and turning radius maintaining an agile nature that you would want in the city.
The best part about this scooter is its new and improved 124cc engine. Producing 8.5bhp and 10.2Nm, power and displacement remain the same, but this motor is lighter and uses the company's SEP tech to improve performance and efficiency. Considering the reduction in weight, the new Access feels very brisk off the line. The way the engine goes about its business is highly commendable. It's smooth and very refined. The engine didn't feel stressed while maintaining speeds of 70-75kph down the highway, and it returned a satisfactory 45kpl while at it.
New Suzuki Access 125 photo gallery
The Access 125 variant we tested is the one with the optional front disk brake. Well, for one, we found the disc to work effectively well in shaving-off speed effortlessly when some locals tried to test our braking ability. The updated Access 125 has a lot of room on offer. It gets one of the longest seats in its segment and also a large under-seat storage of 21 litres. So you can chuck in quite a few things, but there won't be enough room for your full-face helmet.
To sum it up, the all-new Suzuki Access 125 is lighter, more comfortable, fuel efficient and better looking scooter than its last iteration. At Rs 53,887 (ex-showroom Delhi) for the base model, it's also a couple of grand cheaper than the Honda Activa 125. While price for the disk brake variant is yet to be announced, we're sure that it will undercut the Honda on price once more. It's seriously very hard to find fault with this one. Honda better roll up its sleeves, because definitely it's on now.
Specs\:Single-cylinder, 124cc, carbureted, 8.58bhp, 10.2Nm, CVT, 102kg; fuel tank\: 5.6 litres, fuel efficiency\: 45kpl
A thorough effort from Suzuki to revive one of its popular scooters. It can make life difficult for the Activa 125