Review: Suzuki Inazuma 250
A twin-cylinder bike is a hotly-debated topic amongst fellow bikers. Given a choice, I would love anything above 200cc to be a twin-cylinder, but given the added cost manufacturers incur, they have kept a distance from such machines. It's a fair point too, if you build any 500cc motorcycle with a single-cylinder engine, it will still cost much less than a twin-cylinder bike with half that cubic capacity.Case in point, the Suzuki Inazuma. Enthusiasts were waiting for this 250cc, twin-cylinder bike from Suzuki for a fairly long time; but when it was finally launched, the hefty price tag of Rs 3.26 lakh, ex-showroom Mumbai was an anti-climax. But for those who are still keen to know more about this simple twin-pot motorcycle, I suggest you read on.Starting with the appearance, the Inazuma looks like a much bigger bike than the humble 248cc motor that nestles in its frame would suggest. The front apes the B-King muscle bike with the odd looking headlight and the muscular fuel tank with integrated indicators, while the twin exhausts jutting out from the rear give it a mini-Bandit look. Suzuki has very wisely skipped any mention of the cubic capacity on the bike. The only badging you see on the bike is the Suzuki logo on the fuel tank and the Inazuma tag below the pillion seat. If you are looking for something flashy to get you noticed, the Inazuma won't have the desired effect. It is understated, and people who do notice the bike will come and talk to you more about the bike's performance and feel rather than the retarded, 'kitna deti hai?' question.In the city, the bike feels nimble. The commuter-friendly seating position sees to it that your palms don't ache after a long ride. The clutch leaver is soft and goes a long way in reducing stress. But one of the best features of the Inazuma is the power it makes from as little as 2500rpm all the way to 11000rpm.Most of my city ride was done in 4th gear, where the bike would pick up from as little as 35kph all the way to 110kph. With the 6th gear engaged, cruising down the highway is a breeze. You rarely have to shift down to overtake, and with a top speed of 138kph (as indicated by our test equipment) there is enough fast-paced action that the bike has to offer. After riding the bike for some 550-odd kilometres - most of it being highway and some of it through city traffic, the Inazuma managed to return an impressive 29.4kpl to the litre. If you can be gentle with the throttle and keep the bike below the 7000rpm mark (completely possible), you can surely extract another 8kpl with ease.Coming back to the biggest negative for the Inazuma, the price. At Rs 3.6 lakh on-road Mumbai, the bike is not cheap. But it also offers something that no bike in this segment can offer; the butter-smooth performance of that twin-cylinder motor. If you are looking for a motorcycle that can multi-task as a fast city bike, an errand runner and weekend tourer, the price tag is still steep, but it is a price worth paying.The numbers2cyl, 248cc, liquid-cooled, 4-stroke, 6M, 24.1bhp, 21.5Nm, 185kg, 29.4kpl, 138kph, Rs 3.6 lakh on-road, MumbaiThe verdictThough the price may be on the higher side, the Inazuma still tries to bring the simple joy of a twin-cylinder engine back to the masses; and what a joy it is indeed.