Azhar goes stark raving mad at the historical places of Mangalore aboard the naked street fighter from Yamaha.
STARTING WITHROLLING IT ON ONE WHEEL (front as well as rear), I played with this bike for an hour. After I had enough of that, I started flipping the machine around the lovely twisties of Mangalore. The excellent chassis and suspension setup worked wonders to make sure a grin remained plastered on my face throughout. The bike hardly seemed to be bothered and instead was bulling me to push her more. Say hello the new lord of the streets, the brutal looking FZ16 Midnight Special Edition.
Yamaha has decided to produce only 1000 units of each bike FZ16 Midnight Special, FZS Midnight Special and Fazer Midnight Special which makes the bike more special. Also, each bike falling under the category will feature an aluminium plate on the fuel tank that will display a serial number which shall start from 0001 up to 1000 on different 1000 units. Hence, making the bike more special and highly recognizable over the edition.
We got our hands on 123rd (Lucky to have) FZ16 Midnight Special produced by Yamaha India. Urban biking was never this fun. There are bikes which look hot, but don’t run as good. And then there is the FZ16 Midnight Special – probably the best looking two-wheeler in India currently. The short (length wise the FZ16 is the shortest in its class) looking bike with muscular angles and FZ1 derived headlamp stands out among the crowd. It is one of the rare bikes with a ‘don’t mess with me’ attitude written on every square inch of its body. Major contributors to the FZ’s wicked appearance are the fat radial tubeless tyres (A first in India), the muscular tank, the short and stubby exhaust and as mentioned above, the ‘V’ shaped headlamp. Spend two minutes around the bike and you will appreciate its finer details. For example, the superbly crafted bar ends, the design of the plastic side panels, the beautiful yet sporty all digital instrumentation console, et al.
Swing a leg over the bike, rest your bum on the soft and wide seat and you can’t help but notice the wide chunky tank. Make no mistake; the designers have used a dummy plastic outer shell to give it a big muscular look but the actual tank sits below it and holds twelve litres of fuel. The flat and wide handlebar is finished in matte black and nesting above it, India’s first all digital instrumentation console, looks great. Thumb the starter and be ready for an altogether different riding experience.
Powering the FZ16 Midnight Special is a 153cc engine that shares a similar platform with the Gladiator. Yes, this unit is completely unlike the one found on the R15. The FZ was made keeping city riding and low and midrange torque in mind rather than outright and high revving performance. With 14PS of power on tap along with an impressive 13.6Nm of torque (at just 6000rpm), Yamaha engineers have tuned the engine more for flicking through traffic, the occasional stunts and stress free commuting. Shifting through the impressed with the strong power delivery. It does seem to run out of breath after say 7500rpm, but keep her between 4000-5000rpm and silencing through urban traffic will never be the same. Slotted in fifth, the bike picks up easily from as low as 28-30km/h run. This is the best in the 150cc segment, barring the R15. Flat out, Azhar managed to clock a true 111km/h with the digital speedometer showing an indicated 118Km/h.
Complementing the strong engine is the bike’s handling. It is simply superb and makes you want to have some fun while riding. In traffic, the FZ16 Midnight Special has you giggling inside your helmet and marvelling at just how enjoyable urban riding can be. I say urban because this is not a highway motorcycle as we posted earlier is our Comparo – RTR-FI challenges FZ-S. This motorcycle wasn’t built to travel in straight lines. It loves curves, corners and twisties. Yamaha engineers have focused on mass centralization.
Let me add that the FZ is just a stunters choice. The FZ raises the hooliganism bar on two wheels in India. Make it do anything and it responds back positively like a swaggering beast. It makes you push her further – simple stoppies convert into long ones, rolling burnouts don’t bother her and wheelies are just so easy. The stiff suspension further aids in the way she behaves, though you can adjust the rear mono-cross suspension to suit the your riding needs (Surprisingly the R15 comes without a non-adjustable rear suspension). However, adjusting the rear mono-cross suspension by a step made the ride perfect.
Overall comfort was on par with the rest segment, however, we felt the seat (which initially feels soft) isn’t good for long stints. The soft sponge used for padding gives in easily and your bum atarts paining after a while. The wide tyres have been made especially for the FZ by MRF and even on wet roads, grip wasn’t much of an issue. Infact, while riding back with Asrar to the home, I happened to pass over the omnipresent cow dung on a curve and the bike held on!
But Yamaha has blended in an unbeatable combination of handling and engine performance as well. Add to it, the brilliant build quality and standard features that the bike comes loaded with and I’m sure if you’re looking for a practical, yet fun bike that’s easy on the wallet too, the FZ is the answer. The icing on the cake here is the pricing. An (On-Road price, Delhi Rs.68,600/-) . Additionally, six free services and two year/ 30,000km warranty mean that you get a bike worth every penny.
The FZ16 Midnight Special is an urban tool that will make the fair sex drool all over it. You will be in love with corners all over again and dump your car each time you have to commute. If you want to be daringly different, the FZ 16 invites inspection particularly in flaming Midnight Special!
Technical Specification of FZ16 Midnight Special –
|Engine and transmission|
|Displacement:||153.00 ccm (9.34 cubic inches)|
|Engine type:||Single cylinder, four-stroke|
|Power:||14.00 HP (10.2 kW)) @ 7500 RPM|
|Torque:||14.00 Nm (1.4 kgf-m or 10.3 ft.lbs) @ 6000 RPM|
|Bore x stroke:||58.0 x 57.9 mm (2.3 x 2.3 inches)|
|Valves per cylinder:||2|
|Fuel system:||Carburettor. BS26|
|Lubrication system:||Wet sump|
|Clutch:||Constant mesh wet multiplate|
|Chassis, suspension, brakes and wheels|
|Front suspension:||Telescopic fork|
|Front tyre dimensions:||100/80-17|
|Rear tyre dimensions:||140/60-R17|
|Front brakes:||Single disc|
|Rear brakes:||Expanding brake (drum brake)|
|Physical measures and capacities|
|Dry weight:||126.0 kg (277.8 pounds)|
|Weight incl. oil, gas, etc:||137.0 kg (302.0 pounds)|
|Power/weight ratio:||0.1111 HP/kg|
|Seat height:||790 mm (31.1 inches) If adjustable, lowest setting.|
|Overall length:||1,975 mm (77.8 inches)|
|Wheelbase:||1,335 mm (52.6 inches)|
|Fuel capacity:||12.00 litres (3.17 gallons)|
|Electrical:||12V, 2.5 Ah battery|