Vehicle models coming into the market, whether two-, three-, or four-wheelers, are becoming day by day, more youthful and more attractive. How many visually attractive, youthful designs are appearing on the roads every day! In fact, it will not be wrong to say that the ageing process is going in reverse gear only for Mammootty and vehicle designs!
In India, today there is a flood of youth-oriented scooters. Honda DO, Yamaha Ray and Hero Maestro are just some examples of new generation scooters aiming at the youthful market. Into the midst of these, there now comes with a more contemporary shape and with a much better engine, a new star from Yamaha: Cygnus Ray ZR.
Ray ZR which is based on “NextGen Real Boys Scooter” concept harmonizes excellently with the new generation vehicle concepts. This model, in four very attractive colours, aims at the male segment of market which is looking for a combination of style and power.
The appearance of ZR is ultra-modern and beautiful. The body, executed in multi-tone paint, concentrates on emphasizing sharp lines. At first sight, what is most attractive is the sharp body-lined headlamp assembly extending from the middle of the front panel to the bottom end. This headlamp is reminiscent of Honda DO. Above this on the front panel we can see the logo of Yamaha. The indicator lamps on either side of the headlamp, reminding the viewer of flower petals, add to the beauty of the front view. But it is in side view that ZR is most attractive. The side panels, boomerang-shaped and including the front indicator lamps, are extremely beautiful. Sharp bodylines are seen also in the rear protecting board. The stylish pin grab rail too deserves special mention. In the side profile, a part which attracts attention are the body graphics which appear here and there: Though adding to the stylishness, this does seem a little excessive.
The great attraction at the back is the big tail lamp. Close to this, just above, is the Yamaha logo. Rear indicator lamps are not in the tail lamp cluster but are installed on either side as in bikes. The way in which the meter cluster has been conceived, including analog speedometer, odometer and fuel gauge, is explosively grand. Warning lamps are included in specially designed slots in a stylishly illuminated cluster. Quality of Plastic components looks better. In the front pockets of ZR, mobile phone or purse, or even a half-liter bottle can be accommodated. In addition, there is plenty of under-seat storage space. Key shutter locking system which is a familiar feature of modern-day scooters is also incorporated here. In short, this vehicle optimally combines style and utility.
Next let us look at some of the technical aspects of the visually youthful Ray ZR. This scooter has the same 113cc, 4-stroke, SOHC, 2-valve, air-cooled engine that we have seen in Fasino. However here, the engine has been tuned for power of 7.2 PS and 8.1 NM torque.
When the Starter button is pressed the vehicle comes alive with a very minimal sound. The reason for this attractiveness of the engine of ZR, which is in no way lacking in refinement, must be its tuning. The company has tuned it to be most “user-friendly”, i.e. for smooth power delivery even at low speeds. The mid-range is also optimal. The CVT transmission has been built for smooth initial acceleration. However, it also has enough capability for instant acceleration required while overtaking. When this highly efficient transmission is combined with a BS carburetor with throttle suspension centre, the result is the dual benefits of excellent performance and incomparable mileage. Comfortable ride is ensured by a big seat with excellent support and wide floorboard.
Suspension setup with telescopic forks in front and unit swing at the back offers comfortable ride both in front and back. Though weighing only 105 kgs, ZR does not lose control even at high speeds. The reason for this must be its excellent suspension.
Though a variant with 170mm front disk brake was available, we chose the drum brake variant for our test ride. Drum brakes also toned with good bite even at higher speed.Utilizing the “Blue Core” technology, ZR promises a fuel efficiency of 66 kms per liter.
Price: Rs.56,241/- ex showroom, Kochi. (Rs.58,785/- with disk brake variant.) We have no doubt that Ray ZR with its youthful appearance and excellent performance, will capture the minds of young people. But it remains to be seen how middle-aged users will react to this offering.