Suzuki Hayate Review
Best in its ClassWednesday, October 23, 2013
Design and Style
Suzuki is known worldwide for their motorcycles but they are yet to mark their presence in India. This time they are ready with their entry level bike known as Hayate. With this commuter bike, Suzuki aims to change their fortune here in India as it will compete with bikes like Bajaj Discover, Hero Passion Pro and ruler of this segment, Hero Splendor.
Design and Style
Unlike its name, there is nothing fresh in this bike visually. It looks almost identical to its predecessor Slingshot. Hayate carries the same sleek bikini fairing and dynamics from Slingshot. Front mudguard along with its fairing and prominent headlight looks very aerodynamic. Suzuki has used the all black theme on this bike which includes black silencer, engine, alloy wheels and side panels. The tail light and grab rail may remind you of Honda Shine. It has a wide rear mudguard which doesn't go well with its rear profile as it looks very slim from its back. The fuel tank has nice edgy lines with sporty decals on it which enhance the look of this bike. Overall the bike looks very simple and sober.
Suzuki Hayate has a very basic twin pod instrument console which uses black and white colour. It has an analogue speedometer, odometer and fuel gauge with other indicators of high beam, turn indicators placed around.
Engine and Gearbox
Suzuki offers Hayate with an 112.8cc engine. It’s a mono cylinder, air-cooled, SOHC engine. This 4 stoke engine generates a peak power of 8.3 bhp at 7500 rpm with a maximum torque output of 8.4 Nm available at 5500rpm. This engine is mated with a four-speed manual gearbox with all gears down shift pattern.
Acceleration and Top Speed
This is the best thing about this bike. It accelerates really well and feels very stable. Unlike most of the bikes in its segment, Hayate doesn't much starve for power and proves that commuter bikes can also be performers. The light weight of this bike act as a boon for it and the power to weight ratio seems to be the best in its segment. Its initial gear ratios allow it to easily squeeze through the city traffic. The bike has enough amount of torque and avoids frequent gear shifting. The gearbox is very smooth and responsive; We wish if it had a fifth gear as it’s highly missed once you go pass 4000rpm. The engine is very silent and feels much more refined than what we have seen in Bajaj Discover 100cc as well as 125cc. If you compare it with the engine used in Hero Splendor, it doesn't feel less powerful but it can’t match the refinement and noise level of that engine. Commuter bikes are not known for their power packed performance but Hayate still manages to impress you. If pushed hard, the bike may touch the three digit mark but we won’t recommend you as after 80km/hour it becomes very noisy and vibrations are noticeable. At high speed it loses out to bikes like Hero Passion Pro which stays grounded and feels very refined.
This department matters the most when it comes to the commuter bikes. Suzuki has made sure that Hayate will live up to people’s expectations. Its taller gear ratios and light weight of 112kg makes it a very fuel efficient bike. In daily usage, expect this bike to return a mileage of around 65km/ltr which may increase when used on long stretches.
Comfort While Driving
Comfort level is optimum while driving Hayate. It has a low seating position with comfortable seat. When you hold the handle bar and place your legs on its foot pegs, it instantly feels like a typical commuter bike offering satisfactory comfort. Thighs stick well around the fuel tank with palms holding the bar firmly. Its instrument console is easily readable and its buttons are easy to use and nice to touch.
Safety Features and Storage Space
There is not much storage space in this bike except for the space inside its side panel and under the seat which can’t be used on daily basis. Safety features include front leg guard but it lacks pass light button.
Suspension and Brakes
Suzuki Hayate uses telescopic, coil spring front suspension with 5 step adjustable rear shock swing arm suspension which it borrows from the Slingshot. It does feel better than bikes from Hero on our Indian roads but can’t match the suspension quality of Bajaj which uses nitrox suspension. It comes with no option of disk brake and has 130mm and 110mm drum brakes at its front and rear respectively. These brakes are capable enough to stop this light bike whenever needed.
Ride and Handling
The bike handles really well in city traffic; its light weight allows you to move quickly through the tight spaces. It has a ground clearance of 165mm which works well but we wish if it had a longer wheelbase than 1260mm which affects its handling especially at high speeds and sharp corners. The bike sometimes loses its stability although it manages to pass big potholes and speed breakers without any problem.
It comes loaded with 5-spoke alloy wheels and R17 size of MRF tyres which hold the road firmly.
Suzuki Hayate is available in five shades: Pearl Mirage White, Metallic Lush Green, Pearl Mica Red, GL Sparkle Black and Metallic Flint Grey.
Suzuki Hayate is available in two variants: Hayate kick start and Hayate electric start. It is expected that disc brake variant will also be introduced in coming months.
Suzuki has smartly priced Hayate. Its pricing is the biggest USP of this bike as this way it manages to be cheaper than most of its competitors. At this price it offers satisfactory performance, mileage, comfort and basic features. Yes, we agree that its looks are disappointing and you will have to suffer the poor after sales services of Suzuki but it can’t be denied that at this price you won’t find any bike which is as fuel efficient and powerful as Hayate. We hope the time to work in the favour of Hayate as for me it’s a complete value for money bike.