Being a bike enthusiast, we know what does it takes to own a Japanese bike. It’s riding comfort, toughness, durability, stability, and more importantly the peace that you get in driving those machines. Moreover to the terminology of biking in Japanese context, we had learnt till date that each one of them has got a different DNA and they are very much distinct from each other, even then the maker would say that figures on paper are matching and they are of the same category. We usually don’t believe such temperament, and when there was Yamaha and Honda pitted against each other, and you are given to choose a one form them from both of them, it becomes the toughest question of life at that point of time. Well, for us when both the bikes came to our parking lot, it was the condition like to do the comparison, or leave back both of the bikes to their respective stables. We were finding ourselves in a fuss at that time. The reason for same we had said above (that DNA and all), then finally one of our guys said let’s give our life one more shot of the Japanese kick to reveal that our conclusion is yet being the same, or had they changed in this cut throat retailing competition. So we got onto our bikes, and took our way first to the highways. The open stretch of land is quite near to our office, so the city traffic did not come serving us for long distances. We then fled the clutter of sounds and found ourselves hosting the bikini fairing beauties in the harshest manner possible. Once again, riding the Japanese machine is really an experience out of this world.
Truly speaking, Honda CB Trigger is the advanced version of CB Dazzler, the tweaked version of Unicorn too, which Honda had made up with some of the minute changes and then rolled it out in the market against Yamaha FZ-S. Though, the makers themselves had claimed Trigger to be pitted against the FZ-S, so the comparison of same is being written by us in this office. Otherwise we know what the Yamaha holds under its name of performance driven 150cc sector against the mass oriented commuter segment of Honda Unicorn or Dazzler.
Leaving this discriminations behind, let’s get started with the aesthetics first. Both of them are street bikes, and so their appealing too is the same – naked, raunchy, rough, and always striding to take them out on the road, eyeing you if you dare to mess with them, more masculine, and a lot more to name in the line. CB Trigger on the top sits completely different from Honda family except that its headlight is driven from the Dazzler origin. The well sculpted fuel tank, razor sharp cowl underneath fuel belly, minute tweak on the front mudguards are some of the changes to name for this newbie. But we all know Yamaha FZ-S very well. Uplifted chin headlamp for parking, a comparatively beefier fuel tank, good quality switches and but obviously the long back carried forward digital speedometer which still looks stylish even today, and a lot more to come in this article soon. Honda had given the stylish speedo on their commuter segment product for the first time, but in comparison the Yamaha ones feel better than the rival. Both of them possess tachometer, speedometer, fuel gauge, odometer, orange backlit and clock. Honda had gained some brownie points here by pulling an extra string of dual trip meter which the Yamaha is still doing with the singe one. Comparing both of them in the quality, Yamaha is simply better than the rival Japanese. It looks sports-oriented and made perfect to the order regarding the precise demand of sportiness from its brand. The case with Honda offering on the speedo clutter doesn’t seem mellowed down the sweeping lane. It feels a bit tad, and moreover in these days of advancements it seems they had forgotten to look into the basics of competition badges. There is not engine killing switch on the switchgear cluster, was really annoying to see this type of nuisances performed by the market leaders in spite of charging the very next market price. Palm grips and clutch luke are of the right quality, no complaints from their side, even pass light and rear view mirrors are doing their jobs reliably on both of them. In the mid, Honda’s fuel tank is a bit slimmer than the other one and boasts the 3D logo on it to convey its brand name. Yamaha on the other hand had used decals to print the same, but had done the sculpting on fuel tank rightly to fit the rider in perfect position. The fuel lid tank on Honda’s offering is hinged whereas the Yamaha’s one is barely the same i.e. detachable. It gets you fizzed out for most of the time at fuel stations.
Stepping on the seats of both, is a completely the same distance. The rear space for Yamaha pillion is quite cramped and not as spacious as that of Trigger one. Honda had done with ample of space for both the riders, and even the ergonomics of its seats are better than the FZ-S. While talking in terms of space and comfort, Honda had gone more sophisticatedly with the chain socket and had provided with the chain guard on same to protect it on the maintenance cost. Whilst Yamaha had gone with practicality instead of maintenance and had left the chain exposed to air. Rear detailing is also trimmed with razor sharp tweaks on both of them. Each of these bikes has their unique styling cues. To layered tail lamps on Honda, whilst the square boxed unit fitted under the largely shaped rear fairing of FZ-S. Yamaha’s exhaust note is comparatively shorter and flung low than the competitive sibling, making a more stylish statement on the first stance. On the other side, Honda still uses the same long canister driven silencers and is placed higher than the other one. Both of them had their own advantages and disadvantages over each other. Honda’s note can make you swerve more miles in feet nagging water, which is quite familiar in India, whereas the Yamaha will not let you to go further when the water lever start rises to some additional notches than our feet. Setting off to our ride, one more feature you will notice remarkably that is the foot pegs. Honda still uses the same old school ones (made by aluminum) which one can find on Unicorn and other such, but the Yamaha had tripped it foot pegs very precisely with the machine. A good quality remark comes straight to your mind when you first look at them. Gear shifting lever is user friendly in Honda, i.e. given with both the touch point for toe as well as heel, and in FZ-S it uses the toe shifter only regarding the preference for performance driven customers.
Handling and Performance:
Handling and performance comes majorly from the engine and gearbox. Honda had tweaked Unicorn powerplant to yield many of the applications like Dazzler and maybe some more to come. Yet on this bike, most of the technical cues come from CB Dazzler itself. That same 149.1cc displacement is done with the beefy camshaft and minutely changed carburetor. But newbie hinders taller gearing and now follows the trait of shorter gearing. It is nice for the street jerks to put some rubber marking on the down side streets which is majorly a market crowded area or that the human walking zone. This sort of analysis doesn’t helps a lot on open stretches. So now this is the good news for the young generation who doesn’t spare anyone when it comes to the laws of street racing.
While looking at the FZ-S, Yamaha hadn’t taken a chance in terms of following the lower cubic displacements. The fullest 153cc engine is planted in its naked offering, whilst the other flicking like CV carburetor and multi-mapped ignition system remains same on both of them. On papers, Japanese street duos are almost similar. Yamaha FZ-S shows the power of 14bhp at 7500rpm where the Honda CB Trigger also does the same (i.e. 14 bhp) but at a slight higher mark of 8500rpm. Yamaha had given the peak torque of 1.3kgm at 6500rpm whereas the Honda motorbike does it all for an impressive 1.42kgm at 6000rpm. Hence, on paper both of the bikes shows almost similar result but it is the actual road test where their engineering will be driven to test on the harshest note, like we also don’t spare anyone for the exact conclusion. One thing which is tormenting us on paper is the braking system. Honda had deployed the CBS (combi braking system) on the top end variant of Trigger, where the Yamaha is still lacking it. Moreover the Trigger also barges for an optional rear disc brake, whilst the opponent has still not thought about it. Honda had scored again some more brownie points here which the Yamaha had not shown any interest in those respective areas. Well, the performance is still not done, so final verdict is yet to come. The beefy rear tyres of FZ-S make you go sports at any given point of time.
As we all know the first impression is the last one, and when we snapped our legs around them, both the bikes had given us an impressive equation of their respective makers and their respective segment. Yamaha was a bit sporty whilst the Honda was a bit sophisticated and upright. Saddle was also well-padded on the duos. Pushed the start button of both and engine came into action. Both had given us the better ride quality during our times, and were performing without any vibrations. Even high revs were tempting too. One can easily take any of them to their maximum limit and no one will say you a grunting a scrub in between. They reached the red mark very easily, but shied away from touching the 10,000rpm bent. However, in the initial stretches, FZ-S did its overwhelming performance and had notched ahead than the Trigger to reach 60kmph, but when the Trigger reached there and stood for a second competition started taking a different shape. Literally CB moniker of Honda had stood for around a second only on the 60-65 kmph mark and then it started moving ahead of FZ-S. Yamaha scored here in the initial clocking due to short gearing, and when the Honda came into its original action then the other one loses its race. Honda was first to touch our 100kmph mark, but instead the top whack clocking of Yamaha was a yardstick more than the Trigger. Yamaha had stood up in the top shelve at approximately 110kmph, while Honda was only a mere less than it i.e. near to 107kmph. These were the actual figures which we had seen on the speedo during out ride.
Cornering is an important section to write in this article, it’s because we have Yamaha here on board and Honda’s new experiment to challenging to make most of it against the rivals. Both of the bikes uses single downtube steel frames, where Yamaha’s FZ-S is based on the concept of “mass centralization”. So leaning was not a problem for it. But the Honda badge was a bit tad to swift down the twists. Well, this disadvantage of race track had given an advantage to it while moving in the cities. Sleeker gearbox, respectively proportionate engine, and good amount of torque at higher RPMs made it to grab the street crisps very easily. We tell you, those heavily clad minute street roads, filthy and dirty one too, will not be a jerk when you will be sitting on the CB Trigger, but same will be a bit thudding, you are likely to lean for this long on the short banded streets every time, when Yamaha FZ-S will be your buddy.
Braking, as we all know how FZ-S had shown results, thick and quick, a lot of confidence every time when you hit the pedal. But the Honda CB Trigger is quite late. There was a huge distance between both of the distance covered while going down from 60-0 kmph. The top of line what Honda is trying to mark its mettle is Combi Braking System (CBS). It functions when you dab the rear brake pedal under your feet. Both the bike makers provides disc brakes on front and drum at rear, but this Honda badge comes with the optional disc for rear. So now you can rely easily on it blindly.
Fuel efficiency is the thing which is firstly looked by any Indian when goes out there to buy a vehicle. Here we can give you the mixed response only, and hence the CB Trigger had clocked figures near, or most probably a bit more than 50kmpl, but looking at Yamaha’s configuration it was nearing in between the 38-41 kmpl. So, but obviously there wasn’t any doubt that Honda was proving healthy fuel efficiency coronation in the past and likely it had improved a lot in present too.
As we said in the beginning itself, Japanese bikes are not very easy to conclude, we had the mixed response from both of them. But when one would ask us measuring the stick of performance, then no doubt Yamaha is the best. It is a whole bunch of power and style. Looks are guaranteed when you just passing by some of the colleges. On the other hand, Honda is not that bad in riding. It too had proven the mark in line with the FZ-S. There was only minute lacking in the Trigger which we think Honda had tweaked to give 100% on practicality yet durability. We go 50-50 with this comparison. It is as per to our preference which we choose over the other one. But lastly we say, there is enough in Honda CB Trigger to pump out the adrenaline junkie like FZ-S that too the trust of Honda is also something to consider for buying a one among these two. And when in the days of rising petrol prices, the better deal will hopefully be the cost effective one. In fact, the hard core guys must dump the Japanese wing if they are expecting to be professional in every aspect, it is for beginners or conventional not the original speed junk.
Well, finally the prices may pose a threat to Honda who had adopted a lot premium than the FZ-S.