Upcoming new bikes for 2017

Yamaha MT-03

After Yamaha launched the brilliant YZF-R3, plans are now in order to introduce a naked version of the motorcycle, labelled the MT-03. There were expectations of the model being launched during the Auto Expo 2016 in Noida, but instead, Yamaha launched its larger sibling, the MT-09, which is brought here as a CBU unit.

The MT-03 will sport the same 321cc, parallel-twin, liquid-cooled engine that is seen on the R3 that will churn out 41.4hp of power and 29.6Nm of torque. Essentially, most of the components from the R3 have been carried over, including the suspension, brakes, wheels and tyres. What will be completely fresh is the seating position. The MT-03 now has a wider and more upright handlebar.

It will, however, be on the compact side and sport an R3 derived, diamond frame. It is unclear whether ABS will be offered as an option on the MT-03, as it's still not available on the sportier YZF-R3. But if the R3 is anything to go by, we can expect the naked version of it to be just as fun to ride.

Expected launch date: Late 2016
Expected price: Rs 2.90 lakh

Tork Motorcycles T6X

Electric is the future, and the future is finally here. Tork Motorcycle, a Pune-based firm, is set to launch an electric motorcycle T6X that seems to tick all the right boxes. It will also be the first electric motorcycle to be manufactured and sold in India. Founded by mechanical engineer Kapil Shelke, his passion for racing has seen Tork Motorcycle participate in professional racing, including events like the coveted Isle of Man's TTXGP (electric motorcycle class) to the TT Zero Race. The Tork racing motorcycle even secured a podium on its debut appearance at the Isle of Man.

With the T6X, Tork plans to cater to the 125cc commuter bike buyers who are looking for something more premium. While the bike is expected to cost more than its immediate competition, the company claims that the lower running costs of the bike (a full recharge costs Rs 10-20) means that the additional expenses incurred will be easily recovered within a year of purchase.

Two charging stations have already been installed in Pune, and the company aims to set up a total of 100 stations by the time the bike is launched in the city. The company is working on a similar plan for other cities too, which is expected to be completed within a year of the bike's launch. The T6X is expected to deliver a maximum range of over 100km on a single charge, while top-speed has been limited to 85kph. Its Li-ion battery can reach 80 percent charge in one hour when plugged into a 15A source, and will attain full charge in two hours. It gets bespoke tyres developed by Ceat and features regenerative braking that charges the bike’s batteries upon decelerating. The bike is already ABS compatible, but initial models will make do without the safety feature.

The highlight of the T6X is its connectivity features. It will get a display with navigation and a Mirror Link-like interface which is compatible with both Android and iOS devices. The bike was officially unveiled in October 2016 and Tork plans to launch the T6X early 2017.

Expected Launch Date: Q1 2017
Expected Price: Rs1.25 lakh

Yamaha FZ 200/250

Even before any official word of Yamaha’s MT-03's imminent arrival in India has come out, spy pictures of a new Yamaha bike undergoing testing have come to light. Now this unknown naked bike is distinctly a Yamaha and even seems to borrow some design cues from the MT-03. However, closer inspection reveals that this is an altogether different motorcycle. For one, the motor looks like an evolution of the 150cc air-cooled mill from the FZ16, but now is seen to be sporting an oil-cooler. This leads us to believe that this motor could be a 200cc or even a 250cc single-cylinder unit. This bump-up in cubic capacity will add another model in the company’s line-up and should form the perfect bridge from the existing 150cc motorcycle and the yet-to-arrive MT-03 (which we believe will come in as a CKD).

Apart from that, the tank and its extensions seem to be much larger than those from the FZ16, and the small headlight further accentuates its size. The short, stubby exhaust too seems to be a derivative of the one from the current Yamaha FZ16 series. The narrower swingarm and smaller brake discs seem to come from the current 150cc bike. The bike also sports a split seat setup much like the FZ16 v2.0, and gets wide, flat grab handles at the back. The spy pics of the test mule reveal a full-LCD instrument cluster, and LED headlight as well as LED tail lights. Beefy 41mm forks upfront and a monoshock at the back complete the setup.

Exact details of this bike aren’t known just yet, but it looks like Yamaha fans in India will be happy to see a new performance bike from the company, after most of its recent portfolio has been a sea of scooters and commuter motorcycles.

Expected Price: 1.5 lakh
Expected Release Date: Q2 2017

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Autocar Magazine

Issue: 209 | Autocar India: January 2017

We bring you drives of the Maruti Ignis, the Skoda Kodiaq, the new 5-series and take you on a trip from India to Paris in a Renault Kwid. All that and lots more inside!
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