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  • USB charging slot is standard and located conveniently un...
    USB charging slot is standard and located conveniently under the seat .
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    Under seat stowage area not as spacious as a conventional scooter.
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    MRF Nylogrip Zappers offer good grip and feedback, even on wet roads.
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Aprilia SR 160 review, road test

29th Jun 2020 4:23 pm

The sportiest scooter in the country gets a cleaner and more powerful engine.

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When Aprilia launched the SR 150 in 2016, it made the enthusiasts and the industry sit up and take notice. In a market where scooters are considered as nothing but a frugal means to get from point A to point B, Aprilia dared to tread into unchartered territory. In many ways, the Aprilia SR150 is the antithesis to the relaxed and practical Indian scooter. Its powerful motor, involving handling, and inherent sporty character has seen it being lapped up by enthusiasts. Cut to 2020, and the BS6 regulations have resulted in the SR getting a slightly bigger, more powerful engine. But has the quest for cleaner emissions dulled the fun factor it is known for? Let’s find out.

The SR 160 looks identical to the SR 150, except for the tweaked decals denoting the use of a 160cc engine. The scooter has been around for some time now but it is far from evoking that ‘long in the tooth’ feeling. It still looks like a sharp and sporty scooter to me, one with a distinct identity of its own. This is complemented by the 14-inch wheels that lend a unique stance, unlike anything seen in the rather crowded Indian scooter space. 

Moving beyond the design, the fit and finish is good in most places but I would’ve liked the use of a better grade of plastic around the instrument cluster and the switchgear. It just doesn’t feel premium enough for a scooter priced on the other side of Rs 1 lakh. And this is only magnified when you look at the scant features list. The SR 160 doesn’t get a LED headlamp, there’s no multifunctional ignition slot and the part-digital instrument cluster could’ve displayed more information. There are 125cc scooters that are better equipped than the SR160. I wish Aprilia had used this opportunity to throw in more features and justify the huge price hike; I’ll get to that later. 


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Instrument cluster layout is neat but it could display more information.


The Aprilia SR 150 has always been lauded for its benchmark performance, and a look at the SR 160’s larger and more powerful motor suggests that the bar may have been pushed higher. However, our tests reveal otherwise.

In the transition to comply with BS6 norms, the cubic capacity of the air-cooled single has gone up slightly, from 154.8cc to 160cc, via an increase in the stroke from 58.6mm to 60.6mm. Meanwhile, the carburettor has been replaced with a fuel-injection system. The result of this is a 0.84hp increase in power and a 0.7Nm increase in torque. 


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The new BS6 engine sounds similar to the outgoing BS4 unit at idle.


Crank up the engine and you’ll notice that it sounds similar to the BS4 unit at idle, despite the addition of the secondary catalytic converter. However, once you set off, you’ll find that the scooter feels notably smoother, and it remains that way until you cross the 70- 80kph mark. This smoothness, however, has come at the cost of the initial punch off the line that made the previous scooter a bit more exciting. This reduced feeling of urgency reflects in our performance tests as well. Clocking 7.96sec in the 0-60kph sprint, the SR 160 is 0.49sec slower than the SR 150 we tested last year. Nevertheless, it remains India’s quickest scooter, albeit by a slim margin over the 125cc scooters such as the BS6 Suzuki Access (0-60kph in 8.08sec).

As far as top speed is concerned, the SR160 managed to nudge past 90kph on the speedometer. Corresponding to the Vbox numbers, it is great to see that the speed displayed is now quite accurate and Aprilia has finally fixed the massive speedo error issue that exaggerated the SR 150’s top speed. 

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The one area that the SR 160 hasn’t seen any change over the 2019 SR 150, is in the way it rides. Aprilia tweaked the front fork last year to make the suspension more absorbent over our broken and undulating roads, and the SR 160 continues in the same vein. The low-speed ride remains stiff, but it is not as jarring as the original and is a small price to pay for the genuinely sporty handling; show the SR a series of corners and it shines. The poise and confidence with which the SR flows through a series of bends is unlike any other scooter. The SR is also easy to tip into a corner, despite its 14-inch wheels, and the MRFs offer sufficient grip and feedback. 


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Stepped seat is firm and can feel uncomfortable after some time.


The brakes are the best we’ve experienced on an Indian scooter. The bite from the front disc is powerful and the feedback through the lever so accurate, it puts to shame the braking on some more expensive motorcycles. The ABS too is well calibrated and doesn’t come in until required. However, when it does, it stays on for a bit.

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ABS equipped 220mm disc brake offers excellent stopping power.


The Aprilia SR 160 is one of the most exciting scooters in the market and if you’ve always desired to own a dynamically sound scooter with a high fun quotient, this is a no-brainer. That said, what might make you stop and think before drawing out the cheque book is the Rs 1.24 lakh (on-road, Mumbai) price tag, for the base version. That’s roughly Rs 20,000 over the BS4 SR 150 and bang in the territory of some really good 150cc motorcycles. That’s a steep hike for a model that offers a riding experience that’s not very different from before and comes without any additional features. Nevertheless, the SR 160’s BS6 motor is a sign of what we can expect from the upcoming Aprilia SXR 160 maxi-scooter that will use the same engine. With its more spacious ergonomics and expected improvement in comfort, the SXR should be a good match for this motor and is something to look forward to when it launches later this year. 

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PRICE Petrol Petrol AT Diesel Diesel AT Electric
Ex-showroom - Delhi Rs 1.04- Rs 1.14 lakh (ex-showroom, India)
ENGINE Petrol Petrol AT Diesel Diesel AT Electric
No of Cylinders 1
Cubic Capacity (cc) 160.03cc
Fuel Delivery System Fuel-injection
Bore/Stroke (mm) 58 x 60.6mm
Max Power (hp @ rpm) 10.9hp at 7,600rpm
Max Torque (nm @ rpm) 11.6Nm at 6,000rpm
Power to Weight Ratio (hp/tonne) 92.37hp per tonne
TRANSMISSION Petrol Petrol AT Diesel Diesel AT Electric
Gearbox Type CVT
BRAKES Petrol Petrol AT Diesel Diesel AT Electric
Front Brake Type Disc
Front Brake Size (mm) 220mm
Rear Brake Type Drum
Rear Brake Size (mm) 140mm
SUSPENSION Petrol Petrol AT Diesel Diesel AT Electric
Front Suspension Telescopic fork
Rear Suspension Monoshock
WHEELS AND TYRES Petrol Petrol AT Diesel Diesel AT Electric
Front wheel (inch) 14
Front Tyre 120/70-14
Rear wheel (inch) 14
Rear Tyre 120/70-14
ACCELERATION Petrol Petrol AT Diesel Diesel AT Electric
0 - 10 kph (sec) 0.63
0 - 20 kph (sec) 1.34
0 - 30 kph (sec) 2.24
0 - 40 kph (sec) 3.46
0 - 50 kph (sec) 5.24
0 - 60 kph (sec) 7.96
0 - 70 kph (sec) 11.64
0 - 80 kph (sec) 15.75
BRAKING Petrol Petrol AT Diesel Diesel AT Electric
60 - 0 kph (mts, sec) 17.29m
EFFICIENCY Petrol Petrol AT Diesel Diesel AT Electric
City (kpl) 35kpl
Highway (kpl) 37.27kpl
Overall (kpl) 36.1kpl
Overall Range (kms) 252.7km
Aprilia SR 160 review, road test
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