Of the three new Yezdis, the Roadster is the closest to the existing Jawa motorcycles.
A month after the new range of Yezdis was launched, Classic Legends has finally given us a chance to sample these machines. We were only given a couple of hours with each bike so we won’t be able to tell you much about its performance, highway manners, city comfort and fuel efficiency. All that will have to wait till another day, but, for now, we can tell you what each bike has to offer in terms of the riding experience. This article is about the most affordable Yezdi of the lot, the Roadster.
To start off, the Roadster’s identity is not as clear as the other two Yezdis. On the face of it, this looks like a stretched out Jawa with a different fuel tank and headlamp design. That’s because this Yezdi continues to use the Jawa shaped engine cases and side panels under the seat. It appears stretched out because Classic Legends has increased the steering rake angle to a lazy 29 degrees and stretched the wheelbase out from 1,369mm to 1,440mm.
Where the Roadster stands apart from the Jawas is in terms of its size and presence. It may not be as visually pleasing a design as the Jawas, but this bike is larger, and feels that way when you sit on it. However, if the looks had you expecting a more relaxed cruiser-style riding position, this is not the case, as the foot pegs are still mounted underneath you and quite high up, just as they are with the Jawas. With a 790mm seat height, this will be the most-friendly Yezdi for shorter riders, but as with the Jawas, tall riders will find the foot peg placement a little too tight.
The Roadster and the Scrambler have a 12.5-litre fuel tank with the latter being positioned as the lowest model in the Yezdi line-up. That means it doesn't get the switchable modes for the dual-channel ABS and the USB chargers will be sold as an optional accessory. The back rest and the bar-end mirrors on the Roadster are standard equipment though.
As for quality, all three Yezdis need to improve, but the Roadster fares better because the matt black treatment does a better job of hiding the blemishes. However, if you look closely, you'll still see some rough welds and cheap looking bolts in a few areas.
To ride, the Roadster feels a lot like the Jawas and that's not a surprise, since the main chassis is more or less the same, apart from the tweaked steering geometry and extended wheelbase. Ride quality is not bad and it’s fairly pliant, although the rear suspension felt a little too soft. This was something we noticed in the corners as well, where the bike didn't feel as planted or confident as the new Jawas.
Raising the preload on the rear shocks definitely helped improve the bikes handling, but it's still not as connected a handler as I remember the new Jawa 42 feeling. With that bike you could lay it on its side in a corner till the foot pegs are grinding away, but on the Roadster, I couldn't find that confidence.
Like the other two Yezdis, the Roadster uses the bigger 334cc motor from the Jawa Perak, but Classic Legends claims that many internal components in the engine are different. The performance on offer is brisk, but we’ll have to test it properly with a Vbox to see exactly how effective the promised 29.7hp and 29Nm are. However, all three Yezdi engines could do with more refinement.
The Roadster engine is also the only one here that still has two exhaust ports in the cylinder head, while the Scrambler and Adventure engine now get single exhaust ports. It does sound a little different from the other two Yezdis, with a more pronounced pulse and beat that you would hear in the modern day Jawa engines. In comparison, the other two bikes have a flatter, more brappy exhaust note that you would normally associate with a single-cylinder motorcycle, and this is especially true in the case of the Adventure with its single exhaust. If you like the sound of the modern day Jawas, you will find the Roadster the most pleasing.
The Yezdi Roadster is the most affordable of the trio, with prices ranging from Rs 1.98 lakh-2.06 lakh, ex-showroom Delhi, depending on what colour you go for. That puts it squarely against the 350cc competition from Royal Enfield and Honda.
Yezdi Scrambler, Roadster, Adventure video review