Why are 125 cc bikes popular in Europe..?? Why are there hardly any 150/200 cc Street Bikes in Europe..?? Rumours of Cagiva coming to India with its "Sexy" 125 cc bikes..!!
What is common among the following bikes posted below..??
Apart from looking out of this world, they are all..
- Popular and on sale in Europe
- Maximum Power is upto 11 Kw or 14.75 bhp
- Maximum Engine Capacity is 125 cc
Most European Street bikes comes with engine capacities of either 125cc, 250cc, 600cc or 1000cc..
Yes, Europeans it seems have a thing for 125 cc bikes. These pocket rockets are comes fully loaded with the kinds of bells and whistles, which even our (Indian) premium (??) bikes haven't yet offered.
So why do Europeans like riding 125 cc bikes..??
Lets first visit the European websites of a few motorcycle makers..
Just visit the Website of Yamaha UK: In UK Yamaha currently sells (in the supersport category), the YZF-R1, YZF-R6 and the YZF R-125..!!
Just visit the Website of Honda UK: In UK Honda currently sells (in the supersport category), the CBR1000RR (Firblade), the CBR600RR and the CBR125R..!!
Just visit the Website of Kawasaki UK: In UK Kawasaki currently sells (in the supersport category), the Ninja ZX-10R, the Ninja ZX-6R and the Ninja 250R (in the Sports Category)
Just visit the Website of Hyosung UK: In UK Hyosung currently sells (among the street bikes), the GT650R, the GT250R (faired version), GT250 (naked version, the Comet which Kinetic once sold in India), GT125R (faired), GT125 (naked version)
Just visit the Austrian Website of Cagiva Motorcycles: In Eupore Cagiva currently sells, the RAPTOR 1000, the RAPTOR 650 and the MITO 125- SP525..!!
As can be clearly see, the European Street bikes comes with engine capacities of either 125cc, 250cc, 600cc or 1000cc. Not even 150 cc (Which is a segment quite popular in India) or 200 cc.
So what's the reason behind the popularity of 125 cc bikes in Europe..??
For answers lets have a look at the Motorcycle Laws of Europe..
European Motorcycle Laws:
Most European Countries have motorcycle laws which restrict riders from the age of 16-18 to ride motorcycles with maximum of 125 cc engine capacity and producing not more than 11 Kw or 14.75 bhp. (Lucky European Teens..!!)
Another law which makes 125 cc motorcycles popular among European Adults is that anyone who has a 4 wheeler driving license can ride a 125 cc motorcycle without a motorcycle riding license.
For a motorcycle rider between the age of 18-21 there is no restriction in engine cc but restricted to ride a bike not producing not more than 25 Kw or 33.5 bhp. Therefore after 125 cc bikes, most bike makers sell 250 cc bikes with around 30 bhp power (like the Kawasaki Ninja 250R & the Hyosung GT250R)
Above 21 years old, a rider can ride motorcycles of any capacity and power but have to undergo a practical test by riding a bike at least 33.5 bhp or above.
It is therefore seen that due to this legal system, Street bikes in Europe are either restricted to 125 cc or 14.8 bhp (or less) for 16-18 year olds and for adults with 4 wheeler license, or 33 bhp (or less) for 18-21 year olds.
Probably this explains the reason why motorcycles in Europe are 125 cc, 250 cc or above..
[European Motorcycle Laws: Source]
Great..!! Now can't India get these 125 cc bikes..?? Surely there is a huge market for two wheelers here.
Well... these fast (by Indian standards) 125 cc beauties have a cool sticker price which is equivalent to around Rs.2,30,000(Excluding Import Duties)..!!
Cagiva "Might" join hands with Kinetic:
The March 2008 issue of Bike India did carry an article about Cagiva looking to enter into an agreement with Kinetic Motors of India, in which Kinetic would manufacture the engines for its motorcycles like the Mito 125. But so far there hasn't been any concrete official announcement about it by either Cagiva or Kinetic.
Also according to Bike India, the Mito 125 makes around 30 bhp. But what Bike India did not tell was that the 2-Stroke engine of the Mito 125 makes around 30 bhp only in the unrestricted form (with performance mods), under European laws the Mito 125 has to stick to 11 Kw or 14.75 bhp in its stock form.
Also since the Mito125-SP525 has a 2 stroke motor, Cagiva might be make the switch to a more eco friendly 4 stroke motor in the future.
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- Will the "Yamaha Fazer 250" and "Honda CBX 250 Twister" be ever launched in India..??
- Honda India has 100/125 C.C plans. Can we please have the CBR 150R too..??
- Road to the Indonesian Two Wheeler Industry
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