First impression – Yamaha FZ looks exactly the same as older model from far and absolutely different upon closer inspection. Version 1.0 Yamaha FZ is still known for its muscular looks and not the least contributing factor of which is its chubby and grippy tires. At the time FZ first made its debut, there was no bike to compare it with in terms of visual appeal and there still isn’t any in its price range. New Yamaha FZ version 2.0 has successfully put the nameplate back in trend with sharper body lines and athletic features. Starting with headlamp all the way upto tail piece, FZ FI has undergone careful surgery to make it look modern and at the same time not compromising on its beefy figure. New decals also help the bike look fresh and furious. It was hard to say no to Yamaha FZ when looking to buy a bike in the segment and the feeling hasn’t changed after launch of FZ version 2.0.
Features – New Yamaha FZ has stylish halogen headlamp with small parking lamp on its chin, clear lens halogen turn indicators, plain looking side mirrors, wide handlebars, fully digital LCD instrument panel with speedo, tacho, odo, trip and fuel meters, and special mention to ECO indication lamp, chunky fuel tank, stylish tank extensions, split seats, split and open ended grab rails, rear tire hugger, sophisticated two trim exhaust, halogen tail lamp, 100/80 front tire, 140/60 rear tire and 17 inch black alloy wheels.
Engine – Yamaha FZ FI version 2.0 is powered by single cylinder 149 cc 4-stroke air-cooled Blue Core Technology engine with Single Over Head Camshaft (SOHC) controlling 2 valves. Unlike earlier motor powering FZ version 1.0, new engine is fuel injected. Downsized power plant produces 13.1 PS maximum power @ 8000 rpm and 12.8 Nm peak torque @ 6000 rpm, which is about 0.9 PS and 0.8 Nm lesser than older carbureted engine. Both are mated to 5 speed gearbox with one-down four-up shift pattern.
Performance – Although FZ FI version 2.0 has lost some power and torque on paper, the bike feels surprisingly more peppy than older model right from low engine speed to redline. Loss of 3 kg (kerb weight) can be easily felt, the bike feels less resistive to acceleration. Reaching 60 kmph and 80 kmph from halt is quick and easy. Even with a pillion hugging, performance drop was not as much as we expected. And the pillion felt glad about new broader seat in FZ version 2.0. New engine in Yamaha FZ FI not only sports good performance, but also has better refinement over the older motor. Yamaha claims 14 % better mileage with new fuel injected engine. We haven’t tested the bike for fuel efficiency yet, but we are certain of improved mileage over version 1.0 based on lightness and rev quality of new engine.
Handling – Yamaha FZ was always a good handler and new version 2.0 bike being lighter exhibits enhanced agility. The bike feels as planted on the road as earlier model and is easier around corners. High speed stability is appreciable.
Braking – Front disc brake has strong bite as usual which is probably the best in class. It is high time Yamaha gave FZ rear disc brake as drum is not very effective especially with the huge rubber.
Verdict – It is safe to say Yamaha FZ FI version 2.0 is a near perfect bike for commuters and enthusiasts, munching as many miles in the city as on highway. With upgraded looks, features and promised better mileage, FZ version 2.0 upholds all aspects FZ nameplate stood for in India.
Price – Yamaha FZ FI version 2.0 is priced at Rs. 76,250 (ex-showroom Delhi) while sportier Yamaha FZ-S FI is priced at Rs. 78,250. Compared to original Yamaha FZ, fuel injected version is about Rs. 5,000 more expensive. Although FZ was never a very affordable bike in its segment, price difference for FI version is worth it, considering version 1.0 FZ is still on sale.