Yamaha Alpha review
- Make: Yamaha
- Model: Alpha
- Cubic Capacity: 113 CC
- Horse Power: 7 HP
- Top Speed: 90 kmph
- Delhi ex-showroom Price: Rs. 48,000/-
Yamaha took its time to bring out scooters into the Indian market. But eventually when they did, they started with the Ray and followed it by the Ray Z. Both of these immediately resulted in huge sales numbers for Yamaha, it’s as though the market was just waiting for scooter from Yamaha. That said, the Indian market is seeing a huge surge in demand for scooter for the past couple of years. The ease of use in our congested roads probably being the top factor. Now the Ray was a really well made scooter, pushing all the right buttons, it was light, easy to handle, fuel efficient and had well sorted out suspensions. The Yamaha Alpha, basically is the Ray underneath but with some key changes to make it more practical. So let’s get into the details then.
Engine and Performance
There is very little you can find fault with the peppy 113cc engine on the Yamaha Alpha. While the numbers of 7.1 PS at 7500 RPM and 8.1 Nm at 5000 RPM might seem low, the beauty of this Yamaha mill is in the way it translates this into on road performance. Yes, the engine is the same as that on the Ray, which means you have instant throttle response even though it is a CVT transmission. Even at low speeds with a pillion there is enough juice in the engine to accelerate out of tight spots and once you are moving and above the 30 to 35 kmph mark the throttle response gets way better. The scooter chugs on smoothly till it maxes out at a speedo indicated 90 kmph. The best part has to be the fact that even after some chaotic city traffic riding and highway runs, the engine remained just as smooth and ready for more. All scooters in the segment were sounding almost the same these days but the Yamaha Alpha has a fresh and clean sound right from start-up to in fact almost no sound on road. Mileage of the Yamaha Alpha surprised us too, it returned an impressive 40 kmpl in city traffic conditions and 45 kmpl when traffic was less and it was free moving.
Look and Feel and Build Quality
Off late there has been this trend that we have noticed that most of the scooters in the midrange started looking the same, and sadly the Yamaha Alpha also does not really stick out in terms of design. Do not get us wrong, it does look good, distinctive and proportional, just not the stand out type. The rear design is a welcome change though, the brake lamp is placed lower than the turn indicators making it instantly recognizable on road. The turn indicator lamps all over are the clear lens type, and up front there is a small grill that separates them, with the Yamaha logo right below it. The Alpha feels bigger than the Ray but surprisingly the weight remains the same and that’s a commendable job by Yamaha. You sit a little tall on the scooter and the with the increase in foot board space regardless of your height you will find yourself comfortable. Build quality is pretty good all over, something that is a Yamaha trait.
Handling and Braking
The Yamaha Alpha is a typical Yamaha, and what that means is that, it is probably the best handling scooter out there. It is very well balanced and easy to ride. The best part is that it comes with forks at front and not the regular spring loaded ones that some of its competitors have. This very point makes the Alpha so much more comfortable at front and gives it even more confidence under braking. You can change directions ever so easily and not once will you feel out of control. The suspensions although could have been a softer at the rear, as it’s a bit tight. But on the plus side the stiff suspensions means it feels very confident while taking turns even with a pillion on board, there is no “seesaw action”, basically the bouncing around that we are used to with other scooters. Brakes are also good and even under hard braking things were in control, but it does miss out on the combi braking that the Honda’s and Hero’s provide. Not a huge factor actually when it comes to actual braking, but it does add that extra bit of comfort while braking in some situations.
Accessories and Key features
The one area that the Yamaha Alpha probably looses out to some of its competition is the fact that it lacks a lot of the goodies that competitors offer. It has everything that you will ever need, but not everything that you want. Mirrors are good with nice visibility. The rear pillion grab rail is nice and huge and provides good grip for the pillion. And talking about the pillion, the seat is nice, wide and big, and will for sure be comfortable even with people of larger stature on-board at both ends. The instrument console is very basic and has a common light for the turn indicator and then the usual’s like the fuel gauge, high beam light, speedometer and the odometer. Under seat storage is pretty good and can comfortably hold a half face and some smaller models of full face helmets. Headlights are pretty good and have good throw, although we wish it had a wider spread. For a detailed look at the Aplha in photographs check out the gallery. The Yamaha Alpha comes is 5 colour options, namely, magenta, white, black, grey, and red.
Value for Money
Price wise the Yamaha Alpha has been placed very competitively and it’s right up there with the rest. Service and maintenance costs are also pretty much the same across the range. In fact we feel in the long run the Yamaha might work out cheaper due to the better quality of parts. The scooter market is the most competitive and things are very much competitive when it comes to value for money.
The Yamaha Alpha is a very practical scooter, it is easy to ride and handle, and does not put a dent in your pocket when it comes to maintaining it. Like we said earlier it has everything that you need from a scooter but misses out on some of the accessories and features that you might want. But it makes up for this with its immensely good build quality and long lasting engine build. So if you are in the scooter market it is going to be a tough task deciding with the options out there, but you definitely cannot go wrong with the Yamaha Alpha.
|Design||Air-cooled, 4-stroke, SOHC, 2-valve|
|Bore * Stroke||50 mm × 57.8 mm|
|Torque||8.1 Nm @ 5000 RPM|
|Power||7.1 HP @ 7500 RPM|
|Transmission||Automatic – CVT transmission|
|Rear Shock absorber||Unit swing|
|Brake system Front||Drum|
|Brake system Rear||Drum|
|Brake drum diameter front||130 mm|
|Brake drum diameter rear||130 mm|
|Front tyre||90/100- 10 inch|
|Rear tyre||90/100- 10 inch|
|Fuel tank capacity||5.2 L|
|Ground clearance||128 mm|
|Kerb Weight||104 kg|