Hero CBZ Extreme
Mention the word CBZ and your expectations go high on what to expect from the motorcycle. The name has been around for quite a bit and reminds us of a time when things started to look up for the motorcycling segment for us here in India. The CBZ has come a long way from the original and very few things remain the same, but does it still have that old magic that stole our hearts long long ago?
Engine and Performance
The 149.2cc engine on the CBZ Extreme is one with a lot of low end torque making it apt for city use. Even in top gear it can steadily pull through cleanly without knocking, quite a handy feature for city riding. Gear changes were a bit hard but we expect that to be sorted by first service. This CBZ engine is not exactly a typical Honda engine in terms of vibes and all the low end short gearing has come at the price of a stressed engine at higher RPM’s. The engine pulls all the way till a 9.5k RPM cut off. We hit a top speed of 105 kmph in a nice open stretch but clearly this bike is meant for the everyday battle in traffic where it is at its best.
Look and Feel and Build Quality
The CBZ extreme overall has a big tall stance to it and with all the additions and updates over the years to keep it ‘in’ with the times making it jam packed when it comes to the looks department. You either like it or you do not, there is no being okay with it, and we pretty much had a 50/50 distribution on likes and otherwise amongst the review team. We all unanimously agree with one thing though, the build quality and finish on the bike is really good.
The riding stance is a tall relaxed feeling one and the seats offer good comfort and grip. The disc version is the one to go for, it does its braking duties just fine and looks much better too, any day better than relying on the drums for braking. The tank fins, the split seats, the 5 double spoke alloys and the all black treatment add up to a smart looking commuter bike.
Handling and Braking
The CBZ Extreme has a well sorted out and balanced chassis, the suspensions are very soft at the front and a bit on the stiffer side at the rear, the rear shocks are adjustable though and you can move it to a softer setting for a better ride. The extra soft front suspension does take its toll on the handling when you are in the mood for some spirited riding, but then from a daily use point of view one would probably never reach its limits. The braking department is handled by disc brakes at both ends and both do a very good job with excellent feedback. We were particularly impressed with how the rear disc performed during our review and put it’s performance up there with the best in the market. The stock MRF tyres compliment the braking setup very well with good grip on tarmac and pretty good control on gravel.
Accessories and Key features
Like we mentioned earlier the CBZ Extreme is jam packed with a lot of things. Split seats, clip on handle bars, a safety flap for the main key lock, a cool blue backlit speedometer console, a helmet strap on lock and good bright headlight with a 35/35W setup. An engine kill switch is severely missed on this bike though. The front indicators are integrated with the headlight console and are of the clear lens type. The brake lights are of the LED type and are very good functionally and aesthetically, the rear indicators are again integrated with the brake light system and are of the clear lens type too. While the blue LCD display was very easy to read during the day, the black blue combo made it a bit difficult to read it quickly during night riding. The fuel and the RPM meter remain analogue and both needles do a self test during power on. The CBZ Extreme is available in 5 colour options Silver/Orange/Brown/Black and Red.
Value for Money
Strictly speaking from a commuter point of view, yes, there are lot of things that go for the CBZ Extreme. The bike comes with a lot of goodies that are pretty much upmarket and some that are new for the segment as well, it also has a good build quality that will stand the time. Being a Hero product you will never be far from a service centre either. The CBZ Extreme also returns a steady mileage of 50 kmpl in the city and 55kmpl on the highways. Making it a decent buy in the segment.
So coming back to the question, does the CBZ Extreme still have the soul of the original? Sadly though the answer is not a yes, the bike is pretty much all new in feel and ride. Over the years the balance has shifted from it being an out right riding experience to a bike with pure commuter essentials. Although that necessarily is not a bad thing either, the new CBZ Extreme is a premium commuter bike that has all the ‘goodies’ expected by its targetted customers and is a bike that goes by doing its job very well, comfortably and will keep you a happy person on the long run.
|Design||4-stroke, Air cooled|
|Torque||12.8 Nm @ 6500 RPM|
|Power||14.1 BHP @ 8,500 RPM|
|Frame||Tubular Diamond Type|
|Front Suspension||Telescopic hydraulic type|
|Rear Shock absorber||5 step adjustable gas reservoir suspension|
|Brake system Front||Disc|
|Brake system Rear||Drum / Disc|
|Brake disc – diameter front||240 mm|
|Brake disc – diameter rear||220 mm|
|Brake drum – diameter rear||130 mm|
|Wheel base||1,240 mm|
|Front tyre||80 / 100 x 18 inch|
|Rear tyre||90 / 100 x 18 inch|
|Ground clearance (unloaded)||145 mm|
|Total fuel tank capacity approx.||12.1L Normal unleaded petrol|
|Kerb Weight||148 kg|
|Battery||12 Volt 4 Amp maintenance free|
|Head lights||12V 35/35 W HS1|