2020 TVS NTorq 125 Test Ride Review
We do a detailed road test of the TVS's flagship scooter, the NTorq 125 Race Edition
Bike tested: TVS NTorq 125 BS6; Road Test No. 1223; Test Location: Mumbai
Price OTR Mumbai: Rs. 96,000/-
The 2020 NTorq 125 isn’t very different from the previous model and it is a good as well as a bad thing!
The TVS NTorq 125 is one of the sportiest scooters in the segment and has been around for about 2 years. It did not receive any major update until last year when TVS launched the Race Edition. It is now BS6 compliant, while it still looks the same and even retains all the previous features. However, it gets FI now and there has been another huge change. The price. The BS6 variant is up to Rs. 10,000/- costlier than the BS4 version and this is one of the steepest price hikes we’ve seen for any scooter. So, is it worth it? We tell you all the good and the bad about the updated TVS NTorq 125 to see if it justifies the extra cash!
MotorQuest: The TVS NTorq was the first TVS product to get an all-new 3-valve 125cc mill. It was launched right before the 2018 Auto Expo and took the market by storm as it was the only scooter to get Bluetooth Connectivity features and the first-ever scooter to get an engine kill switch in India. Moreover, it looked sporty and was the only scooter to take the fight to the Aprilia SR 125 in terms of aesthetics and performance.
Styling: If you liked how the NTorq looked in the past, we have good news for you! The updated NTorq 125 looks exactly the same as before. It has received no aesthetic updates whatsoever, and it’ll be tough to differentiate the BS6 model from the BS4 model. However, this is large because there wasn’t much wrong with the NTorq’s looks in the first place. It looks radical and gets a lot of sporty touches like rear vents, stubby muffler, diamond cut alloys and 3D logos. Further, the numerous colour options to choose from are like a cherry on the cake. However, for the Race Edition, you get just 2 colour options.
The TVS NTorq 125 Race Edition looks pretty radical from the front
For the lower variants, the disappointing bit is the halogen headlamp. It looks decent with the LED DRL but the competition has switched to full-LED headlamps which gives them an upper hand. However, if you opt for the top-of-the-line Race Edition of the NTorq, you get a full-LED headlamp, carbon fibre type seat cover, and sporty graphics which enhance the character of the scooter. Also, the Race Edition now comes in a yellow colour option as well. To sum it up, while the halogen headlamp is a bummer, the TVS NTorq 125 is still a handsome chap. But the Race Edition is definitely the most aesthetically pleasing out of all the variants.
Instrument Cluster and Switchgear: Just like the looks, not much is new here as well. The NTorq still boasts of a fully digital display which gets features like a personalised welcome message, three trip meters, ride stats, lap-timer, and even an engine temperature gauge. But the most impressive feature is the Smart Connect Bluetooth Connectivity. The connectivity features include phone battery display, incoming call notifications, automatic SMS reply, navigation assistance, signal strength display, etc. This is where the NTorq gaps every other scooter in the segment. Even high-end motorcycles don’t offer some of these features!
One of the biggest plus points of the TVS NTorq 125 is its premium and completely digital instrument cluster
Moving on, the switchgear is unchanged as well. It feels good to use and isn’t clunky or plasticky. The NTorq was the first scooter to get an engine kill switch, but some brands have added this feature as well. Hence, TVS has gone ahead to introduce a new Hazard light switch, but only on the Race Edition. While it might not be beneficial, it’s still an addition. All in all, the instrument console is feature-rich and no other scooter comes close to it in this category.
Ergonomics: The NTorq is a comfortable scooter, and it serves its purpose well. The riding triangle is upright but sportier than normal and commuting duties will be fine but not for stretched durations. There’s enough space on the footboard as well but you can’t stretch your legs too much. Further, the BS6 version retains the double-stitched Hysteresis seat that’s wide enough to accommodate two healthy adults. Even the mirrors work well and provide you with a good view of what you’re leaving behind.
The LED light and the USB port in the boot are practical features which make the NTorq feel more premium than the competition
But the scooter isn’t the most comfortable one out there, and it is more suitable for young adults. Lastly, the under-seat storage has remained the same and at 22-litres, it doesn’t accommodate a full-sized helmet. However, the storage unit gets a USB port and an LED light which gives you a premium feel. Ergonomically, the scooter isn’t chart-topping in terms of comfort but will attract enthusiasts looking for a sportier feel.
Performance: Just like the majority, the biggest change in the TVS NTorq is that the engine is now BS6 compliant. TVS has managed to retain similar performance figures, though. The air-cooled 124.8cc motor gets RT-FI now and makes 9.25 BHP at 7000 RPM and 10.5 Nm of torque at 5500 RPM. Additionally, the engine feels better in terms of refinement too. However, the NTorq is actually slower than its BS4 counterpart by a significant margin. The BS4 NTorq had an exciting urgency to its power delivery that the BS6 unit lacks. We think the stricter emission norms are to blame for this. The scooter still cruises at 60 km/hr effortlessly and manages a top speed of 96 km/hr (VBOX tested), though, but it just takes a few seconds longer to reach there.
The BS6 motor has the same power figures on paper, but it is a full second slower in reaching 60 km/hr
The throttle response is too good thanks to the RT-FI. While the low-end is strong with a decent mid-range, the scooter does not feel the need for speed in the top-end. During our test, the scooter returned 38-42 km/l which is comparable to the previous version. We think if ridden calmly, the scooter can return even better fuel economy. The FI also means that there’s a surge in refinement, and the vibrations have reduced to a bare minimum now. Further, the fuel tank capacity has also gone up by 0.8-litres which rounds the up the full range to about 240 km which is a tad less than the competition. All in all, the scooter might not be as fast as the previous version, but it feels much more refined and still retains its strong points.
Riding Dynamics: Following the BS6 update, the NTorq has put on 2 kgs but truth be told, you won’t feel any of it while riding. The scooter feels very similar to the previous version and retains all the good and the bad points. The good bits include agile handling, good cornering capabilities, strong and high-speed stability. The scooter also gets 12-inch rims with wider tyres than the competition. All this means that the NTorq will probably outperform most of its rivals in corners. The telescopic suspension at the front and the monoshock at the rear add to its cornering capabilities as well. The high-rigid underbone chassis also complements to the brilliant riding dynamics.
The TVS NTorq munches corners, which is not something you usually hear about a scooter!
However, the suspension might not be the best for city conditions. Rough patches and potholes will hit hard, and other scooters in the segment offer more versatility here. This again adds to the fact that this scooter targets youngsters who are looking for sportiness. Moving on, the brakes continue to impress. The 220 mm disc brake offers a stupendous bite and inspires a lot of confidence, and the same can be said for the rear drum setup. For added safety, the scooter also gets SBT (TVS’ term for a combined braking system). If you usually ride on paved roads and want sporty riding dynamics, the NTorq should definitely be your pick.
Verdict: While the TVS NTorq might not be the best scooter out there, it is arguably one of the best 125cc scooters by an Indian manufacturer. The BS6 update is a step in the right direction, but the question is, is it worth the extra money? Sort of. The NTorq is still a super-capable scooter and has retained all its plus points like the excellent speedometer, good riding dynamics, strong brakes and many other premium features. It has gotten a little less value-for-money, but so have almost all other BS6 products. In conclusion, we think that if you’re looking for a good-looking scooter with sporty handling and can compromise a little on overall comfort, the NTorq should be your pick. However, if you’re on a budget and comfort is your priority, there are better options in the market.
* Cornering capabilities are the best in class
* Excellent braking performance and bite for a scooter
* The scooter looks great, especially the Race Edition variant
* The digital speedometer with the connectivity features is still unbeaten
What’s Not So Cool
* Not as comfortable as the competition
* Least fuel efficient scooter in the 125cc category
* The engine no longer has the need-for-speed top-end grunt
Alternatives – Honda Activa 125, Yamaha Fascino 125, Suzuki Access 125, Piaggio Vespa 125
* Engine: 124.79cc, Single-Cylinder, 3-Valve, Air-Cooled, FI
* Power: 9.25 BHP @ 7000 RPM
* Torque: 10.5 Nm @ 5500 RPM
* Transmission: CVTi RE
* Fuel Type: Petrol
* Frame: Rigid Underbone Rectangular Tube Frame
* Suspension: Telescopic Forks (Front), Gas Filled Hydraulic Monoshock (Rear)
* Tyres: 100/80/12 (Front), 110/80/12 (Rear)
* Brakes: 220 mm Petal Disc (Front), 130 mm Drum (Rear)
* Length x Width x Height: 1861 mm x 710 mm x 1164 mm
* Wheelbase: 1285 mm
* Ground Clearance: 155 mm
* Seat Height: 785 mm
* Fuel Tank Capacity: 5.8-litres
* Kerb Weight: 118 kgs