With the launch of Gusto in the year, Mahindra looks like more determined to fish out a major share of the Indian scooter market. The Gusto looks more dynamic and sharp from the elder sibling Rodeo, launched back in 2009. Mahindra was much more confident about this product, as it was based on new platform and new powertrain, which was expected to possess some new grounds in the market. It was a tedious task for this 110cc Mahindra to change the course of the market, which has been ruled by Honda Activa for many years. But this Indian brand was not ready surrender and they came up with 125cc Gusto which looks like to be much more logical in the market they are competing with. As the original Gusto backfired at the scooter market, they were much confident about the 125cc segment.
The Design and Features
From the very first glance, it looks like the old 110cc Gusto. One cannot differentiate between two, unless they had recently launched a two-tone paint job and the redesigned new front fascia. The latest generation also features high quality graphics works, which blends well with the dual-tone color. Apart from these two features, everything is adopted from the old Gusto 110cc. Altogether, styling of the scooter could have been done better, to make it as a standout scooter.
The scooter gets a chrome shielded muffler, which is one stylish addition. The user friendly analogue cluster houses speedometer, odometer, fuel gauge and various tell-tale lights. Mahindra has upgraded the quality and design of this console, to look more premium and bit attractive. Other features like height adjustable seats (found in the 110cc Gusto), remote flip key with LED panel that illuminates, find me lamp-operated with flip keys, LED pilot lamps, tubeless tyres, front pocket-like storage, Spacious under seat storage and easy front kick start which is unique to the Gusto 125.
The Engine and Performance
The Gusto 125 is powered by the brand new 125cc, M-Tec engine with an incredible mileage and smooth operating graphs. The mill churns out a maximum power of 8 bhp @ 7500 rpm and a peak torque of 9 Nm @ 5500 rpm. Engine is mated with CVT automatic transmission, which is found in other Mahindra scooters. Unlike other scooters in the market, this one gets an easy front kick starter, which is very convenient to use without getting off from the scooter. The 125cc Gusto is expected to deliver a mileage around 40-45 kmpl. One can surpass 70kmph with ease, without making any effort. Engine refinement is too good that, it create less amount of vibration on the rise. It also have a top speed of 85kmph.
Chassis, Suspension and Braking
The scooter is constructed around underbone steel type tubular frame. It weighs 119kg, measuring over 1825mm in length and 711mm wide. It gets larger 12-inch wheels, which are covered by tubeless tyres, provides high stability and firm grip over the road surfaces. It employs telescopic forks with air springs at the front and monoshock hydraulic suspension at the rear part. This enables the scooter to provide smooth and comfort rides by absorbing all kinds of road shocks. It features 130mm mechanical drum brakes at both the ends for smooth and safer braking. An optional front disc brake might have been a better asset for the Gusto.
Mahindra Gusto 125 is not the best 125cc scooter, on the Indian roads. The engine is well engineered, but it lacks the refinement of Activa 125 or Access 125. the fit and finish of the Gusto 125 is optimum and it can be the best scooter from the Mahindra plant. The excess weigh in this scooter affects the dynamics and handling ability of the scooter on a busy street.
Altogether, it is a good looking Mahindra with some solid mileage and performance figures with a lot of room for improvement. It requires a major evolution in the brand itself to emerge as a global two-wheeler maker.