In principle, the new VSR 125i CBS is just an updated version of KYMCO’s best-selling CK1 125 naked sports bike – and looks-wise it has inherited much of its predecessor’s sharp street styling. But, it’s underneath that tried and tested aesthetic where all the major changes have been made – as KYMCO have worked hard to bring the VSR 125i in line with new Euro 4 legislation.
It’s powered by KYMCO’s 4-stroke air-cooled OHC 125cc fuel-injected engine – which is capable of getting you up to speeds of around 65mph. It offers 7.5kW of power at 8000rpm and 10Nm of torque at 7000rpm. Of course, it’s a 125cc machine, so it’s never going to be the punchiest bike on the market, but it was more than capable of keeping up with traffic on the rural A-road we attacked on our test ride, and it was at ease tootling around town.
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For such a reasonably priced bike, the chassis is actually quite impressive. The steel tubular structure frame offers a slim line base for the learner-friendly machine. The five speed gearbox is relatively smooth, helped along by the wet multi-disc clutch. It’s got 17-inch front and rear wheels. The front telescopic hydraulic forks and adjustable hydraulic dampers are more than capable too, making the machine perfect for whizzing around town – but out on the pot-hole laden A-roads of the UK, you might encounter a few sketchy moments.
KYMCO have also introduced a new combined braking system, which should be welcome news for learner riders. As you’d expect (from the name) it works by linking the front and rear disc brakes – offering progressive, balanced and safer braking. And under duress, I was pretty surprised with how well they performed, as they brought me to a halt quickly from speed.
It weighs-in at 128kg with the weight distributed really evenly across the bike – while the seat height is a learner-friendly 780mm (and should make it within the bounds of the shorter riders out there). Notably, KYMCO claim that the VSR is also impressively cheap to run, making it one of the most affordable 125 commuters on the market. They reckon that it can achieve well in excess of 100mpg – meaning that around £10 worth of fuel should allow you to cover 160 miles.
Bells and whistles
On the equipment front, the VSR 125i has a rev counter and digital display, electric start, steering lock, side and centre stands, tool kit and rear grab rails too. Its available now in a choice of three colours – Matt Blue, Flame Orange and Bright Green Metallic. KYMCO also offer subsidised insurance and finance – plus a two-year manufacturers’ unlimited mileage parts and labour warranty.
In short, the KYMCO VSR 125i takes over where the CK1 left off – bridging the gap between pricey Japanese and European machines, and cheaper models from unknown manufacturers. The VSR 125i CBS offers riders a well-equipped machine from a globally trusted manufacturer with a wide reaching UK support network. Of course, as a 125cc machine, you can ride the VSR 125i on L-plates – but it’s not just a stylish proposition for learners; it’s also a very affordable one for more experienced riders too.
If you’re in the market for a stylish, economical and reliable ride for your daily commute, then I’d encourage you to give KYMCO’s new fuel-injected VSR 125i Naked Sports motorcycle a test ride.
ENGINE: 125cc, four-stroke, OHC, fuel injected, liquid-cooled
SEAT HEIGHT: 780mm
TANK CAPACITY: 13.5 litres
O2W RATING: 7 stars