TVS Phoenix 125 : Road Test
Given its looks, performance, handling and a few exclusive features, the Phoenix is undoubtedly a good motorcycle but when you are trying to make that climb back up the field you need more than to be just good. In this highly competitive 125cc segment, product placement and deliverables are of equal importance. TVS has launched it as a premium 125cc motorcycle to compete against the Bajaj Discover 125ST, Hero Ignitor and the Honda Stunner, mainly because of features like a petal disc, digital console, twin-spring suspension, hazard lights and the like, but if it falters in vital areas that its rivals excel in, then the going gets tougher.
Maybe the premium features need to be bolstered by a five-speed transmission at the very earliest and we think that this will enable the EcoThrust motor to live up to its name, which right now is lacking both the economy and the thrust, so to speak. With sticker prices ranging from Rs 50,890 to Rs 52,905, the Phoenix is placed between the two categories, which make its prospects an even more complicated matter. TVS has sought to find a middle way but it hasn’t quite worked out.
For buyers of this class of motorcycle, efficiency and driveability are of the utmost importance. The Phoenix has the makings of a decent motorcycle, but there is nothing to set it apart from the competition and here is where the engineering and the thought process need to be right up there to deliver a unique selling proposition. Address this and then the Phoenix may rise, we think.