Reliability, efficiency, consistency and quality are a few of the attributes the motorcycling pioneer honda brings to the table. That is the reason why Honda has been a household name here in Nepal. Honda has brought the newest iteration of its unsung hero of a motorcycle the XR150L. Honda XR 150 The Ultimate Dirt Slinger; has been one of the best-selling motorcycles here in Nepal since its introduction in 2013 and has come with its fair share of problems. Throughout the years Honda has gradually been gradually addressing the issues and hopefully this latest iteration completely resolves all the issues.
Honda XR 150L is a comfortable, dependable, reliable and capable on and off roader. There is no change in the dimension, color graphics and any other visual attributes. Honda XR 150L comes in two color variations Black and Red. Honda XR 150L is the definition of the honda feel – Neat and Tidy and Functional. It has a relatively streamlined body and is not a very aggressive looking motorcycle. It gives off a pragmatic off roader look. It also has maintained the Honda Standard using a sturdy and durable material for the entire bike's body. It has a pleasant appeal which might not be sufficient to those desirous of a rather aggressive styling particularly today’s youth. However, it’s a pragmatic motorcycle designed to fit in the city streets and conquer the offroad environment, thus can be titled as the gentleman in the Dirt motorcycles arena.
ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE
It comes with a 149.15 CC, 4 stroke, single cylinder, air cooled, OHV engine carrying the spirit of legendary XR family that generates maximum power of 12.14 BHP at 7750 RPM and maximum torque of 12.5 NM at 6000 RPM and has a compression ratio of 9.5:1. The Honda XR150L is capable of riding in hectic traffic, weekend off road biking trips to chilled out cruising in the slippery highway roads. Upright but not so aggressive seating position, soft suspension, optimally positioned handlebar with wide and soft cushioned seat makes every journey comfortable and pleasant.
The motorcycle comes with a large 12 liters of fuel tank which is to this date unmatched by any other dirt bikes. It provides a mileage of 40 to 45 kmpl which is also an unthinkable number in the Dirt Bike arena. XR150L comes with an electric starter and a kick starter as a backup fail safety option. It is equipped with a 5 gears transmission system with the universal shift pattern. With a six speed transmission system, it would have been a lot more efficient on long highway cruises and a little less hard on the engine.
DIMENSIONS AND FEATURES
This bike has a 2100mm long and 820 mm wide body with wheelbase of 1360 mm, ground clearance of 245 mm and height of 1126 mm. Even though it looks tall, it is actually optimized for average ride height of Nepalese people giving them a comfortable riding experience on longer rides. Its dry weight is 129 kgs making it heavier and taller than its older sibling; the Honda XR190L. But it is still a fairly light motorcycle and can be managed and maneuvered very easily.
The XR 150L has a steel twin tube frame with a telescopic front suspension that gives 180mm of axle travel and mono suspension swingarm with 150mm of axle travel. Just like any other honda bikes, Honda XR150L is a very comfortable bike to ride. The seating position is upright but not very aggressive which is easier for both on and off-road purposes. The ergonomically placed handlebar doesn’t wear down your arms or back even after a fairly long ride. The adequately cushioned and quite wide seats unlike other dirt bikes are luxe to sit on for both the rider and pillion.
The bike is equally comfortable on city rides, long cruises and off-road rides. What the motorcycle lacks is its suspension and braking system. The telescopic suspension is of generic nature and is not sufficient for proper off roading. It’s imperative that an off road motorcycle gets a disc brake on the rear as well for hard braking requirement but the Honda XR150L comes with a dual piston caliper 240 mm disc brake on the front wheel of 90 x 90 R19 wheel and mechanical drum brake on the rear wheel of 110 x 90 R17 wheel. These brakes and wheels perform okay for normal rides but on loose dirt the bike skids. Nevertheless, the XR150L is a very nimble and responsive bike and is quite easy to maneuver. The tubular frame forms a very solid base and the bike even at a very high speed generates very low vibration.
FINAL VERDICTS AND CONCLUSION
The current iteration of XR150L is not different to its successor in terms of power and performance. But it’s a Honda after all and there isn’t much you can complain about. The initial pick up is phenomenal and the bike gives you the thrust that will enable you to conquer all terrains. But it doesn’t provide the explosive performance like other dirt bikes available in the market today and the absence of a rear disc brake is a deal breaker. But since the intention of the manufacturer behind creating XR150L is completely different from those bikes, that lack of explosive performance is justified by increased mileage and smooth riding experience. City rides and highway cruising is very pleasing and the bike reaches a good speed plus the comfortable seats and seating position makes Honda XR150L a gentleman’s off roader instead of an aggressive beast.
Honda XR150L comes at a price point of Rs. 6,49,900. A lot of other Chinese manufactured motorcycles available today in the market are comparatively cheaper and provide explosive performance and aggressive looks that the XR150 cannot keep up to. The XR150L believes in refined quality, reliability and efficiency provided by Honda. These features are unmatched by any other motorcycle brands in the market today. XR150L is a rather pragmatic and mature choice which is at an equilibrium of reliability and capability. Either one is riding in formals to the office or geared up for a off-road trailing expedition, the Honda XR150L is one of the very few bikes that suits both situations.