TVS Motor’s latest offering, the Scooty Zest, seems very promising on paper. It is a compact scooter targeted at the mature woman rider. We take it for a ride around the city to see how it performs, and whether it can out do its competitors, the Honda Activa-i, and the Suzuki Let’s.
The Scooty Zest is quite an attractive scooter. While the front end resembles that of the Scooty Pep, with the front apron extending forward to also serve as the front fender, the headlight and rear section are completely. The all-new LED tail-light cluster, the black tail-light surround and the black wheels add a touch of sportiness to the Zest. The scooter may be targeted at women, but it is safe to say that the overall design seems gender-neutral. We think that the Scooty Zest is one of the better-looking offerings in the scooter segment at the moment.
The ergonomics offered by the Zest is quite comfortable, although riders over 5’ 8” will find that the height between the seat and floor board is low, which makes it slightly discomforting while riding for extended periods. On the brighter side, despite its compact dimensions, it has a large and wide seat, which provides good cushioning for riders of all sizes. Pillion comfort is pretty good too.
The overall levels of fit and finish on the Scooty Zest are good for a scooter in this category. The panels felt sturdy, the plastics used throughout seemed of good quality, and the whole scooter felt well put together. There were a few places where it could have been better though. There was inconsistency with the paint finish, particularly on the body-coloured mirrors, and when we accessed the underseat storage, we found that the hinge connecting the seat to the body felt flimsy.
Engine & Performance
Performance is one of the Scooty Zest’s hallmarks. It comes equipped with a 110cc single-cylinder engine that develops nearly 8 bhp and 8.7 Nm of torque. Combined with the extremely low kerb weight of 98.5 kg, you get some stonking acceleration when you twist the throttle. It gets to 60 kmph rapidly, and pulls strongly and effortlessly all the way till 80 kmph. This performance makes it is easy to overtake and stay ahead in traffic.
While TVS claims a mileage figure of 62 kmpl for the Scooty Zest, we received around 45 kmpl while riding in the city. If you are very careful with the throttle, and ride sedately all the time, you could definitely see upwards of 50 kmpl, which is a commendable figure for an automatic scooter.
Ride & Handling
Yet another positive aspect of the Zest is its ride quality. The telescopic front forks and the rear mono shock soak up road imperfections commendably. Only the large potholes that catch it out, but otherwise, it is quite effective in providing a comfortable ride.
Riding the Scooty Zest in the city is a breeze. It is very agile and easy to manoeuver, thanks to its low weight, compact size, and relatively small turning radius. It is also quite stable when taking turns at speed too.
The scooter features an unconventional braking setup. It has a smaller 110mm drum brake at the front, and a larger 130mm drum brake at the rear, contrary to what all other scooters possess. TVS says that this is because the Zest has a rear-biased weight distribution, which necessitates the need for more braking power at the rear.
The brakes are quite effective, but only when you apply both the front and the rear simultaneously. Applying the front brake alone didn’t seem enough, whereas using only the rear was sufficient only at low speeds.
Like all TVS scooters, the Scooty Zest too comes abound with a list of nifty, practical features. It gets a cool backlit analogue speedometer, capacious underseat storage space, two bag hooks, an open front glove box, an easy-to-use centre stand, rear brake lock clamp, LED brake light, and tubeless tyres.
The TVS Scooty Zest took us by surprise. While Scooties of yore were small and nimble scooters that were easy to ride, they weren’t exactly fast by any measure. The Zest changes that. It accelerates very quickly for a 110cc scooter, handles really well, and is extremely easy to manoeuver through tight spots in traffic. At Rs 44,390 (ex-showroom, Delhi), it is also priced reasonably well to boot. If you want a quick and compact scooter for running errands around town, we suggest you take more than a closer look the TVS Scooty Zest.
|Engine||4-stroke single cylinder, air cooled engine|
|Power||7.9 bhp @ 7500rpm|
|Torque||8.8 Nm @ 5500rpm|
|Chassis Type||Underbone Chassis|
|Brakes||Front:110 mm Drum
Rear:Drum, Dia. 130mm
Rear:Double-rated Hydraulic Mono Shock
|Fuel Tank Capacity||5|