NTORQ: When stylish scooterisation rides with smart digitisation

Last Updated : 07 April 2018, 12:12 IST
Last Updated : 07 April 2018, 12:12 IST

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India rides on a scooter, the humble two-wheeler that brought affordable convenient mobility to a vast market. The yesteryear utilitarian scooter has unleashed itself in the most stylish and contemporary avatars today, stitching in some revolutionary features, which are rich in tech and style at the same time. And not to forget the seamless, yet powerful engines they come with, rivalling some of the most popular motorcycles out there.

Scooterisation has been taking real shape in India in recent times, with a host of 125 cc scooter models to choose from, enticing different types of customers who have begun craving for more punch in their vehicles. Yet, all this while, there had been one two-wheeler legend which was steadily taking to the whole buzz. TVS, with its stable of inspiring machines such as the Scooty, Wego and Jupiter, was watching from the side for the right moment to storm the 125 cc arena. And the time has come, surprising the market with the most brilliant 125 cc package till date.

The TVS NTORQ 125 is a scooter like no other in India, especially in the 125 cc space. To begin with, it's love at first sight for any scooter enthusiast. While the market is abuzz with many 125 cc machines, TVS' product has raised the standard of this very segment, and it wouldn't be incorrect to say that it is near-perfect scooter, one which the market impatiently awaited and deserved.

Stealth that shows

The NTORQ begins to impress not from the word 'go', but from the word 'show'. It starts with its looks. The scooter is so well-crafted that one can guess the reason why TVS has been so tight-lipped about its existence, even as speculation online and on social media was rife that the South India-headquartered company was conceptualising its own 125 cc model. But little could one guess that this model was beyond charging as a showstopper.

Coming to the looks itself, it is evident that TVS has crafted the NTORQ 125 based on some new-age principle. Rightly so, stealth aircraft design has been applied while putting this scooter together. Blade-like edges looking like wingtips, an angular chiselled body, and air exhaust-like embellishments in the rear accentuate the said design. Also, an aggressive headlamp cluster with uber cool indicator lights, batwing-style daytime running lights and a T-shaped tail lamp, adds to its great appearance. And, while the scooter does integrate stealth aircraft design, unlike its inspiration that can even evade radar let alone be seen by the naked eye on the ground, the NTORQ proudly flaunts its hotness.

The NTORQ's design finesse is experienced even when seated. The overall design of the digital instrument cluster (which will be explained later) and its surrounding console is a treat to behold. The body is dual-coloured matt-finished (Matte Yellow, Matte white, Matte Green and Matte Red), with swatches of black in the right places.

Then there are the little touches that need to be noticed. TVS has carefully laid importance on nuanced design cues – such as the red stitching on the seat with an NTORQ-stitched tag sewn into it, the 3D NTORQ 125 insignia on the body, and the Indian tricolour scheme stickered on the console panel – which give some glimpse into the meticulous planning and seriousness on the company's part while rolling out this beauty.

Apart from its stealthy design, the NTORQ has sought inspiration in-house. Just below the rider foot mat, one can spot the TVS Racing sticker, which emphasises the power credentials of this scooter. Supporting this claim are several other stylised elements such as the supremely set sporty stubby muffler, large 12-inch diamond-cut alloy wheels and 220 mm roto petal front disk brake. A few pinches of metal simply make the NTORQ seem more sublime.

It's in the sound

I repeat, the TVS NTORQ 125 is a scooter like no other, at least in the 125 cc market in India! While this has been substantiated in the looks department, the true worth of any motor vehicle is in its 'motor' or engine to be precise. How it runs, how it saves et al.

The NTORQ is gifted with a new 3-valve 125 CVTi REVV engine. This 4-stroke, single-cylinder, air-cooled, OHC 124.79 cc powertrain dishes out a max power of 9.4 ps @ 7500 rpm, and a max torque of 10.5 Nm @ 5500 rpm.

The stylish key goes into the ignition slot, power on and button start – there is no doubt or hesitation saying that the NTORQ emits 'the best' sound when the engine comes alive among all scooters. It's a smooth and light thrum, which yet feels strong and full of life.

Riding the NTORQ and pushing its engine and overall offering to their limits is best experienced in a track-like scenario. The TVS Motor Company throws open its test track at its Hosur-based plant to enable just that.

The scooter is at the starting line and a light roll of the accelerator and she takes off. Within no time, speed picks up and it's 60 kmph recorded in 9 seconds.

The road at the beginning of the track is one straight stretch allowing for speed testing. The scooter is very smooth, and despite the aggressive hits of the throttle, it remains stable and grounded. Then come the bends and turns, which require some tilting in order to ride through. Even here, the NTORQ beats all odds. Its 1285 mm wheelbase helps, coupled with its chunky tubeless tyres (100/80X12 front and 110/80X12 rear) that make the ride in its entirety seem robust.

There are serpentine tracks, gravel and pebble pits and other bad road-mimicking obstacles, which the NTORQ beats hollow. Its 155 mm ground clearance, and again, its awesome set of tyres do the trick. While the scooter boasts of a telescopic suspension in the front, there is a gas-filled hydraulic-type coil spring shock absorber for the rear. And in all this, TVS has cracked the comfortable cushion puzzle, which most other manufacturers either lose out on or just take for granted. The NTORQ has one of the most comfortable seats in its segment, thus emerging an ideal companion for a long jaunt.

After riding the scooter for over 35 km, over a span of 45 minutes, through smooth and rocky surfaces, there appears to be always the mood for more. While the stated top speed is 95 kmph, it feels comfortable to touch 97 kmph and beyond (as recorded on the app).

Yes, you read it right! The TVS NTORQ 125 is one of the earliest two-wheelers in India to come with its very own connected solution. But before that, note a few of its technical fittings.

Digital gets smart

Digitisation is the way to go, and the NTORQ is riding in the same direction. It comes with the first-ever 'TVS SMARTXONNECT' solution – a Bluetooth-enabled tool that connects the NTORQ app to the scooter's digital instrument cluster. The cluster itself displays a series of relevant data points, including a multi-mode speedometer, engine temperature indicator, navigation assist, caller ID, last-parked location assist, and ride stats share of social platforms. There is a sport mode (which helps clock laps and speed) and street mode for casual city riding. All this is connected to, and can be accessed through the app on one's smartphone.

With TVS, comes thoughtful convenience, way beyond the bling that the competition often just shows off. The most required feature is the jet-style external fuel fill, a feature on most other TVS scooters. This ensures less time spent at the filling station and massive under-seat storage space – 22 litres in this case, which also accommodates a safety light and USB slot for charging one's phone. The NTORQ also offers the segment's first-ever pass-by switch and engine kill switch, as safety features. In all, there are said to be 30 first-ever features, for a scooter that is priced
Rs 74,400 (on-road Bengaluru). While this scooter has been positioned for the youth, it's purpose seems to fit all kinds of style- and substance-craving customers. Stealthily, the NTORQ's arrival has taken the scooterisation war to a scintillating new high. And this machine seems to have enough ammo against the competition.

Published 22 March 2018, 13:14 IST

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