Honda two-wheeler buyers would contemplate whether they should go for the Honda
X Blade while there is the slightly cheaper CB Unicorn 160 and the slightly
more expensive and feature packed CB Hornet 160R within the Honda stable. So we
take the X Blade for a ride around the city to find out whether the Honda X
Blade has a distinct identity of its own.
162.7cc air cooled,
Dimesnsions (L x W x
2013 x 786 x 1115
Design and Styling of
Honda X Blade
The design on the X Blade is quite striking and that is
largely due to the elongated headlamp chin and the full-LED cluster which
illuminates the road ahead in a pleasing white light. It gets a small cowl
above the headlamp to enhance its sporty appeal. The motorcycle gets a nice and
big fuel tank that has an imposing look. All along the sides, one can see small
plastic sections with slightly different designs. They look kind of cool. What
I also like are these tiny covers for the chain and on parts of the frame. At
the back you get a t-shaped tail lamp that flows well with the sleek look
offered in the rear. The X Blade definitely looks better than the somewhat
plain CB Unicorn 160 and the raw looks of the hornet 160R. This could be the
product to woo in college goers who want a stylish and contemporary looking
The riding position on this bike is very comfortable, no
doubt. The handlebar is high enough and the foot pegs also are positioned not
too far back. The saddle is long enough to comfortably seat two adults and the
seat height too is adequate for most Indian riders. What irks one is the
cushion which is not the softest. The fit and finish on the handle bar is good
but nothing extraordinary. The switches can be reached easily and they feel
well built. While an engine kill switch is nowhere to be found, Honda has
provided a hazard light switch which will be appreciated by many, especially riders
who like to ride in groups.
Performance of Honda X Blade
The 162.71cc engine on the X Blade is shared with the
Unicorn and the Hornet. So naturally the engine is well tuned for city riding
and it feels very refined. The bike feels very quick and that has been helped
by the relatively less kerb weight of 140kgs. The 13.9hp that this engine
produces is almost identical to the Unicorn 160 but about 1hp less than the
Hornet but you hardly notice it. The torque output stands at 13.9Nm which kicks
in at 6000rpm. I was able to cruise on this bike at 100kmph without much
problem. The bike even managed to touch a top speed of 120kmph. The wheelbase
is handily short at 1347mm and that combined with a great turning radius makes
this bike a delight to ride on the crowded city roads. Riding around the city
will yield a fuel efficiency of 40-45kmpl which could get better if you are
careful with your throttle inputs. The 5-speed transmission is pretty decent as
The refinement on the engine is lovable but at higher rpms,
post 7000, there is some buzz in the foot pegs and handlebars. You do not mind
the vibes in the pegs much until you gently place your right foot on the rear
brake. Since this is a metal piece it vibrates much more than the rubber coated
pegs. Furthermore, the rear brake is slightly elevated and that makes the
riding position a bit awkward since your left foot is pointing down while the
right one is pointing up a bit.
The brakes on the X Blade are great for city use and pack
quite a decent bite. There is a large 276mm disc in the front and a 130mm drum
in the rear. The front disc does a fantastic job of bringing you to a halt
while the rear is no slouch either. Sadly there is no option for getting a disc
brake in the rear which in my opinion would have made a strong case for the X
Blade. But then an X Blade with a rear disc would more or less be a CB Hornet
Moving on, the tubeless tyres are quite a delight as they
provide a lot of grip and make the ride ever so confident. I especially like
the 130/70 rear tyre which is nice and fat and gave me a lot of confidence
while riding just after rains had washed the city. The suspension, however, is
a bit too stiff for my liking and I could feel the vibrations from the road.
Despite my complaint with the stiff suspension and lack of
disc brakes at the rear, it gets a thumbs up from me, more so because of the fact
that it is so spirited and fun to ride. And when it comes to looks, it scores
big with its smart and sporty designs.
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