I like to ring the changes in my reviews. Last month was the humongous Harley-Davidson Road King Special at 1868cc engine size, and this month, it’s the scoot- aboot-town Suzuki Avenis 124cc! I wanted to see what learner riders/commuters felt after riding big bikes myself for many years. Motech in Newcastle offered me a ride out on this six-month-old Suzuki scooter with 900 miles on it. It’s a sharp, up-to-the-minute looking scoot and one of three brothers, the Address, the Avenis and the Burgman, all at 125 cc. All the scooters are twist-and-go CVT belt transmission 4-stroke single cylinder/ Euro 5 compliant.
I tried to fit in the scooter ride amongst the latest storm deluge/monsoon/showers and thought I had a window today to take it out. On the way to Motech, the heavens opened again. Marvellous. Fortunately, I had all my waterproof gear on, including battery-operated heated gloves, so I was warm as toast and dry.
The rain was actually ‘stotting’ off the roads when I went to pick the scooter up. It’s the usual modern feet-forward design with small wheels, and I worked out how to start it up by pulling in the left-hand rear brake lever on the handlebars and pressing the start button. Off we went with a quiet whirr. No drama. I came to realise that the power delivery was smooth, unfussy and without distinct bands, which is a great help on greasy, wet roads and for perhaps first-timers. In and out of the traffic with my visor part tilted up to stop it from fogging. Parking and manoeuvring wasn’t a problem – low seat height/lightweight so you could put your feet on the ground. Up to 50 mph on the dual carriageways (I’m told it’s 60 mph flat out) on this learner-friendly A1 licence version. I used most of the 8.6 bhp on this single-cylinder SOHC air-cooled engine and had no problem with control whatsoever. It was easy to filter alongside the massive queues I encountered in rush hour, and what it lost on the dual carriageway, it made up for in the 30 mph areas and traffic jams. I would bet I got to my destination quicker than the cars!
Who is the target audience? I’ve read a few reviews and you could say that this is targeted at 17-20-year-olds/commuters, or you can hook it on the back of a motorhome. All ideal. Also, first timers because the
power delivery was so easy to get used to. A 17-year-old could ride this with a provisional licence, pay £22 per annum road tax, and I’m told by Mark at Motech who reckons that he can put this scooter on the road for less than the cost of a weekly bus pass! Its’ claimed mpg is 148.67, but in the real world, it’s 113 mpg plus and it would cost £7.50 at current prices to fill up the tank. The fuel filler cap is not underneath the seat and is outside and back of the pillion – a really good feature to stop the slopping of fuel into the dry area underneath the seat. I’m told it will take an open-face helmet or a gym bag.
There were some other excellent touches. The two all-important shopping bag hangers, one underneath the handlebars and one in the front of the seat. It’s a digital speedo display which shows the mpg. The pillion passengers’ footrests are well-made alloy flip-outs underneath the bodywork. It not only has a centre stand but also has a side stand which I thought was a really good point. On the left-hand side underneath the handlebars there is a closable cubbyhole where you could put your mobile with a USB socket to recharge, and on the right-hand side there is an open cubbyhole for ‘stuff’! I also noticed an additional kickstart, which was easier to start facing the rear and pushing down with your right foot. It is so easy to ride and move this scoot at rest and at slow speeds.
What would it be like out on the road? I splashed and squished my way through the traffic and decided to go through Whitley Bay town centre along the coast to a coffee stop in Blyth’s new South Beach retail development. It coped with everything really well and I didn’t feel that it was overawed by the traffic.
Caffé Ginevra is a new coffee shop with sister shops in the area. I looked out onto the South Beach vista with my massive flat white and cheese/sundried tomato/pepper focaccia panino. Both splendiferous. A recommended coffee shop for the discerning two-wheeler!
This scooter is extremely well made, and comes with a Suzuki three-year warranty. You get the comfort and security of a global manufacturer of quality bikes, producing this cheap scooter (cheap in price not in terms
of quality) which is on the road at £2,799. So, you get Suzuki build, reliability and kudos in your scoot aboot toon! This is a good- looking, extremely easy-to-use, very cheap two-wheeled form of transport. A world away from lifestyle/expensive bikes, but it does what it says on the tin – or the metal/plastic (even though I couldn’t find a definition of the word Avenis that I was happy with)!! Many thanks again to Mark at Motech for the use of the scooter. This is an “L” of a scooter!
Mark Hipkin is a Partner/ Head of the Personal Injury and Civil Litigation department. He welcomes your e-mails or calls on the law (or your biking experiences) at email@example.com or call 0191 2533509.