Talk of Honda scooters in India and it just isn't possible you won't think of the Activa. The scooter has registered a stellar success in the country, and why wouldn't it! It is reliable, powerful enough to transport two people in comfort and delivers a good fuel efficiency figure. It has now been about 17 years Activa has been an apple of the eye for a whole lot of people, which leads to a theory - while it has aged well, it is perhaps time two-wheeler buyers would like a fresh design. As I also wrote in my previous review when Honda launched the Cliq just some time back, the Japanese brand is bringing in an array of better designs. The Cliq stands out in a crowd of scooters, owing to its peppy new design, and now there is the Grazia. A literal translation of the word will tell you that 'Grazia' means grace in Italian and it does pretty much go with the personality of the new scooter. This is, in fact, Honda's flagship scooter in India and is more premium than ever. Me thinks, this will cut the mustard with prospective customers who aren't satisfied with anything below the Activa.
Why I am so on and on about the design is that I am genuinely glad to see a change being brought about in two-wheelers in India. Motorcyclists are moving towards more power and scooters are getting better to look at. I am reminded of the Dio a little bit when I look at the Grazia, but it sure is a lot sportier and sharper and a lot more premium. The headlamp unit gives it a very attentive, slightly aggressive look.
It is not just the looks that left me impressed though, the Grazia is quite practical too. A very neat feature that I must mention first is the mobile phone holder on the left, and it can also have a charger fitted to it. Ask me, most women don't keep their phones in their pockets. This little thoughtful addition will allow a phone to be within reach when you do have to stop and answer a phone call or look at the maps.
Another convenience feature is a button to unlock the seat and is positioned right next to where the key goes – saves the hassle of pulling out the key to unlock the seat. These are some of the aspects and more like an LED headlamp that make the Grazia that much more of a refined product. The under seat storage is 18 litres and enough accommodate a small bag or a regular full face helmet.
The powertrain is the same as the one that powers the Activa 125, which is a 124.99 cc that makes 8.52 bhp and 10.54 Nm, and features HET (Honda Eco Tech). The HET, as Honda says, delivers a balance between fuel economy and power. The Grazia can attain a top speed of about 85 km/h and remains composed and stable at those speeds as well. It runs as smooth as you can expect and is rather very comfortable, thanks to the telescopic front suspension and a soft spring at the back. The throttle is soft as butter, and butter which has been brought to room temperature! The seat is well cushioned and large, with a slight hump in the middle differentiating the rider and pillion territory.
Another segment first feature on the Grazia is the all-digital instrument console, which has the speedo, tacho, fuel gauge and a clock. The dash also has three little green lamps, to let the rider know of when the scooter is at its fuel-efficient best, called the three-step eco speed indicator. Speaking of fuel efficiency, the Grazia has a 5.3-litre fuel tank. While my time spent with the Grazia was short, so I will refrain from putting a figure on mileage, but the 125cc Activa engine is capable of delivering about 53 kmpl.
Available in three variants, the top trim Grazia comes with a 190mm disc brake up front, and only for a couple of thousands more, the buyer can ensure better safety. And I would suggest to anyone buying the Grazia to spend a bit more and get the disc variant, because well.. safety first! And Honda's got you covered for additional peace of mind through CBS (combi brake system), a system that essentially applies both the brakes even if the rider pulls just the rear brake lever.
Honda Grazia variant wise prices (ex-showroom, Delhi):
Grazia Alloy 59827
Grazia Dlx 62269
Grazia STD 57897
Honda Grazia is perhaps rising in popularity already, considering that the brand registered about a thousand bookings even before the scooter was launched in our market. Set to be introduced in 35 cities by year-end, the Grazia suits the urban rider with a style that is modern and offers a break free from the usual. Although, it has a strong competition from within the brand - the Activa, especially since the price tags on the two are minutely different. However, the Grazia comes with segment first features, like the LED headlamp and the digital instrument panel, and also the uber-convenient bits like the glove box up front and seat opening switch. Comes in six colour options, looks modern, offers comfort and a smooth ride, and I can't help say the name with an Italian dialect with three 'R's. Welcome, Grrrazia!