Suzuki Nex: Small But Terrible

Taking my car to my work place in Intramuros, Manila, regularly takes about an hour and a half in my sport utility vehicle. Using the same vehicle, my fuel consumption runs only about seven to eight kilometers to a liter, and that easily drains the pocket of a regular employee like me. And until now, the price of fuel has not gone down to a comfortable level for me to use my SUV daily.

And then I tried the new Suzuki Nex 115 scooter. Light, agile and fun to ride, the Suzuki Nex 115 may be the answer to my woes in traveling around Metro Manila with the worsening traffic and the increasing prices of petroleum.

Ultra-lightweight at 87 kilograms as compared to my 400cc motorbike that I used to ride to office, the Suzuki Nex gave me a feeling that I was riding a bicycle more than a scooter. It gave me much freedom to swerve in and out of stalled traffic to catch newspaper deadlines.

Short wheel-based (1,285 mm), this cutey can squeeze in between bumpers to head for a clear part of the road. With a low seat height (735mm) and high positioned handle-bars, the Suzuki Nex has not given me body aches, even after maneuvering at tight spots.

Painted with Pearl Flash Green, the scooter gave me the feeling of youth. Although small, it immediately gained respect from other scooters and underbone motorbike riders who now rule the streets in times of heavy traffic.

My job title requires me to be in smart casual attire most of the time. Wearing polo shirt and leather shoes easily blended well with the chic styling of the Nex.

Worried about mud stains? The not-so-wide foot board is enough to protect my shoes and slacks from flying particles. That attire, complemented by an Italian-brand helmet and leather gloves, got me good "positioning." Policemen manning checkpoints accorded me courtesy, giving a friendly salute and sparing me from their flag-down routine. Looking good while riding the Next distinguished me from other riders who are likely viewed as riding-in-tandem criminals, who are the real target of the checkpoints manned by the authorities.

Even if the Nex is small, it had a 4.5-liter space for my "Kikay" kit which I never fail to bring to freshen up after every ride. And should I want to take along a water bottle, above the foot board are two small slots that appear to be cup holders.

Although light-weight, the Suzuki Nex remained stable on the road despite the ruts and pot holes. The credit goes to its durable and firm square-section pipe frame of purely Japanese technology.

Even if its engine is completely covered by body claddings, the Suzuki Nex did not succumb to overheating during traffic. It is equipped with newly-designed cylinder fins with a fan for better cooling system which is, again, of Japanese technology.

Fun to ride, the Suzuki Nex is stable at 100kph. When braking, the right and left hand brake levers are easy to operate. So soft to press, the Nex only needs two fingers to brake. Equipped with CVT belt-operated transmission, just squeeze the throttle and off you go!

And what will convince you to try the Suzuki Nex? It can take you up to 50-55 kilometers on a liter of gas, and it's yours for only P60,900.

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