Motorcycle journalism is a new field in Pakistan with next to zero scope, We guys are motorcycle journalist or motorcycle reviewers which are often said to be corrupt or biased because we express our feelings about a machine in our own way and charge for our services. That’s where things go wrong because all people do same things but when we do something, they want things there way and that to for free but good things always cost. Enough of the complaints now let’s get towards the comparison.
The motorcycles in question today come from the land of rising sun, both Atlas Honda and Dawood Yamaha were enjoying a healthy competition in Pakistan from many decades and then Yamaha decided to take a break from their partnership with Dawood. Legend has it that Yamaha insisted on leaving 100cc 2strokes and developing something new which triggered the issues between the partners. Yamaha went back to Japan and they re entered Pakistan in year 2015 as MNC with YBR125 which became an instant hit amongst youngsters and motorcycle critics. The Milkman image of Yamaha was long gone with introduction of this futuristic little motorcycle.
While Atlas Honda continues their love story till date, one of the longest production runs of old motorcycles are being continued even today. Though Atlas Honda has some good motorcycles up its sleeves like CB150F and Pridor, they were missing out on a sporty 125cc motorcycle which could compete with Yamaha YBR and they have redesigned and rebadged their Deluxe 125 as CB125F with some additional features and they hope to compete with it. As same as these two may appear, they both are very different because CB125F shows its muscle by saying #PowerKayTashan while YBR125 makes up for it in terms of Smartness and Style. The power plant in CB125F is Honda’s old and trusted push rod based over square engine which is mated to a 5-speed conventional gear box and gets a self-starter. The fueling is done by old traditional slide carb. YBR125 has a square engine with return shift transmission and a butterfly carb. YBR gets an engine balancer to iron out any vibrations while they are your companion if you ride a Honda CB125F.Yamaha has more compression ratio than Honda. Where as Honda shines on pickup but due to its heavy weight Yamaha gets it quickly. (122 / 114)
Talking about Style, YBR125 is undoubtedly the trend setter because we never had a sportier 125cc in Pakistan which offers a deal of style and comfort too. The crystal headlamp comes with a halogen headlamp and a parking lamp, it has very good brightness and it comes in a cowling fitted with a smoked visor. While CB125F also gets a crystal headlight in a cowl along with a visor but it misses on the parking light. The next thing you will notice it’s a good upgrade from Deluxe 125 but it is not as sporty as of YBR though It has muscular tank that holds up to 12.3 ltrs of fuel as compared to YBR’S 13L but has a flat seat which is more practical but not sporty enough as on the YBR. Honda has played safe here by keeping the psyche of its audience in mind. Now let’s talk about the instrumental cluster, the one on CBF has a carbon fiber finish and good graphics but it has no Gear position indicator where as Yamaha has it. Honda’s handle bars come equipped with counter weights to damp vibrations and has some basic switch assembly while Yamaha has no counter weights and decent switch assembly. Both bikes miss Kill switch and dipper features and have analogue speedo meters. Only difference is Yamaha’s rpm are electronic while Honda uses old cable-based rpm. The side covers on both bikes are huge and the one on Honda have panel gaps in them while Yamaha has proper fitment. The rear cowl is present on both bikes and Honda has an aluminum grab rail which looks very good while Yamaha has a simple stainless steel one.
Both bikes come equipped with telescopic frontend and alloy wheels, both get hydraulic disc setup at front, Honda gets a dual piston caliper while Yamaha gets a single piston caliper. The front shocks on Honda have travel of 119mm while Yamaha has travel of 120mm. Both use same tire size and pattern at both ends and have plastic fenders, both of these bad boys splash mud when they find a pothole! Yamaha out runs Honda when it comes to smoothness and comfort, YBR 125 rear suspension is 5 steps adjustable and has travel of 90mm while Honda ones though adjustable but have a travel of 76mm also the seat is hard on Honda as compared to Yamaha.
This is where the similar bits end because dimensions of both these bikes are very different. YBR125 is smarter and lighter, also due to its less wheelbase its agile and has a much higher ground clearance. Also, its little wider than the CBF. YBR has a much sporty yet comfortable rider’s triangle while CBF had more of a typical motorbike. Performance wise there is no denying that OHV’s have more pickup and CB125F surges ahead but YBR125 makes up for that in its less weight, it gives a hard time to CB125F and out runs it in top speed figures that too with very less vibrations as compared to the later.
There are two major points in my books where CB125F couldn’t make the cut. Point number 1 is the styling, a blind man can touch YBR and tell that its way sportier than CBF and the second point is the price. Honda has priced CB125F way higher than YBR125 and both of them have a difference of 22 thousand rupees which is a lot in Pakistan.
Like I said in the start, we vloggers are accused of manipulating our reviews and misguiding our audience by some of the critics. Now I leave it to your fine sense of judgement as now you know WHO IS WHO and WHAT IS WHAT!