Yamaha MT-15 single-channel ABS is Rs. 3,000 costlier than the touring-friendly and more powerful FZ25 dual-channel ABS model
Amidst much anticipation, Yamaha introduced the MT-15 naked streetfighter yesterday and it is a logical move from the Japanese brand. With the volume segments just above Rs. 1 lakh steadily increasing and customers not minding to invest in feature-packed performance motorcycles, the MT-15 comes as the perfect product to slot between the YZF-R15 V3.0 and FZ V3 series.
KTM launched its entry-level Duke 125 in November 2018 at an ex-showroom price of Rs. 1.18 lakh. In its first full month of December 2018, the baby Duke attained a massive haul of 2,414 unit sales. Yamaha could have learned a thing or two from it while assessing the price range of the MT-15 as it can target high volume numbers just as the Duke 125.
However, Yamaha quoting the MT-15 with Rs. 1.36 lakh (ex-showroom, New Delhi) did come as a shocker for many. In comparison, it only costs Rs. 3,000 lesser than the bigger and more composed YZF-R15 V3.0 (dual-channel ABS) that has gained tremendous attention from the buyers ever since it went on sale at the 2018 Auto Expo. The MT-15 stands toe-to-toe against Duke 125, Pulsar NS200 and Apache RTR 200 4V.
The single-channel ABS version of NS200 costs Rs. 1.12 lakh while the Apache RTR 200 Race Edition 2.0 with dual-channel ABS is priced at Rs. 1.11 lakh (both prices, ex-showroom Delhi). Yamaha generally positions the R15 at a premium and the third generation was no different. The FZ-S V3 comprising of features like LED headlamp has been priced at Rs. 97,000 (ex-showroom).
We expected the MT-15 to be priced only Rs. 20,000 costlier than the FZ-S to avoid cannibalisation. Moreover, as you can see its actual pricing is Rs. 24,000 and Rs. 25,000 more expensive than the NS200 and Apache RTR 200 4V Race Edition 2.0. In a price sensitive market, every thousand rupees count and thus the huge price difference has definitely come as a downer.
It is kind of unrealistic pricing considering that the FZ25 with dual-channel ABS only costs Rs. 1.33 lakh (ex-showroom). The MT-15 is ideally a lucrative alternative to the buyers wanting to own a stripped out R15 with more agile performance and usability, and in fact, it has its ECU specifically retuned for better low-end power and torque delivery with optimised gear ratios.
Despite having an applaudable build quality and striking design features taking influence from the bigger siblings, we do feel Rs. 1.36 lakh (ex-showroom) for the single-channel ABS system in the MT-15 is an opportunity well missed!