MOTOSIKAL Dan Enjin Nasional Sdn Bhd (Modenas) recently organised a media ride to Malacca, and we had the opportunity to test out the latest models offered to the Malaysian market.
Modenas motorcycles are distributed by its wholly-owned subsidiary, Edaran Modenas Sdn Bhd (EMOS).
The bikes that I managed to test-ride were the Modenas Elegan 250, Modenas CT 110 and the Kymco Downtown 250i.
The first on my test list was Kymco’s maxi scooter, the Downtown 250i. The Downtown is powered by a 246cc four-stroke single-cylinder, liquid-cooled, four-valve DOHC engine. The acceleration of this scooter is immediate and not at all jerky, thanks to the CVT automatic gear set-up.
The Kymco product was unveiled after the recent announcement of Edaran Modenas (Emos) as the official distributor of Taiwanese scooter brand Kymco. Kymco is a global brand under Kwang Yang Motor Company, headquartered in Kaohsiung, Taiwan.
I was intimidated at first because I don’t normally ride huge and bulky scooters. I commute daily with my smaller scooter, the Piaggio Liberty 150cc.
But once I opened the throttle, I was amazed by how comfortable the scooter was, especially the laidback seating position. It wasn’t just the seating position that amazes me, but also the manoeuvrability.
It’s fast, nimble and so easy to handle. However, when approaching traffic lights, bear in mind that this is no lightweight scooter. It’s huge, bulky and you may start to feel the heaviness of this 191kg scooter when it’s stationary.
Besides that, I must say that the Downtown’s windshield was not as practical as the Elegan 250. Unlike Elegan’s slightly lowered seating position, the Downtown’s seating position is almost the same level as its windshield, thus defeating its purpose, especially for lanky riders.
When riding on uneven surfaces, the 37mm telescopic fork equipped at the front and trailing swing arm with two adjustable shock absorbers at the rear, helps to maximise absorption for rider’s comfort.
Braking is marvelous with the help of 260mm disc brake at the front (single disc with three-piston calipers) and 240mm at the rear (with two-piston calipers). Of course, the Downtown also comes with anti-lock braking system (ABS) for significant safety benefits to riders.
Besides that, the Downtown scooter comes with two mini compartments under the handlebars and one comes with a USB port. It also gets a huge storage space under the seat where I can even fit my laptop in it! So practical!
Priced at RM22,790 (basic price with GST), the Downtown offers a lot more than its sporty and stylish looks. I may even consider one for myself in the future!
My next ride was the Modenas CT 115S, one of Modenas mopeds (or kapchai) replacing the CT 100 and CT 110.
It is powered by a 115cc four-stroke, carburetor engine which produces a maximum output of 8.8hp at 9,000rpm and is paired with a four-speed transmission.
The 4.8-litre fuel tank comes with a five-step adjustable monoshock suspension which helps in absorbing bumpy roads or small potholes smoothly. Besides that, this bike also gets a 12V electrical charging socket under the seat for owners to charge devices.
This bike delivers enough power to zip around town and through busy streets, but is less suitable on highways. Not only is it underpowered for such use, but one will also feel extra vulnerable on the CT 115S compared to other fast-speeding vehicles.
Handling wise, the kapchai is agile and it is easy to change direction without much effort.
However, when going at high speed, I realised the vibration was a bit too harsh as the view in my mirrors became blurred. Besides that, the handlebar was a bit too low for tall riders like me.
Priced below RM4,998 (excluding insurance and road tax), this locally-made bike is practical and has a futuristic look - perfect for younger buyers!
The last leg of the journey was done on the Elegan 250cc.
The Elegan has a 249.1cc liquid-cooled, single overhead cam (SOHC) and single-cylinder engine that provides 22.1hp at 7,000rpm.
I thought the 193kg scooter would be a hassle for a young woman like me to ride but was proven otherwise. Shifting the bike forward and backward also was not as hard as I thought it would be.
Riding on a 14-inch wheel in front with a 13-inch one on the rear, the handling of the scooter was perfectly fine and stable on the highway - thanks to its 1,540mm wheelbase. Not to mention that the amount of torque this scooter produces is more than adequate.
However, as we clocked some mileage the seat did feel a little hard because I found myself adjusting several times to find a comfortable sitting position.
Also, for those who have long legs, one may constantly have to change feet position due to the limited legroom. The size and position of the 12.5-litre fuel tank restricted the movement of my legs.
Braking is made easy with the 260mm front brake disc and 240mm rear brake disc.
The Elegan 250 also has a huge compartment that is enough to accommodate an open-face helmet. This is definitely a plus as it not only can fit lots of knickknacks but also my laptop.
Priced at RM13,599 (including GST), there are two colour options available - white and black - catered specially for that executive style.
I was lucky that all three bikes that I tested came with GIVI boxes. I need not worry about where to put my belongings or if it rained. The boxes were huge and extremely convenient on the journey.