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The TVS Jupiter Review. We ride the TVS Jupiter in varying traffic conditions to find out how good is this scooter in the conditions for which it was built!
The TVS Jupiter was recently launched with much fanfare by the company as a new scooter with a difference. The company promised ‘More’, as they promoted the Jupiter with the tagline ‘Enjoy Doing More’. We at xBhp got a chance to find out how much MORE is this scooter capable of!
The scooter we got was a Pristine White Jupiter; it already had a few km on the clock. Since the engine run-in was complete, we could exploit the scoot to its full potential. Riding an automatic scooter in a crowded city like Delhi is a lot of fun and I was happy to be handed the keys to the Jupiter. Having clocked many miles on the industry standard – Honda Activa as my daily commute I knew the positive practical experiences of having one.
The TVS Jupiter is not the snazziest looking scooter in the market; it is more of a ‘go to the market unnoticed’ kind of two-wheeler. That may not get your blood pumping, but it is a big advantage for your average daily commuter, as it won’t attract attention in a public parking. But a scooter in a city is good for all practical purposes; if you want looks then a motorcycle would probably be a better choice! The Jupiter has a simple but elegant design, a no nonsense bike which every member of the family can ride without feeling out of place. That is the reason why the Jupiter will be directly taking on the Honda Activa, Mahindra Duro, Hero Maestro and Suzuki Access. A family scooter which promises to do everything that is required and more!
But the Jupiter is not to be enjoyed off the saddle; one must get on and thumb the starter to experience ‘tension-free commuting’. The engine is smooth, with a lovely sound, leaving not much to be desired. A touch of the throttle and the responsiveness of the engine is surprising as it pulls away cleanly, even when rider and pillion weighing a cumulative 180 kg are being pulled uphill. Never did the engine feel stressed or complain of being overstressed. The 110cc engine is very satisfactory and 8Nm of torque allows one to accelerate off a red-light, with the same alacrity as most commuter motorcycles. At 5’11”, flatfooting is never a problem for me, but footboard space is always a concern. The Jupiter does not disappoint in this regard as well, as there is sufficient space for my Size 11 riding boots! TVS claims that it has the largest leg space at 375mm, as compared to the competition. But even a small bag of luggage robs you of this luxury and the feet stick out like ‘sore thumbs’!
Talking about luggage space the 17 litre underseat storage will take most of your bags and more without any trouble, as I found out much to the chagrin of my fellow biker as he tried to lug his hefty bag on his shoulders, while I simply rode away without having to worry about future spinal problems. One of the biggest advantages of scooters vis-à-vis motorcycles is the luggage space and thus supreme comfort while commuting, as a bag with laptop, camera and other paraphernalia required for office can weigh a ton! To help in this regard, the bag hooks are retractable to let you enjoy all the space when you do not have any luggage. But scooters generally lose out in the handling department. Not so with the Jupiter, it can easily run circles around any commuter bike, with its Rigid Underbone Frame, Telescopic Suspension up front and Gas Filled Hydraulic Suspension at the rear. It is a piece of cake to cut in and out of traffic without a second’s thought. The turning radius of the Jupiter is industry best at just 1910mm (claimed), which aids the rider in flicking his/her way through traffic. The seat is the largest I have ever sat on, with two tall people easily fitting with room to spare (Rider: 5’11”, Pillion: 6’1”!). All these things work in perfect unison to ensure that one is riding in comfort at all times.
While commuting one might want to get the best mileage, but at other times have fun on the run. And the Jupiter has an Econometer for this very purpose, to make the rider aware of economy or power runs. To get the best Fuel Economy just ensure that the Green Indicator Light stays on, though we did not get a chance to confirm fuel consumption. One very useful feature is the Pass Switch. It makes overtaking a breeze in traffic, as the horn does not need to be used, a big help to be a civilised rider! The headlight is bright enough for the speeds that this little machine is capable of and it also has Twin Pilot Lamps, for riding in low visibility situations. The tail lamp is an LED unit, but the turn signal indicators are not. Asking for too much? Maybe, but TVS does promise more!
On the safety front also the Jupiter provides some nifty features like large tubeless tyres fitted on 12” wheels, while the rest of the competition offers 10” wheels, this helps in tackling bad roads and improves comfort and practicality as well. The TL tyres on the other hand give one peace of mind, especially for lady commuters. To ensure that the rider never runs out of fuel, the console not just has a fuel indicator, but also a Low Fuel Indicator which lights up reminding you to top up. Necessary as it has the smallest tank in the competition. The Jupiter is a one thumb start bike and did not give any starting trouble even in the coldest part of the Delhi winter. But in case you do need to kick start the bike, it has the lever perfectly positioned, so that the centre stand does not come in the way. The Centre Stand uses a TVS patented method called the ‘E-Z’ Stand, which allows you to put the bike on the centre stand while seated. A very useful feature is the external fuel filling cap, negating the need to open the seat, but one does need to get off the bike to put the key in. A lever on the dash, would have been just about perfect, giving the convenience of a motorcycle that we are so used to. The parking brake is also very useful, when leaving the bike on a slope, ensures that it does not roll off the Aravalli Hills!
The TVS Jupiter is an extremely user friendly bike, giving a lot of features which are useful in day to day running. The Scoot comes with the reliability of the TVS badge and support network, it also adds in a few modern bits which motorcycle riders are used to. The ease of automatic scooters in traffic is the reason why one sees a spurt of them being ridden by middle aged men, unlike earlier where it was considered a lady centric product. TVS has surely got a winner on their hands, but as always the final verdict will be given by the consumer in the form of his hard earned money. I do feel that the TVS Jupiter will not just be taking sales off other scooters, but also attracting a lot of prospective commuter motorcycle buyers with a very attractive alternative.