Street Stealth Fighter
When I first saw the new Yamaha Mio Soul i 125, my first impression of it was that it looks like a stealth fighter because of its matte black finish and edgy styling. But instead of evading detection, this one will certainly attract attention from pedestrians and other road users because it simply stands out from a virtual sea of generic looking scooters. The original Yamaha Soul always had a somewhat peculiar cyclops-like styling because of its centrally mounted headlight design and this latest iteration is no different. Of course it may not be to everyone’s liking, but it certainly grows on you the longer you stare at it, and it also gives the new Mio Soul i 125 its unmistakable identity.
What I’m sure everybody will appreciate, however, is the responsive power from the fuel injected 125cc single-cylinder motor mated to an equally responsive CVT transmission. From a closed throttle, the power builds up gradually as the CVT spools to the correct gear ratio and road speed. When presented with a long stretch of road, the Mio Soul i 125 can briskly accelerate to a top speed of 100 km/h, about par with other 125cc scooters in the market, and plenty fast for city riding. The Mio Soul i 125 rolls on 14-inch front and rear cast aluminum wheels, with the rear shod with a wider than usual 100/70-14 rear tire for more grip and better handling. Braking duties is handled by a front disc and a drum rear setup.
While it can be used for the occasional long rides to the countryside, it’s in the city where scooters like the Mio Soul i 125 truly excel. A short 1,260 mm wheelbase coupled with a 96 Kg. light curb weight allows the Mio Soul i 125 to dart smoothly and effortlessly in and out of traffic even with a pillion. And speaking of pillions, unlike other scooters with a narrow seat, the Mio Soul is gifted with a wide and comfortable seat for both rider and passenger. For convenience, there’s a 14L compartment under the seat where you can securely place your personal belongings while riding.
One could argue that the reason most people buy Mio scooters is because of their immense aftermarket support and modification potential for more speed and power. But for some of the riders content with just the stock performance, the Mio Soul i 125 strikes the best balance of speed and fuel economy without compromising long term reliability. For the fuel misers amongst us, the meter gauge even comes with a useful ECO indicator to let you know when the balance of power and fuel efficiency is achieved, a neat feature to help you conserve fuel. A thoughtful safety feature is a side-stand switch that prevents you from riding off with the side stand down.
Lately, big bikes have been getting the most attention from the local motoring press because, well, everybody just loves big bikes. Small bikes, like the Mio Soul i 125, were temporarily relegated to the sidelines. But the worsening traffic situation in Metro Manila and the looming oil price hikes because of the strengthening US dollar will make them relevant, perhaps more than they’ve ever been, to the commuting public. So if you’re in the market for a sporty, stylish and well-built city runabout scooter, don’t forget to include the Yamaha Mio Soul i 125 in your target acquisition radar.
Engine: Air-cooled, EFI, SOHC, 2-valve, 4-stroke
Displacement: 125 cc
Max power: 9.27 bhp @ 8000 rpm
Torque: 7.08 lb ft @ 5500 rpm
Seat height: 773 mm
Fuel capacity: 4.2 liters
Curb weight: 96 kg
Top speed: 100 km/h
Price: PhP 79,900
Plus: Smooth and fuel efficient motor, superb build quality
Minus: Not much
C! Rating: 9.5 / 10