This is the first time I’m going to review a motorcycle, it is one of my latest purchases so I might as well make a review out of it, some of you may find it a bit out of place in this blog, but as far as I can see, this bike is also a piece of technology with gadgetry of its own which makes it not that all different from my other reviews. The Zongshen Z-one is technology and practicality merge into one.
Zongshen have progressed thru the years as China’s leading motorcycle manufacturer, merging with European brands such as Piaggio and Aprillia mana, thus acquiring European technology and concept designing. The Z-one in particular is a joint venture product of Piaggio and Zongshen, similar to what Bajaj and Kawasaki did to the Rouser. Sharing of technology and know-how is essential to the success of two merging companies; the Z-one is a product of two distinct motorcycle technology merge into one, a combination of European and Chinese know-how.
The Z-one is distributed worldwide; in South America i.e. Peru, Colombia and Brazil it bears the name Zongshen Z-one, while in Europe it is known as the Piaggio Robinson with slight design alteration, most evidently, on the tail light and head light section, meanwhile, in the Philippines, Motorstar is the sole distributor of the Z-one, and they re-introduce it here as the Xplorer Z-150 but still carry the brand Zongshen, in my opinion it’s better off as the Z-one.
Z-one Latin American version Peru and Brazil import.
European version Piaggio-Zongshen Robinson.
Z-one Philippine version distributed by Motorstar as Xplorer Z-150
It was love at first sight when I saw the Z-one on display at Eastworld Motors, a naked street bike oozing in machismo, the Z-one is uniquely designed and will guarantee to turn heads as you pass on a crowd, whether on a traffic light or a parking lot it will surely attract attention.
The Z-one’s size to weight ratio is well balanced and the ergonomics stresses greatly on the rider’s comfort perfect for everyday commuting, a feature which is obviously European in nature, probably designed by Piaggio, who had participated a lot in the Z-one’s overall design. The weight is evenly distributed making the Z-one easy to maneuver in heavy traffic, the curvy seat is comfortable to sit on, the leather and the amount of cushions used is just right to keep the rider comfortable for long distance riding and the recessed indentation on both sides of the tank keeps the rider’s knees and legs in a safe and relaxed position.
Acceleration: On paper, the Z-one is powered by a diagonal type 150cc engine with 5 speed gear box, in which I find it responsive enough to cater my need for speed, whether on city driving or hi-ways you won’t find it lacking in power, the Z-one’s engine is also equipped with Engine Balance technology, which aims to minimize engine vibrations during high-revs and high speed driving, keeping the rider safe, and comfortable even on the fast lane and ensuring no after ride vibrations will be felt on your palms and feet.
The Z-one is well planted on concrete roads, thanks to its vacuum type tires, skidding and slipping is greatly reduced, the tire thickness is just right to give the bike a stable performance ( front = 90x90, rear = 110x80 ), the tire measurements also match the Z-one’s size, which overall gave it a muscular appeal.
Safety is always been an issue for two wheel rides, the Z-one however, will provide you with such features. The front disk brake is equipped with dual piston caliper, and the responsive rear drum break will ensure a steady sudden stop when needed, proper illumination is also important especially at night, the Z-one uses an all LED light for night illumination which is 30% brighter than ordinary light bulbs and it's most likely visible in daylight. The headlight is impressive as well, it illuminates a wide area of the road in front of you, making night visibility at its best, the headlight also features a 3D lighting effect which eliminates glares, keeping you safe especially on two way roads.
The fully adjustable rear suspensions absorbs bumps well and the large front telescopic fork ensures stability and comfortability on rugged terrains, the Z-one’s 170mm minimum ground clearance suggests that it can handle both on-road and off-road conditions.
The 21st century is all about the digital age, Zongshen and Piaggio took note of that and decided to give the Z-one a digital console display and is lit up by a blue backlight, which personally I find it neat, though I took notice of some issues, like the LCD display is a bit small and has poor viewing angles, and is somewhat a pain to get readings, there will be times wherein you’ll have to position your head just to get a clear feedback, the speedometer reading and gear positioning, is not much of a problem but the fuel gauge and the trip counter is a pain to look at, which is kind off disappointing especially when driving, the analog tachometer however is perfectly lit and it's a marvel to look at....... All in all the Z-one is definitely worth riding.
Z-one APES modification by Piaggio
Wednesday, July 3, 2013
12:40 AM Lrence 20 comments