It’s fair to say the 125cc market in the UK is a very crowded one.
Bikes of this capacity engine size can be ridden on L-plates by anyone with a car licence who has completed their CBT.
They can also, crucially, be used with L-plates by anyone aged 17 and over who has done the CBT and without L-plates by those 17 and over who have the CBT and the two-part practical test on an A1 licence.
Young riders cannot move up to a bigger bike until they turn 19, at which point they need to get an A2 licence.
What that means is that for thousands of riders, the 125cc motorbike is their primary means of affordable, independent transportation for at least two years.
Which is, of course, why lots of manufacturers have lots of models in this category.
Possibly one of the less well known of these is Hyosung.
The South Korean firm has gone out on something of a limb with its Aquila GV125S – a cruiser-style 125, complete with liquid-cooled V-twin engine.
It looks great – like a scaled-down version of a Harley sportster, yet seeming bigger than the average bike of this engine size.
It’s long and low, with a fat front tyre, finned cylinder heads and blacked-out, on-trend features.
Jump on board and it feels the part, too.
The seat is nice and low, the bars upswept and wide and the ride position upright, relaxed and comfortable.
The quality and attention to detail is impressive.
The cockpit features an asymmetrical, LCD backlit screen clock with analogue rev counter and digital speedo.
That V-twin engine – the only one in this class – is a little peach.
It features overhead cams and has three valves per cylinder.
A1 compliant bikes are limited to 14.6bhp, but it has plenty of low-down torque, accelerates surprisingly quickly and has a decent top cruising speed of around 65mph.
Handling, for a cruiser-style bike, is pleasingly better than I thought it would be.
The forks do a grand job and the twin rear shocks have adjustable preload so you can tailor your ride.
With twin discs up front and one at the rear, and a linked system, braking is progressive and plenty powerful enough.
The GV125S is at the higher end, cost-wise, for a 125, but, for me, it’s worth it due to the high quality, the unusual, stylish looks and that unique V-twin engine.
*Bike provided by Sinnis Motorcycles sinnismotorcycles.com
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