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2009 SYM HD 200 Preview


by Pascal Bastien ,

SYM's Canadian lineup is evolving with the introduction of the all-new HD 200, a versatile scooter that can keep pace with the traffic both in the city and on byroads. It also benefits from slightly above-average fit and finish.

The HD 200 rides on larger wheels than most scooters. These 16-inch units deliver safety and comfort on rough roads as well as pleasant dynamics in corners thanks to superior stability when leaned over.

Nimble and lively, the new SYM member is driven by a liquid-cooled, 4-valve, DOHC single-cylinder that generates 20.8 horsepower. Meanwhile, the featherweight chassis is more than 20-kilogram lighter than similarly-sized rivals.

Geared to please
In the braking department, the SYM HD 200 hits the bull's eye with front and rear disc brakes featuring dual-piston calipers and a master cylinder that provides excellent feel through the lever. Storage capacity is also commendable; there's a flat floorboard, a cargo hook, a large cargo rack in the back and a generous underseat compartment that can easily fit a full-face helmet (a rare feature on big-wheel scooters since the rear wheel and related components usually limit the available room for the trunk).

The comprehensive, easy-to-read instrumentation includes fuel and water temperature gauges, an odometer and a clock but no trip meter. The various controls and buttons are simple and ergonomically laid out, making the riding experience more user-friendly. Moreover, there are two stands -- the side stand is solid and useful when running errands, while the reassuring center stand features a noisy auto-fold system.

Stylish and accessible
The SYM HD 200 looks borderline unorthodox yet it proves stylish and attractive, especially with the wide headlight, chrome grille, translucent turn signals and tinted windshield. Fit and finish is one notch above other SYM products courtesy of higher-quality plastics and assembly. The seat is firm though nicely sculpted and features a lower, forward-tilted front section, allowing riders of all shapes and sizes to put two solid feet on the ground at idle. Meanwhile, the passenger gets wide, retractable footpegs for added comfort.

For less than $4,000, the 2009 SYM HD 200 is one of the best-valued scooters in this extremely-competitive segment. True, build quality is not quite on par with Japanese models and the HD 200 doesn't have the soul of Italians, but it sure boasts ideal size, interesting equipment, well-executed styling and -- more importantly -- big, 16-inch wheels that are a perfect fit for our mediocre roads.

Photo Credit : SYM