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SYM WOLF Naked Motorbike Review

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MCN overall verdict rating is 2

The Sym Wolf SB125Ni is a fuel-injected learner-friendly motorcycle from the Taiwanese giant. Sym pumps out around half a million two wheelers (albeit mostly scooters) a year, and this is one of their first steps into the UK motorcycle market. But… despite its great looks, the £2999 price tag puts it way above more attractive budget options, while the quality of the ride and engine simply isn’t good enough to challenge the 125 Dukes and YZF-R125s of this world.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 2
Owners' rating rating is 3

Not exciting. Vibration picks up as the old-school, air-cooled four-stroke single begins to approach 70mph. You’ll want to back off soon after. Keeping it pinned and moving along at 62mph is the norm. Acceleration is slow and breathless. The only redeeming feature is the fuel injection, which makes starting it and keeping it running as simple as pushing a button. Essentially the performance is feeble. Even for a 125.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 2
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

Not confidence inspiring. It feels poorly balanced and is consequently awkward to manoeuvre at low speeds. Most cheaper bikes get away with adequate or ill thought out design by being so light it really doesn’t matter. At 155kg dry the Wolf just can’t get away with it. The brakes are very basic twin piston callipers at the front with a drum at the rear, giving adequate stopping performance but nothing more. The gear change is sloppy, imprecise and ill-positioned. Deeply irritating.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

By far the Wolf’s biggest selling point. A very tidy LCD dash – complete with sexy blue backlighting – shows off a slick digital speedo, a trip meter, fuel gauge and the current time. It has LED lights and neat styling touches like the CB1000R-styled alloy wheels. The screen is good looking and colour coded and the grab rail is extremely good. The ease of the fuel injection is a great bonus too. Only downside is a slightly rattly pillion seat that doesn’t clip in with much confidence.

Sym Wolf SB125Ni (2011-current)

Detail Value
New price £2,999
Used price range View SYM WOLF bikes for sale to see current asking prices
Engine size 125 cc
Power 11 bhp
Top speed 70 mph
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 2 rating is 3.5
Engine rating is 2 rating is 3
Ride & Handling rating is 2 rating is 3.5
Equipment rating is 5 rating is 4.5
Quality & Reliability rating is 0 rating is 3.5
Value rating is 3 rating is 3.5

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 0
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

General quality is adequate while failing to match major European or Japanese rivals. Sym haven’t so far shared any details of warranty cover, and it remains to be seen how the Wolf will handle winter conditions and the drops and scrapes learners will subject it to.

Value

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

Yes, you get a lot of equipment for the money. You get almost as much as on KTM’s 125 Duke and for over £500 less. But, if you do buy the Wolf, you’ll wish you splashed out just a little bit extra for a Honda CBR125R or the like. In short, the equipment’s a bargain, the quality of the ride isn’t.

Insurance

Insurance group: n/a

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Model History

2011: Sym Wolf SB125Ni launched

Other Versions

2011: Wolf SB125N (£TBA) – lower spec. carburated version not currently available in the UK.

Specifications

Top speed 70 mph
1/4-mile acceleration secs
Max power 11 bhp
Max torque ft-lb
Weight 155 kg
Seat height mm
Fuel capacity 13 litres
Average fuel consumption mpg
Tank range miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group of 17
Engine size 125 cc
Engine specification Air-cooled, 124.5cc fuel-injected, single cylinder four-stroke
Frame
Front suspension adjustment Telescopic fork
Rear suspension adjustment -
Front brakes Disc brake with 2 piston caliper
Rear brake Drum
Front tyre size 110/70 - 17
Rear tyre size 130/70 - 17

See all SYM WOLF motorcycles for sale

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£1,200

SYM
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£2,399

SYM
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£2,999

SYM
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£2,399

SYM
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£2,999

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 3.5(3 reviews)

  • Awful!!

    Harrison Hide

    Average rating rating is 2

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    Very unreliable bike for sure. Less than 6 months of owning this bike, it had a fuel injector issue. Kept cutting out at junctions, wouldn't above 30mph and I spent a fortune on this bike. Got the fuel injected issue fixed, but again 6 months, same problem!! Waste of money for sure!! Whatever you do don't buy this piece of sh**, I'm telling you!!!!!

    24 October 2013

  • Wicked Bike!

    SteliosAl

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    Ok I am the owner of a wolf 250cc and all I have to say is that this review is utterly invalid!the bike is a complete success, sym engines are very reliable, handles like a charm, gear change is really smooth and precise!as for the looks it beats the hondas and yamahas and kawasakis!at least thats the comments i receive! :) MCN should reconsider before posting this review!

    07 May 2012

  • Better than a CBF125

    Anonymous

    Average rating rating is 4

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    OK. Yet another innaccurate and unfair road test by MCN. The tester states that it has a "drum brake at the rear". Erm... no it's a disc actually (look at the photo's). There's nothing wrong with the gearchange either; it's neither sloppy nor imprecise. I have never missed a gear or had any problems whatsoever with the gearchange, and to say it is "badly positioned" is frankly ridiculous. It's easily adjustable just like most other bikes, so what's the problem? "General quality is adequate" Are you serious? I'm beginning to think this guy hasn't even seen the bike, never mind ridden it. The build quality on SYMs is easily on a par with the Japanese brands and knocks spots off Honda's cheap and nasty CBF125.What is meant by "Sym haven’t so far shared any details of warranty cover"? If you go to the SYM UK website, it clearly states that models 125cc and over come with a 3 year warranty. Talk about lazy journalism! If you're thinking of buying a Wolf 125, ingore this "road test" and go to your local SYM dealer and see for yourself.

    09 September 2011

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dreamchaser1966

dreamchaser1966says

Wow! I'm so glad that real people have wrote there comments about this bike! I am picking my new sym up on friday and was gutted when I just read MCN's review... Feeling more confident now ive realised whoever wrote the MCN review has probably never even seen the bike let alone given it a test ride! Thanks guys for your comments and honesty....

10 June 2013 17:38

SteliosAl

SteliosAlsays

Agreed

very true.. I am very impressed with the bike!

07 May 2012 10:02

R1KSU

R1KSUsays

I agree, when it comes to small bikes and maxi-scooters MCN dont seem to give a toss, Im getting the wife a Sym 300 GTS Evo in a cpl of weeks, it gets good reviews in other places.

12 January 2012 07:57

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