Bike Reviews Reviews

Mahindra Gusto Vs Honda Activa Vs Yamaha Alpha

Mahindra Gusto Vs Honda Activa Vs Yamaha Alpha
Written by Parichay Malvankar

The scooter segment has been showing tremendous growth potential over the past couple of years and it is obvious that almost all tw0-wheeler manufacturers want a piece of this, except for Bajaj. We shared the extensive review of the Mahindra Gusto with you by the end of September this year, and mentioned how capable the scooter was, if not the segment best. So we thought of having a fun shootout and comparison with arch rivals.

In this report, we compare the Mahindra Gusto with the segment leader and benchmark, the Honda Activa and the slow selling Yamaha Alpha.

Mahindra Gusto

Honda Activa

Yamaha Alpha

Dimensions (lxwxh)

1,825 x 697 x 1,188

1,761 x 710 x 1,147

1,795 x 675 x 1,124

Engine capacity





8 BHP @ 7,500 RPM

8 BHP @ 7,500 RPM

7 BHP @ 7,500 RPM


9 Nm @ 5,500 RPM

8.74 Nm @ 5,500 RPM

8.1 Nm @ 5,000 RPM

Ground clearance




Going by the specifications, the Mahindra Gusto is the longest as well as tallest amongst the three while the Honda Activa is the widest of them all. The Yamaha Alpha although having a slightly higher engine capacity, is the least powerful scooter with 1 full BHP lower than the competition. The Gusto has the best-in-class torque availability amongst the three. Even the ground clearance on the Gusto is more superior to the Activa and the Alpha making it an easier scooter to live with on imperfect road conditions.

The Mahindra Gusto could easily be a segment favourite with the given features, but only if people knew where the dealer is located

The Mahindra Gusto could easily be a segment favourite with the given features, but only if people knew where the dealer is located

In the design department, the Honda Activa now has started looking dated. Not only because of the number of years it has been available in the market, but also because we see so many of them, that its become quite an ordinary looking design. The Gusto on the other hand might come as a rather flat design to some. Although boxy, the design language on the Gusto is refreshingly new in the segment and breaks the monotony. The Yamaha Alpha on the other hand is way to curvy, making it a little more inclined towards the female buyers probably.

At the front, all the scooters are pretty much conventional scooter-like and nothing extraordinary say like the Kinetic Blaze. The Activa houses the headlamp and indicators both on the headlamp leaving the front apron empty for two air ducts. The Alpha has a pointy front apron with indicators on the either side and the headlamp is mounted on the handlebar. Mahindra being Mahindra, tries to add a lot more design detailing with silver aero-fin like element on the front apron and turn indicators with a blacked out plastic surround. Headlamp on the handlebar for the Gusto also sports LED pilot lamps which are a segment first.

Side profile of all the bikes look more or less the same. Being a scooter, there is nothing much a designer can do on this side to add more funk. Seats are adequately soft on all the three products and good room for both the rider and pillion. While the Activa and the Alpha pop-open the seats towards the front, as has been the case all these years, Mahindra has come up with a seat which opens towards the back, and gets a segment first seat hold function as well, which doesn’t allow the seat to fall on you if you’re picking something up from the storage bin. Also, the seat height adjustment on the Mahindra Gusto is probably the best feature which has been introduced in the scooter market till date. When scooters act as a versatile family commuter, starting from the kids to the elderly, the seat height adjustment is sure to come in handy. The handlebar on the Gusto is slightly higher than the others, which will keep taller riders happy as well.

Rear end of the Alpha is again slightly cheesy with the tail lamp below the rear crease line and the turn indicators above. Looks quirky! The Activa and the Gusto have conventional tail lamp setup with turn indicators on either side. Mahindra adds an additional reflector strip above the tail lamp for enhanced visibility while riding at night. All three scooters have a chunky grab rail at the back.

Another segment first feature which the Gusto has is the flip-keyfob. Considering the current trend of offering fancy keys, Mahindra Gusto gets a keyfob similar to 4-wheelers and gets a remote find-me function.

Performance & handling:
All three scooters belong to the 110cc-class and power the rear wheel via a CVT gearbox. The Gusto and Activa both produce 8 BHP of power while the Aplha falls behind with only 7 BHP on offer. The Gusto offers slightly higher 9 Nm of torque, more than both the Activa and Alpha. All three scooters are par for the course and provide decent pep for city commuting.

While the Japanese competition is known for the technological expertise, Mahindra has done a commendable job with this indigenously developed 110cc motor dubbed as M-Tec. It does not fall short in any aspect when we compared it to the Activa and the Alpha.

When on the move, all-three scooters accelerate in a similar manner, with very linear power delivery. However, we found the Activa to be a little lagging and surprisingly the lower powered Alpha to accelerate better. The Gusto slot in between these two. Top speed on all the scooters will be in the range of 80-90 kmph. Being the heaviest amongst the lot at ~ 120kg, the Gusto is also more stable on the highways.

In the handling department, the Alpha and the Activa are almost at par. But the Gusto rides in a more mature manner. The 12″ front wheels probably add to the well-weighted front end which does not bob around over undulated roads. The front end weight on the Gusto is also better on high speeds compared to the Activa and the Alpha. Honda still doesn’t offer telescopic front fork on the Activa while Yamaha does on the Alpha and so does Mahindra with the Gusto. Suspension setup on the Gusto and Alpha is much better than the Activa which is a bit harsh.

The Activa owner who took the Gusto for a short spin did mention that he preferred the brake setup on the Mahindra more than his Activa. Also the additional features on the Gusto were very interesting for him. But he did not know of any Mahindra dealer nearby, he hadn’t seen even one. So buying a Mahindra over the Honda was out of question with limited availability and limited serviceability.

Pricing: (ex-showroom Delhi)
Mahindra Gusto: Rs. 43,000 – Rs. 47,000
Honda Activa: Rs. 46,636
Yamaha Alpha: Rs. 48,000

Cheapest amongst the lot, but feature rich, the Mahindra Gusto surely needs to be considered when looking at buying a new scooter. The Activa according to us is now an overrated product with competition offering almost equal, or even better value for money.

The only problem Mahindra will face is their low visibility in the two-wheeler space. More number of dealerships and more visibility will result in more sales.