AJS Desert Scrambler 125 Review
This is the ajs desert scrambler. If youre interested in this machine stick around stay tuned ill, tell you what i think of it Music, so first off ajs then whats that all about, because ajs is a brand that has absolutely bags of british heritage in the motorcycle world. Back in, i think about 1909, they started making motorcycles and uh throughout the early 20th century. They made motorcycles of all sorts and cars running all the way up to uh the late 60s when they were known for their scramblers and uh. Around that time they were brought up by what was then, i think, norton village, and got subsumed into that group and ajs is a standalone motorcycle brand kind of disappeared from the scene as all those uh old british manufacturers kind of conglomerated around that time. However, i think in the mid 70s, the ajs name was uh saved was bought out and some of those uh scramblers continue to be built in a handmade limited run capacity, and these days ajs is still a british company, but now they import chinese sauce motorcycles. So i know what youre gon na say its another chinese bite. I know i always get um lots of mixed feedback whenever i review one of these chinese sauce motorcycles its, although it is very much a british brand. This motorcycle itself is made in china. The engine on here 125cc unit based on the yamaha yb125, is actually made in the same factory in china that made the engine for the ybr 125.
So it is made to the same sorts of standards and is effectively the same engine, even though its not badged yamaha, okay, so lets take a look at that engine. Then here we are thats the ybr copy flight, its a 124 cc unit. It puts out um 7.3 kilowatts which, if youre old school like me, is about 10 brake horsepower and 9.5 newton meters of torque, which is about seven foot pounds. So, as i say, not going to win any races with that. But a very reliable unit. And, as i say, made in the same factory that made the original ybl 125 um, interestingly, its got a kickstart as you can see on it. I have tried to use that, but not successfully im afraid. I think it might be better if it wasnt a fuel injected one, but i do like the idea that its got a kickstart on there still, i have to say it feels remarkably smooth for a single its, not at all thumpy. I dont know if theres a balancer shaft in here or what but uh yeah the engine feels quite nice. Its got a great note to it as well. The exhaust on here sounds nice ill. Just uh go down this bit of road because its a bit faster here i can wind her up, lets just see what shes, like its, never going to win any races on the track. This, of course, because it is only one two five but lets see how she does great instrumentation on here, look thats djs, it looks properly retro, it looks like hes got six gears flat out and im doing 50 miles an hour.
Now i weigh what do i weigh 11 and a half stone, so it propels an eleven half stone bloke at 50 miles down no problem. In fact, its still going up, i think 55. It will probably top out that downhill with the fire wind youll be a bit quicker, but basically this bike isnt built to win races, its built for commuting and learning to ride. That sort of thing about comfort on the desert, scrambler hows that stack up well. Handlebars are nice and wide on. It feels nice and comfortable your nice uh good leverage there, obviously its a naked bike, so theres no wind protection, but the speed youre doing on this that doesnt really matter now. Your legs are tucked up quite high. It feels actually quite a big bike, a little bit bigger than some of its competitors in the 125 space, but your legs are tucked up in a bit of a sportier position than you would think. You dont feel like youre sitting bolt upright, as you do on say, a bonneville. There is a bit more of an acute angle at the leg. The seat itself feels lovely and padded its nice and big nice and wide feels nice and comfy. Let me show you it so what we just talked about. The comfort on the bike lets take a look at the seat on the desert. Scrambler then here she is its got a seat height of 760, mil so really low, uh, so very easy to uh.
Get your feet on the deck im five foot eight and i can get my feet bang flat on the floor. I think, if youre a shorter rider, this would be no problem, but the seat on here i just want to show you is lovely and padded nice and big and its got the ajs logo on there as well. Uh, you know looks like a quality item, so nice and comfortable just to show you sat on here. Look, i can get my feet basically flat on the deck, no problem at all, with a bit of a bend in my leg, im five foot, eight with a 32 inch leg, and this bike is perfectly suited to me. I think, for the shorter rider. This is perfect. Okay lets check the brakes. Nothing behind me front brake seems absolutely fine. Lets just come around the corner here. Still, nothing behind me just check the back brake yeah that brake works back brakes are never that great on bikes, but that one feels absolutely fine so those brakes then. Actually, when you look at the um calipers here, you can see that its actually a three pot caliper and thats a 300 mil uh single disc. On the front. If you have a look down the back end, uh weve got a much smaller disc and a single pot caliper, and that disc is a 210mm dont know who makes these brakes um but, as i say, they seem to work quite well.
Actually, i said i dont know it says on an lbn cbs, never heard of them, but uh. They seem to work perfectly adequately for this size of bike, its obviously a very lightweight bike: 126 kilograms with 90 percent fuel, so very light and easy to move around. You may notice actually this bike doesnt have any mirrors thats, not because they come without mirrors, but this because this is the press bike and it was prepared for uh. I think the malay mile, something like that. Its got the stickers on it still and the mirrors were removed so uh, i cant tell you what the mirrors are like, but the brakes are certainly adequate in terms of handling its very stable, actually for a lightweight 125.. Its um you do have to were not really muscle it. We have to make a definite, you know, grab with the handlebars to change its direction, so its not all flight in and skittish in that manner, and the ride itself yeah seems all right, very basic suspension. As youd suspect, but these are bumpy old roads that im riding on and its a comfortable ride, suspension on the bike super basic, very retro, looking with the gators, which i think is good, no adjustment, of course – and these are right way up – forks ie, not upside Down and on the back, weve got again in keeping with its retro styling its got these twin shocks on the back, which look pretty cool and uh absolutely adequate for a bike of this size, power and weight.
What the controls like on the uh desert scrambler! Well, all very conventional. The switch gear just the same as youd find on any other bike, its not particularly expensive as youd. Imagine because this is a budget bike, but uh works very well. Its very tactile feels fine. The displays here, as ive mentioned, were not displays. Displaying the gauges very old school, they look great rev counter on the right speedo on the left. You got your idiot lights odometer. It is marked in miles an hour and kilometers. So thats all good lets. Take a quick look at those controls, then, on the bike. Here we go bog standard switch gear, nothing complicated about it indicators and lights. On the left hand, side over on the right, youve got your starter and your kill switch youve got those amazing, retro, styled clocks. There, which are badged ags with ajs, which i think are nice and then, if we turn the ignition on weve, actually got an led front light. The indicators are led as well, and i think that looks really cool yeah, nothing complicated about uh how the bike is controlled. I have to say the exhaust on this sounds absolutely fabulous for riding around the lanes like this, its just a great fun bike. I really do love one two fives. If you dont bring one for a while, get yourself a go on one because theyre, just a hoot Music youre, not gon na get yourself in too much trouble with the law on it, but theyre a lot of fun.
Just to rag around the corners and just see, if you can maintain your momentum, there are a few features on the bike that i like that. I thought worth pointing out. First off this exhaust. Not only does it sound good, but it looks good as well, really actually thats a really nicely made piece on it. Uh, as is the paintwork. I mean a really nice job on the tank there. What isnt so good, maybe as is in keeping with a lot of these um chinese um source bikes, is the welds. If you have a check out those wells, they look a little bit. You know pigeon crappy, so you have to sort of take account of that. But then it is built to a price. Has a center stand, which is an excellent addition and uh yeah what else to say or dont like the um brake pedal there? That looks a little bit um rubbish a bit of a you know, a bit of rubber on. There would have just finished that off. I think uh. What else wheels look good got. These knobbly tires on here, uh made by a company called kenda. Dont know much about those, but they look like theyre, probably all right for a bit of light green laning fuel tank on here good for 13 liters love it in this orange color comes in three colors by the way, a metallic red black and this orange. And this apparently will do 128 miles per gallon.
Absolutely amazing, frugal bike, this not only to buy at uh something like 2 800 pounds on the road, but also to run as well at 128 miles per gallon, so the upsides to this bike. As far as i can determine on this first ride, then, obviously the price less than three grand for a really cool, looking bike, its got some lovely features like the clocks, the finish to the paint, the exhaust sounds really good, as well as looks good downsides of The bike well youve got that chinese factor. Dont know what the longevity would be like. Ive got no reason to believe it. Wouldnt be good, but uh Music, plenty of people have written to me in the past about other manufactured chinese sauce bikes and said they dont. Last long, so if youve, if youve got one of these ajs bikes id love to know how well its done long term on the downside, i suppose its uh, i mean it is only one two five, but it does top out quite quickly in terms of speed. As i say about 55 miles, an hour tops not probably important if youre commuting around town. That would be absolutely fine. Okay, so there we have it thats, the ajs desert scrambler whats my sort of closing thoughts on this first ride review on the bike, sound like it very much. As i said, ive ridden a number of these chinese sourced bikes and uh yeah. This one stacks up very well, certainly towards the top of my list.
So when youre, comparing it against things, like you know the handways, the synthesis heralds all right, sir, the maps, those sort of bikes it compares very favorably. It feels a bit more substantial than those in terms of its size. I think this would suit a bigger person a bit better than some of those other bikes. I love the styling of this. I think the paint is lovely. I love those retro dolls. They look great the stuff youre looking at all the time is good. Switchgear is nice to use its comfortable its a nice place to be, i think, if youre on the market, for a bike to get you around town youve got a relatively short commute to do, or you want to learn to ride. You want to do your cvt, something like that, and this is a pretty cool option at an amazing price. Frugal 125 miles per gallon. You aint gon na get cheaper motoring than this. Of course, like all these machines, time will tell how well they stand up to the vagaries of the british weather. So if youve got one of these or youve ridden one for a few years, love to hear how youve gone do leave your comments below about how you found the ajs in terms of its um. You know whether the whether it does well in british weather, because thats something that always comes up with these reviews, of course, its not something that i can comment on.
Having just ridden this new bike but from a straightforward riding perspective, easy to ride, not intimidating great fun as all one two fives are, you can just rag it around the place. It sounds good. It looks cool, definitely worth your consideration anyway. Look forward to comments below as usual, thats it for this time, look forward to speaking to you again soon.