Date posted on April 16, 2019
The new Motorstar Hawk 150 R has changed its character from a big and slightly boring but very comfortable cruiser to a very cool, sexy, sophisticated and compact sports scooter.
When we tested the old Hawk 150 , we praised it for its comfort and all-day seat as well as its smooth engine but we criticized its size and bland looks. Well, with the new model, Motorstar addresses almost all of our concerns and has created a whole new scooter with a completely different personality. The new Hawk 150R is now an attractive sports scooter with a European flavor. However, it has also lost one of its strengths, which is the all-day riding comfort.
The new Motorstar Hawk 150R is more compact and stylish than the old model. The biggest revision is definitely the scooter’s styling, which went from bulky and dated to sporty and modern. Starting with the big attractive twin headlamps and big clear tail lamp and two-tone body colors with minimal graphics, the new Hawk actually looks like a more expensive European or Taiwanese scooter costing more than double its asking price. There are also chrome highlights on the rear body panels and muffler plus the black chrome color for engine. The paint quality is good with a thick clear coat that seals the graphics and logo.
Other nice touches include the sleek body-colored side mirrors, carbon fiber garnished instrument panel (with a tachometer!) and a lockable fuel filler cap that can be accessed without opening the seat. The tachometer is a rare feature for an automatic scooter but is a welcome sporty feature. The seat has a better non-slip material which looks and feels more durable, but it is thinner and therefore, less comfortable than the old Hawk.
The new Hawk is equipped with dual rear shocks that are a bit hard but, make the new Hawk handle better. The 12-inch Duro tires sized 120/70 R12 for both front and rear have sporty tread patterns that offer good grip. They are mounted on nice silver alloy wheels with polished lip finish. The small fat wheels absorb bumps and give the new Hawk quick light handling.
The brakes are average. The front disc looks small but is equipped with a rubber type ABS which makes it ok to jam the levers to take full braking power without locking up. The compact dimensions and short wheelbase allow it to maneuver easily in tight situations.
The 150cc engine remains unchanged. However, the engine on this new model seems to run more quietly. The new Hawk never felt under powered and can accelerate strongly. There is also no unwanted vibration or rough sounds that one would expect from earlier China-made scooters. Riding the new Hawk, you will have a relatively more solidly-built feeling about the scooter.
Utility-wise, the flat floor is still best for hauling big items, but sadly, the small glove box in front on the old model is gone. However, there is a big underseat storage that is fully trimmed and is big enough for any open face helmet or a small full size one. A few gripes about the new Hawk include a square hole in the plastic trim that exposes the metal frame above floorboard, the seat base’s big gap to the body and the slightly short handlebars. Also, the all-day comfort which was a strong feature of the old model is not there anymore. However, the trade-off of sporty handling for comfort is true to any vehicle be it cars, motorcycles or scooters.
What has not changed on the new Hawk 150R is its amazing value for money. Even with its improvement, this 150cc scooter still commands a price below P60,000! For riders looking for an affordable brand new European-styled scooter, the Hawk is a very good option. China-made scooters are continuously making improvements on all fronts and the Hawk is definitely a step forward.
Al Camba “Style-wise, it’s very good and more compact than the previous model and it also looks much lighter. The performance is also good. The engine is quiet and can accelerate the Hawk at a respectable rate. The brake feeling is good and the handling is very light and quick. You can easily maximize the performance of the small front brake because of the standard ABS control valve which made it feel more powerful than it actually is. So, aside from it being better looking, it is also a much sportier ride than the old Hawk. However, the comfort level seems to be lower compared to the previous model which we’ve compared to a lounge seat on wheels. The new seat looks sleeker but also thinner and I think is a bit harder than before. The old Hawk is better for long distance touring but the new Hawk is more usable for everyday short rides, flashy and better looking. The subtle two-tone color combination of white and black and body graphics are very simple and more elegant unlike the “cartoon-ish” graphics of the old Hawk. I also like the few chrome “bling” trimmings on the body and pipe that add to the overall sporty-elegance of the package. The instrument panel is also much improved with sporty carbon fiber garnish and even includes a tachometer! The twin headlights look nice and the engine sound is quieter. I like the nicely trimmed, big seat compartment which can swallow a medium full-face helmet. Compared to the old model, I think the new Hawk 150R is a big improvement yet maintains its terrific value-for-money proposition.”
Philip Bonza – ” I like the black and white color combination. The graphics are much cooler than the previous model of the Hawk. The plastic body panels look very much cooler! From the front, it looks like a European scooter, definitely lots of “pogi points”! The tail light and the rear signal lights are cool. The height of the foot platform is very comfortable for my own height. However, the seat is not that soft and my seating position is not good. The brakes work well but are not very strong. The good point is that it is not that very hard to feel the brakes so it performs well. The handling is comfortable. The ergonomics of the platform to the handlebars are very good and comfortable. For me, I find the handlebars too short. I think it will perform well with wider handlebars. The rear suspension is hard so I can feel my big fat belly shaking even more. But overall, this scooter is more comfortable and handy to ride for short trips and maybe on some weekend rides. I can give this bike a rating of 7 out of 10.”
Ricci Abrina – “For its sporty styling, I give it an “A minus” for its looks but the quality of the plastics can be improved. For me, the graphics also can still be improved. The headlights are big enough just like the old 150 Hawk and the body now is slightly smaller compared to the last model. I like the tachometer and the layout of the speedometer and the gas gauge but I feel that the numbers are all too small and hard to read at a glance especially when you are doing 60 kph. I think I would suggest that they should increase the size of the numbers on the speedometer and tachometer. Never mind the fuel gauge because you could see when it’s full or empty but the needle on the gauge has some movement when running which could be annoying to a few. The ignition switch is good because it has a lock and the gas tank also has a lockable cover. It’s definitely better because you don’t have to open the seat to fill up gasoline. The seating position of the new Hawk 150 R is quite on the sporty side. I would think that the narrow handlebars would be a plus for the weaving in and out of heavy traffic. The 12-inch tires are big enough for bumps and small enough for maneuvering around traffic. The brakes are fine for the rear, you just have to adjust it to get more stopping power. The suspension is on the sporty side, it’s very hard and stiff. Compared to the last Hawk we’ve tested, the seat is thinner and harder. So, I would think that traveling long distance is better with the old model. The power of the engine could be improved. Acceleration-wise, it’s not that strong.”
*This article was published in InsideRACING’s Volume 7 Number 5 2009 issue.