Both bikes certainly look snappy and fast. But especially the RC looks bigger and feels even bigger when driving. However, if you look closely, the RC’s body panels are quite busy and there are many hollow spaces in various areas. Don’t get me wrong, this is a much better built motorcycle compared to its predecessor, but a detailed inspection revealed an uneven panel gap around the tank area and a loose panel on one side of the tail section. As for the R15, this is a more compact motorcycle and the body panels are packed more tightly. Even the paint finish and sturdiness of plastic panels throughout are slightly better than the RC 200 in that they exude a more premium vibe.
Typical of sport bikes, the RC 200 and R15 require a committed and crouched riding position. However, there are certain differences. It’s a little hard to get to on the RC 200 due to the higher seat height of 824mm. But once you’re settled in, the seat feels roomy and the steering wheel is now easier to reach compared to the previous model of the RC. It’s also set a little higher compared to the R15. One notable improvement is the seat design and cushioning, which is much better than before. Therefore, the RC 200 should be relatively more comfortable to drive longer distances.
Moving on to the R15, the seat height here is 9mm lower than the RC, so getting on the saddle is a little easier than on the RC. But once you’re seated, the R15 feels a bit more committed compared to the RC due to the lower-positioned clip-on handlebars. This puts more weight on your wrist and makes moving the bike in traffic or pushing in the parking lot a bit cumbersome. However, the lower saddle helps here because you stand more firmly on the ground and that helps with moving the bike.
The story is similar in passenger comfort. Jumping on the duo saddle of the RC is quite a task. Due to the extremely high placement, the process of jumping on it feels like climbing a tree. However, the presence of large and sturdy stirrups provides a safe feeling. Even the space and design of the passenger seat is better than before.
As for the R15, it is more welcoming to the pillion passenger, as the seat height is obviously lower. But then you might be looking for something to grab onto. You can wrap your fingers around the scoops in the tail section or crouch in front of you and rest your hands on the fuel tank. Meanwhile, the padding and space is nothing to complain about.