Bike-scooters/ First-drive/ Orxa Mantis | Good From Far, Far From Good | First Ride Review

Orxa Mantis | Good From Far, Far From Good | First Ride Review

Good From Far, Far From Good






Electric vehicles have a notorious reputation in our country. The end product is usually quite a gamble and is approached with a pinch of scepticism each time. Few manufacturers have been able to roll out products requiring little to no spit and polish after their launch. Orxa Energies is a Bangalore-based startup that has joined the fold of EV manufacturers. The Mantis is their first product and one they’ve worked on for the past eight years.

On paper, the Mantis seems rather accomplished and boasts specs that put it on par with some of the best in the EV game. The reality, though, was far from that, and within the limited time I spent with this motorcycle around a go-kart track, many of its flaws shined brighter than its strengths. Before I proceed, I’d like to mention that Orxa clarified that what we were riding was a “prototype” and that it doesn’t entirely reflect the final product that may go on sale in April 2024. If that is the case, they certainly have their work cut out for them.

How Is The Mantis?

Polarising. That’s the first thing that came to mind when I saw the Mantis in the flesh. Orxa claims they’ve gone the biomimicry route and taken great inspiration from the anatomy and design of an actual praying mantis. Biomimicry is quite common in certain areas, especially in aerospace. Though I’m still determining how well it will translate to a motorcycle. One does not think of speed when they think of a praying Mantis.

Nevertheless, I do like the design of the headlamp; I’m not a massive fan of the choice of colours and graphics. It makes the already busy design look even busier and less coherent to your eyes. Sharp angular lines followed by cuts and creases aim to create a more muscular design. The Mantis’ overall ground clearance and length give it a good stance but leave more to be desired. In a clean shade of yellow or green, the Mantis would have looked stellar, making the design a lot less incoherent.

When you turn the key, you realise there is still work to be done because the TFT requires a whole minute to boot up. One can hastily start up the bike. However, you’d be riding without a speedo for a whole minute until it boots up. Once it’s up, you have a clear enough TFT with sufficient information on offer and the promise of Bluetooth connectivity and navigation. Unfortunately, given my limited time with the Mantis, I could not test either of these features. Look around, and you’ll realise the paint quality, fit, and overall finish leave a lot to be desired and don’t live up to the high asking price by Orxa.

TopGear Magazine July 2024