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Jawa 42 Owner Experience: From Mileage To Performance

Booked a Jawa 42 or a Jawa Classic? Wondering how’s its mileage and performance? Read this detailed Jawa 42 owner review, and find your answers!

I understand, for a travel blogger, whose focus area always remained documenting people and cultures and destinations, writing a few simultaneous stories featuring a motorbike can sound a bit fishy. So, before you make any assumptions, first things first… I am not being paid to promote Jawa. And neither am I expecting some unsolicited favors by the company by doing so.

I have noticed there is fairly limited information about Jawa motorcycles on the internet at the moment, and since the company has reappeared in the Indian market after being discontinued a few decades ago, the craze is even bigger. By writing a few articles on Jawa, I am just bridging the information gap.

Since I have started making videos about my Jawa 42 experiences and learning (yes, I am vlogging too now, since last week) on My Youtube Channel, I have realized people are, in fact, craving for some first-hand owner information about Jawa motorbikes. In just about 10 days, I have crossed 3000 subscribers, with almost all my videos – as soon as they go live – getting a few hundred comments. Understanding the need for information, I decided to write a detailed review as well, for the readers…

(Update: As per February 2020, I have returned from a 2 month Delhi-Bangalore-Kerala-Delhi road trip on my Jawa 42 and for the first time I felt that it is not meant for touring – at least for long distances. Until this trip, I was riding in the mountains only where you go zig-zag and take regular turns… not feeling much fatigue, because of regular movement of arms and shoulder. Whereas riding it on long straight highways is a different thing, and made me realize that Jawa’s comfort – that, however, always failed to impress me – went from ‘failing to impress’ to ‘feeling disappointing’. The comfort made the entire journey so tough that I’ve even decided to either sell my Jawa or keep it as a substitute for city-rides only (waiting for something to come in BS6 at the moment). Having said that, and out of my recent experience, I want to conclude that Jawa is not meant for long touring (again, it’s a solely personal experience). Watch this review video here…

Anyway, I have moreover taken my Jawa 42 on several tours across Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, and Jammu&Kashmir and have done Leh Ladakh, Sach Pass, Shankula Pass, and even the full circuit of Zanskar, that connects Keylong and Kargil. With a lot of experience of owning a Jawa under my kitty, people often keep asking me questions on my Instagram and other channels how I am finding my Jawa. How much mileage Jawa 42 offer? What accessories does the bike come with? How’s the bike performance? How do I rate it? Should they buy one? Do I recommend it… they ask all kinds of questions.

So here’s an attempt of bridging the information gap (in the form of a more explanatory article) and bringing to you some first-hand Jawa 42 owner experiences.

Here’s a quick video about removing the DB Killer from the exhaust and increasing the exhaust note to maximum…

Jawa 42: Mileage, Performance, And Everything Else In Between

Before we get into details, let’s get into a bit of specification.

Jawa and Jawa 42 come with exactly identical technical specifications. Both are powered with a 4 Stroke, Single-Cylinder, Liquid Cooled, Spark Ignition, DOCH; and offer an impressive 28 N.m @5000 rpm of torque, guaranteeing a much quicker acceleration, compared to other competitors in the retro segment.

Here’s an easy compilation of some other useful Technical Specifications & Dimensions:

  1. Engine Oil Capacity (service fill): 1.25 Litre
  2. Fuel System: Electronic Fuel Injection
  3. 6 Speed Gearbox
  4. Fuel Tank Capacity 13.2 Litre (3.0 Litre reserve)
  5. Battery: 12V, (9Ah)
  6. Weight: 179 Kg (with 90% Fuel, Tools, etc.)
  7. Overall Length: 2071 mm
  8. Overall Width: 833 mm
  9. Overall Height: 1090 (Jawa) | 1065 (Jawa 42)
  10. Minimum Ground Clearance: 165 mm
  11. Seat Height: 765 mm

With that said, the company also claims that the above dimensions are subjective to change for further improvements.

The Pride Behind Owning A Jawa

There is no denying the fact that both the Jawa models are designed to impress. Where Jawa is more retro and classic in its appearance, Jawa 42 is trendy and new-age (I prefer Jawa 42 to be honest!). And since it’s not the first time for Jawa to sell its motorbikes in India, the company already has a powerful fan-base and a legacy associated with it. Having said that, there is a certain degree of pride associated with owning a Jawa.

It happens to me that every time I ride my Jawa 42 in my city, people notice. And their reactions, if nothing else, are assuring this motorbike is at least not letting me down because of its appearance. From its price to specifications to the waiting time, people inquire about all kinds of questions. Many even shared stories about how they, or someone in their family, owned a Jawa back in the days and how eagerly they’re waiting for market reaction to finally book a Jawa for themselves.

Jawa 42 Mileage

Though the company is claiming for Jawa and Jawa 42 to have a mileage of 37.5 kmpl when I tested the mileage of Jawa 42, I got nearly 34 kmpl. The second mileage test, however, gave an improved result of 36 kmpl. Having said that, the mileage is improving, as it happens before the first service.

Update (July 2019): After my first service, my Jawa 42 mileage was about 42 kmpl. I even did a mileage test in the mountains and got an average of over 40kmpl which is pretty impressive. Here’s a quick video of my mileage test in mountains:

Jawa classic will have an exact same mileage since Jawa and Jawa 42 are identical in all specifications.

Update (November 2019): After my second service and with my kilometer reading at 7,800 my mileage seemed to have decreased. I am getting a mileage of nearly 34 kmpl. I removed the Db Killer from my motorbike, which may be another reason for a sudden fall in the mileage. I am planning to put back the Db killer now. But yea, at this moment, my Jawa 42 mileage is about 34 kmpl.

Update (February 2020): During my North to South India 2-month motorcycle trip, I calculated the mileage a few times and every time I got the result of over 40kmpl which is quite impressive. So yea, speaking of the mileage, I am certainly impressed with what (at least my) Jawa 42 offers.

Jawa 42 Heating Issues

For some reason, people have been noticing the heating issue during a few minutes of demo ride. But Jawa 42 comes with a liquid cool engine, with a powerful radiator and coolant doing their work at the backend.

So rest assured, the heating mechanism has been well placed by the company and there should be no reason to be worried about it. Speaking of the heating mechanism, as soon as the engine temperature hits the mark of 98 degrees Fahrenheit, the radiator starts functioning its effort to cool it down to 92 degrees. There is moreover an overheating indication given in the odometer that signals RED ALERT as soon as the temperature hits a certain level.

Update (July 2019): After the first service, and riding it for almost 3000km in the previous 3 months, I am pretty satisfied with the heating issue. The radiator works when it has to, the engine does not feel as if it’s about to blast. The heating of the engine, after the first service, has certainly improved.

How Good Is The Handling

Thanks to a great riding posture, light-weighted body, and the overall design, Jawa 42 and Jawa offer great handling/maneuvering – especially if we compare them with their most common competitor Royal Enfield Classic 350.

A low seating (of 765mm) makes the riding posture more confident for me, as unlike with higher seating motorbikes (even if I compare it with my previous Bajaj Pulsar 200) it’s not just my toes that touch the ground now but my entire feet do. This moreover makes taking U-turns exceptionally easy. Speaking of my height, I am 5’7”. For people over 6 feet, Jawa 42 may feel a little tiny, but that is a minority in India.

How Is Jawa 42’s Ground Clearance?

To be honest, Jawa 42 does feel a little disappointing when it comes to its ground clearance, especially if we position it as an off-roader. For a street-tourer, however, Jawa 42’s ground clearance should be okay.

It happened to me a few times that I scratched its exhausts on bumps (exceptionally bigger ones though) and regretted not slowing down a bit more.

However, if you compare Jawa with Royal Enfield Classic 350, you will be happy to know that Jawa and Jawa 42 offer better ground clearance than Royal Enfield Classic 350 (as per their user manuals).

About Jawa 42’s Service Interval

I am really happy that Jawa offers a good service interval of every 6000 km, allowing people like me to stay on the road and not worrying about servicing every few thousand kilometers.

Speaking of the numbers, the first service will be due at 1000 km, followed by a service interval of every 6000 km thereafter.

Also Read: Details About The Delivery Time & Company Fitted Accessories

About Company Fitted Accessories

This is where Jawa disappoints a little as they’ve really kept everything as an add-on accessory – a trick to take every little buck out of its customers. Even the essentials like crash guards and backrest are paid add-on accessories.

Jawa: An Urban Scrambler

Before anything, I would like to claim that my knowledge of motorcycles is still very limited. The technical jargon makes little to no sense to me, and I understand a machine with its feel and emotions. Having said that, though Jawa 42 can be well classified as a retro motorbike, I found it as a perfect urban scrambler – if only, of course, you install dual-purpose tires and install a higher exhaust (to improve the ground clearance).

Jawa 42’s quick acceleration, impressive power, and a light-weight body make it a perfect street motorbike with great off-roading abilities. Unlike its most obvious competitor (Royal Enfield Classic 350) Jawa offers an impressive in-traffic-handling and maneuvering. And this remained a fairly significant reason why I chose Jawa over a Royal Enfield.

Do I Recommend It: The Conclusion

To cut things short: I am super happy with the performance of my Jawa 42 and I will certainly recommend it (if you’re considering buying a Jawa at all). Until now, I have done nearly 500 km in Delhi and there seems no problem with my motorbike. Given its aesthetics and design, Jawa 42 offers good handling, making it easy to filter through traffic.

It offers all the new-age technology: a BS6 engine, Fuel Injection, liquid-cooled, 6-speed gearbox and torque to challenge other competitors in the class. As said above, Jawa 42 attracts those who are looking for a retro motorbike with the perks of a scrambler. It is light-weight, easy to maneuver, quick, powerful, with looks to die for.

So knowing how my bike performs, coupled with all the things I like or dislike about Jawa, would I buy it again? Hell yes. A hundred times!

Check the latest video of my Jawa 42 Ladakh tour published on my Youtube channel:

Do you own a Jawa or a Jawa 42? How has been your experience? Let’s share in the comments below!

Filed under: Miscellaneous


After my couple of years of corporate career, I left that lifestyle behind, and with it, everything that didn't fit in a backpack. I've learned that this world is too big (and too interesting!) to spend your life working at one place, and that's what inspires me to remain footloose and fancy-free for the rest of my life!


  1. Jawa_Lover says

    Got my jawa on new year, was super excited! did only 450 kms city,
    Yesterday parked in the morning & when was returning from work it just doesn’t start checked petrol battery everything is okay but it just doesn’t start, starter is cranking the engine but its not firing…
    Will be towing tomorrow will see what the service center says, super annoyed!!!
    I will update more

  2. Anonymous says

    Got my jawa on new year, was super excited! did only 450 kms city,
    Yesterday parked in the morning & when was returning from work it just doesn’t start checked petrol battery everything is okay but it just doesn’t start, starter is cranking the engine but its not firing…
    Will be towing tomorrow will see what the service center says, super annoyed!!!
    I will update more

  3. Niashinlulu says

    Hey footloose Dev, been following you since the time I booked my Jawa 42 and now I have received it took around 8months.
    Do you have any idea if there are ways to increase the ground clearance of the bike? It’s becoming too much of an issue especially when there is a pillion.
    My Jawa service guy said there are these clips you can install on the suspension which can increase the clearance by about 10 to 12 mm.. but either ways.. bikes great! But kills me when I scratch the bottom of the bike even sometimes on shallow bumps on moderate speeds.

    Or we should just create a public thread and see what all solutions we can come up with different people.

    • Ashish Sharma says

      No brother.. its bs4 but having bs6 components like abs, fuel injection. After April jawa will come with bs6 norms

  4. Utkarsh Tyagi says

    I was willing to buy a retro bike for past one year.It was u who helped me to reach at right destination(jawa 42 combet red).
    It sounds great u have found exciting opportunities in this world #Remain Footloose always nd plz share to me the trick

  5. Umesh says

    Hi Bro, Thanks for sharing your experiences.

    I have booked the bike and waiting to get delivery.

    Done a test ride but not completely satisfied, would like to know will it suits for the daily commute?
    The turning radius seems to be high and stiffness of handlebar (in TD bike) seems to be not good.

    what is your opinion

  6. Prashanth says

    Hey Dev,

    Hope you are continuing to have a good time with the 42. I also have booked the red 42. Delivery has not commenced yet. But hearing small issues like rusting and water entering into to Odometer console, whats your take on that? I know the seating is a bit on the uncomfortable side, but willing to let it go, but rusting and water entering into the meter is bit worrying for me.

    Kindly advise

  7. Sushil says

    Thank you for such informative post. I also bought a Jawa 42 three days back and I love it except one issue(i cant say it’s really issue),that during morning i observed bike start issue. Its take time to spark the engine and start immediately. In multiple attempts of self start, engine runs. Did you also observed the same?

  8. S D Nanda says

    Hi Footloose Dev,
    Can you please upload the pdf copy of the user manual, if you do have one..
    If you remember, I had earlier asked you in your video comment section about the compatibility for taller people.

    • Sorry bro, cannot share the screenshot in comments as sharing images in comments isn’t technically possible. Please visit your nearest dealership and you can find one there I am sure. Else, write to me on my instagram (instagram.com/footloosedev) and I shall share a screenshot there 🙂

  9. Ather Adil says

    I got my Halley’s Teal Jawa 42 couple of weeks back. I loved the pickup and glide. I did not like the very low ground clearance. With pillion and a speed of 10-20 kmph on turns, side stand touches the ground. With 5-10 kmph and pillion, stand touches the ground on speed bumps.

    • Yea bro, the center stand will scrape the ground (especially if you’re riding with a pillion). Jawa does disappoint here. For a solo ride, it is still okay!

    • First service can cost anywhere between 1200-1800, depends from dealership to dealership and what were the consumables!

  10. Harikrishan Sharma says

    Hello friend
    I am first owner in Agra reason Jawa 42mera jo Jawa hai 42 uska head ka paint hi utar Gaya hit ki vajah se

  11. raj says

    Recently I got jawa 42 … in my bike I facing engine heat issue.. I never expect this much of heat even 5 to 10 min riding … radiator and cooling fan is not Support this much of heat … I never seen this much of heat in any motorcycle …. guys please check the engine issue before buying a jawa ..

    • if the fan is working and the heat FEELS a bit too much, it’s not heating issue. If the motorbike stops working because of overheating, or you get heating indication in the digital console, then you can call it HEATING ISSUE!

      Personal thought. What do you think?

  12. Akshay says

    Thank you for you wonderful post. I am also planning to buy a Jawa motorcycle. But I am hating them for a long waiting period.

    • Cheers bro. Thanks for reading. Yea, the waiting period is a little brutal. But what to do :/

  13. Lalit Nagrath says

    Bike looks awesume and retro looks being maintained by Jawa has been a very good step .

    as you have a NS , how do you compare the acceleration.Kindly update here when you can revv the bike after 5-7k kms when engine is braken in.

    i have 2 enfields and one NS, planning to swap NS with jawa but i need stable speeds over 120 to do so 🙂

    nice blog and videos too 🙂

    • Hey man, I did a road trip with a friend (to Ladakh) who owned a NS.
      I was on my JAwa and he was on his NS, and both did pretty similar when it came to acceleration.

  14. Jayesh Kumar says

    Is there any possibility to share the Jawa Manual book (Sorry I have a habit of reading the manual before I buy, I have booked my jawa I have to wait long to see my bike

    • Sushil says

      Thank you for such informative post. I also bought a Jawa 42 three days back and I love it except one issue(i cant say it’s really issue),that during morning i observed bike start issue. Its take time to spark the engine and start immediately. In multiple attempts of self start, engine runs. Did you also observed the same?

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