Hero MotoCorp, the country’s largest two-wheeler manufacturer, had taken everybody by surprise at the 2014 Auto Expo with a long list of lip smacking, supremely interesting new product unveilings! Three years down the line and almost a year after the 2016 Auto Expo, we sit back and analyse how much of that aggression has really percolated to real production motorcycles!
Ever since their collaboration with Honda ended, Hero wanted to be seen as a ‘real’ entity and not just a shadow of the Jap giant! They surprised everybody with their power-showcase of some very interesting models which were developed in collaboration with controversial EBR, AVL and others. In fact they went on to claim that these products would exceed the expectations of their customers in India and across the globe. But for that, they have to be available to be ridden on the roads…. and that is what has just not happened!
Let’s have a look at the most interesting products the company showcased…
- Hastur: Not Launched
The 620 cc middleweight streetfighter can be safely called as the biggest surprise of the last (to last) Expo. The water cooled parallel twin mill was claimed to produce 80 PS of maximum power at 9,600 rpm. The engine was a stressed member of the chassis for optimum mass centralisation. The athletic looking bike had the looks to kill but was still in a concept stage then.
The quarter litre 31 PS bike is one of the most ambitious offering by the Gurgaon based manufacturer, one, which had everybody waiting. It boasted of claimed best in-class performance yet being light on the fuel efficiency front. Two riding modes, six speed transmission, lightweight mass centralised chassis, 17 inch wheels, Brembo brakes and optional ABS were some of the features Hero highlighted. This one could have been a major crowd puller in the segment considering the relative lack of competition this space sees currently. Hero has however missed the bus and is yet to launch the bike!
The premium 150 cc offering from Hero was set to be an ideal opponent to the Yamaha FZ family, the Gixxers and Honda Hornet 160R. The bike did see a delayed launch and amidst some confusion, it ultimately produced 15.6 bhp of power and 13.5 Nm of torque. However, despite the impressive power output, it has not been able to take Hero’s 150 cc figures a lot higher! The manufacturer continues to have a long road to climb to gain a stronghold in this segment.