- Published On: 25 May 2018
- 4 min read
We ride Hero’s newest offering to see if it is their sportiest motorcycle yet.
The Hero Xtreme 200R is not exactly a new motorcycle. There was a previous iteration of it that we were familiar with and now there is the new model which was first showcased at the Auto Expo this year. Which is why, let’s get directly to the bike and what we feel about it.
We were riding the bike around a short loop of the Buddh International Circuit. At the straight, we were fully crouched over the Xtreme’s handlebar. We managed to do 105kph – which isn’t great, but not bad if you consider our heavy frames on the motorcycle and the limited length of the track.
Going over the details, the Xtreme 200R is a big step-up from the 149cc Xtreme Sports. The engine is a heavily modified version of the unit seen in the Achiever 150. It makes 18.4hp and 17.1Nm of torque while being paired to a five-speed box. For fuelling the bike makes do with a carburettor. These figures sound good until you start comparing it to its closest rivals – the Pulsar NS200 and the Apache RTR 200 4V. Both those bikes offer a lot more performance.
On paper, the Xtreme is far behind. So how does it do in the real world? Here is or analysis of it on smooth tarmac. The motor comes to life with a short press of the button. The motor sounds refined and the bike shifts into first smoothly. One you let go off the clutch, you realise you are riding a peppy bike.
As soon as you begin riding the bike, one thing is for clear – the bike is developed for torque and healthy mid-range. While it lacks the racer characteristics of the RTR and Pulsar, it displays its commuter capabilities. We found this new bike to continue offering the philosophy of the original CBZ Xtreme – to be a sporty street motorcycle. The handlebar on the bike isn’t too aggressive nor is foot position. The single seat on the bike also offers a position that is high with a lot of overall room.
However, if you are looking for an exciting toy the Xtreme isn’t one. It features regular digi-analogue instrumentation with a blue backlight. This cluster does miss out on a gear indicator. An interesting light on the unit is the ABS one. Yes, this motorcycle will feature ABS as standard. It has to since it is now a norm for two-wheelers which are above 150cc. The Xtreme and the NS200 only feature single-channel ABS, while the RTR is the only one to offer dual-channel ABS.
Luckily, the braking on the bike is pretty impressive. The 37mm fork, wide front tyre and 276mm disc offer good performance. The lever doesn’t feel sharp or sensitive – well balanced for everyday riding. A nice touch is the steel braided hose for the front brake.
Moving to the Xtreme’s best area – the handling and ride. We were left impressed and the bike handled just like we expected it to. The bike behaved very well in the corners even though it doesn’t look or feel like a bike that should. The bike rides on MRF tyres front and rear and they performed decently.
Coming back to the looks, the Xtreme never turned heads and this one won’t as well. The styling is very conventional and it has no special areas in terms of design. The tank extensions and other small details have also helped it establish it as the bigger model. The paint quality and fit and finish of the panels on the bike are of decent quality.
Should I buy one?
If you are a person who has been riding a 150cc for a long time and looking for an upgrade without going too big – the Xtreme 200 is the bike for you. If you are somebody who rides mostly for commuting with a few engaging rides on the weekends, the 200R is a good option. The bike is comfortable and the engine is refined. Additionally, the bike is expected to be priced around Rs 90,000 which does make it cheaper than competition.