Xpulse roadster could be the performance offering in this segment…
Hero has understood that to be relevant in India, they will have to turn their focus on bigger and sportier bikes than what they currently make and sell. The first outcome of this changed strategy, called as Xtreme 200R, is already on our streets, but it has not really caught the fancy of youngsters and motorcycle enthusiasts.
The reason is simple – Xtreme 200R is not aspirational; it appears as if Hero made it with a very commuterish mindset. They have compensated for the lack of any USP by offering it at a lower entry price. However, the next confirmed offering – XPulse Adventure is what everybody is looking forward to. Hero plans to introduce it towards the end of this year or early next year (details).
A recent media story revealed that there are, in fact, as many as four big motorcycles Hero is working on (more details). And Gaadiwaadi seems to have leaked the third one already! The lone patent pic which is being circulated features a street-spec naked motorcycle based on XPulse. The tank, seat, headlamp etc seem to be direct lifts from the upcoming Adv.
But this unknown motorcycle features conventional side-mounted exhaust in place of the raised canister of the Xpulse. The front mudguard is also not lifted and it features alloy wheels instead of spoke wheels. Also, the disc brake appears to be larger.
Why are we expecting this to be a 200?
There are two reasons why we believe it could again be a 200..
- Design (and platform) sharing with Xpulse.
- Of whatever is visible the crankcase cover appears to be the same or very similar to Xpulse.
Xpulse Roadster Launch & the Lineup
You may question – why another naked when we already have the Xtreme in this segment? Hero, traditionally, has never been a very aggressive player. They have been taking risk-free steps which we have discussed here. So, the idea probably appears to be to focus on the existing 200 platform and create as many products on it as possible.
The next step – the 300cc XF3R will require a lot of confidence from Hero, which they currently seem to be lacking.
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So, the lineup could look like – Xtreme 200R as the entry 200 without many bells and whistles, XPulse to take care of the adventure crowd and this Xpulse roadster in the premium segment with a lot of features. Makes sense…?