Super bikes have all the glamor come with the technology but its the 100cc to 150cc bikes that provide the funding for all of them. The budget commuter oriented 100cc – 150cc bikes are the bread and butter models, which bring in the numbers and profits. The 150cc bikes have had a great rise in sales during the recent years as youngsters prefer powerful bikes as their first motorcycle. Also the 150cc to 180cc segment bikes have a good combination of performance and fuel efficiency which makes them even more appealing. Here we bring you the 5 upcoming bikes for India in this segment that you ought to watch for in 2014:
1) Hero Splendor iSmart Micro Hybrid Bike
Hero ever since the split with Honda hasn’t had a very good with year with sales numbers dropping as its models face stiff competition from Honda, with the new Dream Yuga and Dream Neo. Hero’s models are fast becoming old and boring, so to inject a whiff of freshness to the budget commuter segment, they revealed the Hero Splendor iSmart Micro Hybrid. The Splendor was a long-standing model from Hero and contributes largely for the company’s good sales numbers. And the iSmart model is a significant upgrade to this basic model.
The Splendor iSmart is a striking variant of the popular Splendor and comes with ‘Idle Stop-Start System’ (i3S tech) which shuts the engine when idling and turns it on when you want to move ahead. This helps in giving higher mileage in city which is a very significant factor in this segment.
The Hero Splendor iSmart also gets stylish body graphics, self start, alloy wheels and a snazzy instrument cluster. The bike looks different from the standard Splendor and we expect Hero to market the Splendor iSmart at the higher end of the 100cc segment, taking on the Mahindra Centuro and Bajaj’s Discover 100T. With the i3S technology don’t expect the bike to give you supernatural mileage, though its good of Hero to offer something different from the rest of the competition. At least they are making an effort, unlike the new 2014 Karizma R which was a disappointment.
The 2014 Hero Splendor iSmart will go on sale by 2014 and is priced Rs. 3000 more than the Super Splendor. The power train remains the with the 97.2cc single cylinder engine putting out
There are no changes to the powertrain and the Splendor iSmart retains the 97.2cc, single-cylinder engine which belts out about 7.6 bhp of power at 7500 RPM and 8.04 Nm of torque at 4500 RPM. The Splendor iSmart should appeal to the buyers in semi-urban areas of our country where Hero has a good service network.
2) New 2014 TVS Victor
After splitting ways with Suzuki in 2001 everyone expected TVS to slowly slip into oblivion and die, but against all odds with the launch of new products, the company has registered steady growth. The Victor released in 2004 was a good offering and a best-selling bike but now its gone stale with newer launches from other manufacturers. TVS is planning to resurrect the bike and launch the new Victor.
The new TVS Victor is completely redesigned to sport a modern look to attract the young Indian biker. The original Victor had a 110cc mill that offered decent power and good fuel economy making it very appealing and these features will also be seen in the new TVS Victor.
TVS will aim to target the 100-110 cc space of the Indian motorcycle market with the Victor. This segment holds a massive 65 % of the motorcycle market in terms of numbers. So the new Victor from TVS will face stiff competition from Bajaj Discover 100T, Honda Dream Yuga and Suzuki Hayate and TVS Motors better have a successful and ride worthy product to achieve good sales numbers.
The new Victor will most likely sport a modified version of the Star City’s 109.7 cc four-stroke unit, now giving out about 8.1 BHP at 7500 Rpm and 8.1 Nm of Torque paired to a constant mesh 4-Speed Gearbox like in the Star City.
3) Bajaj Discover ST 150cc
Bajaj plans to launch two new bikes to the Pulsar family. One will be the much expected Pulsar 375 and the other will likely be a 150cc bike replacing the aging Pulsar 150 as a 180 will be too close to the 200NS in price as well as performance. This is a segment which hasn’t got many new products as manufacturers just launch cosmetic updates and variants to keep things interesting and Bajaj with a new 150 can capture some market share. With the success of the Discover 100 series, a budget Discover 150 for the commuters will be a good bike, if Bajaj can pull it off.
4) 2014 Hero Xtreme Motorcycle
Hero MotoCorp has revealed the updated 2014 CBZ Xtreme. The new Xtreme has undergone a complete makeover and now looks even better. The new version gets led eyebrow lights over the headlight like on the TVS Apache and full LED tail lamps. The old Hero Honda CBZ lovers will also love this bike as CBZ traits like the single seat, grab rails and rear section all appear on this bike. The rear view mirrors are dual toned in body colour with black. The front mudguard, alloy wheels and disc brakes also get the same treatment.
The CBZ Xtreme also gets a new instrument cluster, which resembles the one on Honda’s CBR 150. The blue back-lit dials have a nice readout and is very legible and clear giving information on the go. The engine fairing is removed and the bike also gets sturdy metal foot pegs. The new Xtreme is also loaded with tech. The bike has an electronic immobilizer which prevents other keys from starting the bike. There is also a side stand warning light with automatic ignition cut-off and a handy mobile charger point too.
The heart of the bike still remains unchanged with the 2014 Hero Xtreme is powered by the 150cc air cooled Honda engine producing about 14.2 BHP at 8500 RPM and 12.8 Nm of torque. The Xtreme gets a 240 mm disc upfront as standard with an optional 220 mm rear disc. It is also a sensible buy as Hero gives a 5-years/70,000 km vehicle warranty and 3-years/30,000 km emission warranty. Theses much-needed updates should work for the 2014 CBZ Xtreme making it appealing to the people and bring in the numbers.
5) Hyosung 150cc Bike
Hyosung after bringing in 250 and 650cc sports bikes is now planning to manufacture 150cc bikes in India for export purposes as well as sale here. Hyosung in its bid to increase sale numbers plans to enter the high volume mass market segment with 125 and 150cc bikes. These bikes will be aimed at Yamaha’s R1 and KTM Duke bikes which are very successful in this segment and the market leaders.
DSK Motowheels, the Indian arm of Hyosung would manufacture the bikes armed with smaller capacity engines and will be seen in the market by the next two to three years in India.