It’s not fast. It’s not dynamic. And it doesn’t sell too well either. But, it is a café racer. Not the ton-up type – you need to get some serious slipstreaming to hit 100kmph – but it has a clubman style handlebar, chromed round mirrors, spoked wheels, a single seat, and even a bum-stop. It’s also got round dials (chrome-lined at that) and – for whatever it is worth – classic pin striping on the tank and side panels.
- 97.2 cc
- 70 kmpl
- 8.1 bhp
- 109 kg ;
Last known Avg. Ex-showroom price
So, why do we have it in our long-term garage? Because it is seriously cool. Now any motorcycle that can laugh at itself, has to be cool. And the Hero Splendor Pro Classic is just that. It is based on India’s highest selling motorcycle, the Splendor. And the Splendor sells because it is fuel-efficient, affordable to buy and run, and is as dependable as your dad. But, it’s anything but fast. So, to do a go-faster version of something with hardcore commuter credentials and virtues that actually doesn’t go any faster has to be a laugh.
But, it’s a motorcycle I am quite enjoying. The Hero Splendor Pro Classic (sorry about the long name) is smooth, light and surprisingly comfortable. It also manages to draw quite a few glances and the rare query by fellow motorcyclists. And, did I mention it was fuel-efficient? Well it is. And hugely so. It only has an 11-litre tank, but so far I haven’t had to tank it up, even though the bike has been putting in around 70km everyday for nearly two weeks (that’s 10 days because I don’t work weekends). That’s a mileage of around 70kmpl, right there!
The more important question is – how badly is it ruined by daily commute? We will answer that along with how efficient it really is; can it carry a pillion if push comes to shove; and whether it is worth spending Rs 61,000 on road in Mumbai, but in the reports that follow. For now, all I can say is; I like it.
Photography by Kapil Angane