2020 Hero Passion Pro Test Ride Review
We do a detailed road test of the updated Hero Passion Pro.
Bike tested: Hero Passion Pro; Road Test No. 1245; Test Location: Mumbai
Price OTR Mumbai: Rs. 83,258/-
The Hero Passion Pro combines practicality and good-looks making it a solid package
When an average Indian customer thinks of getting himself a commuter motorcycle, they always give serious thought to the Hero Passion Pro. The Pro was updated a couple of years ago and at the time, it got the in-house-developed 109.1cc motor from the Splendor iSmart 110. For 2020, the story remains the same, but it now gets the updated BS6-compliant 113cc engine from the Splendor. Along with the engine, there are some updates here and there as well. The updated headlight, bump in performance, updated graphics, etc. all make the BS6 Passion Pro a better bike on paper. Does the story remain the same in the real world, though? We try to find out in our test ride review of the new BS6 Hero Passion Pro.
Motor Quest: Hero Passion Pro’s first model came out almost 2 decades ago, and it has been one of the highest selling bikes in the country. It comes above the Splendor and basically targets the customers who want a commuter motorcycle, which looks good as well. It’s safe to say that Hero has tried various strategies on the Passion Pro, as it even received an off-road friendly version named the Passion Pro TR. Over the years, the Passion Pro has matured handsomely and for 2020, it promises to up the game further.
Styling: The Hero Passion Pro is one of the sportiest looking commuter bikes out there and it shows. The overall styling of the motorcycle is funkier than the competition, all thanks to the trendy colours are on offer and the stylish graphics add to the good looks. Further, the updated headlamp is sportier than before too. Moreover, the lines are more pronounced, and the tank extensions have grown, resulting in an appealing presence, especially for its segment.
The Hero Passion Pro is one of the sportiest looking commuter bikes out there
Moving on, the tail-light also gets an updated design, and it now sports an upside-down U-shaped layout which looks sharp. Even the indicators are new and they are the same ones as seen on the Hero Xpulse. To summarise, the Passion Pro looks like Hero made it with one thing in mind – to look better than the competition and it’s worked. The Passion Pro looks good, fresh, and it is definitely one of the smartest commuter bikes out there.
Instrument Cluster and Switchgear: Just like the Hero Glamour, the Passion Pro also features a semi-digital instrument cluster which is fairly modest. The digital display gets a trip meter, odometer, fuel meter, and an i3S mode indicator. There is a side-stand indicator and an engine malfunction light as well, along with the basic lights. The layout is easy to read while riding. However, there has been no change to it which might bug a few people. The switchgear has remained largely unchanged as well and the feel is plasticky but nothing major to complain about here. The bike does miss out on an engine start/stop switch, though, which might have given it a further edge over its competition. All in all, the Passion Pro has a good setup which feels premium and up-to-date in the segment even though it hasn’t received any major updates.
Ergonomics: The Passion Pro is a commuter motorcycle, and it feels that way too. The pegs are a little front set and the handlebar is tall, which results in an eased riding posture. Further, the seat offers good cushioning all around and thanks to its long length; it feels roomy even with a pillion. The seat height is at 799 mm making it quite accessible for all kind of rider. However, the cushioning feels a tad too soft if you ride for long durations, which can get uncomfortable. The mirrors are new as well, while they look sporty, Hero hasn’t compromised on purpose for looks. The mirrors offer a wide field of view and they feel sturdy on the go as well.
Performance: As we mentioned in the opening paragraphs, the Hero Passion Pro shares its motor with the Splendor 110. The motor has increased in size and Hero has somehow managed to improve the performance of the bike while adhering to the strict norms. The 113cc motor with fuel injection now makes 9.02 BHP at 7500 RPM and 9.79 Nm at 5000 RPM. Additionally, Hero has put a bunch of sensors which monitor various aspects of the engine to improve the performance even more. To make life easier for the commuters, the bike also gets Hero’s i3S tech and the new ‘AutoSail’ feature, which lets you ride smoothly even at very slow speeds.
The XSense FI has made the engine smoother, peppier and more fuel-efficient!
The engine feels pretty punchy while maintaining its smooth character. This is all thanks to the many sensors and the unmistakable FI system. Talking of sensors, the i3S tech and the AutoSail feature, both work pretty flawlessly enhancing the riding experience. Further, the engine feels pretty under stressed even at speeds over 60 km/hr which is commendable. The efficiency has also increased and the bike returned 54 km/l which rounds up the range to about 500 kms, if you consider its 10-litre fuel tank. The only thing that reminds us of the old Passion Pro is the 4-speed gearbox which feels dated but still works just about right.
Riding Dynamics: Thanks to the change in its dimensions, the Passion Pro has improved here as well. The suspension travel has increased along with the ground clearance to make the bike more practical, and it has definitely worked. Moreover, the bike gets a new diamond frame, which has made the bike much more planted throughout. Even at high speeds, the Passion Pro feels planted, thanks to the increase in wheelbase. Although the weight has increased by 2 kgs, the Passion cuts through traffic effortlessly.
While the weight has increased, the Passion Pro retains its good riding dynamics
However, it’s not all glittery. The biggest limiting factor of the Passion Pro are its tyres. The tyres are slim and don’t inspire a lot of confidence, especially in tough terrain. This also affects the braking performance of the bike. While the 240 mm front disc and the 130 mm drum at the rear offer sufficient performance to stop the motorcycle, we think the tyres somewhat limit their potential. In conclusion, the Passion Pro has improved from its previous iteration, but it can still be better in this aspect.
Verdict: At Rs. Rs. 83,258/-, the Passion Pro isn’t the cheapest offering in the segment, and a few bikes undercut it by about Rs. 3000/- or so. But for the extra premium, you get a much more aesthetic appeal, best-in-segment performance, great fuel efficiency, and good features which justify the bump. However, if you’re on a strict budget and looks and features aren’t a priority to you, we suggest you look at other Hero offerings which come at a lower price and offer the same no non-sense usability.
What’s Not So Cool
* Engine: 113cc, Air-Cooled, XSense FI
* Power: 9.02 BHP @ 7500 RPM
* Torque: 9.89 Nm @ 5000 RPM
* Transmission: 4-Speed
* Top Speed: 90 km/hr
* Fuel Consumption: 54 km/l
* Fuel Type: Petrol
* Chassis: Diamond Frame
* Suspension: Telescopic Forks (Front), Twin Shock (Rear)
* Tyres: 80/100/18 (Front), 80/100/18 (Rear)
* Brakes: 240 mm Disc (Front), 130 mm Drum (Rear)
* Length x Width x Height: 2036 mm x 739 mm x 1113 mm
* Wheelbase: 1270 mm
* Ground Clearance: 180 mm
* Seat Height: 799 mm
* Fuel Tank Capacity: 10-litres
* Kerb weight: 118 kgs