The Hero Xtreme 200R is the new kid on the block in the 200cc motorcycle segment. We do a spec comparison of the Xtreme 200R with its rivals to find out how they stack against each other.
The 200cc bike segment isn’t that crowded when it comes to contenders. Until now, you had the KTM Duke 200, Bajaj Pulsar NS 200 and the TVS Apache 200. Hero has entered this space with the Xtreme 200R but the question is will the new kid on the block give its rivals a run for their money? Will it survive in the intensely competitive segment?
Design and Looks – While all the motorcycles mentioned above are naked streetfighters, every player has a distinctive design. Starting with the Xtreme 200R, this isn’t an all-new design. The typical Xtreme silhouette is retained. That said, the beefy rear tyre (130-section rubber), the massive tank shrouds and the multi-spoke alloy wheels make the Hero look sporty enough. The TVS Apache 200 is by far the best-looking bike in the segment while the Pulsar NS 200 isn’t far behind.
Dimensions – In terms of dimensions, all the three motorcycles are closely matched. However, the Xtreme 200R is slightly the longest and the least in width and height. Since all the three bikes pitted here would be used more often in the city and occasionally on the highways, wheelbase plays a crucial role. Shorter the wheelbase better the flickability. Well, not only does the Xtreme have an advantage here but also in the seat height department. It has got the shortest wheelbase of 1338 mm and seat height of 790 mm when compared to its rivals. Shorter seat height makes the motorcycle more accessible to shorter riders as well.
Features – All the three vehicles get LED tail-light, monoshock rear suspension, engine-kill switch and halogen headlight setup. The Apache 200 takes the honours when it comes to features. It offers LED DRLs, fully-digital instrument cluster, double-barrel exhaust, Pirelli tyres (optional), foam seats and more importantly a dual-channel ABS. The Xtreme 200R and Pulsar NS offer a single-channel ABS only.
Powertrain – This is where the Pulsar 200 NS’ Duke 200 derived 199.5cc motor shines. In terms of pure performance, the Pulsar has the highest power and torque figures and claims a mileage of 30 km/l (in the city). The Pulsar 200’s engine also gets a 6-speed gearbox while the Apache and Xtreme make do with a 5-speed unit. The Apache 200 slots in between the Pulsar and the Xtreme offering slightly lower power and torque but the same fuel efficiency as the Pulsar. The Apache 200 is also available in an FI (fuel-injection) variant. While the Xtreme 200R’s power and torque output are not mind-blowing, the claimed mileage definitely is. Hero claims a figure of 40 km/l.
Verdict – Hero’s entry into the 200cc space is quite late in terms of timing. However as the saying goes, better late than never, the Xtreme 200R has many firsts for a Hero product and is a definite step-up by Hero’s standards. It is a motorcycle for current Hero Splendor, Glamour and Xtreme 150 owners who are looking for an upgrade. That said, the Apache 200 is our favourite and the bike you should be putting your money on if you’re in the market for a 200cc bike. It comes across as a jack of all trades by offering more features, better performance and fuel-efficiency. The Pulsar NS 200 with single-channel ABS, in contrast, offers better performance than the other two in the comparo but at Rs. 1.09 lakhs it loses out on VFM quotient (value for money) against the Apache which at Rs. 1.06 lakhs (both prices, ex-showroom, Delhi) offers similar levels of performance and mileage as the Pulsar but more importantly gets you a safer dual-channel ABS.