Since its introduction into the local market, Hero MotoCorp has become a favourite among riders who prefer well-priced, no-nonsense, well-equpidded bikes to travel from point A to B. Take the classic Hero Hunk for example. A 150cc motorcycle with a sub 2 lakh price that gets you to places without burning too much fuel. It was reliable, well built, and had lines that were generally liked by everyone. Enter the Hunk 150R. An “aggressive” cousin of the everyman Hunk with sharper lines, edgy tank graphics, and a pair of LED daytime running lights that the Indian company describes as “Wolf eye” pilot lamps.
We can only assume Hero added the “R” at the end to put it in the same lineup with their top-shelf Thriller 160R, as an alternative to those who want the looks of a sports commuter, but could do without the performance. Speaking of looks, the prominent design element on the Hunk R is its fuel tank, featuring wider plastic “shoulders” with moulded cutouts for the rider’s knee. From the riding position, it reminds you of another, much more rowdy Indian motorcycle, giving you the impression that this bike is a performer. In connection with its “R” badging, the 150R does have some design and tech elements that can be traced to the Thriller. The seats and part of the rear fairing seem to have been inspired by it and it has the side stand warning indicator in combination tachometer. Being a Hero product, the LCD screen is missing a gear indicator as well as dedicated turn signals, and according to a Hero staff, the side stand lacks the engine cutoff safety.
In terms of things it does have, the bike comes standard with an automatic headlamp, an engine shield and a rear wheel mudguard. Considering the buyer segment of the Hunk, are much more appreciated items to have over some fancy screen icons. Powering the bike is a 149.2 cc carbureted motor sending 14 Hp and 12.6Nm of torque to the rear wheels through a five-speed gearbox. Interestingly, the new Hunk makes slightly less power than the standard Hunk, which is odd considering it is supposed to be the sportier cousin. Keeping the bike off the ground are a pair of 100/80″ and 130/70 tubeless tires at the front and rear respectively. Both of the 17-inch rims are equipped with disk brakes, and while an ABS variant is available, our review unit didn’t have it.
We took the bike to the empty roads of Diabari, Uttara to see how it rides, and the results frankly, surprised us. From a standstill, the 150R accelerates reasonably well up to 65Km/h, but after that, it practically loses all power. During the initial test run, I initially thought I stalled the engine, as after 65 the torque becomes non-existent, and no matter how much you twist the throttle, the acceleration drops to a crawl. We ended up scrapping our plans to measure the 0-100, as no one in the team was willing to walk that far with a stopwatch with a scorching sun over their heads.
The brake setup of the 150R is quite good, to the point one can lock up the wheels at 30-45Km/h. During our tests, we felt a bit of vibration after 4,000rpm. According to Hero staff, the issue is specific to the bike’s newness and will go away after prolonged use. The front telescopic hydraulic shock absorber and the rear 7 steps adjustable mono-shock does a decent job smoothing out all the bumps on the road, while the wide tires dose a decent job keeping the platform stable. If you have ever been on the market for a bike, the chances are one of the most suggested bikes was the Hero Hunk. It is one of the cheapest 150cc motorcycles that is reliable and easy to ride. The Hunk 150R is something of a racing-inspired trim line of the more pedestrian Hunk with a few extra amenities added to the mix. For any rider looking for a sporterized motorcycle but prefers to avoid the workout involved in riding a performance machine, this will be a good choice. Though we recommend that you get the one with ABS, in only for the piece of mind.