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Old 10th September 2013, 21:27   #166
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

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Originally Posted by ringoism View Post
Apart from odd gearing, I'm also kind of wondering why exactly the Impulse has to be quite as much as 30kg heavier than something like the foreign-market Honda CRF150f which is pretty much an adult-sized frame. Despite having the same basic engine (identical bore/stroke and similar power output even), reviewers seem to think it has plenty of performance, at least at lower speeds. 30kg overweight on a 150cc bike is no joke. Wonder what (if anything) could be taken off / exchanged to improve matters there for the Impulse (aluminum wheels for the steel ones might be a good start).

Cash in hand, was planning to go buy the bike tomorrow. Pretty dismayed to hear your negative comments on the quality (rusted bolts, switchgear, etc). Sure doesn't seem to be the Hero Honda of early Splendor days (which I know could do 1lakh km before a rebuild). As I said, hope I'm not going to regret this... but tired of trying (in absence of genuine spares, and with quality control issues of its own) to get my old KB125 (with off-road modified suspension) running as it should - it's been a fun machine and taken me all over the Himalayas - but it's making me deaf and vibe-ing me to death lately. I swore the last time I tore into its innards that it was going to be the last time...

If we want perfection, we can only look upward...

-Eric
I think the added weight compared to a crf150 is because of a lot of factors. Primary problem being the intended design. Where the crf150 is more a focussed dirt bike the impulse has to seat 2 and is generally meant for more diverse duties. A few places where weight can be saved. For eg. steel tank compared to crf's plastic one, minimalist body work which again means fewer and lighter plastics on the crf, Lack of crash guards, saree guards, mirrors, rear foot pegs and other heavy steel bits, heavy alloys (grab rail, hand bar..etc) and steel wheels are some of the things that pop to my mind.
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Old 12th September 2013, 19:59   #167
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

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Originally Posted by nitro.1000bhp View Post
I think the added weight compared to a crf150 is because of a lot of factors. Primary problem being the intended design. Where the crf150 is more a focussed dirt bike the impulse has to seat 2 and is generally meant for more diverse duties. A few places where weight can be saved. For eg. steel tank compared to crf's plastic one, minimalist body work which again means fewer and lighter plastics on the crf, Lack of crash guards, saree guards, mirrors, rear foot pegs and other heavy steel bits, heavy alloys (grab rail, hand bar..etc) and steel wheels are some of the things that pop to my mind.

Good inputs, thanks. Yet the Impulse (at 134kg) is kind of heavy even in comparison to other "diverse-duty" bikes with full street equipment and pillion seating:

1) A buddy from Delhi has a Honda NX250 (Dominator): great 118kg dual-sport from the 1990's with 250cc (26bhp), six gears, water-cooled 4-valve twin-cam engine, big beefy fork tubes, and all the usual street-legal lighting, mirrors, luggage rack, long-enough seat & rear foot pegs, etc - http://www.motorcyclespecs.co.za/mod...a_nx250_93.htm. A lot of additional / beefier components and a lot bigger engine compared to the Hero, and it's still 16kg lighter. BTW, it'll cruise at 120, and still manages 40kpl. at moderate speeds in the hills (friend's been to Burma and back on it, and it's covered over 1lakh km. without doing the bore / crank). (With the above in mind: Pray ye, how might a 225cc air-cooled Karizma be weighing in at quite 162kg????!!!! A 44kg premium for WHAT exactly???!!!).

2) My own street-legal, pillion-ready '93 Suzuki DR350S http://www.motorcyclespecs.co.za/mod...r350s%2093.htm http://www.motorcyclespecs.co.za/mod...r350s%2092.htm(unfortunately stuck abroad) weighs 130kg with a smooth, counter-balanced air-cooled 30bhp 350cc mill with heaps of torque and all the same necessary street-legal equipment.

So I'm still a little perplexed as to why domestic bikes need to be quite so porky. I think even the CRF has steel rims, so maybe it's got something partly to do with superior - albeit more costly - materials (steel frame tubing, etc) that can be thinner / lighter and just as strong?

Anyway, if I do finally buy an Impulse, the leg/sari guards will be the first things to go - and it'll still weigh more than either of these bikes, and have no more than half the power, with only marginally better fuel average than the NX. Not complaining, mind you (well, just a little... though I realize the NX must've been a very expensive bike new compared with the Hero). Just a little wistful.

Obviously many of us wish Hero (or Honda - or Yamaha or whomever else) could've somehow given us either a lighter 150 unit or else a 250cc bike at around the same weight and a reasonable price premium. Would've been good for both performance and fuel average, and more importantly for the company, might've blown RE sales into the weeds for adventure touring.

Domestic two-wheeler makers are really squandering this opportunity - quite a lot of the RE-riding touring set are saying, "We wish there were something better - we just don't have any options." I realize that the traditional Indian commuter market is averse to high seats and mudguards that still get the rider muddy, and especially the lack of the all-important center stand (with our living in the puncture-capital of the world); and truly, in the past, going out on any limb typically was of no benefit to any company (i.e., the Bajaj Endura): BUT consider: could a KTM or Harley have been sold in India fifteen years ago? No way. Now look at the present: tens of thousands are presently engaging in the not-very traditional activity of adventure-touring - and for these riders, the few compromises would seldom be an issue so long as the bike had standard adventure-tourer levels of power / performance. Which I guess the Impulse doesn't in stock form. They might perform OK in the plains, but every single person I've talked to up here in the hills (at near 7,000ft) complains about the lack of power (not less than other 150's, but somewhat less than what's expected / enjoyable for serious Himalayan travels).

Hero misjudged this one: Neither the average commuter nor the average adventure rider will be able to feel good about the compromises. Hero/Honda have plenteous 150cc bikes for the commuter market already - this one should've been more oriented towards the latter customer.

As for me, if there was a way to import the DR, I'd do it. The bike was bought a couple years back for only $800US (Rs50,000) in decent used condition (with nearly new premium-grade rubber).

Both the nearest Hero showrooms sold the red Impulses they had this past week when I was hesitating (only a single black one is left), so I'd have to book one of the "right color" (orange would also work) if I still want it. Maybe I'll finish the first couple services, and then work out a self-engineered big-bore (180+cc) kit for it (hang the five-year warranty). One U.S. company I found has a 225cc pure bolt-on kit (no case machining) that they swear is reliable (and fun!). Expensive, but gives 18+bhp (dyno-tested) with the stock cam / cylinder head, only a bigger carb. That'd work! I could at least retain my original engine serial numbers that way.

New concern, now that I'd have to book one, is re: how much quality control might be suffering in the midst of labor unrest at the Gurgaon plant these past couple weeks.

-Eric

Last edited by ringoism : 12th September 2013 at 20:22.
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Old 19th September 2013, 11:39   #168
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

Re: Power (or lack thereof):

I finally borrowed a black, fully run-in (2,800km) 2013 Impulse from its lady owner a couple days back in a desire to ascertain how much of an issue the oft-alleged lack of power in the stock unit would be for me in real-world, day-to-day hill riding. Even the young lady (who’s never ridden any other bike to compare it to), who regularly commutes 40+km between Kullu and Manali, said it lacked power - the apparently unanimous consensus here in the hills. My plan was to keep it for a couple hours, take it on the worst, roughest, steepest, and also smoothest, twistiest and straightest of roads within several km. radius of Manali, and see whether its sluggishness was tolerable enough for me to nonetheless buy one.

My conclusion? Ridden properly (i.e., letting it rev freely, if necessary using the tachometer), the bike has plenty of power – I dare say, even an enjoyable level of power – for the moderate-sized solo rider with light luggage in the mountains (I’m less than 75kg). Yes, the 1-2 gearing is less than ideal (but on the plus side, 1st should be low enough to get you just about anywhere, a great “crawl ratio” for negotiating truly horrendous sections). Yet overall, the bike is a capable performer.

I suspect that most people don’t know how to fully utilize, for more spirited riding, the sort of power delivery that a small-displacement (150cc) bike produces. The main thing to remember is that the Hero, even being tuned for a slightly lower-rpm torque peak, doesn’t really pull very hard till you’re above at least 4,000rpm (the lady owner didn't even know what the tachometer was!); So if you try and ride it too conservatively, or like you would bigger-engined bikes, you’re going to be sorely disappointed. With this in mind, on the steepest uphill sections, I took 1st gear all the way to the 8,000rpm redline, and found, to my satisfaction, that on shifting to second, the engine dropped to just about 5,000 – a huge drop, but it puts you exactly at the torque peak for this engine. Maybe this is not a coincidence, and maybe – just maybe – the Hero (or Honda Bros) engineers were not sleeping after all.

Granted a more flexible 200+cc mill would make it easier to ride without thinking so much about the engine. But here engineers have put together a bike which can get 50kpl+ under light-duty conditions, which can cruise at 90kph (and it gets there quick if you’re willing to rev it hard in each gear), which can pull up just about any grade on the roughest sorts of roads, which exhibits confidence-inspiring handling on the smooth twisties, and also has a suspension capable of soaking up the worst kinds of road surfaces even at near-reckless speeds; which has good, firm braking, a full-sized frame capable of handling 6-footers in comfort – AND WHICH, if ridden properly, can provide a level of performance that’s actually FUN. Put some good oil (Mobil 1) in it, rev it with wild abandon, and you’ve got a good, reliable, economical, easily serviced all-rounder. That's the humble opinion of someone who's spent considerable time in the saddles of much bigger and more powerful foreign-market bikes like the XL600, DR350, NX200/250, and XR200 (besides my modified 2-stroke KB125).

As for critique: Despite all I’ve written above, I really do still think Hero ought to offer a 200+cc variant, for those who want to tour longer distances at higher speeds, with pillion and luggage, where I know the 150 would be strained. But with the current model in mind: 1) I really don’t think that the rear brake lever should be rusting and rim coatings chipping on a 2-month old bike. 2) The suspension really should be adjustable (while it performed well when pushing it, I found it a bit too hard at lower speeds); and 3) the bike would be a noticeably better performer if it were maybe 15-20kg lighter. But then it wouldn’t be a Rs70,000 bike, and I suppose very few in India would be buying it at the minimum 10-20k price premium required to gain alloy wheels and swingarm, lighter frame steel, and the upgraded suspension bits; 4) I do have SERIOUS concerns about quality control, since besides the rusting plated parts, one of the two I rode at the showroom had what sounded like slight piston-slap (or some other load-related light engine rattle – not valves) coming from the engine, and even this one, with its otherwise very smooth mill, had some kind of different NASTY loud engine rattle (not plastic fairings, etc) that would come on suddenly when accelerating under load between 3,000-5000rpm (detonation due to timing malfunction, perhaps?) and disappear immediately when the throttle was lifted. Which is to say that I wouldn’t want to book one and buy it without thoroughly test riding it. And that I don’t really have a lot of confidence in Hero as a company. Sad.

But if I can find a good one, I want it. Thinking second-hand might actually be better, since: 1) the free services / any warranty services would consume full days for me (nearest showroom an hour away); 2) I’m mechanically inclined and can handle even major repairs on my own; 3) and moreover I’ve heard of used ones going, surprisingly, for as little as Rs35,000.

Regards, Eric

Last edited by ringoism : 19th September 2013 at 12:01.
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Old 19th September 2013, 17:22   #169
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

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Originally Posted by ringoism View Post
Re: Power (or lack thereof):
But here engineers have put together a bike which can get 50kpl+ under light-duty conditions, which can cruise at 90kph (and it gets there quick if you’re willing to rev it hard in each gear),
Thanks for that neatly written impression Eric. A bunch of questions from my side.

-Can you tell me if the bike was comfortable at 90kmph cruising? Does the engine feels strained at that speed?
-Will there be some reserve power on tap for some quick overtake?
-Also lastly How are the bite and overall feedback of the brakes at those speeds?
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Old 24th October 2013, 10:49   #170
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

Hero to re-launch Impulse with bigger engine soon

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Pawan Munjal, Hero’s CEO and Managing Director, told Telegraph India that he was working on bringing the bike back. Mr. Munjal also confirmed that the re-launch would take place soon and that this time, the Impulse would be offered with a bigger engine in addition to the existing engine.
http://indianautosblog.com/2013/10/h...-engine-101582

I was not aware that this model was discontinued
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Old 24th October 2013, 11:06   #171
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

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Hero to re-launch Impulse with bigger engine soon
Wow, this is good news. But am a little skeptical whether Hero has the spunk to do that.

But if they do - I can have that engine transplant finally...
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Old 24th October 2013, 11:43   #172
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

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Wow, this is good news. But am a little skeptical whether Hero has the spunk to do that.

But if they do - I can have that engine transplant finally...
I would also take the impulse with the bigger heart bike, provided the in-house design team will not even think about touching the existing design of the bike!
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Old 22nd November 2013, 21:59   #173
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

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Originally Posted by man_of_steel View Post
Thanks for that neatly written impression Eric. A bunch of questions from my side.

-Can you tell me if the bike was comfortable at 90kmph cruising? Does the engine feels strained at that speed?
-Will there be some reserve power on tap for some quick overtake?
-Also lastly How are the bite and overall feedback of the brakes at those speeds?
1. Can't help you much here from personal experience - we don't generally cruise at 90kph in these hills (not enough long straights) - but in my short bursts to 90, it felt smooth, and as though it was not topped out. A friend from Mumbai insists that his mechanic's Impulse cruises smoothly at 90, vs. his own vibratory RE 500 Classic.

2. Reserve power is again going to be dependent on how you utilize the gears. It's not torquey enough to pull hard from low revs (like a RE 500), but if you're willing to kick it down a couple gears and let it rev, it would seem to pull well enough for overtaking.

3. Re: brakes, I generally do use the front more than the rear (as one should on most surfaces) and that front one seemed plenty strong - mind you, I only pulled it down from 90 to 50 or so once, and not repeatedly.

-Eric

Last edited by ringoism : 22nd November 2013 at 22:05.
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Old 2nd December 2013, 14:50   #174
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

How difficult is it to remove the tyres to fix a puncture without a center stand?

Sorry if this is a silly question, but how does one balance the bike to remove the rear or front wheel? A paddock stand would work, but what happens if one is travelling?

Also, since the front mud guard is that high, does the front wheel throw back a lot of mud on the rider's feet when one is riding on slushy roads?

Last edited by am1m : 2nd December 2013 at 14:51.
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Old 2nd December 2013, 15:05   #175
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

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How difficult is it to remove the tyres to fix a puncture without a center stand?

Sorry if this is a silly question, but how does one balance the bike to remove the rear or front wheel? A paddock stand would work, but what happens if one is travelling?

Also, since the front mud guard is that high, does the front wheel throw back a lot of mud on the rider's feet when one is riding on slushy roads?
For our trip to Ladakh I had a stand made for this very purpose. Its basically a hollowed out rod with holes drilled through it and a flat base on one end and another solid rod with matching holes drilled through and hook shaped end to hold the frame. All you need to do is slide the solid rod out according to the height needed based on the terrain and lock it with another smaller rod that would go through the holes. google "Trail Stand" for more info.
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Old 7th February 2014, 15:01   #176
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

One of the dealers at Hyderabad states that the Impulse is no longer in production and he has a couple of 2012 models for sale at a discount of 10K. Can someone please confirm the situation in other cities as well?? Anyone bought a 2013 model of the impulse?

On a side note, am still waiting hopefully that Hero might unveil the 250/225 Impulse before the auto expo ends!
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Old 16th February 2014, 09:54   #177
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

Hello,

Pretty informative thread this. Can someone please let me know if the engine transplant you've done is actually a bore+head transplant from the Karizma on the Impulse's crankcase or a complete engine + gearbox transplant? Can you please let me know the gear ratios of the Impulse (is it the same as the Unicorn/Achiever? In that case I have the info) and the Karizma R ? I'm doing some torque@wheel / gear calculations for the Impulse and trying to arrive the optimal gearbox / wheel and sprocket combo for a typical on-off road condition with a 223cc engine. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 16th February 2014, 20:52   #178
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Hello again!

I found this: http://www.motorcycl.in/hero-impulse-specifications/
Hope others around here agree with this
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Old 26th February 2014, 23:44   #179
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Smile Re: Hero Impulse

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Originally Posted by paliontile View Post
One of the dealers at Hyderabad states that the Impulse is no longer in production and he has a couple of 2012 models for sale at a discount of 10K. Can someone please confirm the situation in other cities as well?? Anyone bought a 2013 model of the impulse?
Hello All, I am buying the 2012 Manufacturing dated Hero Impulse tomorrow. Payment will be done tomorrow i.e. Rs. 68K (I am serious about the discounted price here) this will include zero debt insurance + RTO Registration. No freebies neither any free Teflon Coating for me though and I am fine with it. By the way, I am going to get the Delivery of the Bike in next week after completing the RTO Registration process via the Dealer. The color of my Impulse is Tar Black.

I did check on the price of Chain Sprocket - 2300 Rs.

I will come to know about the price and availability of Stock Hand Guards only tomorrow afternoon. Will keep you all posted.

A piece of Advice for People who stay in Navi Mumbai. This Manager - Mr. Girish and overall staff of Spectra Auto, Nerul, Navi Mumbai is BIG ZERO in customer service and ethics. Please be very clear in your communication and be attentive to each detail they discuss with you. I felt they really take things casually and don't really give much importance to customers like us.

Cheers!
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Old 27th February 2014, 12:21   #180
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Default Re: Hero Impulse

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Originally Posted by a4amish View Post
Hello All, I am buying the 2012 Manufacturing dated Hero Impulse tomorrow. Payment will be done tomorrow i.e. Rs. 68K (I am serious about the discounted price here) this will include zero debt insurance + RTO Registration. No freebies neither any free Teflon Coating for me though and I am fine with it. By the way, I am going to get the Delivery of the Bike in next week after completing the RTO Registration process via the Dealer. The color of my Impulse is Tar Black.

I did check on the price of Chain Sprocket - 2300 Rs.

I will come to know about the price and availability of Stock Hand Guards only tomorrow afternoon. Will keep you all posted.

Cheers!
Thanks for the update Amish. And congratulations

I can believe the discounts you are getting there. Over here, on phone, the sales reps said the price won't be above 70k for their 2012 models. However i was apprehensive and thinking if a used 2012 model would be in a better condition provided it is well cared for. Found one on OLX and going to check-out tomorrow morning.
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