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Old 11th January 2012, 11:31   #1
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Default Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012

The automobile sector is slowly taking its steps towards being environment friendly.

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-1.jpg

Hero Electric is one such player which has been in the market for a while and has sold decent numbers of its plug in two-wheelers.

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-2.jpg


Hero Electric at the Auto-Expo 2012 showcased a concept called the Photon.
Even though they called it a concept, it looked production ready to us.
  • Photon will be available in 2 battery options, VRLA and Li-ion.
  • It also had a front disc brake.

Photon VRLA Battery

- Top speed of 45 kmph.
- Range of 50 kms per charge.
- 111Kg Kerb Weight.

Photon Li-Ion Battery

- Top speed on 45 kmph.
- Range of 75 kms per charge.
- 85kg Kerb Weight.

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-dscf1982.jpg

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-dscf1984.jpg

Last edited by Rehaan : 11th January 2012 at 12:41.
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Old 11th January 2012, 11:39   #2
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Default Re: Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012

Hero Electric - Optima +
  • Looked good when compared to other electric two-wheelers. (Please Notice the Wheels-rims)
  • Range of 70 kms per charge.
  • Powered by a VRLA 48V/24AH battery.
  • 82kg Kerb Weight.
  • Hero Electric claims that this is their largest selling model.
  • Extendable travel range - possibility of fitting extra batteries.
  • No gears, No oil change.
  • Common for all models is the battery charging time - 6 to 8 hours.

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-dscf1989.jpg

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-dscf1990.jpg

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-dscf1991.jpg
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Old 11th January 2012, 11:44   #3
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Default Re: Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012

Other Electric Scooters on display.

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-dscf1992.jpg

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-dscf1994.jpg

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-dscf1995.jpg


This model is called a special ability vehicle. 3-wheels give it the ability to stand upright.

Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012-dscf1997.jpg

Last edited by Rehaan : 11th January 2012 at 12:45.
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Old 7th March 2012, 13:13   #4
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Default Re: Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012

Heh,

Any other information that you were able to gather. Had checked their showroom in Bangalore. Prices vary from 30 K to 45 K depending on the variant.

The service guys told me that the battery requires a replacement after 12 to 13 months. The cost for the same is 10 K.

If this info is correct, it does not make sense in comparison to say a Scooty pep or Suzuki Swish.

The Hero Sprint which is the only model that can go upto 45 km (single rider) is costing 45 K and Scooty Pep cost 47 K. The fuel economy of Scooty pep is 45 km/l (single rider) @ 74 rs/litre of petrol.

So, I end up spending 13 K per annum on fuel (15 km dalily running) and some basic maintenance. Whereas, on the electric 2wheeler, it consumes 1 unit per charge and the service guys say it practically goes 50 km. It means I spend peanuts on running it but(1 unit cost @5 Rs), add another 10 K for battery change and the difference is just 2.5 k per annum.

Hmm, so for an opex saving of 2.5 k per annum, I am re-stricting myself to a single rider (practically) and ofcourse limiting my speed to only 45 km/hr. I guess even if I spend 10 K more for the Suzuki Swish, it makes more sense.

Am I missing something here people. Please do pour your thoughts.

Cheers
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Old 7th March 2012, 16:09   #5
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Default Re: Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012

Quote:
Originally Posted by pareshraheja View Post
Heh,

The service guys told me that the battery requires a replacement after 12 to 13 months. The cost for the same is 10 K.

Am I missing something here people. Please do pour your thoughts.

Cheers
Thanks for that information. Am having pretty much the same thoughts. Would gladly start using an electric bike for the daily commute, but for the fact that the cost savings don't seem worth the limitations; single rider, low effective range, etc.

Guess we'll have to wait till the batteries become more efficient and cheaper, which should certainly happen over time.
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Old 7th April 2012, 22:08   #6
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Default Re: Hero Electric @ Auto-Expo 2012

I own one of these. I purchased the Optima-Plus model for my daily commute in Jan. At that time, it costed 32K. There was a price revision after this (might have gone up by 1000Rs or so) (This is in Kerala). After using it for past 3 months, I am satisfied. "BUT" there is a catch.. Your satisfaction level will depend on what you expect from this bike. There are pros & cons. One must consider these before making a purchase.

Let me put the negatives first.

1. Top speed is 25Km/hr. They have only one model which go past 25Km limit (E-Sprint).

2. Proposed loading capacity is only 85Kgs. So, practically only one adult and a child can ride on it. I have seen two adults on it, but not sure how long that vehicle will survive with such overloading.

3. This vehicle is not at all fit for a terrain having ups and downs. (count the number of bridges/fly-overs etc too). Its pulling capacity is not that great when it has to deal with gravity.

4. Top speed decreases as the battery charging levels come down. After a full charge, the first 15km or so you will get 25km/hr speed. After that you will get max 20-22km/hr.


Now consider these positives..
1. Its a good vehicle for your local ride requirements (3-4kms at a stretch), as long as you are living in an area with no serious uphill/downhill area.

2. The reason they have put a speed lock at 25km, is to take it out of the Motor Vehicle Act. Yes, though it looks like a proper bike (size-wise), there is no need to register this at RTO, no insurance, no helmet etc etc..

3. There is hardly any maintenance required. The motor is located in the rear-wheel itself. So, there are no chains/belts/moving parts etc etc.. Very simple design.

4. This has a four battery pack. Each one costs around 2.5k now (there are various brands at various price points). When I was purchasing this vehicle, I asked few people who were owning electric bikes (Hero & other brands), and I think these batteries will last for 4yrs+ if maintained properly. As per the battery maintenance tips, we are supposed to keep them fully charged as much as possible. In other words charge them every night. Also, we should not charge them immediately after a ride. Give 30 mints-1 hour before we plug-in the charger. If these simple steps are followed, I believe batteries will run for multiple years.

5. This thing has a huge storage space. All most all of your grocery / vegetable purchase will fit in. This was one of the major consideration for me, as it was becoming difficult with the car with every day shrinking parking space availability.

6. Once I did not charge until I hit about 55-60 kms (btw, this thing does not has a Odo). After that when I charged it, I did measure the actual power usage. It was ~1unit only. It took more than 8 hours to charge fully. Basically 1unit of electricity will take you around 60kms away. Pretty good..

I hear A-one brand (another electric scooter maker) is coming out with a auto-gear version. With that, the pulling problem will get solved.

Another important point is on our riding habits. Since the top speed is only 25kms, you have to keep watching who is behind you, and you have to respect every other vehicle (big or small) as every one will keep overtaking you in a flash..

Thanks.
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