The commuter segment in India is one that is filled with staid machines with no uniqueness. Hero Motocorp realised this, and leveraging the security of their “Numero Uno” status in this segment, they decided to experiment with this segment. At the 2014 Auto Expo held early last year, they unveiled the Passion Pro TR, a rough-road version of the standard Passion. While it certainly looks intriguing, how does it perform in the real world? We find out in our detailed road test!
Design & Build Quality
While the bike is based on the standard Passion Pro, the design is made interesting with the addition of the high-mounted front fender, headlight grille, knuckle guards, and grip-pads on the tank. All these make the bike look extremely functional and distinctive, though we aren’t sure if it will appeal to buyers over 40 years of age.
Build quality is very good for a bike in this price bracket. The paint looks lustrous, the switchgear plastics feel good on the touch, and the black-finished wheels and engine seemed very neat.
The Passion Pro TR offers standard commuter ergonomics, which seats the rider bolt upright. This position is fairly comfortable for riders of all sizes, and doesn’t apply any undue strain on the body. The seat felt slightly firm though, which could take some time to get used to. Pillion comfort is excellent, with well-positioned foot pegs and a handy grab rail.
The tried-and-tested 97.2cc single-cylinder engine that’s used in a variety of Hero’s commuter motorcycles, also finds its place in the Passion Pro TR. It is a very refined unit, and develops a decent 8.24 bhp and 8.05 Nm. Acceleration feels energetic up to 60 kmph, and there is sufficient bottom-end torque to pull from low speeds in high gears. The only issue we faced was the four-speed gearbox. While it offers well-spaced ratios, it felt quite imprecise and clunky while shifting gears.
Handling & Ride Quality
The Passion Pro TR is an agile motorcycle, easy to trickle though small gaps in traffic. It also corners with confidence and stability, which was a pleasant surprise.
The ride quality is one of the bikes strongest points. It is not very soft, but it still manages to soak up rough patches effortlessly, which gives support to its trans-roader credentials. Only the very sharp bumps filter through to the rider.
The Passion Pro TR comes equipped as standard with a front disc brake and a rear drum brake. This set up felt very effective, bringing the bike to a halt quickly without any drama when called upon, even over uneven surfaces.
The list of standard features includes an analogue info display, electric start, a pass light switch, high-mounted front fender, headlight grille, handlebar reinforced with a cross-brace, and knuckle guards.
Like the Splendor Pro Classic, the Hero Passion Pro TR is an intriguing take on the commuter motorcycle, infusing some enthusiasm in an otherwise dull segment. It isn’t fast by any measure, and it can do mild off-roading at best, but it stands out from the crowd by offering a distinct design and a feature-loaded package. It is also a capable and comfortable everyday motorcycle too. If you are looking for an efficient and fuss-free bike for daily use, something that looks unique and out of the ordinary, we suggest you take a closer look at the Hero Passion Pro TR.
|Engine||Air Cooled, 4-Stroke Single Cylinder OHC|
|Power||7.7 bhp @ 7500 rpm|
|Torque||8.04 Nm @ 4500 rpm|
|Brakes||Front:Disc, Dia 240 mm
Rear:Drum, Internal Expanding Shoe Type (130 mm)
|Suspension||Front:Telescopic Hydraulic Shock Absorbers
Rear:Swing Arm with 5 Step Adjustable Type Hydraulic Shock Absorbers
|Fuel Tank Capacity||12.8|