Hero Xpulse 200 FI Long Term Reports

By Vineet | on August 23, 2020
Long Term Report: August 2020

As I bid adieu to our long term Xpulse, I'm going to miss the little adventures I had with it. I've taken it for touring, used it for my daily commute, and even some off-roading, considering the conditions of our roads during monsoon. In the monsoons, many a time the roads get flooded and water blocks the way. Despite this, I had no hesitation riding straight through the water in the Xpulse. The 220mm ground clearance and bigger wheels helped me cruise through with ease. My commute also has a lot of speed breakers and broken tarmac patches, and the Xpulse has tackled them very smoothly. Well, no speed breaker is too high, and no pothole is too deep for the Xpulse. The perks of an adventure motorcycle!

I've been riding the Xpulse for three months, and I've had a good experience with it. Although it's a 200cc engine, but it lacks power compared to other 200cc bikes. But it's not disappointing at all. At city speeds, it delivers power instantaneously when needed and it's the most affordable dual-purpose motorcycle in the segment. I would recommend starting off with this if you want an entry level off-roader.  

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: November 2019

Current Odo reading: 3,704kms

Mileage this month: 279kms

Fuel efficiency: 37km/l

What’s good: Riding comfort, easy to handle

What’s not: Low top end, narrow seat

Long Term Report: July 2020

Last month, I clocked a few more kilometres on our long term Xpulse 200. Although it's a 200cc bike, sometimes it doesn't feel like it – it struggles to go beyond the 110km/h mark. But still, I'm quite happy with its performance.

Hero Xpulse 200 FI Long Term

Despite being an off-road-focused bike, it performs well for daily commutes. Coming to its touring performance, I took it once for a long tour of roughly around 200kms. And I can safely say that this bike is not meant for touring. After a few kilometres, the seat felt so uncomfortable that I had to stop every few kilometres and relax a little bit. 

But one thing that this bike has in abundance is the road presence – I have seen a lot of heads turn towards the Xpulse. People often bombard me with questions regarding its performance, fuel efficiency, and so on. I have seen a lot of people checking out the bike every time I stop at a red light. And this happens on a daily basis. So, yes, it stands out in the crowd. 

At the start of June, I topped up the engine oil since it was a little low. I hope I get some more time to spend with it next month. What I really would love to do is to take it for a small off-roading adventure – it’s an off-road-oriented bike after all.  

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: November 2019

Current Odo reading: 3,128kms

Mileage this month: 868kms

Fuel efficiency: 36km/l

What’s good: Lightweight, easy to handle

What’s not: Engine vibrations, seat cushioning

Long Term Report: June 2020

The COVID-19 crisis has seriously impacted our lives. Staying indoors and social distancing have become the new normal. Although the lockdown has been extended nationwide, the latest guidelines by the government came with a few relaxations, including public movement. But public transport is still restricted, and understandably so. 

Hero Xpulse 200 FI Long Term

Following the new guidelines, I resumed going to office, but since there's no public transport at the moment, I needed a personal vehicle, and, thankfully, our long-term Xpulse was available. 

Now, I'm a fan of sports bikes, and adventure motorcycles never appealed to me as much. But my views towards ADVs changed drastically after riding the Xpulse. I've really come to like this machine. Besides, there are benefits of owning a dual-purpose motorcycle. Because of the lockdown, our roads are mostly empty, allowing me a perfect opportunity to test the performance of the Xpulse. It's so comfortable to ride –  the wide handlebar keeps your posture straight, which means no back pain during long rides. It has now become my everyday riding companion. Although I do feel that a softer seat cushion could have been a better fit. Overall, I must say that I really like this mini off-roader and the adventures it allows me to have.  

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: November 2019

Current Odo reading: 2,260kms

Mileage this month: 153kms

Fuel efficiency: 38km/l

What’s good: Riding comfort, engine performance

What’s not: Seat cushioning

Long Term Report: May 2020

Last month, I decided to take the keys to our long-term Xpulse 200 from Divyank because I wanted to hit some local trails and improve my off-road riding skills. It only took a ride home for me to realise why the Xpulse is such a fun machine! Despite having off-road focussed hardware, the Xpulse works brilliantly for daily commutes. It’s compact, the handling is nippy, the suspension is taut, the gear ratios are closely matched, and the brakes are precise and effective. Slicing it through traffic is, surprisingly, fun. 

Hero Xpulse 200 FI Long Term

Having said that, the engine has high NVH levels, especially when it revs beyond 5,000rpm. And the other thing is that it doesn’t really perform like a 200cc engine – it feels like a 150cc one! The acceleration isn’t up to the mark (for a 200cc bike), and it struggles to go past 110km/h on the speedo. And at three-digit speeds, the powertrain sounds quite coarse. You can’t tour on this motorcycle. 

So, what is it for? Well, it’s a great learning tool for someone who wants to learn the ropes of off-road riding. It’s light, agile, and the weight distribution is spot-on. On top of that, it's abuse resistant. You can drop it as many times as you want, and it won’t hurt your pocket at all. The Xpulse is not a perfect bike. But, after being locked in my house for more than a month now, I very well know that I’d happily hack a limb or two for an opportunity to take it on a long ride!   

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: November 2019

Current Odo reading: 2,107kms

Mileage this month: 244kms

Fuel efficiency: 35km/l

What’s good: Off-road dynamics, lightweight

What’s not: Engine vibrations, weak top-end

Long Term Report: March 2020

So far, my time with the Xpulse 200 has been quite rewarding. Now, since I’ve have become familiar with the basics, like the bike’s engine response, braking, & acceleration, my attention has shifted to figuring out finer details – which includes a few positives and a negative, thus far.

Hero Xpulse 200

Let me start with the good stuff. It goes without saying that the Xpulse 200 offers unparalleled road presence by the virtue of its off-road build. It stands out for all the right reasons. I’ve had numerous passers-by and fellow riders turn their heads at the sight of me crossing them on the Xpulse. I’ve also been told the smooth ‘thrum’ of the exhaust adds further to its stand-out quotient. As impressive as the Xpulse's road presence is, I was very disappointed with the headlamp's light distribution. Yes, its a full-LED headlamp, but the illumination is quite poor and one should be careful while riding in the dark.  

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: November 2019

Current Odo reading: 1,863kms

Mileage this month: 573kms

Fuel efficiency: 35.8km/l

What’s good: Road presence

What’s not: Poor illumination

Long Term Report: January 2020

With more time to ride, I clocked more kilometres this month on the Xpulse 200. And as promised, here are some more insights into the bike’s riding comfort and engine performance. As you may be aware, the infamous Delhi winter season kicked in last month and riders like me experienced a new-found appreciation for Fuel-Injection (FI) technology.

Hero Xpulse 200

You see, my personal bike is carburettor-based, and therefore, it takes forever to start the engine on a cold morning. However, the Xpulse 200, thanks to its injector-based propulsion, offers unparalleled convenience on this front. Now, having ridden the bike in virtually all traffic scenarios over the past month, I’ve really grown to like the Xpulse 200’s addictive acceleration and mid-range performance. However, when pushed too hard, it runs out of steam. So, the trick to enjoying the bike’s performance to the max is to stay in the mid-rpm range. As for the ride, the bike remains very well planted and is easy to flick around in traffic. The seat, however, could do with a lot more cushioning, as it’s quite flat and narrow. This makes long-distance riding a little tiring.  

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: November 2019

Current Odo reading: 1,290kms

Mileage this month: 253kms

Fuel efficiency: 37.5km/l

Faults: None

What’s good: Acceleration & mid-range power

What’s not: Seat cushioning

Long Term Report: December 2019

The Hero Xpulse 200 FI is the latest entrant into our two-wheeler long-term fleet, and I must say that the bike offers a surprisingly good riding experience on regular roads despite being a thorough adventure motorcycle. While I’ve only had the bike for a few days, a short ride in and around the city has made it clear that the Xpulse 200 can easily become an everyday riding companion.

Hero Xpulse 200

The 199.6cc motor has a smooth thrum, and since I have the top-spec Fuel-Injected (FI) version, cold starts are not an issue at all. Thanks to the large wheels & long-travel suspension, the Xpulse 200 glides over uneven surfaces. However, go over a deep pothole or a sharp speed bump, and the rather firm suspension setup ensures a body-rattling jolt. The gear & clutch operation is smooth as well, but some might feel the gear lever is set a tad bit too high, resulting in awkward ankle movements. One area where the Xpulse 200 can improve is braking. While the brakes have plenty of bite, the feel of both the front & rear brake levers is really numb that detracts from the overall riding experience. More details on the riding comfort & engine performance coming soon!  

  • LOGBOOK

When it came: November 2019

Current Odo reading: 1,037kms

Mileage this month: 95kms

Fuel efficiency: 37km/l

Faults: None

What’s good: Ride quality

What’s not: Braking feel

Also read - Hero XPulse 200 Review

Hero Xpulse 200, Track Test

Tags: Hero Xpulse 200 FI Hero

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