Today’s motor scooter scenario in Sri Lanka is pretty crowded with a vast array of offerings from big Indian manufacturers, so much so you’d be hard put to find a gap that a credit card could creep into edgeways, even if you look hard. In fact, the harder you look the more scooter brands you will uncover.
The Pleasure began life twelve years ago being the first ever foray in the scooter segment by the long-standing giant India-Nippon collaboration, at the time generally recognized as the largest volume seller of motorized two-wheelers in India. Soon, Motor received one of the earliest Pleasure scooters to step upon our shores and during that still-fresh-in-my-mind ride test the little scooter performed brilliantly.
I had so much fun and joy riding the Pleasure that 2006 day. Some observations from then: ‘So delightfully easy to get to know’. The official introduction to the market was still to take place and our Pleasure was just out of the box. Despite the test bike’s newness, I was able to say, ‘…the charming two-wheeler proved a willing performer; no noticeable rough edges, no noticeable tightness of engine, sweetly responsive …”. The Pleasure of that day impressed me as being so delightfully light in ride feel and totally stable throughout our day together. The Hero Pleasure is a light bike and its 5.15kW (6.9 BHP) power and 8.1 Nm of torque could be expected to comfortably propel bike and two riders, while remaining easy on your wallet. Importantly, the torque band is pretty wide allowing for ample acceleration over the broad speed range that a commuter would experience on a daily basis. The CVT (‘automatic’) system of transmitting power and torque to the driven wheel is still the same as earlier and is now an essential part of the scooter design narrative.
The Hero Pleasure’s personal charm and understated simple appearance is clearly what you see is what you get, and largely the same technology as back in 2006. Despite the addition of the Integrated Brake System and tweaks here and there the Pleasure is much as in early days. Quality of assembly and overall finish of the bike has always been of a high level and remains what one would expect from an accomplished manufacturer as Hero. A few words here about the Integrated Brake System. The front and rear brake linkages (both brakes are drum) are integrated, so that when the rear is actuated the front brake, too, comes on to a slight extent. Benefit reduction of stopping distance, due to both brakes being applied in combination.
The new Pleasure retains the luggage carrying features as the original, and in addition it now has a mobile phone battery charger socket. Mounted inside the inner apron luggage compartment which is lockable, the battery charger socket is safely tucked away from wet weather conditions. The recent renewal of my ties with Hero’s Pleasure certainly was a pleasure in itself. While the personality of the bike is, as always was, friendly, I somehow missed that cheery, free, easy feel that I so much enjoyed during our 2006 ride. The Pleasure of that day was an outstanding personality and equally an outgoing one.
Today’s Pleasure, though, felt like something was holding her back from expressing her own joy at being out on the open road, where a bike worthy of its name ought, anyway, to be. You know how it is. When a brake binds lightly it takes the edge, the spirit, off of a bike; but yet I received no such feedback - of passive or active nature - in either of the brake levers front and rear to indicate that this was indeed the case. Some mechanical adjustment needed somewhere, perhaps. It is amazing what a couple minutes of adjustment on an off-key two wheeler can do to transform it into a spirited, eager, cheery, agile being.
All Indian manufactured motorized two wheelers sold April 1st 2017 onwards must be fitted with the AHO / DRL (Automatic Headlight On / Daytime Running Lamp) feature. Thus, this version of the Hero Pleasure, introduced to the Sri Lankan market late March this year carries this feature, and therefore the headlight on/off switch which normally is mounted on the right side handlebar in close proximity to the starter motor push button will not be seen any more. The AHO move initiated late 2015 in India was publicly announced soon after, and the feature is mandated by the Government of India and the Indian Supreme Court appointed committee on road safety.
Some classes of, usually larger, bikes have been compulsorily fitted out with this feature since 2003 for use in Japanese and EU markets, while in Australia, USA, and a number of other markets big bikes have had the feature for decades now. The purpose of the AHO / DRL is to increase visibility of the two-wheeler during fog and rain and other low light situations, and is a definite safety plus in all riding conditions.
Studying the tech literature of the bike we see a few small differences between today’s Pleasure and the original. Torque is a tad higher today (8.1Nm compared with 7.85), at the same (5000) revs, height is 5mm more at 1,115mm, and kerb weight is now 101 kg while it used to be 104kg. Happily the friendly riding characteristics are unchanged, the same engine capacity of 102cc and the retained long stroke (Bore 50.0mm x Stroke 52.0mm) cylinder swept dimensions are the ingredients that provide the joy factor.
Even today, over a decade since my first ever experience of it, I still find the Pleasure a charming little bike. Indian bike makers are seriously upping the game in the scooter division, and with current and future programmed entrants we can expect a tough scooter war situation.
The Pleasure, smart as she is today, has, as we know, been around a while and the design specialists at Hero MotoCorp are no doubt keeping a close eye on the developments in the arena and a sensitive finger on the pulse of the industry.
I would love to see the Pleasure brand continue. Maybe it’s time for a technology step-up now.
THE HERO PLEASURE
The new Hero Pleasure was put out into the Sri Lankan market on the 23rd of March 2017. The Pleasure brand has been a well recognized and highly popular one in our country since its arrival back in 2006.
Abans Auto (Pvt) Limited are the Sole Sri Lankan Distributors for the range of two-wheelers out of Hero MotoCorp, India, and the company offers the local riders a wide line-up of scooters and motorcycles.
Asanga Lakmal, Brand Manager, Hero motorcycles and scooters, tells us :-
“The Pleasure is a well-known and trusted brand of scooter in Sri Lanka and the new Pleasure has received very good reception from riders. The Automatic Headlight On feature and alloy wheels are new to the Pleasure, and the 2017 bike features the proven Integrated Brake System. The modern different meter console, new colours, and new style graphic designs give the Pleasure a nice appearance. The Hero warranty is 5 years / 50,000 kms, whichever earlier. The Hero Pleasure is targeted at young buyers who want a proven scooter model and good quality scooter at an affordable price. The new Pleasure comes in five new colours and graphics, and this will be increased to seven.”
Air-cooled 4-stroke single-cylinder OHC
9.9:1 Compression Ratio
Electric / Kick start
CHASSIS AND RUNNING GEAR
Tyres Front 90/100 x 10 tubeless
Rear 90/100 x 10 tubeless
Brakes Front and Rear Drum
(Integrated Braking System)
Suspension Front - Bottom link,
coil spring and damper
Rear - Coil spring and damper
DIMENSIONS & CAPACITIES
Length 1750 mm
Width 705 mm
Height 1190 mm
Wheelbase 1115 mm
Weight 101 kg
Fuel tank 5 lit
THE GO FACTOR
Max Power 5.15 kW (6.9 BHP) @ 7000 rpm
Max Torque 8.1 Nm @ 5000 rpm
Warranty 5 yrs / 50,000 kms
HOW MUCH ? Rs 226,500/-