The Achiever has been around for almost 10 years and, though it has seen a few visual updates, it’s the oft-neglected member in the Hero family. But, of late, Hero Motocorp has been on a roll. Their Centre of Innovation and Technology (CIT) in Jaipur has been giving the company’s established brands a good shot in the arm, with the most recent example being of the Splendor iSmart 110, an all-new bike which was designed and engineered completely in-house. Now, it is the Achiever that has gone under the knife of sorts. It’s not an all-new motorcycle, but the boffins at CIT have taken the 150cc premium commuter formula and made it better.
Reserved but premium
This new update cleans up the design of the Achiever to a large extent. It’s still recognisable as an Achiever, but a new, taller fuel tank with a flush filler cap adds a bit of chunkiness to the design. The centre panels are now more filled out as well and they flow smoothly into the new, meatier tail piece – none of those silly faux air scoops here, thankfully. The bikini fairing is sharper as well and there are new lights all around – headlight, clear-lens indicators and even a new, larger tail light. To enhance safety, the new headlights have an 'always-on' feature, which means they’ll stay on as long as the bike is running and can only be switched off by turning off the ignition. New on this update are body-coloured rear view mirrors as well. Now we do agree that there are some bits of the design that might look like they have been inspired by other motorcycles – the tank bears a striking resemblance to that of the Suzuki GS150R and the tail-light is reminiscent of the first-generation Honda Unicorn. However, with minimal graphics and good build quality all around, the Achiever does have a premium air about it. But the skinny 80/100-18 size Ceat Secura Zoom tyres remind you that this bike has been squarely aimed at the commuter market. While the overall design might not be called exciting in any way, there's not much to find fault with, and that makes it perfectly palatable to its target audience.
Heart of gold
Though Hero has worked on improving this 150cc motor, it is fundamentally unchanged from its predecessor. It’s important to remember just how old this engine is though; a relic of the old Hero Honda days, with its roots firmly embedded in the original Honda Unicorn. However, a thorough reworking of this engine’s mapping has resulted in a much smoother powertrain and an almost vibe-free experience, even near its redline of over 9,000rpm. And though its peak horsepower and peak torque figures of 13.6hp and 12.80Nm respectively haven’t been altered, the motor’s tractability has been improved. It can pull way more easily from low speeds in high gears without stuttering, which should give its usability a big boost in heavy traffic conditions. In fact, it’s comfortable at slightly higher speeds as well, and Hero claims a 0-60kph time of just 5 seconds. Not too shabby for a bike that, in Hero’s own words, isn’t targeted towards boy-racers!
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Issue: 209 | Autocar India: January 2017
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