If the title of this article is a bit of a tongue twister, then wrap your head around these figures. Hero has sold more than 30 million Splendors in India since it was launched in 1994. 23 years and the bike still leads the way in monthly sales figures, with the Honda Activa the only vehicle to give it stiff competition. On an average, more than a million Splendors have been sold per year. The Splendor sells more in one month, than many bikes would sell in their lifetime!
Hero sells more Splendors in one month than European manufacturers sell from their entire fleet!
Hero has sold more Splendors than the population of Malaysia. Hero has sold more Splendors than the population of 21 states and Union Territories of India!
The Hero Splendor might have very modest specifications when compared to most motorcycles. With a 97.2cc engine, you wouldn’t expect much, rightly so. But the power and torque figures were never meant to grab your attention. What did get people’s attention was the frugal nature of the engine. The 4-stroke motorcycle claimed a whopping 70 kilometres per litre at a time when people were commuting on the gas guzzling 2-strokes. It might have not been anywhere close to the RX-100 or Shogun in terms of fun, but the real joy was felt in the wads of notes left in the wallet at the end of the month!
With an 11 litre fuel tank, you would get an astronomical tank range of around 700 kilometres! That is if you ever decided to fill the tank to the brim. Most owners would have been happy with a thimble full of fuel for a month!
We petrolheads often get impressed with the 0-100 figures of machines, the oodles of power and truckloads of torque. Yet there are motorcycles like the Splendor which go about their business without a fuss for 23 years. Without any proper maintenance, TLC and often without any sort of rider skills, the bikes would just go on and on and on. Even Duracell will give up earlier!
Almost any biker you will meet has a Splendor in the family or has had a relative with a Splendor. And every one of the owners will swear by their machines. Countless instances can be seen where someone sells off their old Splendor only to buy a newer one!
The bike has barely seen any changes over the two decades. A few new variants have been introduced by Hero after splitting with Honda to keep the prospective customer interested. Though the reliability of the machine over the years has kept a solid hold on the market’s interest. Currently Hero sells the Splendor Pro, Splendor ISmart 110, Super Splendor and Splendor+. You can buy any Hero bike you want, as long as it is a Splendor!
The Splendor will forever remain one of the most important motorcycles of India. It provided affordable transportation to millions of Indians. Collectively the bike would have clocked a billion kilometres across the length and breadth of this country, bringing bazillion good memories for its owners and more so for all those youngsters who robbed their dad’s keys for a quick spin round the block! Fittingly it is the 100th motorcycle of our search for #100Motorcycles in India…