2021 Hero Maestro Edge 125 Connected: Road Test Review
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Does the 2021 Maestro Edge 125 finally pack enough kit to take on its competition?
The revamped Hero Maestro Edge 125 is the newest contender in the scooter space. It’s sharper, well equipped, and even gets connected features to keep it competitive in the cut-throat 125cc segment. But does it all come together in the real world? And are the updates enough?
We spent some quality time with the scooter to find out.
- A refined and frugal engine with one of the best fuel-efficiency figures in its segment.
- Comes packed with features.
- Looks the part, especially with the revised front apron and funky new colour schemes.
- Brakes have good bite and progression but lack feel.
- The overall build quality is not up to the mark.
- The LED projector headlamp isn’t bright enough to light up dimly lit roads.
First scooter in its segment to feature an LED projector headlamp.
- The revised styling of the front apron and the new funky colour schemes give the scooter a sharper and more youthful look. We reckon this should appeal to the younger audience.
- While the new projector headlight looks cool, it isn’t very practical. It has good throw and spread, but isn’t bright enough to light up dimly lit roads.
- Then comes the overall build quality, which in our opinion isn’t comparable to the competition. The quality of plastics used and the fit and finish are not up to the mark. Panel gaps are inconsistent, and the switchgear feels cheap.
- There are no changes to the rider’s triangle or the kerb weight remains the same as well.
- That said, the foam density in the seat is a little too soft for our liking. You tend to sink in, which makes long-distance rides a bit uncomfortable as your back bears the brunt.
Technology & Features
- The 2021 Maestro Edge 125's feature list is rather impressive. The new LED projector headlight aside, the scooter now comes with a fully digital instrument console with the ‘Hero Connect’ app as standard. You get topple alert, theft alert, find-my-parking and track-my-vehicle functions, and trip analysis.
- However, the crème de la crème ‘Connected’ variant, benefits from Bluetooth connectivity. It includes vehicle start alert (which instantly notifies the user if someone turns on the ignition), turn-by-turn navigation, missed-calls alert, incoming call alert, real-time mileage indicator.
- While it works well, the entire console has been picked right off the XPulse 200. Of course, there are minor tweaks for the readouts, the fonts and the size of the console are the same.
- This makes the information harder to read at a glance.
- An all-new console designed specifically for the Maestro and Destini would have worked wonders.
Engine & Performance
- For a frame of reference, we’ve pegged the updated Maestro Edge against the best scooters in the 125cc segment. And the numbers speak for themselves.
- The Maestro is still one of the slowest scooters of the lot, overshadowed by the NTorq Race XP and the proven Access 125.
- It’s a whole 1.39 seconds slower than the NTorq and almost 2 seconds slower than the Access from the dash to 60kmph.
- And the gap seems to widen as you gain more speed and go past 80kmph.
- Roll-on acceleration is where the Maestro seems to claw its way back into the game. It’s just as quick as the Access but falls short when compared to the meaty mid-range of the NTorq.
- Nonetheless, there’s enough power for quick overtakes within city limits.
- The engine also feels more smooth and refined as opposed to the Destini 125 which felt a bit gruff.
- But, the Maestro Edge 125's ace of spades has to be its fuel efficiency. The i3S system feels more intuitive and kicks in within three-four seconds of the engine idling.
- The engine cut off saves precious fuel thus impacting the Maestro’s fuel efficiency. Our test runs witnessed an improvement of 7.96kmpl within the city and 2.4kmpl, over its predecessor, out on the highway. This makes it one of the best in the 125cc-scooter space.
Ride & Handling
- At 112kg kerb, the Maestro 125 is one of the lightest scooters in its segment. This makes weaving through traffic or simply moving it around in the parking lot an absolute breeze.
- What also works in the scooter’s favour is its 12-inch front and 10-inch rear tyre setup, which makes it feel lively.
- However, the suspension is set up on the firmer side which means it doesn't filter sharp bumps. It doesn't feel composed either.
- Although, having two riders on board seems to solve the issue for the most part. The suspension soaks in undulations fairly well and seems more collected.
- Our test scooter came with a 190mm disc and a 130mm drum setup, with CBS as standard. While the setup has good bite and progression, it lacks feel. So you need to be a little careful when you go hard on the brakes, or else the rear would lock up easily.
- The improvements on the Maestro Edge 125 in terms of performance, features, and styling have definitely upped its game. However, it still doesn't quite match up to its competition. The quality, for instance, could have been better, and Hero could have put some thought into the layout and size of the console.
- Same goes for the ergos, where the seat could have had better cushioning and the suspension better tuned for Indian road conditions.
- And then there’s the price. The 2021 Maestro Edge is almost as expensive as its rivals. But it's hard to justify its price tag considering the performance gap and build quality issues. So while the 2021 Maestro is a clear improvement over its predecessor, it’s still playing catch up as opposed to its rivals.