Hero Pleasure Plus 110: First Ride Review
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With a bigger 110cc motor, the Pleasure Plus is now the most affordable traditional scooter in the segment. But does it have the basics covered or Hero has missed out on the essentials to keep the price in check? We take it for a quick spin to find out.
- Light on its feet, easy to manoeuvre in a parking lot
- Looks cute and retro with the new styling
- Bigger engine make it more effortless to ride
- Feels nervous at higher speeds
- Misses out on premium features like LED headlamps and a digital readout in the instrument cluster
- Brakes don't offer much feel and require a hard squeeze to come to a stop quickly
- USB charging socket below the front apron
- Boot light for convenience at night
- Low seat height friendly for shorter riders
The Hero Pleasure was an immediate hit with female riders when it was launched back in 2006. More than the tagline “why should boys have all the fun?” what worked in its favour was its light and easy-to-ride nature which made it very accessible. But it has been 13 years and with no major update, the Pleasure’s popularity has taken a hit.
Hero now plans to revive things with the Pleasure Plus 110. It gets a bigger engine, new retro styling and a killer pricing. Is this combination enough to again sway you away from the more powerful options in the market?
The is the first time that the Pleasure has gone through a major update. The scooter has been made to look retro with a larger and more conventional headlamp and rounding off the body panels. The front hosts a new apron with the indicators now split by a plastic panel made to replicate a brushed aluminium finish. The same finish has also been used to surround the headlamp and to add contrast to the side panels. An LED headlamp is missing here and would have surely added a bit of modernity to the design. And while the paint makes the panels look like metal, the body is still made of plastic. The seat also gets a dual pattern layout along with a new set of grab rails.
At the back, the Pleasure+ gets a slimmer tail lamp, which looks very neat. Again, what could have made it even better was an LED setup. The seat opener is placed just above the taillamps and gets a black surround to again highlight the paint scheme. Speaking of which, the Pleasure now comes with seven colour options along with three matte finishes as well. We certainly liked this blue quite a lot and while the styling might feel a bit quirky to some, we feel that the scooter looks rather cute in person.
This is one area where the Pleasure shows its lower price point. There has only been a few feature revisions in this update, no new additions. The instrument cluster has been updated but it is still a full analogue unit. The addition of a digital screen for the fuel gauge, odometer and tripmeter, like the one seen on other Hero scooters, would have made it look more premium.
The front box still exists for added utility, but is now an open unit. It still retains the USB charger but it is now placed at the bottom of the unit, which forces you to route the wire through the outside. Longer wires could in this case become a hazard if they get caught up with the rider's feet.
However, the essentials like the integrated braking system along with a boot light under the seat are still there. Because it is 2019, we feel Hero should have added an integrated lock which can operate the boot from the ignition slot, or even the i3S auto start/stop system to the Pleasure Plus, to give it an edge over the competition.
Engine and Performance
The biggest update to the Pleasure Plus has been the bigger and more powerful 110.9cc engine, borrowed from the Duet and the Maestro Edge. It makes 8.15PS of power and 8.7Nm of torque. Compared to before, these figures are 16 per cent (1.15PS) and 7 per cent (0.6Nm) more than the older engine, respectively. However, the Pleasure Plus still tips the scale at 101kg, which now makes it peppier to ride.
The more powerful engine helps the new Pleasure pick up pace with less effort. Both from a standstill and at speeds, the Pleasure now feels more responsive to throttle inputs. Keep the throttle open and the Pleasure Plus will hit an indicated 70kmph in no time. What newer riders will appreciate is that the throttle response is very linear and there is no jerk whatsoever, no matter how hard you twist the throttle.
The Pleasure+ is happy to ride at 50-60kmph all day with the motor running smoothly and stress-free. But go beyond this and the motor starts to feel a bit strained and minor vibrations can be felt on the floorboard. The exhaust note also starts to become gruntier and sounds better as the pace increases.
Ride and Handling
The Pleasure was always a light scooter that was very easy to move around. Factor in the lower seat height and getting it in and out of parking spots is a breeze. Luckily, these aspects of the scooter have been retained. The seat is well padded and the lower handlebars will feel comfortable to shorter riders. What they would also appreciate is the narrow front section which makes the reach to the ground more comfortable. The floorboard is low too, but there isn't much space there. Luckily you get slots cut into the apron which allows you to stretch your feet a little. But taller riders might still have the handlebars rubbing their knees.
And because the chassis of the Pleasure hasn't changed much, it still quick to cut through traffic and make U-turns. It feels very light while riding and this is really a blessing for newer or younger riders. But this makes the Pleasure Plus feels a little nervous at higher speeds. It starts to feel a little twitchy on bumps and especially while taking turns. The Pleasure+ is best ridden at more reasonable city speeds. Even the 130mm brakes at both ends offer limited feel and you will have to squeeze them really hard if you want the scooter to stop quickly.
The Pleasure Plus still retains the bottom-link suspension at the front. This sends more feedback to the handlebars from the road surface than you’d want and hence you feel the bumps more. A telescopic setup would have made a positive impact in both ride and handling. At the back as well, the setup feels underdamped. The sharper bumps and potholes can be felt by the rider and tend to push you up the seat. You will have reduced the pace quite a bit over bumps for a smoother ride.
At Rs 47,300 for the steel wheel variant and Rs 49,300 (ex-showroom Delhi) for the alloy wheel version, the Pleasure+ commands a premium of just Rs 2,200 over the older variants. This is incredible pricing and makes the new Pleasure the cheapest 110cc scooter you can buy (barring the Navi). It’s close to Rs 3000 more affordable than rivals like the Yamaha Ray Z, TVS Scooty Zest 110 and the Honda Activa i.
Given that the Pleasure+ now looks better and the bigger engine makes it a more effortless commuter, it makes a very strong case as an entry level scooter. But the updates, especially in the feature department, are too few and too late, and only brings the Pleasure Plus on par with the competition. A better ride quality and feature set would have surely made it the one to look out for. But as of now, the Pleasure’s selling point remains its aggressive pricing. If you are looking for an easy and nimble scooter for daily commuting, the Pleasure is now back in contention.