The Hero MotoCorp pavilion at the 2014 Auto Expo held in Delhi was quite a sight to behold. The people at Hero certainly worked hard on getting some really good bikes to the Auto Expo, and this certainly marked the comeback of Hero MotoCorp after its Break-up with long time business partner, Honda. Hero MotoCorp revealed some really interesting bikes at the auto expo like the 620cc Hastur and the 100cc Cafe racer styled Splendor. Some more conventional launches include the trio of scooters, named the Dash, Dare and Zir, and then there was the Karizma Duo.
The Karizma is no stranger to us Indians. It was the first true-blue, four-stroke, single cylinder performance motorcycle the country had ever seen. It was launched way back, in 2003, and since then, has received many updates, both big and small. Along the way, it spawned the Karizma ZMR, which was supposed to be a fully faired version of the same bike, but the ZMR received radical styling and became a hit, since then, there hasn’t been any looking back for Hero.
After the split with Honda, Hero has been looking for different ways to make a comeback, and they decided to take the help of their subsidiary, Erik Buell Racing to redesign the Karizma duo, and the new design was revealed at a motor show in Macau last October. There were many who criticised the new design and felt that the older design was better than the newer one.
The Karizma R has been given a thorough aesthetic make-over, and it is evident that Erik Buell Racing has been given the upper hand in the design work. It gets a new half-fairing, and completely re-designed headlamps and a new, bold design with the tail-lamps. It is still powered by the same 223cc single cylinder engine, but this time the Kehlin CV carburettor has been replaced by a fuel injection system, and the motorcycle now has a peak power output of 19.2 BHP.
The Karizma ZMR too gets a major aesthetic overhaul, and the Erik Buell Racing hand in the design work has made the ZMR a low capacity look-alike of the Erik Buell Racing EBR 1190. The ZMR too is powered by the same engine, but a re-tuned ECU helps the ZMR to gain just a little bit extra in terms of BHP, as the peak power output now stands at 20 BHP.
These two motorcycles are out to defend themselves against the upcoming pulsars of varying capacities. As far as features are considered, the Karizma duo just about makes it, but if styling is taken into consideration, the Karizma duo will definitely fall short.