The 125 cc scooter segment has grown exponentially in recent times. The segment saw sales grow by four times in the last five years to 13.5 lakh units. No wonder then, there were as many as four launches over the past year and a half in this space. Every manufacturer wants a chunk of this growing pie. Hero MotoCorp too entered this segment with the Destini 125 last year and now aims to solidify its presence further with its second 125 cc scooter. The new Hero Maestro Edge 125 is the sportier, or rather, edgier offering from the Indian two-wheeler maker and intends to cater to a younger and more vibrant customer base. Does it hold to the promise? We find out.
Also Read: Hero Pleasure+ 110 First Ride Review
WATCH: Hero Maestro Edge 125 Review
What is it?
The Hero Maestro scooter arrived about little less than a decade ago, but was soon followed up with the Maestro Edge 110 in 2015 powered by Hero's first indigenous engine for commuter offerings. However, with growing options in the 125 cc space, the Maestro Edge 125 aims to address the young market's demand. The new scooter is essentially a larger iteration of the Maestro Edge 110, and gets a bigger motor, improved styling and more features. We first saw the new model at the 2018 Auto Expo and the production spec model remains identical to that, albeit with enhancements.
How is the design?
The design on the Hero Maestro Edge 125 remains familiar with the angular lines across the front apron and side panels. While the scooter lacks the freshness of its sibling - Hero Pleasure Plus 110 - it does get upgrades to distinguish itself as a 125 cc offering. The glossy paint scheme is new and specific to the fuel-injected version while the inner plastics around the footboard and instrument console have been finished in a chocolate brown shade creating a nice contrast. There are also red interior panels available with the black colour option. The seat gets a new textured finish for an upmarket feel, while the gold finished telescopic front fork looks premium too. We also like the blacked out rear view mirrors and exhaust muffler, but the LED taillight cluster remains the same. The most noticeable change though is the new triangle-shaped daytime running light integrated in the front apron. The scooter rides on a 12-inch front and a 10-inch rear cast alloy wheel combination. The wheels look premium and add a nice touch to the overall appearance.
What about features?
The Hero Maestro Edge 125 carries over several features from the Destini including the external fuel filler opening, mobile charging port, boot lamp, and a semi-digital instrument console. The instrument console is the same as the one seen on the Destini 125 and comes with an analogue speedometer, while the trip meters and the odometer are displayed via a digital readout. The unit also accommodates a service reminder indicator, while there's a side stand indicator too that comes in handy. The Maestro Edge 125 offers an under seat storage of 18 litres that can hold a few knick knacks but can't hold a full face helmet. You also get two more hooks below the seat for additional stowage.
How does it ride?
The Hero Maestro Edge 125 is powered by a 125 cc single-cylinder, air-cooled motor. The new mill is a bored out version of the 110 cc mill on the Maestro Edge, and is in fact fuel-injected, a first in the segment to be so. The unit makes 9.1 bhp at 7,000 rpm, while peak torque of 10.2 Nm kicks in at 5,000 rpm. The CVT unit takes care of shifting duties. These figures are for the fuel-injected version, mind you; whereas the carburetted version makes 8.7 bhp. Peak torque remains the same on both versions.
At the outset, we rode the top-of-the-line Maestro Edge 125 with fuel injection, and the improvised fuelling does make a difference in how the scooter performs. You get a slightly aggressive throttle response than the Destini, but the actual power delivery does feel a little delayed but linear across the rev range. The Maestro Edge 125 climbs speeds quickly and the scooter can do in excess of 90 kmph with ease. There aren't too many vibrations on the Maestro Edge 125 and that makes it likeable, but there is a strong buzz around the floorboard and the seat when the speedometer crosses 80 kmph.
Despite the sporty positioning, the Hero Maestro Edge 125 isn't as aggressive as some of its rivals. The scooter lacks the punch of the TVS NTorq, which remains its chief competitor with power figures nearly identical. The linear power delivery comes in favour of fuel efficiency on the scooter that stands at a claimed 51 kmpl on the fuel-injected version, and 53.1 kmpl on the carb model.
What about ride and handling?
The Hero Maestro Edge 125 gets a softly sprung suspension set-up that allows for a comfortable ride quality. With telescopic forks up front and spring loaded shocks at the rear, the scooter manages to iron out most undulations with ease. The well-tuned suspension also ensures that the ride is confidence inspiring around corners, without taking too much away from the comfort factor. The floorboard accommodates the feet easily and the riding posture is neutral and upright, like the 110 cc model.
The Maestro Edge 125 comes with a 190 mm front disc brake as optional along with a 130 mm drum brake at the rear, and the unit offers progressive feedback when pressed hard. The bite though isn't as sharp as we would've liked though but works well with the MRF tubeless tyres that offer adequate grip on dry roads.
The Hero Maestro Edge 125 gets a competitive entry price starting from ₹ 58,500 for the drum brake version, but the FI model is priced at a steep ₹ 62,700 (all prices, ex-showroom Delhi). For the money, it manages to tick all the right boxes in terms of offering the essentials in a 125 cc model. While the scooter may feel pricier compared to some of its rivals, it does get a segment-first fuel-injection tech that explains the additional cost. At the end of the day, the Maestro 125 is Hero's idea of a performance scooter, filled with dollops of practicality. And that's how its primary customer will be too. The one who is looking towards a little excitement without wanting to shy away from domestic responsibilities. Then, there's also Hero's widespread network that promises better after sales and service support. And for that, the Maestro Edge 125 is a smart buy.