Over the past few weeks, we’ve seen the motorcycle industry step up in the fight against COVID-19. Dealerships, gearmakers and manufacturers have all found their own way to battle the coronavirus pandemic. But here’s a move we didn’t see coming: Hero has started building motorcycle-based ambulances.
Although its bikes are never seen in North America or Europe, Hero is the largest motorcycle manufacturer in the world, if you count in all its scooter production, with million of units moved. And, the Indian moto-press is reporting Hero has gotten into pandemic response in a big way. Hero has already donated a large sum of money to the Indian prime minister’s official response plan, but has also been funnelling funds into other relief measures, including food distribution and provision of sanitation supplies. Hero has also offered up BML Munjal University, which it runs, to be used as a 2000-bed hostel in the ongoing struggle.
And now, Hero is working on sending motorcycle-based ambulances out to help frontline workers. The ambulances are based around the Xtreme 200R model, which might seem small to Euro/North American riders, but would be a fairly powerful bike by the Indian domestic market’s standards.
There’s a bed bolted to the side of the bike, for patient transport—surely not too comfy, but probably better than being stuck in a remote village with a raging case of COVID-19. Well, maybe.
Hero is also including a fire extinguisher with these bikes, a first-aid kit, an O2 tank, and most importantly, a siren. Would any emergency vehicle be able to navigate Indian traffic without a siren? Probably not.
Supposedly, Hero is making 60 of these ambulances, and distributing them to health authorities around India, suggesting they’d be useful in remote areas.