Iconic Ads: Hero Honda – Fill it, Shut it, Forget it

Hero Honda CD 100 was the first motorcycle in India to position itself on mileage and fuel economy.

Hero Honda introduced a 4-stroke motorcycle badged CD100 in the mid-1980s. It had a class-leading mileage of 80 km/l, unheard of at the time.

The brief was to make motorbikes, which were once regarded as a toy for affluent kids, as popular as scooters. As a result, Ulka focused the advertising on fuel efficiency. It was the first of its kind in India to position the motorcycles on mileage.

It was instantly loved by the marketing team at Hero Honda when it was shared with them.

Ulka’s (FCB) advertising campaign, summed it up aptly “Fill it, shut it, forget it”. 

Indirectly the campaign urged two-wheeler riders to forget other brands. When the new advertisement and the new brand hit the market, the customer ignored all the other brands (well, almost), and three decades later, it is still a force to reckon with (without Honda).

The bike worked exceedingly well in the demanding Indian conditions and on the typical Indian psyche (fuel economy). Both the bike and the campaign have been an enduring success.

This is an excellent example of clear insight translated into simple, single-minded communication.

The Hero Honda CD 100 went on to become the largest selling motorcycle of its time, and firmly established Hero as a two-wheeler major.

Coincidentally, both Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra (the noted film-maker) who was in client servicing along with copywriter Vikram Oberoi who crafted the line and this campaign, worked together on this.

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