Royal Enfield motorcycles – the undying charm of Royalty

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Made like a gun, goes like a bullet. Sounds like an adrenaline pump and definitely holds true to its core for the Royal Enfield bikes. The young and the unstoppable is what Royal Enfield is and this is clearly evident from its popularity among bikers. Whether it is a highway trip or a long ride through the mountains, the large tyres and the thumping engine sets the mood right. It is not only the looks of these bikes that attract the youngsters; royal, retro and masculine; these bikes are sure made of substance.

The first ever Royal Enfield bike was made in 1901 in UK. Though the UK unit collapsed in 1971, the Enfield India unit was set up in 1956. Initially the India unit manufactured the bikes with spared parts imported from UK. Later on, the parts were also manufactured in India. Through some legal procedures, the name tag Royal was brought down to be used with Enfield and the Royal Enfield India started taking the whole country by storm. Surprisingly, even when it was not performing well in UK and the manufacturing unit was ailing; the craze was going high in India. The company originally named Royal Enfield was into weapons manufacturing. No wonder from where the design of these bikes have found an inspiration. The roaring engine and the huge tyres definitely set the roads on fire! The new Unit Construction Engines (UCE) were introduced in 2007 which was received with mixed feelings and reactions from the Royal Enfield fraternity. 2010 saw the last Cast Iron (CI) engines royal enfield rolling out before production was stopped for the CI engines. The veteran bikers still vouch and are loyal to the cast iron engines for the royal signature ‘thump’ and performance.

The Royal Enfield bikes are majorly classified as:

Royal Enfield Bullet

It is the living legend among the Royal Enfield bikes. It has continuously been in production since 1932. Loaded with modern features in a vintage look, this bike is the challenger in all possible ways. The categories of this variant are Bullet 500, Bullet Electra and Bullet 350.

Prices start from Rs. 96,000 for the Standard Bullet 350 UCE, Rs. 1 Lakh for Electra UCE to Rs. 1.3L for the Bullet 500 UCE.

Royal Enfield Classic

The effortless hunk among the Royal Enfield bikes, this variant has it all. The power, the look, the strength all encapsulated in a post war styling. It also has a paint scheme that resembles the war era. The categories of this variant are Classic Desert Storm, Classic Chrome, Classic Battle Green, Classic 500 and Classic 350.

Prices start from Rs. 1.16 Lakhs for the Classic 350 UCE to Rs. 1.5 Lakhs for Classic 500 UCE.

Royal Enfield Thunderbird

Introduced in 2002, this cruiser style bike comes loaded with an AVL lean burn engine and five-speed gearbox. It is the highway rider’s boon and is marketed exclusively in India. In 2012, Thunderbird 500 was launched and Royal Enfield became the biking option for leisure riders and enthusiasts. The AVL engine has also been replaced by the Unit construction engine. Currently, there are two categories of this variant available for the bikers; namely, Thunderbird 500 and Thunderbird 350.

Prices start from Rs. 1.2 Lakhs for the Thunderbird 350 UCE to Rs. 1.6 Lakhs for the Thunderbird 500.

Royal Enfield Continental GT

It is the most powerful variant with the credits of being the lightest and the fastest Royal Enfield. It symbolises the cultural phenomenon of a café racer. There are no categories of this variant available currently.

Prices start from Rs. 1.85 lakhs for the Royal Enfield Continental GT.

What keeps Royal Enfield bikes at the top of the favorites chart among bikers is its constant evolvement. The royal heritage and new technologies make the bikes strongly desirable. Every new version of a Royal Enfield bike has something striking to look forward to. No wonder, it is not ageing. These bikes are getting younger by the day pushing the quality barrier among bike manufacturers a level higher every time someone tries matching up the standards.

A typical Royal Enfield, the Classic 350 is manufactured in the same power plant as the Thunderbird. It is the most favoured long trip bike because of its enormously powerful and reliable engine, strong tyres and the large fuel tank. The excellent road grip and sturdy body provides strength as well as safety to the rider. Bikes are often referred as man’s machine but the Royal Enfield bikes are quite a man themselves and isn’t a man’s trip at gushing speed worth it? We say it definitely is! Understated yet charming, it is the typical guy thing.

Royal Enfield has a soldier like appeal – strong, courageous and drop dead smart. No wonder its popularity never faded away. It would not be an exaggeration of facts if it is described as an automotive royalty with just the right mix of modernity and old school charm. It is the dream ride of every young biking enthusiast. Every new variant has so far been well received by the Indian biking fraternity.

Royal Enfield Bike Tour in Northeast

One of the most amazing rides on Royal Enfield can be enjoyed while exploring the north eastern part of India. The amazing natural beauty coupled with majestic sceneries and the powerful bike, form the right combination for a ride to remember. When it comes to north eastern India, Arunachal Pradesh is the best place to explore on a roaring two wheeler. Out under the open sky and surrounded with extraordinary views, this state offers a promising trip. Arunachal has a meagre road network which can be owed to the climatic conditions here. The tour is not going to be plain pleasure; rather it will test your riding skills too! Rocky river beds, slush, jungle dirt tracks, sand, rain, boat rides and camping makes this ride a fantastic experience for the a high degree adventure seeker. And the maximum thrill within all the wonderful experiences are the two rickety bridges you will be riding through. Truly enough, the locals in Arunachal do not call the roads good or bad, but as “adventurous”. But apart from adventure, Arunachal also has various indigenous tribes and their lifestyle and culture change drastically every 60 miles which is fun to observe for a biker. From the huge Buddhist temples to smaller temples in villages where local Gods are either portrayed as Sun and Moon or the Nature, this outstanding mix of culture and adventure promises lively and memorable moments throughout the trip. A biking trip to the north eastern India can also be planned along the tea estates. The panoramic view of lush green plantations are a treat when you are riding a Royal Enfield. Set out to experience adventure, this trip is a lot more than just that.

Shillong to Cherrapunji Road

Photo Credit – Biswajit_Dey (Flickr)

Shillong – Cherrapunji is another route which is every bikers dream and delight. The open blue skies and smooth winding roads make it a pleasure for riding.

Call it the brat or call it the charmer, you can’t afford to ignore the royalty thumping on the roads.

JayB

A self-described travel enthusiast...

2 Comments

  1. John de

    February 8, 2015 at 1:14 am

    I believe my father took one of the first motor cycles to India in 1901. He was joining the 5th Gurkha Regiment travelling by troopship from England. His name was Edward Cuthbert Martin – can anyone confirm this?

  2. Manpreet

    June 30, 2015 at 1:54 pm

    Nice and beautiful description of this legendary bike. Will buy one soon

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