Royal Enfield improves its Classic 500 range.. also launches new Color variants expanding the Classic 500 family in India..
When every other bike is trying to become the next "fastest Indian", the Royal Enfield Classic is like a "Strong, silent & mature character".
To me the Royal Enfield Classic tops the list of "Best Looking Motorcycles in India". And now the Royal Enfield Classic 500 in the new "Desert Storm" color (posted below) is the epitome of Indian Motorcycle Art.
I have always visualized the Royal Enfield rider as "Buddha on two wheels". Some people might say that Royal Enfield is the poor (Indian) man's Harley. But to me these two brands are poles apart.
As a brand Harley Davidson (to me) is about living the American dream and a statement of making it big in life (In India). Royal Enfield on the other hand is about being the proud & confident global Indian with strong desi roots/identity.
What's been upgraded in the new Classic 500 range?
Apart from carefully nurturing and building a cult around the Royal Enfield Brand (It's not just the Bullet brand anymore), the guys at Royal Enfield has been taking customer feedback seriously and as a result the Classic 500 has received a few changes/upgrades.
Changes to the new Classic 500 range includes:
- Change in the attachment of the front forks to the wheel (which was earlier slightly offset, thus altering the steering rake angle)
- Wider rear tyre (120 section compared to the older 110 section)
- Bigger diameter front wheel (19 inch front compared to the 18 inch for the older Classic 500)
- Remapped EFI system
- Two new colors: "Desert Storm" & "Chrome (with combination of either Black or Maroon)"
The changes might be small but it shows that Royal Enfield is not an archaic entity any more but transforming itself to a modern organization which is on its path of continuous improvement.
The small changes to the front forks, larger diameter frot wheel and a wider rear tyre should make the steering and stability of the Classic 500 improve. I had come across reports that the initial Classic 500 had some issues with its EFI (Electronic Fuel Injection). The new remapped EFI seems to be a genuine effort to iron out these teething issues.
Altered "front fork - wheel" mounting in the new Classic 500:
- Classic 500: Rs. 1.55 lakhs (On-Road Mumbai)
- Classic Desert Storm: Rs. 1.58 lakhs (On-Road Mumbai) i.e. Rs. 3,000 more than the Classic 500
- Classic Chrome: Rs. 1.68 lakhs (On-Road Mumbai) i.e. Rs. 10,000 more than the Classic 500
Since its launch in 2009 the Royal Enfield Classic (500/350) has been available in 3 colors: Green (Bluish-Green or Turquoise), Maroon & Black.
In the 2010 New Delhi Auto Expo, Royal Enfield had shown the Classic 500 in "Chrome" & "Battle Green" colors. Subsequently Royal Enfield did start production of these two colors but only as export models.
The Classic Chrome wasn't difficult to introduce in India but Royal Enfield couldn't sell the "Battle Green" color to the common Indian as it was a color reserved for the Indian Military..!!
The association of Royal Enfield with the Indian Army/Police dates back to the 1950's and this has only helped build on the Macho aura of Royal Enfield in India. There are many enthusiasts who paint their Royal Enfield bikes in Green shade for the experience and attitude of going to battle without joining the military.
Since it wasn't possible to to sell the color reserved for the Indian military, the guys at Royal Enfield turned up with this beautiful "Desert/Sandy" color theme which is also "military"/"khaki". According to me the Desert Storm color is even better than the Battle Green color and is seriously making me drool over it..!!
Royal Enfield Classic Battle Green & Classic Chrome @ 2010 Auto Expo
Royal Enfield Classic Chrome & Desert Storm: [Walk around Video Courtesy: Overdrive]
Royal Enfield Classic Chrome & Desert Storm: [Photos Courtesy: Overdrive & Royal Enfield]
Royal Enfield Classic 500  Specifications:
Type: Single Cylinder, 4 stroke, Twinspark
Bore x stroke: 84mm x 90mm
Compression Ratio: 8.5:1
Maximum Power: 27.2 bhp @ 5250 rpm
Maximum Torque: 41.3 Nm @ 4000 rpm
Ignition System: Digital Electronic Ignition
Clutch: Wet multi-plate
Gearbox: 5 Speed Constant Mesh
Fuel Supply: Keihin Electronic Fuel Injection
Air Cleaner: Paper Element
Engine Start: Electric/Kick
Type: Single downtube, using engine as stressed member
Front suspension: Telescopic, 35mm forks, 130mm travel
Rear suspension: Twin gas charged shock absorbers with 5-step adjustable preload, 80mm travel
Tyres Fr: 90/90 - 19(Domestic), 90/90 - 18(Export)
Tyres Rr: 120/80 - 18(Domestic), 110/80 - 18(Export)
Brakes Front: 280mm Disc, 2-Piston caliper
Brakes Rear: 153mm Drum, Single Lead Internal Expanding
Wheelbase: 1370 mm
Ground Clearance: 135 mm
Length: 2180 mm
Width: 800 mm
Height: 1080 mm
Kerb Weight: 187 Kg (with 90% Fuel & Oil)
Fuel Capacity: 14.5 ± 1 Ltr
Electrical System: 12 volt - DC
Battery: 12 volt, 14 Ah
Head Lamp: 60 W / 55 W, HALOGEN
- Royal Enfield Cafe Racer in the Pipeline [Jan 2011]
- Is Royal Enfield the World's Oldest Surviving Motorcycle Brand?
- Royal Endield Classic Chrome/Bullet 500 for USA [Jan 2011]
- "Handcrafted in Chennai" Royal Enfield Promotional Video [Mar 2011]
This is to remind that the Views or Opinions in the blog are entirely mine unless explicitly stated. The Views and Opinions published in this blog should in no way be related to any other person or organization associated -- directly or indirectly -- with me.