A rider of a Royal Enfield Continental GT535 cafe racer was stunned after his engine literally had a hole in it. Amirtha Raj, the owner of the motorcycle, was riding yesterday when he heard a sound from the engine. Upon inspection, he was shocked to find that the front of the crankcase had a large hole in it.
The rear of the crankcase also exhibited a crack. The said motorcycle has covered 13,000 kilometers, and the owner says that it was serviced just a couple of weeks ago at a Royal Enfield authorised service center. This shocking flaw is not new.
Even in the past, Royal Enfield Continental GT 535 owners have reported cracked/holed crankcases, on the left hand side of the engine. The cracked/holed part houses the primary chain of the motorcycle, a very heavy duty part that conveys the motion of the crankshaft to the clutch. While Royal Enfield is yet to respond to the affected motorcyclist, it’s likely that the crack/hole on the crankcase has been caused by a loose fastener within the crankcase. The sprag clutch fastener is a likely suspect.
Another reason for the crankcase holing/cracking like this is because of stones/metal fragments hitting it at very high speed. The crankcases on the 350cc and 500cc Unit Construction Engines (UCE) are made of aluminium – a material that can crack more easily than iron/steel upon heavy impact.
At least four other Continental GT 535 owners in India have reported of holed/cracked crankcases. Some even have posted pictures of this. If something like this happens, the motorcycle is rendered unrideable. And the cost to fix this issue will be about Rs. 50,000 as the entire bottom engine casing will have to be replaced to fix the issue.
Here are some screenshots of Royal Enfield Continental GT owners reporting similar issues on their motorcycles.