Bikers rejoice, India’s just about to get an affordable adventure bike, the country’s first ever. Royal Enfield will launch the Himalayan on the 2nd of February, and the video teasers are out. These teasers also give us a fair bit of information about the motorcycle itself. Here’s what you need to know about this bike, which is a huge step for Royal Enfield as a motorcycle manufacturer, and for bikers, who’ve been waiting for such a machine.
The Himalayan will feature a 410cc, oil cooled engine called the LS400. Fuel injection is highly likely. Peak power is rated at about 25 Bhp, and this is the first ever overhead camshaft (OHC) four stroke engine from Royal Enfield for the Indian motorcycle market. Well, 25 Bhp doesn’t sound much. Well, that’s until you hear Lester Harris of Harris Engineering. Yes, Harris Engineering of UK, a renowned motorcycle frame maker, has been roped in to develop the chassis and suspension of the Himalayan.
In this kind of bike, it’s the suspension that really counts, and Lester Harris says that the frame and suspension have been made robust, while the weight has been kept low. Now, if we have a 160 kilogram kerb weight matched to a 25 Bhp power output, the Himalayan should roughly be as peppy as the Continental GT (which makes about 20 Bhp at the wheel). Remember, the Himalayan features an OHC motor, which means that 20 Bhp at the wheel is quite possible.
A five speed gearbox, a massive 21 inch front wheel to make it rough road ready, telescopic front forks, a monoshock rear, disc brakes on both wheels and an ABS ready package (Remember, ABS will soon be mandatory on bigger engined bikes) is expected. From the images and videos, the bike seems to have comfortable seats for two adults. Now, this will make touring much more comfortable, especially when the pillion factor comes in.
Plenty of ground clearance is a given, making the Himalayan an SUV among affordable yet sporty bikes. And the folks at Royal Enfield are emphasizing on the bike’s go anywhere ability. They’ve even tailored the bike to suit Indian frames, by getting a good compromise between ground clearance and seat height. Now all these, combined with a sharp price tag, should sell this bike. Watch this space.