Royal Enfield’s range of motorcycles including the Bullet, is known to be heavy. Many people don’t opt for these bikes due to the sheer weight, which makes Royal Enfields difficult to maneuver at lower speeds, and also while parking. There’s now a indigenous solution to this – a Royal Enfield owner in India – Jagdish Rawal – has managed to fit a reverse gear on a 350cc Bullet. This video shows him effortlessly maneuvering the bike out of parking lots using the reverse gear.
The gearbox that has a reverse gear has been fitted to the Bullet 350, and the gearbox has been sourced from a sidecar manufacturing company. The 350cc Bullet that has been fitted with a reverse gear has a neutral finder. So, to shift into reverse gear, the rider needs to first step on the neutral finder and then shift up for reverse gear.
There are a lot of high-end motorcycles in India that are very heavy. They are very cumbersome to park, as pushing them backwards becomes altough task due to the weight. Honda is the only bike maker who sells a bike with a reverse gear. The bike is called the Gold Wing, and is a high-end cruiser that comes with many car-like features such as a stereo system and even lockable storage compartments.
Most high-end bike makers don’t anticipate tight parking slots like the ones seen in most Indian cities. High-end bikes in most parts of the world are used for recreational riding, where finding parking isn’t much of an issue. But in India, even recreational riding generally takes riders to places where parking can be a big bother.
In such situations, this reverse gear can come in handy. However, it will be difficult to fit such a gear on modern bikes with unit construction engines. The reason why it’s been so seamlessly integrated into the Bullet 350 is because it’s an older model with a pre-unit construction engine (where engine, gearbox and clutch are in different cases).