We were right when we reported yesterday that Royal Enfield would be launching souped versions of their motorcycles. Mr Venki Padmanabhan, the CEO of Royal Enfield and Shaaji Koshy, the Senior VP for Sales were present at the do. Saying that the bikes were for leisure, we expected that there would be a new café racer on the block, however, what came out were just two new color schemes for the Royal Enfield Classic 500 version, namely Desert Storm and Classic Chrome.
Both the variants come with a 500 cc engine which is derived from the latest UCE construction plus the added advantage of have electronic fuel injection in their fold. For the reliability factor, Royal Enfield have ensured that the piston rings as also the piston is much more improved, charging circuit is more powerful and also an auto chain tensioner. The Desert Storm version is said to be inspired from the army camps and is a sober road going version of the green color which is for the army camp people. About 1 percent of the sales of Royal Enfield bikes is achieved by selling these bikes to the Indian Army.
There has been an increase in price for both these variants and they stand at Rs 1.65 lakhs for the Classic Chrome while the Desert Storm is relatively cheaper at Rs 1.58 lakhs. All these prices are on-road prices, Mumbai. The production capacity at Royal Enfield’s Chennai capacity has also been ramped up and this unit would now produce 70k units each year. The fuel efficiency to be expected out of the 500 cc engine is 30 kmpl while the 350 cc is rumored to give 40 kmpl. About 40 percent of the bikes sold by Royal Enfield are from the Classic range.Dr Venki had also mentioned that many Indian films right from Sholay to the recent Singham had RE bikes as the mainstay and this was coz they wanted to project a masculine leisurely character.