With the advent of BS III emission norms in India, Royal Enfield has had to retire its older engines and switch to the new lean burn engine with integrated clutch and gear box i.e. UCE. Now all the new Enfields in India come with engines which are newer than that of Hero Honda Karizma and Honda Unicorn and if one factors in Classic 500 Fi, technologically advance as well.
With this, I feel, all the excuses about the poor reliability of Enfiends due to them supporting an age old engine, goes out of the window and all that matters now is how good/bad Royal Enfield’s manufacturing process is and how much effort they spend on quality control and after sales service.
Although I am still skeptical about the reliability factor as I have already heard a few complaints about the newer Enfields, I seriously hope that Royal Enfield is serious about tackling them head on and isn’t counting on the goodwill and leniency of the Enfield community.
On the side note, during last month’s ride to Udaipur, Bhuwan was riding his Classic 500 Fi , which was still in the running in period and hence wasn’t being ripped. However I was more than impressed by it’s in gear acceleration and the fact that it now comes with 18″ wheel.
The only things which I did not like about it was the fact that the petrol tank capacity has been reduced by a liter (according to me even the initial capacity was low) and so has the ground clearance.
The new upswept exhaust looked good and although wasn’t as quiet as I would have wanted it to be, it wasn’t loud enough to force me to maintain a lot of distance with the bike.
Overall a nice bike, although not something that I would want to buy as of yet (not convinced yet), but still something which I feel is a step in the right direction and would likely get Royal Enfield a few more takers which weren’t earlier interested in its portfolio.