The Royal Enfield Himalayan has been spotted again, but this time, reader Allen Richard sends us one of the clearest images of the elusive beast that’s all set to shape up the future of the Chennai based manufacturer. And it looks pretty badass.
The all-new Himalayan will be very different from any other thumper on sale since 1901. The character, as the name denotes, will be that of an explorer motorcycle – adventure tourer, if you may. A glance is enough to deduce that this Royal Enfield will mean business when the going gets tough, what with its high ground clearance, rugged build, long-travel suspension and other outdoorsy additions.
Initial impressions suggest that the motorcycle will be more of a functional machine, built to devour lesser known roads, explore the unknown and celebrate the spirit of motorcycling – a far cry from today’s oil dripping, lethargic, racket making Bullets that occasionally titillates the girl next door.
Royal Enfield’s lazy styling team gets a shot in the arm as ex-Ducati designer Pierre Terblanche hops on board. We’re not quite sure what his inputs on the Himalayan are, if any at all, but things at RE are definitely starting to get temperamental.
The Himalayan features all new styling, which features a functionally designed fuel tank with functional knee recesses, along with new side panels, which don’t quite look production ready yet. The tank also features strengthened braces on either side, that hold the high-set, round headlamp, tall wind deflector and front turn indicators in place, while the raised handlebars go about their maneuvering duties independently.
The seating position will be straight-forward, high set and relaxed, thus likely to help the riders traverse more miles sans fatigue. The fresh seat is a well-contoured, split job and should be comfortable enough. But who cares when you’re chasing that horizon strewn with snow-capped mountains.
Suspension comprises of blacked-out telescopic front forks (with dust protectors) up front, and for the first time in Royal Enfield history – a monoshock rear suspension. Suspension travel will be commendably long, if the large rear clearance and motocross-style, high front mudguard are anything to go by. The rear also features a box section swingarm.
The frame is also totally new, and rises up a fair bit at the rear, where it meets the high set, rear fender. One can also note the mounts for the pannier holders, which have been integrated with the rear section of the frame.
Spoke wheels are old-school, cooler and inherently stronger, and that’s why the Himalayan has them. In true off-road tradition, the front gets a larger, 18-inch wheel, while sports a smaller 17-inch wheel. Both are wrapped around with knobby, off-road, CEAT rubber.
Other notable features on the Himalayan include a vertically aligned, minimalist instrument cluster, front & rear disc brakes, and an upswept exhaust, with the latter expected to give better aural company over long jaunts.
The Himalayan will debut with Royal Enfield’s brand new engine, rumoured to be a 400cc, single cylinder motor that’ll benefit from oil-cooling (presence of radiator confirmed by Allen), and, in all probability, fuel injection as well.
The new engine can be seen in all its glory in the photograph, sporting its all-new, contemporary looking, matte black finished crankcase bearing the new Royal Enfield crest in its midst. In comparison, the old one felt a bit like a polished stone, fit for a museum.
The torque output figure is expected to be about 40 Nm, nearly 12 Nm (or so) higher than the current 350cc engine, while power is also expected to nudge the 35 bhp mark.
All in all, the Himalayan could be the steed of choice, if Che Guevara still lived on, and decides to revisit his “Motorcycle Diaries” once again! The launch of the Royal Enfield Himalayan is expected to be launched sometime later this year, if not early next year.
Check out the Royal Enfield Himalayan in action in the video below:
Video Source: TeamBHP