A Royal Enfield motorcycle breaking land speed records would have sounded absolutely bizarre a few years back. Royal Enfield motorcycles are generally associated with cruising and are loved around the globe for their retro charm. But now, it seems like the direction of the wind is changing. It is now official that the Royal Enfield Interceptor 650 salt racer, custom-built by Mid Life Cycles, has broken the land speed record for the M-F 650 class (650cc un-streamlined motorcycles with commercial unleaded fuel) at the annual Speed Week, held at Lake Gairdner in Australia.
The salt racer is being called ‘The Sabre’ and was helmed by a rider named Charlie Hallam who managed to clock 212.514 kmph or 132.050 mph.
To give you an idea, the previous record for the class – 193.056 kmph (119.961 mph) – was set back in 2016. Day 1 of the event saw Charlie break the record in his very first run as he managed to clock 195.989 kmph, followed by a 198.917 kmph pass. Day 2 witnessed the rider clocking an average speed and the new land speed record for the class was set at 212.514 kmph.
List of mods
Talking about the motorcycle now, The Sabre has been built by the folks at HRA Geelong and Hallam Cycle Works. The base motorcycle is RE Interceptor 650 but almost all the internal components including the likes of the frame, engine, and other parts are modified as per the specifications of Class M-F 650. To squeeze the most out of the engine, changes have been made to the cylinder head, valves, intake manifold, throttle body, conrods, crankshaft, and gearbox. It also gets forged pistons and a new camshaft, while the counter-balancer has been removed.
One good look at the motorcycle and you would realize that the changes don’t culminate here. To make sure that it shatters the land speed record, it also gets lighter alloy wheels, Pirelli Diablo Slicks (front and rear), a longer swingarm, custom front and rear sprockets, and Öhlins suspension. What’s worth noting here is the fact that all the changes made to the engine could soon be made available to the customers as well, for those who want their Interceptor 650 to be blisteringly quick. The Royal Enfield 650cc platform is indeed a great one and all it takes is a bunch of creative heads to give birth to something as spectacular as ‘The Sabre’.