Manufacturers work around the clock to bring new models for creating more options for the consumers. Developing a motorcycle from scratch is a tiring process but developing a new engine is a technical headache altogether while a lot of cash goes into it as well. With the economy in tatters due to COVID-19 pandemic, the two-wheeler companies are bound to make new strategies. Reducing the cost is important for the motorcycle brands and one way to achieve it is to share an engine between various models. The reason we are saying this is because there is a very good chance that the powerful 650cc parallel-twin engine can power a new model besides the Interceptor and the Continental GT.
Royal Enfield Himalayan 650 is rumoured to be arriving later this year or by early 2021 depending on the COVID-19 scenario. Till the time we get more information, we can try to find out if the Royal Enfield's 650cc engine can take the abuse if it powers the off-roading bike. We can thank Vishnu R Nair (Instagram) here as he is trying to answer the question by testing the Interceptor 650 in gruelling conditions.
Off-roading motorcycles are conceptualized in a different way to what road-based bikes do. Hardcore off-roading machines come with several components entirely different than the regular road bikes in the form of Body frame, suspension system, tyres and shape. The engine needs to be good enough to handle situations like water, hard landing, bike going off the ground etc. among other gruelling aspects.
Royal Enfield was successful in bringing the BS6 compliant models to the market thus complying with the new stringent BS6 vehicular norms. The Chennai-based motorcycle-maker was working on new models but COVID-19 delayed their arrivals. New-generation Classic, Thunderbird and Meteor are in the offing but we need to wait for some time more I guess. All the three models would share a newly developed engine which could either exist with the current 350cc or replace it entirely. The Himalayan range of bikes hasn’t received a big revamp with build quality improvements, new colour options and switchable ABS being the key highlights.