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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Royal Enfield's old Bullet carries Gordon May to factory where the new ones emerge

Gordon May writes: The good news is that both bike and rider survived to tell the tale.I undertook my overland journey to India between August 22nd and October 8 2008. I rode for 9 hours a day on average, often without stopping the engine for more than a couple of minutes to refuel. Despite intense heat, a crash and some appalling road conditions, my wonderful 55-year old motorcycle hardly missed a beat.

Gordon May's epic 8,000-mile trip on an antique Royal Enfield Bullet ended at the factory where the very newest Royal Enfields are being made. You can read Gordon's entire account of his ride from England to Chennai, India on a 1953 Bullet on his travel blog. Or you can follow the whole route by clicking the icons on the map below.

Gordon finished his journey with a deep affection for his trusty Bullet. He also was impressed by the craftsmanship and old world values he saw in operation at the Royal Enfield factory. He comments:

"The export EFI model is by far the most exciting machine that I see. In the packing area there’s a long row of G5 versions being crated up for export to the UK. Finished in black and chrome like the old deluxe models, this new variant looks truly gorgeous. I learn that today is in fact the long-awaited launch day of the new Bullet at the Intermot motorcycle show in Germany. There’s a buzz of excitement around the offices as people await news of the reception the bike receives. Word comes in that the response has been extremely encouraging, a real success for the company. Of the three variants on display, it’s the all maroon and all green Classic models that have stolen the show. No wonder. Their retro 1950’s styling is absolutely stunning. I can’t wait to get my hands on one myself."

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