Monday, February 8, 2010

Royal Enfield Chief is a fond memory

Charles Todd's search for a Royal Enfield Indian Chief, mentioned on this blog, apparently inspired "Stefan" in Sweden to send me these pictures of his 1959 Chief.


He even enclosed a video clip so we can hear the 700cc engine run. "Hope you can open the film and listen to the sound coming out from this 50 year old bike; you just have to love it," Stefan writes. I agree.

Stefan sold his Chief in 2008 and says it is now in Great Britain.

The entire motorcycle is terrifically eye catching. Just as nice are the small details. I am particularly taken by the "Police Special" speedometer. Why "special"? No doubt it was especially accurate for clocking speeders.

You can just hear that police officer telling the judge "I had to go 100 to catch him, Your Honor!"

1959 would have been the last full year for the Chief, which was akin to the Royal Enfield Meteor but with a lengthened wheelbase and 16-inch wheels. This gave it the low-slung, chubby-tired look of the American-made Indians of the past, beloved by police departments.

Caught by an officer on one of these things, you may as well have pleaded guilty. It just had so much AUTHORITY.

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