Saturday, February 28, 2009

What they're saying about the new Enfield

As a "fly on the wall" at a gathering of Royal Enfield motorcycle dealers, I took notes on comments they made about the new Royal Enfield unit construction engine (UCE) and the new G5 and C5 motorcycles it will go into.

The dealers attended a training session on the new engine Feb. 12 and 13 at Classic Motorworks, the U.S. importer. Dealers are the people most in touch with customers. Here are some of the things they had to say as they learned about the new engine and sampled a 2009 G5 motorcycle:

"The older the look, the better."
"How many senors are there that can fail; that WILL fail?"
"Brilliant." (Said sincerely.)
"No left-hand threads?
"No Whitworth? I'm out!" (Said in jest.)
"People are in love with the kickstarter."
"Very Japanese." (Said as a compliment, I think.)
"It's a gamechanger."

Kevin Mahoney, head of Classic Motorworks, made comments of his own. Among them:

"The hydraulic valve lifters are imported (to India) from America."
"You just get on it and ride."
"The warranty has doubled to two years. We haven't put a mileage limit on
it but we may, because I think these bikes are going to get ridden."
"It's a gamechanger."

The Indian engineers doing the training were naturally full of praise for the new Royal Enfield they helped created. Suddenly, the Royal Enfield Bullet, almost unchanged for 55 years, has a modern engine, goes faster, stops better, and gets even better mileage. With hydraulic lifters, O-ring chain and fuel injection it will require less maintenance.

So, yes, the Indians too said: "It's a gamechanger."

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