Thursday, August 6, 2009

What year Royal Enfield? How to tell

If you're ever in doubt, a few time honored tricks can help you tell what year a Royal Enfield Bullet was manufactured in India for the U.S. market. Most of these were listed in the 2009 Parts and Accessories catalog offered by Classic Motor Works:
  • If it has a Unit Constructed Engine it is a 2009 model or newer.
  • If it has a five-speed transmission, it is a 2004 model or newer.
  • If it has an electric starter, it is a 2002 model or newer.
  • If it has four wires coming from the alternator it was made after June, 1999.
  • If it has three wires coming from the alternator it was made before June, 1999.
  • If it has a yellow horn button it was made after June, 1999.
  • If it has a red horn button it was made before June, 1999.
Easiest of all, the year and month of manufacture is stamped into the plate riveted to the front down-tube of Royal Enfields imported into the U.S. since 1995.

You can also tell the model year of manufacture from the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN). If you're considering buying a motorcycle on eBay you may see the VIN number right there in the ad. The tenth number or letter in the VIN tells you the year of manufacture. Here's how to decode it:

S=1994 (Because the factory started building 1995 bikes late in 1994 some Bullets officially imported into the U.S. did get the 1994 "S" VIN number, according to Graham Scarth, chairman of the Royal Enfield Owners Club UK.)
(Some confusion here; in the U.S. 7 should equal 2007 and 8 equal 2008)

You'll also find the VIN number stamped on a plate inside the right-side toolbox. The plate inside my right-side toolbox (top) helpfully gives the model year of the motorcycle and a quaint warning against modifying it to make it louder.

NOTE: This article deals in a general fashion with Royal Enfield Bullets made in India for the U.S. market. If your Royal Enfield is not one of those, or these tips don't seem to help, there is another article, at this link that may help you.


  1. Hi guys, please I need of the year of construction of my Enfield of 1990:

    The Vin is:


    The first is a zero no o

  2. Hey,
    this is Shree from India...!
    I want to learn how to identify the year of construction of old Royal Enfield....
    You hav given the easy trick of identifying it but it is only for the models which are constructed after 1995....
    how to know about models constructed before 1995...????
    please help...
    i'm very intrested in knowing it...!!!

  3. Dear Shree,
    That is a complex question and I have no experience with it since I am in the U.S. and we didn't have regular imports of made-in-India Enfields until 1995. I am sorry I can not help.

  4. Hi guys I have a 2008 Military and my 10th number is an "8" which is not listed. Just curious....

    Aloha! Randy

  5. Hello Friends!!
    I have gifted a prices Gift from my, Royal Enfield
    Year of manufacture is between 1960-62

    Please help me to find exact no :
    G2/48*** EI/ 104** 10**

  6. Hi David, I have an 2007 iron barrel 5 speed/ electric start. All the info I can find does not include 2007 model years. Why is this? Economic downturn at that time? Same as the 2006 model? Canyou shed soem light?

    1. It is an interesting question. Something must have made an exception of that year. Perhaps a lack of significant change, as you suggest. I will try to find out and update.

  7. On the gooseneck of my bike is stamped (F1223) on the block (1B1223 & BG257).. I don't have a title for it yet any information would be much appreciated thank you..Bopper Minton..

    1. There is another article you need to read at this link that should help you.

  8. Hi every one I wanted to know which year is my royal Enfield its engine number is G2 62248..kindly help


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