Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Royal Enfield's new Interceptor and Continental unveiled

Royal Enfield Continental GT 650 twin, left, Interceptor 650 twin, right.
Update: "Both models are targeted for availability in North America in summer 2018 with a price range of $5,000 - $7,000. More information specific to North America availability is forthcoming." (Press release from Royal Enfield North America media contact.)

Revealed, at last: Royal Enfield showed off its new Interceptor 650 and Continental GT 650 today in Milan, Italy.

Royal Enfield boss Siddhartha Lal repeatedly called the new Interceptor "California Cool." The new Continental GT is the "tucked-in" cafe racer. But they share the new Royal Enfield 650cc parallel twin motor and six-speed gearbox. Brakes are disc, front and rear, with ABS.

The world gets its first look at the new Interceptor, left, and Continental GT 650 twin.
Lal defended the choice of 650cc as the size of the motor, noting that in early development it was to be 600cc. It was enlarged to ensure the motorcycles it powers can exceed 100 mph — the "ton" in cafe-racer speak.

He reluctantly guessed that deliveries could start in April, 2018. India will not get them first — he mentioned that markets like Europe will instead. The problem is that initial production could not meet the immense demand in India.

As for price, he would not reveal a number but said it would be "accessible" and promised we'd be pleased.

Royal Enfield's website is showing three colors for the Interceptor 650: Orange Crush, Ravishing Red and Silver Spectre.

Royal Enfield shows three color choices for the new Interceptor.
Orange Crush, Ravishing Red and Silver Spectre.

Royal Enfield says the rear "loop" handhold is a nod to the original Interceptor.

Three colors are shown for the Continental GT 650. Ice Queen white, Sea Nymph blue and Black Magic.

A dual seat will be available for the Continental GT 650.
Three colors are shown for the Continental GT:
Ice Queen white; Sea Nymph blue and Black Magic.
Seating position is the real variable between the new twins.
The Continental GT 650 comes with rear-sets.
The twin motorcycles — obviously twins under the skin — illustrate Royal Enfield's continuing reverence for both the days of California cool and the cafe racer society of Britain's ton-up boys. Neither looks like the modern plastic-fantastic boy racer some might have feared.

Amazing how different a motorcycle is produced by small variations.

New logos for the new machines.


  1. The interceptor got re-birth nice. Hoping to find its legacy (in all dimensions) with the modern touch. Waiting to hear it. Thanks for bringing its summary first.

  2. Anonymous11/07/2017

    Well Blasco , poor old Bunty is going to need an ocean to drown his sorrows - 'deed so . 47 hp ! Double would have been sufficient -by gad ! A Harris frame raised the expectations of a worthy engine, the lump looks strong and ripe for tuning so mebbe all is not gloomy .
    Royal Enfield thou art a cruel mistress to tempt a chap so !
    47 hp !
    Enough for a Bland Tourer and an Interceptor Minor methinks .
    But not enough of a mount for the compleat motorcyclist .
    Bunty waits and hopes for a big bore kit - motorcycle engines and bosoms , the bigger the better ! Haar haaaaar haaaaaaaaaar !
    Your servant .
    Maj Bunty Golightly . MBH . Defender of the Kickstart .

    1. Major, thank you for not objecting that I referred to you as an elderly cad, bigot and ne'er-do-well. Your observations on motor vehicles (and bosoms) are always welcome here.

  3. Anonymous11/08/2017

    This way, from a classic, RE became modern classic with an engine without the British classic character of a long stroke.

  4. Interesting justification by Lal on the engine displacement.As a Classic 500 owner,was looking forward to a 750cc and rumours of it were flying thick and fast,what with stealthy test riders being caught on youtube(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OXwyj_oXYEc) etc.
    And,finally when it does get to see the dawn of the day,it's a 100cc less;the justification that pre-existing RE owners and wannabe RE owners would find it hard to accept a 750cc price-wise!!
    A lot of disappointed enthusiasts here in India.

  5. Anonymous11/08/2017

    If I had one of these 3rd Gen Interceptors, the first thing I'd do is fit the 60's style Inter seat on it.The factory seat looks awfully thin, therefore probably uncomfortable for long rides.
    Hopefully, H's will come to the rescue with lots of aftermarket kit !

  6. Wish we had a dealer here, but unfortunately, Lubbock, TX seems to be Harleyland. We had a dealer until recently, he was poorly located and it's so HD lopsided that even the other motorcycles have a hard time competing here. But when you watch bikes on the road it is always pleasant to see something other than a Harley. Glad to see the Interceptor, I think I need to saving my money now and look for a closer dealer. I have followed this blog for a long time but this is the first time I've ever commmented. Love the blog!

  7. Anonymous11/11/2017

    I have to agree with our crusty old Major - having had experience trying to coax my Classic 500 up to highway speed here in the USA, I too was hoping to see somewhere around 750cc and perhaps 60HP. But wait! Do I spy enough clearance under the gas tank for a stroked version of the 650??


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