Friday, August 19, 2022

Praise for 1968 Royal Enfield Interceptor

Photo of magazine article.
M.B.E. normally means "Member of the Order of the British Empire." 

 The November 1968 Cycle Guide magazine road test of the Royal Enfield Interceptor declared it the "Interceptor, M.B.E." 

The honorific M.B.E., in this instance, stood for "Made By Enfield." 

"Royal Enfield that is," the headline explained. 

The Interceptor was worthy of honor, the magazine reported in its completely favorable review. 

Cycle Guide for Riders and Buyers was published monthly in Los Angeles, Calif. The November 1968 issue was only the 11th of Volume 2. The magazine kept going for 20 years. (A copy of the November, 1968 magazine is for sale on eBay in Phoenixville, Pa.) 

"It's not a bad bike, to the contrary, it's one of the better machines to come from across the pond," the U.S. magazine asserts. And there is no doubt why it thinks so. 

"With bags of low end torque available, driving in town was a pleasure. On the open road we found cruising speed to be in excess of our state speed limit. When the tap is turned, telephone poles become like pickets in a fence, one big blur as the Interceptor gathers itself and hurtles forward.

"Truly the Interceptor deserves to be placed in the category labeled 'Super Bikes.'"

The magazine was impressed that, when weighed, the Interceptor tipped the scales at exactly what sales material claimed: 425 pounds.

"Most manufacturers lie like hell on this point, sometimes as much as 20 percent. Congratulations to R.E. for telling it like it is."

The magazine reserved its "biggest praise" for the Interceptor's "lack of vibration."

"Above 85 mph the bars will start to grow a bit but where, except in Nevada, can the bike be ridden this fast?"

Touchingly, the humble neutral finder lever on the Albion gearbox was singled out for praise. A touch of the heel found neutral from any of the top gears.

"This feature is a nice touch that many other machines could benefit from."

A panel of specifications and test results gave the "Suggested Price" of the 1968 Royal Enfield Interceptor as $1,395. That's the price without taxes, delivery and other fees, of course, and in today's money would be the equivalent of about $12,000.

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