'New' Royal Enfields

Bullet Sports and T5 come at bargain prices

Posted: 6 December 2012
by Visordown News

ROYAL ENFIELD has launched two new versions of its Bullet Classic 500 to hark back to days long past – and it's also offering kits to convert existing Classic 500s into the same spec for minimal cost.

First up is the Bullet Sports. Inspired (apparently) by the Crusader Sports of 1959, it gets drop bars and a Gold Star style silencer, plus a fly screen and bar-end-mounted mirrors. New, the bike costs £5,595 - £300 more than the base Classic Chrome – or you can buy all the bits for £353.95.

Better still is the T5. No, not an early Terminator model, it's Enfield's take on the currently popular matte-green faux-military look. Yep, Ducati, Triumph and Moto Guzzi have all done it already, but the Enfield actually looks like it's dropped straight out of a WW2 movie thanks to real 1940s technology. Compared to the stock Classic Battle Green, it gets Continental Twinduro rubber, braced handlebars and an alloy bash plate. All in, it's only £5,395, or get the bits alone for £251.

Not a bad way to transform a bike for minimal outlay.

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Discuss this story

I want to like Enfields, but they've retained the classic British attitude to "quality control" as well, i.e. bodge-it-and-ship-it. I've seen pictures of a cylinder head with a large void in it that had been crudely filled with weld (that then failed). That's fairly awful, even by Asian standards.

That might be an acceptable gamble if they were cheap, but they're not. Once you're up to £6K then you might as well scrape together a bit more and get a far superior Triumph.

Posted: 07/12/2012 at 11:12

I'm the press officer for Royal Enfield UK, just so you know where I'm coming from. Prices for a brand new 500cc Bullet start at £4250, which is a lot less than £6k. The new unit-construction fuel injected engine, introduced in 2009, is a massive leap forward from the original iron-barrel 4-speed motor dating back to the 1950's.

Posted: 08/12/2012 at 11:43

I rode a Royal Enfield classic Bullit at the Motorcycle live show this year and really enjoyed it. I'd love to get on as a second bike one day, just for the pure fun of knocking around on it.

Posted: 08/12/2012 at 17:23

Love the concept unfortunatly compliance with euro 3 is a retrograde step, at least for using unit engine and box where a lot of fun could be had adding things like a diesel just for an example of how these euro gestapo are slowly destroyin our hobby and controllin our lives, on the basis of some spurious safety arguement which ensures corperate monopoly, and leads to lives lost while the distractions flourish

Posted: 08/12/2012 at 18:08

I agree with rogerborg ,if they were 3 grand i might buy to one for knocking about on but 6k is mental.i could buy a very tasty speed triple for that.wouldnt sell my sprint 1050 though.greedy get that i am.

Posted: 09/12/2012 at 16:04

It's also worth noting that these bikes cost around 100000 rupees in India, which is less than £1200. Even with taxes and the potential change in specs to meet EU regs, then even £3000 seems a bit of a rip off. The same sort of thing is happening with other Indian built bikes like the CBR250R and KTM125/200/350 - cheap in India but the price doubled or in some cases tripled for the european market.

Posted: 10/12/2012 at 09:30

Why are bikes generally more expensive in the UK? For a start, a new 500cc Royal Enfield Classic costs 130000 Rupees in India (not 100000). However, (1) Royal Enfield sell direct to dealers in India - in the UK they sell the bikes to an importer who then sells the bikes to the dealer network, so that's an extra layer of cost (2) we have 20% VAT in the UK (3) many of the components for EU compliance (fuel injection sysetem, European manufactured tyres, etc) have to be imported to india from Europe and fitted to the bikes (4) import duty, freight ... we could go on. And don't forget that the average Briton earns ten times the wage of an average Indian, which massively increases costs ...

Posted: 10/12/2012 at 09:57

Fair points fabbikerboy, but I still don't see how they can justify selling a £1500 for nearly £6000 in the UK. Even with all the markups, they are too expensive for what they are.

Posted: 10/12/2012 at 11:29

I'm not sure where this figure of £6k came from - a basic Bullet 500 is £4250 and a standard Bullet Classic is £5195. Yes, they cost more than in India but the Euro spec bike is considerably different. They're not to everyone's taste but these are proper metal motorcycles that cost v little to run (80mpg and lowest insurance around) that are proper classics

Posted: 10/12/2012 at 15:50

Apologies, you're right, the prices range from £4250 which doesn't seem quite so bad, only double what it costs in India. There is a "fury" model at just under £6000 but clearly this won't be the biggest selling bike in the range.

I suppose you've got to compare them with other bikes sold in the UK, in which case they're not too badly priced, just a side effect of living in a very expensive country.

Posted: 11/12/2012 at 10:12

I had a 1996 Enfield for a couple of years. It was a fun bike to ride, but I made sure never to go anywhere without the toolbag and extra screwdrivers.

Posted: 11/12/2012 at 20:59

I had a 2008 ElectraX for 1 year and 16000 miles commuting.
Cheapest bike I ever owned, dealer was brilliant nothing too much trouble (Richardsons Ripley).
Service, repair costs and fuel economy brilliant (72mpg average).
Then my work moved and I faced a longer motorway commute.
Fond memories.

Posted: 15/12/2012 at 21:08

A pile o' shite at a stupid price. Why buy technology of half a century ago? Or why not pay the prices of the 1950s?



Posted: 17/12/2012 at 00:36

I suppose you,ve got a high tech chinese scooter then?

Posted: 17/12/2012 at 16:43

I own a couple of classic Moto Guzzis and I visit Haywards in Cambridge who are also Enfield dealers. I love classic bikes but just don`t get the modern Enfields at all. The Fury model looks like it was concocted in somebodies garage with a few parts bought off ebay.

Why anybody would wish to own a bike in pseudo military livery is beyond me although I also cannot see the attraction of battle re-enactments etc so I guess there is probably a VERY limited market for such things amongst bearded ale drinkers who are single

I can understand the Hinckley Bonneville and Moto Guzzi V7 Classic thing as they are bikes that, although attractively retro looking, are useable on our modern roads as they are modern bikes that are retro. Enfields are just new old bikes (I don`t believe the fuel injection or electric start change this)

On paper the big positive for Enfields is their economy however I do not doubt that many bikes would obtain similar figures if kept to the same speeds.

If you check out Enfield that are for sale/recently sold on ebay you will see that the majority have averaged approximately 1000 miles a year. There can be several explanations for this;-

Their owners bought them as ornaments

Their owners daren`t take them on long trips

They spend a lot of time off the road being fixed

Their owners own more than one bike and always find an excuse to use their other bike/s.

I supect the last one is quite common.  

Posted: 17/12/2012 at 21:22

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