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Royal Enfield is one of the oldest surviving motorcycle manufacturers in the world. Established in 1901, the iconic British manufacturer started off by manufacturing motorcycles, bicycles, lawnmowers, stationary engines and more popularly, weapons. To this day the Royal Enfield continues to use the motto ‘Made like a gun’, as a remembrance of its legacy.
Royal Enfield was acquired by Eicher Motors in 1994, which proved to be a pivotal role in the resurgence of the manufacturer. Though the company continues to make classic-styled and old-school motorcycles which are essentially modernised versions of the early Bullet models from the 1950s, the fortunes of Royal Enfield have turned and it is one of the fastest growing bike makers in the country. However, while the Classic set the company on a path of unprecedented growth, a few models like the Continental GT had to make do with a muted response.
Making the most of its image as a lifestyle motorcycle manufacturer, Royal Enfield has so far managed to hold its turf despite having a line-up which is, to be frank, quite out-dated. Having established its foothold in the Indian market, Royal Enfield is now aiming at widening its footprint at a global level. Off late, the company has been making its presence felt on a global scale by setting up exclusive dealerships in Europe, Gulf and the US.
The Royal Enfield portfolio currently comprises of Bullet, Electra, Classic, Thunderbird, Himalayan and the Continental GT. Of these, the Bullet, Classic and Thunderbird are available in two versions powered by 350cc and 500cc engines. While all the models have stayed true to the company’s traditional character, a few specific models do get their share of modern tech in the form of fuel injection, projector headlamp and digital instrument cluster. If reports are to be believed, ABS is soon expected to join this list.