Legacies serve as a valuable foundation, keeping you connected to your roots. For Royal Enfield, its rich heritage has always been just as influential as the brand itself, a strength the manufacturer has leveraged repeatedly. However, in 2016, Royal Enfield took a daring step to redefine its identity. The Himalayan symbolized the brand’s fresh perspective on motorcycling—an adventure tourer crafted in India and designed to be accessible, a groundbreaking achievement.
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450
The Royal Enfield Himalayan, neither as retro as RE’s 350/500 motorcycles nor as modern as a Japanese cruiser, was originally designed for exploration, both in a literal and metaphorical sense. It’s safe to say that this adventure bike quickly found its dedicated following. Fast forward seven years, and Royal Enfield is tasked with establishing a new legacy for the Himalayan. This rugged machine is eagerly awaiting an update, and that’s precisely what the brand has accomplished. They have reimagined the Himalayan, preserving its utility while enhancing its capabilities. Can the revamped Himalayan meet expectations and even surpass them? To find out, we embarked on a 300-kilometer ride in its birthplace, the Himalayas.
Out with the old and in with the new, the upcoming Himalayan 450 is poised to take the place of the previous Himalayan 411 with a completely fresh platform. While the design represents an evolution, Royal Enfield asserts that not a single component has been carried over from the earlier model. The motorcycle has been meticulously constructed from the ground up, embodying novelty in every aspect. The distinctive styling remains instantly recognizable, yet you can’t help but notice that this version appears to have hit the gym amidst the mountains.
With dimensions of 2,245 mm in length, 852 mm in width, and 1,316 mm in height, the new Himalayan measures 55 mm longer and 12 mm wider, but stands 54 mm shorter than its predecessor. The wheelbase has also seen an increase, now spanning 1,510 mm.
Not only have the proportions improved, but the new Himalayan also boasts an enhanced road presence. It appears notably larger visually, particularly with the replacement of the industrial design by a more stylish bulbous fuel tank and a sleek exhaust. The design cues inspired by Dakar motorcycles are hard to overlook, leaving you wondering if the brand harbors any aspirations of entering the world’s most challenging rally. Perhaps, it’s a wishful thought.