BS6 Royal Enfield Himalayan: Road Test Review

20 March 2020, 06:39 PM Pratheek Kunder

Introduction

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

This is the 2020 Royal EnfieldHimalayan and it costs Rs 2.32 lakh (on-road Mumbai) making it approximately Rs 8000 more expensive than the BS4 model. But what do you get for those extra thousand rupees? Well, for starters, you get a BS6 compliant motor, some practical new features and it finally gets some fancy colour options.  

We had the opportunity to spend a few days with this Himalayan and this is what we feel about it. 

Quality

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

The Himalayan follows a minimalistic design theme. That means, there isn’t a lot of body panels or things that make the bike look aesthetically different. The only big cycle part that’s visible is the fuel tank. Rest of the parts are either situated inside the frame or on it. As a result, the bike feels and looks quite sturdy. The frame has been nicely weld too.

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

 The paint finish feels a bit premium. The touch and feel of the switchgear is decent. The plastics around the instrument cluster, however, feel cheap. In fact, the buttons on it are super hard to press. The Himalayan can be thrashed around and chances of anything breaking now is slim.

Comfort

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior
Royal Enfield Himalayan

Royal Enfield Himalayan

  • Displacement411 cc
  • Max Power(bhp)24.3 bhp
  • Kerb Weight199 kg
  • ;

Ex-showroom, Mumbai

 1,86,811

One of the strongest points of the Himalayan is the seating ergos. With a seat height of just 800mm, it’s quite easy to swing a leg over.  It might look pretty easy for a 6.2ft tall person like me, but it is actually quite good for the average Indian too. And once you are seated, the seating triangle is perfect. The wide handlebar gives good leverage and it isn’t too far or inside. The footpegs are neutrally set. So touring on it should be comfortable.  

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

And if you are one of those, who will spend a lot of time off-road, well, the good news is, you are going to enjoy the Himalayan because the stand-up ergos are really good. You can reach on to the bar easily, and there’s more than enough space to hold on to the fuel tank. The other aspect of the Himalayan that we appreciate is the suspension setup. It’s comfortable and takes most of the road abuses without a fuss.

Performance

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

The 2020 Himalayan now gets a BS6 compliant motor. The power output has gone down marginally. But what has gone up is the level of refinement. The fuel-injected motor feels and sounds more refined. Even at higher revs, the engine feels stress-free. The Himalayan is now 5kgs heavier. As a result, the power-to-weight ratio has gone down and one can feel that in the lower revs.  

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

The engine feels lazier to go off the start line.  But once in motion, the strong mid-range puts the motorcycle in a decent speed. This Himalayan can easily cruise at 110kmph and you will get minimal vibes. The five-speed gearbox continues to be a bit notchy at low speed.  

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

The brakes on this Himalayan have improved considerably, especially at the rear but the front continues to return a spongy feel. There’s decent bite, but the feeling isn’t nice.  The off-road performance of the Himalayan is commendable. The combination of large ground clearance and long travel suspension makes exploring an easy affair .In fact, the stand-up ergos lets you do some tight trails without the need of adjusting your body every few minutes. 

Technology

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

The BS6 Himalayan is now somewhat tech-friendly as it gets things like fuel-injection and ABS that can be switched off. Most of the other bits like semi-digital instrument cluster and spoke wheels have been carried forward from the older Himalayan. Even in its 2020 avatar, this motorcycle misses out on some important features like LED headlamp, tail-lamp and turn indicators. It doesn’t come with mobile charging point even as an option.  

Fuel Efficiency

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

With a fuel tank capacity of 15 litres and a tested fuel efficiency of 31kmpl, the Himalayan has a riding range of 465kms on a single full tank. But being a fuel-injected motor, it is always good to refuel the motorcycle when the fuel indicator needle touches the quarter-mark.   

Fitness of purpose

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

Adventure bikes have one main purpose – to be versatile. The bike should go wherever the rider wants to take it. Be it the hills. Across the river. Or over a massive pothole. It also needs to be extremely comfortable for the daily commute. The riding position should be comfortable. The feet should reach the ground easily. It also needs be decently fuel efficient. The Himalayan meets all these requirements and that is why it makes for such a wonderful do-it-all motorcycle.   

Our take

Royal Enfield Himalayan Exterior

If you are in the market for a good all-rounder motorcycle, your search should end at the Himalayan. It checks all the right boxes. It’s easy to ride, is comfortable, can do long distance with ease, and when the road ends, the Himalayan can take you places where a normal motorcycle would struggle. The only reason you should avoid this bike is if you want a feature-rich motorcycle.  

Photography by Kapil Angane

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