Royal Enfield Interceptor 650 Custom Long Term Review: 1000km Report

03 May 2019, 06:34 PM Vikrant Singh

Introduction

It’s has been a month and over 1000km of travel since we welcomed the Royal Enfield Interceptor 650 into our long term fleet. In that time, it has gone through its first service – which included an oil change, re-torqueing of all the nuts and bolts, adjustment and lubrication of the chain, and filling up a feedback form. 

That apart, we have so far only used the bike in the city. And if you are worried about fuel economy, well, it’s neither good nor bad. It’s just par for the course. The bike has been returning a little over 26kmpl. But, to put things in perspective – the bike was only ridden solo, it was used on an 80km daily commute, and it never saw sixth gear while at it. It did however see regular chock-a-block traffic.

Royal Enfield Interceptor 650

Royal Enfield Interceptor 650

  • Displacement648 cc
  • Max Power(bhp)47 bhp
  • Kerb Weight202 kg
  • ;

Ex-showroom, Mumbai

 2,56,372

In the meantime, we have learned a few other things about the Interceptor as a commuter. So, here’s a list of things we like and some we don’t about the bike purely as a machine to commute on…

Things we like

Comfort. Seat, ride, or seating ergos, you name it and the Interceptor has nailed it, especially if you are going to spend long hours commuting at slow speeds. I know many are complaining about the seat being too thin and soft, but I haven’t found it to be uncomfortable at all even during my hour-and-half long ride back home. 

We love the light controls on the 650. It has a light clutch, a light throttle and a surprisingly light steering when the bike is rolling. Moreover, even in crawling traffic, the constant use of the clutch and brake hasn’t left us with aching wrists or forearms. This along with good weight distribution means that we don’t really need to put our feet down even when filtering through traffic, no matter how slow. 

And even when we do, the wide rider footpegs don’t really hinder progress. Yes, these are in the way. But, being foldable and spring loaded, and being slightly rearset means that these fold behind the legs as the bike begins to roll ahead. 

Things we didn't like

Wide exhausts. Now, don’t get us wrong, the twin exhaust setup is fantastic. These look great and sound even better. But, when you have to squeeze through a gap – which as a motorcyclist in Mumbai you are expected to do because otherwise you just get sneered at and pointed at and almost spat on (from a BEST bus) – it’s a challenge. 

It’s like the three, four and six wheeled guys on the roads of Mumbai have perfected the gap needed for a two-wheeler to squeeze through. And the Interceptor with its wide exhausts just doesn’t fit in. So, you either stand in line with the cars or risk scrapping those shiny pipes. It can get harrowing at times. But, to be fair to the bike, I haven’t once scrapped the pipes. Not even on the occasions when I forgot that these are as wide as they look. So maybe, it’s not that bad…

Small mirrors. These needed to be bigger. I get the whole ‘round rear view mirror is retro’ thing. But, it’s not the most practical option. On the Interceptor, the field of view is average at best. And, one has to move the head around to see more in the mirror. And even then, with these mirrors, it’s still best to look back before changing directions. 

What's next?

Since many of you have been asking us about the accessories for the Interceptor 650, we will dedicate our next report to it. We will tell you which ones you must definitely add, and some that you can avoid. 

Bike Stats

Odometer: 1060km

Kilometres ridden this month: 635km

Fuel Efficiency: 26.8kmpl

Photography by Kaustubh Gandhi

Gallery

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