First we rode it in and around Goa for a day to bring you the first ride review. Then, we rode it from Mumbai to Goa and some, to bring you a more comprehensive 1000km road test. We followed that up with a three-bike comparison test which included the KTM 390 Duke and the BMW G310R. That’s a total of over 2,000kms of testing for one single bike.
But, clearly that wasn’t enough for us. So, now we have the new Royal Enfield Interceptor 650 on a long-term test. And, why are we subjecting this particular bike to such scrutiny? Well, for one, it is the Indian Motorcycle of the Year, the highest accolade a motorcycle can achieve in the Indian sub-continent.
And then, through all of our tests (mentioned above), the Interceptor didn’t throw up a single mechanical fault. That’s unheard of for a Royal Enfield. But then, we used three different samples for each of these tests. Not that we don’t recognise the splendid job done by RE – we are amazed! – but, there’s no harm in reconfirming the same now, is there?
So, the plan for this long-term test is to cover 5,000km over a period of six months on one specimen. And, then highlight the good and the not-so-good. We also intend on telling you how you can make the most of the motorcycle if you have already bought it, or decide to buy one in the near future.
So, whether it be the complete lowdown on official accessories, or fine-tuning the riding ergos, or even setting up the suspension, we will cover it all over the span of these six months. But for now, let us just bring you up to speed with the bike…
This here is the Custom version. It retails for Rs 3.11 lakhs on the road in Mumbai, and compared to the standard Interceptor, there are a few cosmetic differences. This one has black fenders, a black headlamp dome, and black mirrors. It also runs black rims and black telescopic forks. And it comes in two special colours. This one is the Ravishing Red.
Otherwise, it’s all the same. The same kerb weight of over 200kg, the same bulb lighting (instead of LEDs) and, the same archaic instrumentation. But, it also has the same smooth, torquey, and rev-happy engine. The same slick-shifting gearbox. And, identically good quality levels.
Next time we will tell you how it is to live and commute with in the city.
Photography by Kaustubh Gandhi