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Old 30th June 2016, 09:54   #346
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Default Re: The Royal Enfield Himalayan Test-Ride Thread

Test Rode the bike yesterday at Kaytee Motors, Mahipalpur, Delhi.

One word: Disappointed!

I agree the bike is built to a purpose hence the torque is only available in lower gears. However, all I could think off while riding the bike... Its a more torquey Pulsar 220!

The windshield does deflect almost the entire wind blast which was a sweet wellcome for me as I presently ride a 2015 Std 500. Could take the bike to 138 max without crouching but the bike begged for mercy. The seats are plush and the posture just purpose. Since I've owned a classic 500 in the yester years, I could see a world of difference in the build quality. No vibrations whatsoever. I don't know if that was one particular bike, but the handling was stiff and I found it really difficult to sway the bike left right and cut through traffic, a thing which my Standard has never bothered me. Overtaking a fast moving vehicle in 4th and 5th is just not possible and downshifting seemed like stressing the engine unnecessarily.

The console had way much info for a bike that's built for offroad purposes. I didn't even care looking at the odo. The gearshift indicator is lazy, horn is a disaster, power delivery blunder and breaking not upto the mark. The bike was running too heavy as if it was overloaded with I being just over 80 Kg as compared to my standard 500.

Came back to the showroom and handed over the keys., filled in the feedback form and the rating was mostly average. When asked for the feedback, all I could say was "I expected much more out of it". As soon as I exited the showroom, sat on my bike, it felt home and then I immediately realized the difference and concluded that I'm already riding the best out of the RE stable.

FYI below is the pic of my bike.
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Old 30th June 2016, 10:19   #347
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Default Re: The Royal Enfield Himalayan Test-Ride Thread

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Originally Posted by rohing View Post
Thanks all of you for the several tips on braking. Very helpful. The last time I rode a bike on a daily basis was in late 90's. The general rule of thumb that I grew up with (both for cycles & motorcycles at that time) was to be very stingy in using the front brake.
Slightly off-topic so sorry about that.

A lot of that legacy is due to the scooters that we used to ride back then. Most of them had front brakes that were very very poor. In some cases, front brakes would be disconnected by mechanics just to prevent people from using them

The scooters would also have rear mounted engines which meant that weight distribution was different. I rode a friend's old Bajaj Chetak a few days back and the braking experience and the lack of stability was terrifying.

It's a no-brainer to use your front brakes a lot more than your rear. For me it's been an 80:20 bias for fronts in normal conditions. Probably 65:35 when wet/slippery.
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Old 1st July 2016, 21:45   #348
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Default Re: The Royal Enfield Himalayan Test-Ride Thread

Agree with 70F/30R on a straight line, good surface, good tyre scenarios. That's not always the case during panic braking in city rides, majority of times is what I have experienced. So, except that above (perfect) braking condition, go with a combination that helps you with max braking efficiency without locking the wheels, that includes making judgements well ahead of times. Those things are more relevant to the 'effective braking' threads but since REH doesn't have ABS, the age old technique will remain to be the one to practice.

Btw, I have booked Himalayan with RE brand store (Jayanagar, Bangalore) and had a chance to ride it for a short distance. Not good enough to be able to provide a good review here. The test ride bike was well maintained, the gearshift wasn't an issue, could find and slot 1/N/2/3 just fine. I was expecting handlebar to be way more lighter based on the reviews I've read so far (reference is my Machismo 500 again). Looked to good chassis and suspension as per what I have read so far. I'd request the store folks to get me a longer test ride on a day/weekend for more exposure.
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Old 1st July 2016, 23:20   #349
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Default Re: The Royal Enfield Himalayan Test-Ride Thread

OK - so an another 100 kms later, here are a few more questions:

1. What should be tire pressure? Have a feeling that the dealer over inflated the tyres as the ride sometime feels bumpy? [Apologies - not have a manual, I have no other information source for these basic questions]

2. If I go over a speed bump or a pothole fast, the center stand moves up and down a bit. Not sure if it hits the chain but it sure feels like it touches something!

3. What are the modes in the Speedometer console? Does it show DTE? I only managed to figure out the toggling between trip A/B/reset.

4. I am 6ft 1in and the windshield deflects the air straight into my neck/ helmet area. As soon as I cross 60, I can start feeling a lot of wind on my face. Any ideas on how to solve this?

5. For Bangalore city traffic, 2nd seems to be most tractable gear. I wish 3rd gear was more usable in city traffic.

6. Where is the best place to fix a helmet lock?

7. The engine seems to be idling at 2K? Is this normal...seems a little high to me

8. Lost one of small plastic covers near the headlight! RE needs to get better at such minor quality details

9. Windshield vibrates/ foot pegs vibrate a little at 70-80 kmph.

All these observations are in city traffic only. Have not yet got a chance to take it for a big highway spin.
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Old 2nd July 2016, 08:36   #350
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Default Re: The Royal Enfield Himalayan Test-Ride Thread

Not sure this information was shared on other ownership threads.
There is a recall for replacing the rocker shaft and clutch assembly on the Himalayan that will be done free at the ASC.

Probably the hard gear shifts and tappet noise will be resolved.
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Old 2nd July 2016, 09:01   #351
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Originally Posted by rohing View Post
1. What should be tire pressure?

7. The engine seems to be idling at 2K? Is this normal...seems a little high to me
1. Tyre pressure to be maintained is 25 psi (F) and 32 psi (R) for solo. Increase 2 psi each for riding with pillion.
7. The idle should be/can be adjusted by you to a rpm range between 1100 to 1500. Ideally 1150 is sufficient in cold engine.

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Not sure this information was shared on other ownership threads.
There is a recall for replacing the rocker shaft and clutch assembly on the Himalayan that will be done free at the ASC.

Probably the hard gear shifts and tappet noise will be resolved.
It's the rocker arm assembly that they are replacing in 1st lot bikes. Don't know the situation clearly for the 2nd lot bikes such as mine. After the tappet adjustment in 1st service, my bike is riding quite well for now though.

Last edited by navin : 2nd July 2016 at 10:52.
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Old 2nd July 2016, 11:34   #352
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Default Re: The Royal Enfield Himalayan Test-Ride Thread

I went for a test ride yesterday. Here is what i learnt:

Location: Royal Enfield Saket
Distance Riden: 8kms (single rider)
Surfaces ridden on: road, mud, gravel, broken roads
Avg speeds: 40-60kph


1) Engine: The New engine is very different from the old Thumpers. Very smooth, and sounds nice too. A very pleasant surprise. A lot of reviews complain about how the motors does not rev smoothly and has less power, etc. But I noticed no such issue, this bike is designed to be a tourer and in particular in the hills. I dont think you need 10k rpm power there. Gearbox was very different again, far better than the old 'BULT' box. Felt very much like a pulsar gearbox; smooth while running, no false neutrals, but at standstill finding neutral was a task.

2) Ride and comfort: I am 6ft tall and quite heavy. I found the seating to be natural and comfortable. Once on the road, even though i was on a bike after a few months, i was right at home and confident. Suspension is slightly stiffer than i had imagined looking at the bike. One thing i noticed was a slight fatigue on my shoulder muscles, although iam not sure if it was because of the handlebar position or a combination of my extremely sedentary lifestyle and the fact that i was on 2 wheels after 3 months. I did ride into a muddy parking area and tried my hand in a little offroading There were no issues and the Himalayan sailed over mud, a small pile of bricks, some old wooden planks, etc with ease. I was never uncomfortable during any of theses. Being someone who has nil experience riding offroad, id say thats a good job done by RE.

3) Handling and feel: Its no secret that this bike is not meant for corner carving at the Faridabad Gurgaon road on Sunday mornings and this sentiment was confirmed when i rode the Himalayan. The bike is poised and confident while while riding straight and at slow speeds and clutch riding. I really liked that even though i was riding after such a long time and that too a new type of bike, i was completely at home. Didnt really get much space or the opportunity to take corners in the crowded areas of Saket but i feel she can hold her own in the twisties of the Himalayas. Brakes are nice with slightly less bite upfront but responsive rear. Logical since you dont want hyperactive brakes upfront in wet and slushy surfaces. As for vibrations, my test ride bike was smooth and i didnt feel anything upto maybe 4.5k rpm. After that, they did creep in but that didnt bother me at all. There were some annoying sounds coming from the motor that i couldnt really make sense of, maybe the valve rockers that are being changed now. The noise was there but no feel of them anywhere to me.

4) Overall: I liked the bike and can definitely see myself owning one and being happy with it. Its comfortable, smooth, powerful enough for me (i dont believe you need 44 bhp to make a relaxed trip upto Shimla with the wife at back) . The only thing i have a slight doubt on is highway performance. I dont plan on riding down the highway with the taps open, but i do want a bike that can 'cruise' at 100-120 kph without feeling stressed. Can the Himalayan do this? I dont know, owners and other riders, please let me know.
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Old 3rd July 2016, 08:45   #353
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Hi there,

I really liked your ride report and your views do match with mine.
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Originally Posted by naturaldisaster View Post
I went for a test ride yesterday. Here is what i learnt:

4) Overall: I liked the bike and can definitely see myself owning one and being happy with it. Its comfortable, smooth, powerful enough for me (i dont believe you need 44 bhp to make a relaxed trip upto Shimla with the wife at back) . The only thing i have a slight doubt on is highway performance. I dont plan on riding down the highway with the taps open, but i do want a bike that can 'cruise' at 100-120 kph without feeling stressed. Can the Himalayan do this? I dont know, owners and other riders, please let me know.
I would say it all comes down to you, and the roads that you are riding on. Last Sunday, my Dad rode 250kms with me as the pillion. The roads were surprisingly empty, excluding the Sunday biker traffic. He constantly rode at 100-110km/h. Believe it or not, the bike in question is a humble Classic 350 with 14k on the odo which will turn 3 late this year. Yes, she did vibrate, but it was nothing which we couldn't stand. Before this, both of us had read a lot of reports which claimed that the 350 cannot cruise at speeds above 90.

Ideally, the Himalayan should be able to do at least 100-110 km/h quite comfortably, even with a pillion. A long test ride should be able to confirm whether you are at your comfort zone riding the bike at those speeds or not.

Regards,
Neel
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Old 3rd July 2016, 11:01   #354
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Default Re: The Royal Enfield Himalayan Test-Ride Thread

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The only thing i have a slight doubt on is highway performance. I dont plan on riding down the highway with the taps open, but i do want a bike that can 'cruise' at 100-120 kph without feeling stressed. Can the Himalayan do this? I dont know, owners and other riders, please let me know.
Its not about x vs y bhp on the bike. A reserve of extra horsepower is always helpful. Btw most big bikes (even super bikes) cruise at around 120kmph, that's the best speed in India for long distance cruising, even if they can easily do more than double that speed in the blink of an eye.
A bullet is quite stretched doing a 120kmph, mostly on the upper echelons of its performance range, given a dip in the road, slow down due to a truck or headwinds the bike is simply incapable of maintaining that speed. The ideal speed on a bullet where it feels divine is between 70 and 80kmph, but that speed is too slow for any real touring.
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Hi there,

I really liked your ride report and your views do match with mine.

I would say it all comes down to you, and the roads that you are riding on. Last Sunday, my Dad rode 250kms with me as the pillion. The roads were surprisingly empty, excluding the Sunday biker traffic. He constantly rode at 100-110km/h. Believe it or not, the bike in question is a humble Classic 350 with 14k on the odo which will turn 3 late this year. Yes, she did vibrate, but it was nothing which we couldn't stand. Before this, both of us had read a lot of reports which claimed that the 350 cannot cruise at speeds above 90.

Ideally, the Himalayan should be able to do at least 100-110 km/h quite comfortably, even with a pillion. A long test ride should be able to confirm whether you are at your comfort zone riding the bike at those speeds or not.

Regards,
Neel
Owning a Thunderbird 500 all I can say is, the bike can touch 130/140kmph doing single and almost 125-130kmph with pillion, but is it comfortable doing that all day? No. The best speed for cruising is around 80kmph, but again its a slow moped for a 500km a day long run.
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Old 3rd July 2016, 15:30   #355
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Originally Posted by apachelongbow View Post
Owning a Thunderbird 500 all I can say is, the bike can touch 130/140kmph doing single and almost 125-130kmph with pillion, but is it comfortable doing that all day? No. The best speed for cruising is around 80kmph, but again its a slow moped for a 500km a day long run.
There's a huge difference in the cruising ability of a Thunderbird 500 vis--vis the Himalayan. Whereas the TB 500 felt quite rattled at 100kmph, the Himalayan is rock solid. The tyre geometry and the difference in the engine plays a part here in providing the planted feel. You are quite right that the ideal speed for TB 500 on the highways is 80 kmph, hence they feel like mopeds in comparison to the big tourers. The Himalayan on the other hand can cruise all day long at 100+ speeds unlike the Bullets till now, hence the gap is quite narrowed down. This is in comparison to the big bore Harleys, which I own. The modern sports cruisers can at max. cruise @10~20 kmph higher speeds than the Himalayan on a regular basis, that's all. Though the top punch can cross 200kmph on a bike like the Multistrada, whereas the Himalayan can at max do 130~140 kmph.

Cheers....

Last edited by dkaile : 3rd July 2016 at 15:36.
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Old 3rd July 2016, 18:05   #356
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Dkaile, the point is how much reserve power do you have to over take when you are cruising at 100 kmph? Can you go down a gear and hammer the bike without peeing in fright?

This is a great bike for the mountains. And used sensibly on the highways, a very good and affordable tourer.

Can it be compared to a versys or a tiger? NO. there is no replacement for displacement.

Enjoy your ride dkaile. I am looking forward to a ktm 390 adv tourer.
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Old 3rd July 2016, 18:21   #357
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Can it be compared to a versys or a tiger? NO. there is no replacement for displacement.

I am looking forward to a ktm 390 adv tourer.
Keep looking forward to the bike you like mate. But don't underestimate and belittle a bike that's tailor made for India unless you have tried and ridden it for a prolonged distance. Have you tried overtaking in it to substantiate your sarcastic comment? I have, and it does its job with full honors. Tiger is a excellent tourer, best in it's category, and I respect it for what it is, but for the value and overall package it offers, the Himalayan stands apart. You may have all the displacement you want, but then the roads and infrastructure causes more harm than good if that displacement is used to its full potential. The rationale given to me by some of these big bike owners, one of which I own myself, is to taper down your riding style to suit our conditions. If tapering down ultimately needs to be done to ride in India, that is where a package like the Himalayan comes into the picture with the right amount of power and grunt to tackle our terrain with aplomb.

Cheers....

Last edited by dkaile : 3rd July 2016 at 18:31.
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Old 3rd July 2016, 20:16   #358
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Keep looking forward to the bike you like mate. But don't underestimate and belittle a bike that's tailor made for India unless you have tried and ridden it for a prolonged distance. Have you tried overtaking in it to substantiate your sarcastic comment?
Let's agree to disagree dkaile and go our way in so far as displacement is concerned. It's good that we think differently. Where is the fun otherwise?

Like I said, used sensibly on the highway and used well in the mountains, it's a very good affordable all purpose tourer. If I were resident in the himalayas, I would get this bike immediately. And ofcourse a well used 4wd 540.

I think The himalayan is not a sports tourer. The versys and tiger are 90% sports touring biased and 10% off road. The himalayan is 50% touring biased and 50% off road. It is a great true dual sport after the impulse.

Then ofcourse there are people who have been waiting to get their hands on an unaffordable big tourer. It's probably a once in this lifetime thing for most folks. It's similar to you getting your Harley? Both the versys, and the tiger tick this box of being and looking like a big adventure bike that finally someone who has been touring on bullets all their life can aspire to. The class of bikes are fundamentally different. Raining on their party is unfair.

As unfair as maybe urban nomad asking why people buy Harleys when the bike really doesn't do anything beyond making noise and going flat out on a flat highway? It's a very personal thing and I understand.

When I see the himalayan on the road, I always do a double take. I absolutely love the design language.

I am sorry if I came across as being sarcastic. That was honestly not my motive. Unfortunately what we say in speech comes out very differently in writing. Such is an Internet forum.

I wish you all my prayers for a successful trip to the himalayas and a safe return to your loving family. I hope we get to share a meal sometime together.
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Old 4th July 2016, 00:19   #359
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@Red Liner. While points raised by dkaile are substantiated by his experience on the bike and his aux light mods for the Himalayan are the finest on the forum I agree that comparing it to the Tiger is a bit of a stretch. Having owned almost all RE models and an Iron 883 and with my latest acquisition being the Himalayan I still aspire for, desire for a 1200 GS or a Tiger eventually. The VFM can't be matched and my bike after the rocker arm replacement is riding like a dream. To each his own and a toast to the love of riding and this amazing forum.
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Old 4th July 2016, 09:11   #360
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Default Re: The Royal Enfield Himalayan Test-Ride Thread

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I still aspire for, desire for a 1200 GS or a Tiger eventually.
The 1200GS is my ultimate world tourer too and I do plan to have it in my garage some day. Not that I cannot afford it today, I can, but is it right for my riding needs and the Indian conditions in which it will be ridden, that is what is stopping me to go ahead and sign the dotted line. Even after being 6', I could not plant both feet flat on the ground atop a 1200GS and it's alloy rim cracked going over our Indian potholes! It may be a one off incident, but still. And God forbid if I am riding alone off-track and it goes down, who will pick it up? I feel it's baby brother the 800GS or even the lighter Tigers and some Ducatis are more apt for our conditions. The Himalayan for now is an 'experiment' I am undergoing, to help me assess whether I really need the bigger dogs for my Himalayan sojourns, or will they be kept in the closet to protect the costly investment.

Cheers...

Last edited by dkaile : 4th July 2016 at 09:26.
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