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Old 4th January 2024, 14:29   #1
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Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review


Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Pros



• All-new, thoroughly improved, contemporary motorcycle that competes a segment higher than before - but still very much a Himalayan!
• Well-rounded package that delivers on most wishlist items from prospective customers - adjustable seat height options and riding modes widen the customer base
• Good looking motorcycle with big-bike dimensions and feel. Substantial stance similar to 500-650 cc ADVs
• 39.5 BHP engine allows new-found expressway cruising abilities. Performance is deceptively fast in the midrange, and the 6-speed gearbox with the slip and assist clutch helps to stay there all day long. Best experienced between 3,000 to 7,000 rpm
• Instrument cluster is a class act! Circular TFT with connectivity and Google Maps navigation is segment-best even two segments above
• Well-tuned Showa suspension dismisses bad roads and potholes with ease. Ride quality is excellent at speeds
• Longer wheelbase offers excellent highway stability. Handling is neutral and the tyres feel adequate for the performance on offer
• 21” front wheel, 224 mm ground clearance, 200 mm suspension travel at both ends - make for a very capable machine off-road
• Good pricing. Undercuts most rivals on price and justifies the price jump over the earlier generation. A comprehensive accessory and merchandise catalogue launched too
• Has grabbed the nation's attention! Never had to answer so many queries while out on a motorcycle - superbikes included

Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Cons



• 452 cc engine's linear power delivery masks the performance on offer. The motor delivers neither the low-end torque pull of the old Himalayan nor the high rpm rush of some rivals
• Single-cylinder vibrations are present throughout the revv-range. Not a deal breaker and no resonance experienced at any rpm range, but certainly not dismissible either
• At 196 kg - the Himalayan is heavy compared to single-cylinder rivals. The motorcycle feels very well-balanced on the move, but top-heavy during parking manoeuvres and when taking the bike off the side and centre stand
• Poor lamps all around. Headlamp is woefully inadequate and the quirky new indicator stalk + tail lamp vibrate on bad roads, making it blurry for traffic behind
• Saddling ergonomics are slightly amiss for taller people. The handlebar feels a bit low and the tank fails to support the knees
• Fit and finish could be improved. Good overall build is marred by poor execution of touchpoint items like the joystick switch, indicator switch, etc. Also, the stock mirror is useless at highway speeds
• Missing features for rider control like traction control, IMU / cornering ABS, quick shifter, adjustable clutch and brake levers, backlit switchgear, etc.
• The much-awaited tubeless spoke wheels have been delayed for the Indian market due to supplier homologation issues
• Concerns about freshly brewed technology. The Sherpa engine is the first-ever liquid-cooled motor from Royal Enfield

Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-20231229_180818_1_1600.jpg

Introduction



The Royal Enfield Himalayan, launched in 2016, was one of India's first attempts at adventure touring. Royal Enfield motorcycles were always a favourite in the mountains - but the Himalayan was their first bike designed to do just that! The bike was revolutionary for Royal Enfield in 2016 and came with the right specs for the time - the LS410 engine producing ~25 BHP, a 21-inch front wheel and significant suspension travel at both ends. Although quality issues marred the initial few years - sales and reputation picked up later and the Himalayan established itself as a cheap, fun motorcycle both in India and abroad. Come 2023 though - the market had far moved on! As seen in our 'two-wheeler of the year' threads- the market focus is now on the ~300-400 cc, ~40 BHP machines.

Enter the second generation! Designed for the Himalayas, the modern Indian expressways and the foreign A2 markets - the Himalayan now jumped a segment higher and has gone significantly upmarket. The all-new 452 cc 'Sherpa' engine that delivers 39.5 BHP @ 8,000 rpm and 40 Nm torque @ 5,500 rpm is the first-ever liquid-cooled motor from Royal Enfield. The technology showcase doesn't stop there - Showa USD forks, a brand new steel twin-spar frame, slip and assist clutch, ride-by-wire throttle with four riding modes, adjustable and accessible seat height options, optional tubeless spoke wheels (to be launched in the coming months) and even a claimed "world's first" circular TFT display with in-built Google maps! Even the accessory and merchandise list is exhaustive and well thought-out with options ranging from panniers to helmets.

Royal Enfield has literally pulled out all the stops to ensure the Himalayan is a truly contemporary rival in the international A2 scene.

Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Pricing


The 2024 2nd-generation Royal Enfield Himalayan was launched in India at an introductory price of Rs.2.69 lakhs ex-showroom. The pricing has been well received by the market - and goes up directly against the Triumph Scrambler 400X while offering more motorcycle for the price. Direct rivals like the KTM 390 Adventure and the BMW 310GS are distinctly more expensive than the Royal Enfield. As of 1st January 2024 - the introductory prices have been revised. The model range now retails at Rs. 2.85 lakhs onwards.

There is no doubt that the Himalayan has grabbed the nation's attention - also helped by the well-executed launch blitzkrieg! I never had to answer so many queries while out on a motorcycle - superbikes included. In fact, the new Himalayan has also been voted by BHPians as the Team-BHP 2-Wheeler of the Year, 2023!

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 9th January 2024 at 06:05.
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Design & Styling



Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06809_1600.jpg

In its second generation- the Himalayan has undergone a full redesign, gaining generous proportions and yet - retaining the design philosophy that made it uniquely identifiable as one!

Whereas the first generation was best described as functional, the new one can even be called good looking! Royal Enfield has primarily achieved this by going longer (length increased by 55 mm) and shorter (height reduced by 44 mm). The frame is all-new, the new bike sits on a steel twin-spar tubular frame as against the half duplex, split cradle of the original. Wheelbase sees a significant jump as well, up by 45 mm now. The bike looks and feels larger than direct competition like the KTM 390 Adventure or the Triumph Scrambler 400X - and more in line with twin-cylinder competition like the Honda CB500X.

These new proportions have ensured that the bike can pull off the 21" front wheel without it looking slightly out of proportion as with the old bike. In essence - the circular headlamps, the short visor on top, and the bare metal tubular headlamp fairing - all are elements shared with the original, but now look more fluid and sculpted in their design. Talking of fluid shapes - the tank is extremely well designed and seems to take inspiration from adventure bikes like the Triumph Tiger 800. Tank capacity is now at 17 litres (up by 2L) and feels much larger, but becomes narrow towards the seat to allow the rider to hug the tank perfectly.

There is minimal badging on the motorcycle - as if the company is sure of its heritage being easily identifiable. Subtle 'Royal Enfield' branding is present on the metal headlamp fairings, whereas the front fork covers carry the 'Himalayan' badging. Lest you forget, there is a prominent badge near the fuel cap as well that only serves to remind the rider of which bike he is riding. The badging on the side panel covers of the last generation has been done away with - the panels themselves have become very minimalistic. Speaking of which - the exhaust is well designed, upswept well enough for water wading, and low enough to provide luggage mount space - all the while looking petite when viewed from the rear.

Where RE has gone truly adventurous (and unnecessarily so IMHO) is with the tail section. The fenders are now straight with the extension housing the number plate and the tail lamps / indicators. These indicator stalks that double up as tail-lamps might have trickled down from the big bikes (like the Harleys and the upcoming BMW 1300 GS), but I struggle to understand the need to fix something that ain't broken in the Indian context. Not only do I think these split tail lamps look ugly when switched on, but I also found them to be vibrating quite a bit on the rough patches. With brake lamps and indicators on, and with the vibrations of those stalks over rough patches - I found it difficult to decipher what was happening when I was following the Himalayan on another motorcycle. Anyway, moving on from the rant - the tail section is completed by a functional luggage rack that can hold a maximum capacity of 7kgs.

The Himalayan comes in five colours - Hanle Black, Slate Poppy Blue, Slate Himalayan Salt, Kaza Brown and Kamet White (our test ride bike).

Overall, Id say this is quite a nice redesign of the original that is unlikely to offend anyone for its looks. There is no doubt that future products will be based on this platform, starting with the upcoming roadster that has already been spied testing.

Build Quality, Fit & Finish



Fit & finish is generally top-notch with the tight feeling on the move reminding you that the bike is well put together. Those of us who associate Royal Enfield with metal more than plastic would not be disappointed. Out on the road - the motorcycle feels like it can take on quite a beating over the rough stuff.

That said - there are a few areas where the quality has slipped and that takes away from the premium experience IMHO. To start with - the indicator stalk on the LHS console feels cheap with the exposed bare metal finish visible beyond the plastic. And right down below it - the joystick button which is five-way operational feels like it can give up after a few months of use. Moreover, the joystick does not offer much feedback for operation - and pressing the button sometimes makes it do another operation (right or up, for example!) than what was intended. Another item that doesn't stay where you intend it - is the stock mirrors, which are completely useless at highway speeds!

Wiring is mostly neatly routed alongside the frame with no ungainly visual elements, but some of the frame and clips for the wiring could have been better concealed around the handlebar section. The paint quality is excellent on some colours like Hanle Black, whereas I found it to be very good on the matte/satin finished colours. Not happy with the stickers on the matte finish though - the test motorcycle has already started collecting dust along the periphery.

Features and Instrumentation



The Himalayan is undoubtedly the most feature-loaded motorcycle in the Royal Enfield lineup. The bike comes equipped with TFT instrumentation, ride-by-wire throttle, slipper clutch, dual channel ABS with switchable rear and four riding modes. But it is still far off from being the most tech-loaded bike in the segment - with features like traction control, IMU / cornering ABS, quick shifter, adjustable clutch and brake levers, backlit switchgear, etc being conspicuous in their absence.

That said - Royal Enfield has absolutely hit it out of the park with the instrumentation - the round TFT looks and feels class apart, especially when it can be used with Google Maps navigation. Whereas others like Harley Davidson have been content at placing square displays inside round console - Royal Enfield truly has gone the whole hog and developed a (claimed) world-first. I am generally a fan of analogue instrumentation on motorcycles and think most connectivity features are a gimmick - but this display and navigation truly works. Take a bow, RE! However...

Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06631_1_1600.jpg

... It is not all rosy and has a few improvement areas - the most important one being the need to have the phone screen turned ON when using navigation. Google Maps is being cast from your phone to the TFT display via the Royal Enfield App, so the navigation needs your screen to be unlocked. This drains the phone and also defeats the purpose of having navigation on the display - I would have rather preferred to keep my phone in the pocket than plugged into a mobile holder in the handlebar. Secondly - as mentioned above, the joystick button needs major improvements and does not offer much feedback for operation. The first one, I hope, can be easily sorted with a software update on the RE app. Whereas the latter needs better hardware in future versions.

Switchgear otherwise is comprehensive - though looks borrowed from other stablemates at first look. RHS switchgear consists of ignition and dedicated buttons for hazard warning and riding modes. LHS switchgear consists of a home button (functionally more of a back button in the menu), headlamp controls, indicators, horn and the infamous joystick as mentioned a couple of times above. The ease of switching riding modes will be appreciated by customers. Point to note - some of the menu functions are disabled while on the move - so you may have to come to a stop to change the display options. Some of the options available to be configured through the display include a clock, ambient air temperature, ride mode, side stand indicator and gear indication.

Lighting all around is LED, but the headlamp is woefully inadequate - so much so that at times I could barely make out the high beam flashing! AUX light purchase cannot be avoided if you are into night riding. Powering all the electricals is a 12 V - 8 Ah VRLA battery from Amaron.

Wheels & Tyres



Royal Enfield was one of the first to offer an offroad-spec 21" front wheel for the entry-level ADV segment and the same continues to the second generation. The bike comes equipped with 90/90 R21 CEAT Gripp RE F tyres in the front and 140/80 R17 CEAT Gripp Rad steel RE tyres at the rear. Please note that although these are both tubeless tyres, they have been used with tubes for this application with normal spoke wheels. The much-awaited tubeless spoke wheels have been delayed for the Indian market due to supplier homologation issues.

As the name indicates - these tyres have been specifically developed for the Himalayan by CEAT in collaboration with Royal Enfield. In three days of riding, I found nothing to complain about the tyres - they took both the rough and the smooth with ease. Corners felt predictable and the bike felt like it would stick to the assigned lane despite hard cornering. That said, no comments on the wet performance of these tyres - due to weather conditions prevalent during the test period.

Ergonomics and Comfort



The first-generation Himalayan was always praised for its ergonomics - many riders have, over the years, expressed that it fit them like a glove! While it had some shortcomings in space for tall and well-built riders - the seat height at 800 mm made it one of the most accessible options in the ADV world.

With the increased proportions - the new Himalayan has a taller seat you no longer sit 'inside' the bike as earlier. However, Royal Enfield has also played it wisely with the adjustment options so as to suit a larger base of customers. The standard seat is adjustable from 825 mm to 845 mm, whereas an optional low seat is available which can be used to drop the height between 825mm and 805 mm. That should suit a lot of riders - but do be mindful of the weight if you are not able to flat foot. Don't just go by the absolute seat height numbers though! Thanks to some clever design from RE - the front section of the seat and the center panels of the bike are quite slim as compared to the rest of the bike - so you can more easily get your feet down. At 845 mm - the tallest setting, on paper, is 5 mm higher than the Kawasaki Versys 650. However - while I cannot flatfoot both sides on the Versys, it was easily possible on the Himalayan.

Overall, the ergonomics are excellent, especially while seated. The handlebar is set slightly lower than earlier - but you still sit in a commuter position and can do long days in the saddle. The short windscreen is more effective than I expected during highway speeds, but that is only for direct windblast and the rider gets badly affected at the slightest of crosswinds. The clutch and brake levers are non-adjustable, but felt ok for my hand size (you may need to check for yours). The gear and brake levers seem to be designed to accommodate ADV and MX boots easily - but on the flip side - I felt them to be slightly higher than expected for regular usage. Don't be surprised to see Himalayan owners unknowingly riding the rear brakes. The gear lever also needs some getting used to - downshifts are especially messy to get right till you get used to the bike. The friendly ergonomics also mean the footpegs are placed just where your feet would go when attempting to put the feet down / push the motorcycle around while seated - a common issue seen with tourers and needs to be worked around!

Riding stance for perspective. I'm 5'11" and the bike is at the 845 mm option first:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06543_1600.jpg

And 825mm option next (Notice that the gap between the seat and the frame has significantly reduced):
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06577_1600.jpg

Although I'm not an expert in offroad riding - I noticed two issues when riding standing up. First - the tank and centre section are really lean, not to mention painted and smooth and you struggle to get a grip with your knees. And second - the handlebar seemed a bit on the lower side for my height of 5'11". That said, the offroad pegs are wide enough and serrated and offer a comfortable perch for the rider - the rubber can even be removed for offroad expeditions.

For reference - shown below with BHPian KarthikK, who is 6'1":
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06894_1600.jpg

Royal Enfield has managed to reduce 3 kg from the earlier generation - despite the size and feature additions packed in! That said - at 196 kg, the Himalayan is much heavier than similar single-cylinder rivals - weighing 11 kg and 19 kg more than the Triumph Scrambler 400X and the KTM 390 Adventure, respectively. As with the dimensions - the weight also reminds you of parallel-twin motorcycles like the Honda CB500X which weighs 199 kg. On the move, you do not feel the additional weight, offroad or in the corners - the motorcycle feels well-balanced and agile.

But there is no escaping this weight during parking manoeuvres and when taking the bike off the side and center stand. Also, in those situations - the motorcycle feels heavier than the previous generation (possibly due to a higher center of gravity) unlike what the figures suggest. Putting the bike on the main stand is just not for everyone! That said - aggravating the feeling of weight is also the side stand design and lean - the bike leans over way too much and if parked on a slope - picking the bike back up from the side stand will prove quite the exercise.

Pillion Comfort



I rode with pillion for about 100 km and the pillion was all praises for the comfort offered by the Himalayan. For starters - the seating posture is very natural and as if in a chair (the legs almost approach 90 degrees), the seat base is long and wide, while the cushioning has the right firmness to it. The linear power delivery ensures no unpleasant kickbacks for the pillion and the Showa suspension provides a smooth ride. With a top box in place - this will be one of the most comfortable motorcycles for touring with a pillion. On the flip side - the pillion seat is not much raised than the rider - at just an additional 5 mm more, restricting the view ahead.

Shown here with BHPian rbp who is 5'10", the rider being 5'11" with the rider seat set at 825mm:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc07006_1600.jpg

(Point to note: Rear preload has not been adjusted for the above pic and is at the default softest setting)

Fuel Tank Capacity & Range



The fuel tank capacity is 17 litres and assuming fuel efficiency is in the ballpark of 25 km/l, this should be good for about 375 km before the bike requires a refill. The Himalayan is E20 compatible, with a sticker near the fuel cap prominently proclaiming this.

Maintenance



After an initial checkup of 500 km / 45 Days, the bike comes with a service interval of 5,000 km / 6 months. However - every alternate service is a general checkup and an oil change is recommended only once a year / 10,000 km. The first four services come with labour charges excluded.

Standard & Extended Warranty



The bike comes with a 36-month / 30,000 km warranty from the date of sale, whichever is earlier. Dealers are offering extended warranty up to 5 years. We strongly recommend taking the maximum extended warranty option available.

Last edited by Omkar : 4th January 2024 at 14:30.
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Riding the Royal Enfield Himalayan 450


The second generation Himalayan is powered by a 452 cc single cylinder, 4 stroke, DOHC, liquid-cooled motor - christened the 'Sherpa'. This engine produces 39.5 BHP @ 8,000 rpm and 40 Nm torque @ 5,500 rpm:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06481_1600.jpg

This new motor is also the first-ever liquid-cooled engine from Royal Enfield. Featuring a compression ratio of 11.5:1 and coupled to a 6-speed gearbox and slip & assist clutch - the powertrain is competitive on paper against modern competition from Triumph and KTM. Traditionally, Royal Enfields have been known for their long-stroke motors and even the LS411 had a lazy bore stroke measurement of 78 mm x 86 mm. Shockingly - the Sherpa motor is square, bordering on short stroke! Featuring an 84 mm bore and an 81.5 mm stroke - Royal Enfield claims that this motor produces more torque than the old Himalayan, all the way from ~2500 rpm to 8000 rpm.

That said, the laws of physics can't be so easily overcome and the new Himalayan falls seriously short of the low-end torque pull of the earlier generation. Releasing the clutch off idle, the bike crawls forward at 10 km/h, but it feels strained and prepared to stall at the hint of an obstacle. You may need a slight throttle and clutch play when moving from idle in 1st. Similarly in 2nd and 3rd gears as well, the bike will pull forward at 17 km/h and 20 km/h respectively without any accelerator inputs, although making its disapproval known quite audibly. This motorcycle is just not happy below 2,000 rpm and if you are used to the older Enfields, relearn your habits. Period.

Above 2,000 rpm, the violent disapproval turns to one of submission and from 2,000 to 3,000 rpm it feels like the bike has accepted the reality that it needs to get a move on. The first hint of real life comes at 3,000 rpm which is a sweet spot for sedate city use, but the real performance of this motor resides between 4,000 to 7,000 rpm where the torque curve feels linear and unwavering. Keep the bike in this rpm range and the progress is deceptively fast. Even capable of giving the men in orange a run for their money. Even though the peak power is delivered at the redline of 8,000 rpm, it feels the most exciting when kept at 7,000. The rpm needle starts flashing red post 8,000 and a smooth fuel cut-off happens at ~8,500 rpm.

Speaking of the Orange machine - that guy would most likely have a wider grin on his face despite the Himalayan being neck to neck in performance with him. The linear power delivery of the Himalayan masks the feel of the actual performance on offer. Coupled with the long wheelbase, many a time you are taken by surprise with the speeds shown on the console. Secondly, the Himalayan motor, although free-revving, lacks the mad top-end rush that the rival is known for! On the plus side, the Sherpa 452 with its ride-by-wire throttle calibration seems to have a dual character that can do a bit of both - relaxed highway touring (whereas the KTMs are always eager to run away) and spirited runs.

The bike now has new-found expressway cruising abilities, and both 80 km/h and 100 km/h come up in the meat of the torque band, i.e. at 4,000 rpm and 5,000 rpm respectively in 6th gear. Coupled with the excellent suspension and long wheelbase - this one is a brilliant mile muncher on the expressways, but an absolute blast on two-lane state highways and B-roads:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-100kmphcruising.jpeg

The gear lever needs some getting used to - downshifts are especially messy to get right till you get used to the bike. All riders did complain of missing downshifts, an issue which I faced as well initially. But once used to the bike, I could get away with even aggressive downshifts when tested with both my touring and sporty riding shoes as well. Upshifts work well and click into place with a very positive feel.

Riding Modes



Four riding modes are available:
• Performance + ABS ON
• Performance + Rear ABS OFF
• ECO + ABS ON
• ECO + Rear ABS OFF

The ride mode can be viewed and changed by pressing the "M" button on the RHS switchgear. ECO mode is interesting as it reduces the power output of the first 4 gears. Royal Enfield claims that the power delivery in ECO mode is reminiscent of the original Himalayan. I found the ECO mode to be useful in city usage and it also helps deliver better fuel efficiency.

While the 4-gears thought process is a bit interesting on paper, I found the logic to be slightly flawed in the highway scenario. For example, you accelerate your way progressively through the first 4 gears and slot into 5th and 6th, the motor feels like the restraints have been removed and it starts performing with the full vigour of a 40 BHP motorcycle in these two gears. However, suppose you have to brake and downshift into 4th or 3rd and then try to pull off with the same eagerness - you suddenly are dealing with a ~ 25 BHP motorcycle once again! That somehow felt more of a buzzkill to me than having all 6 gears in a low-power map for ECO mode.

Refinement & NVH



Once again, the laws of physics raise their ugly head. With a large single-cylinder motor, vibrations are present throughout the revv-range. Unlike the modern J-series 350cc motors from RE, this one even has visible vibration on the handlebars at idle. I could not even identify a particular rpm in which vibrations came on or went off. They were a constant companion. Most of the time, a buzz can be felt on the tank, seat and footpegs. Thankfully, no resonance was experienced at any rpm range and it doesn't get harsh enough to restrict revvs, which means the vibrations are not a deal-breaker for me, but certainly not dismissible either. This is a definite area of improvement for Royal Enfield!

Coming to the exhaust note, gone is the bassy, lazy, long-stroke exhaust note of the old Himalayan. IMHO, the new Himalayan is perhaps the most generic-sounding motorcycle from RE. While riding the motorcycle, you could confuse it for a Hero or KTM depending on the throttle inputs. The only saving grace is a generous dollop of pops and rumbles from the exhaust when closing the throttle off.

Suspension and Handling



Quite interesting to see technology trickling down into lower segments. The first time I heard the magic of Showa was back in 2016 when the Versys 650 was launched with Showa SFF. 7 years down the line, my current motorcycle, the Triumph Tiger Sport 660 also rides on non-adjustable 41 mm forks from Showa. Hence my curiosity levels peaked upon seeing the Himalayan getting launched with Showa 43 mm USD forks (non-adjustable) with 200 mm suspension travel up front, coupled to a mono-shock at the rear, also with 200 mm travel. Happy to report that the performance doesn't disappoint. The suspension is one of the biggest highlights of this motorcycle.

Starting from idle, you notice a slight inherent stiffness in the suspension, but not cumbersome in the city by any means. Where larger potholes are still dealt with plushness. The real magic starts as the speeds climb and the suspension starts to flatten most of the road irregularities. With the 21" wheel upfront, even the smaller speed breakers are dismissed without a second thought. As expected on a bike with longer suspension travel, there is a certain amount of nose dive experienced when grabbing the brakes, but nothing alarming here. The base tune of this suspension setup is excellent and most owners will not miss any adjustability whatsoever.

The rear suspension feels even more plush than the front - however, do note that the 6-step preload adjuster is kept at its softest setting from the factory. Although the ride quality was brilliant even with a pillion, I would have preferred to tighten the preload to avoid the sagging rear with pillion weight. Preload can be increased by rotating the adjuster clockwise using a C-spanner provided in the tool kit. A remote preload adjuster could have been a welcome addition, but then not a negative point considering the price and segment.

As mentioned earlier, the Himalayan is a heavy motorcycle, but the weight is very well masked once on the move. Through corners, the suspension feels reassuring and the bike maintains the line through corners despite slight mid-corner undulations.

Braking



Braking duties are handled by ByBRE, Brembo's budget brand, which has now become the mainstay of most bikes in the segment. The setup consists of a 320 mm ventilated disc up front with double-piston calipers and a 270 mm ventilated disc at the rear with a single-piston caliper. Dual-channel ABS comes standard, and in the interest of offroad abilities, the rear channel can be switched off when required.

Overall the setup is excellent and performs the job efficiently. Front brakes have a soft initial bite, perhaps to aid off-road riding. However, upon pulling the lever harder the bike decelerates rapidly and does not leave you wanting for more bite. There is a certain amount of nose dive experienced when grabbing the brakes but not alarming in this case.

The rear bite is powerful, perhaps too much for a ~200 kg machine. With ABS off, it is very well possible to lock the rear wheels on the road or off-road. Unlike in many rival motorcycles, the rear bite is powerful enough to bring the vehicle to a halt by itself, but it is far more effective to use the front brakes instead.

Closing Thoughts



The Himalayan was not a full-on love at first ride, and it took me some time to get used to the characteristics of the vehicle. Once you become familiar with a couple of factors like the rpm sweet spot and the gearshifts to keep you in that zone, the Himalayan is a fun motorcycle to ride and own. Deceptively fast on the expressways and extremely enjoyable on good 2-lane roads. The engine isn't even the main highlight here, it is the mechanical package that is well complemented with a good chassis, excellent suspension, good tyres and brakes setup. As a BHPian commented, things can only get better from here on, and if the engine can be made a little bit more refined and the engine tune tweaked, this package will be flawless! But even now, it is certainly an excellent contender for a one-motorcycle garage.

Last edited by Omkar : 4th January 2024 at 15:04.
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Old 4th January 2024, 14:29   #4
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Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Images


In its second generation, the Himalayan has undergone a full redesign, gaining generous proportions and yet retaining the design philosophy that made it uniquely identifiable as one!
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06480_1.jpg

In essence, the circular headlamp, the short visor on top, and the bare metal tubular side frame all are elements shared with the original, but now look more fluid and sculpted in their design:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06474_1.jpg

Royal Enfield has primarily achieved this by going longer (length increased by 55 mm) and shorter (height reduced by 44 mm):
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06463_1600.jpg

Wheelbase sees a significant jump as well, up by 45 mm now:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06457_1600.jpg

Where RE has gone truly adventurous (and unnecessarily so IMHO) is with the tail section. The quirky new indicator stalk + tail lamps vibrate on bad roads, making it illegible for traffic behind:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06468.jpg

LED headlamp are shared with other RE models like the Super Meteor 650:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06488.jpg

A look at the headlamp in their high beam, low beam and parking DRL modes. It is woefully inadequate so much so that at times I could barely make out the high beam flashing!
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-hl.jpg

The metal tubular side frame fairings are a characteristic carried forward from the old Himalayan:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06598.jpg

Stock mirror is useless at highway speeds, it has a poor field of view and just doesn't stay in place!
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06512_1600.jpg

Switchgear is comprehensive - though looks borrowed from other stablemates in the first look. RHS switchgear consists of ignition and dedicated buttons for hazard warning and riding modes. LHS switchgear consists of a home button (functionally more of a back button in the menu), headlamp controls, indicators, horn and the infamous joystick as mentioned above. Levers are non-adjustable:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-switchgear_1600.jpg

5V, 2A Type C charging port is provided on the handlebar with a spring-loaded cap:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc07013_1600.jpg

Front suspension duties are handled by Showa 43 mm USD forks with 200 mm suspension travel:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06494_1600.jpg

The bike comes equipped with 90/90 R21 CEAT Gripp RE F tyres in the front with tube spoke wheels. Braking duties at the front are handled by ByBRE 320 mm ventilated discs with double piston calipers. Himalayan branding is prominent on the fork protectors. Also, note the neat way the wire has been pulled from right to left over the wheel:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06509_1600.jpg

A plastic radiator guard comes as standard. Interesting design protrudes outwards away from the wheel to minimize damage from stone chips thrown by the wheel:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06599_1600.jpg

Tank capacity is now at 17 litres (up by 2 litres):
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06526_1600.jpg

The tank feels much larger, than the original but becomes narrow towards the seat to allow the rider to hug the tank perfectly when seated:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-20231230_175331.jpg

A close look at the split seats offered on the Himalayan:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06706_1600.jpg

As mentioned earlier, seat height is adjustable and suits a variety of riders. The standard seat is adjustable from 825 mm to 845 mm, whereas an optional low seat is available which can be used to drop the height between 825 mm and 805 mm. The rider seat height adjustment option is available on the bottom side of the rider seat. To increase or decrease - just need to change the front and rear end seat rod slot from between the two options as shown in the picture:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06755_1600.jpg

Offroad pegs are wide enough and serrated and offer a comfortable perch for the rider. The rubber can even be removed for offroad expeditions:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06621_1600.jpg

Exhaust is well designed, upswept well enough for water wading, and low enough to provide for luggage mount space. All the while looking petite when viewed from the rear:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06688_1600.jpg

The fenders are now straight with the extension housing the number plate and the tail lamps / indicators. The tail section is completed by a functional luggage rack that can hold a maximum capacity of 7 kg:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06704.jpg

These indicator stalks that double up as tail-lamps might have trickled down from the big bikes (like the Harleys and the upcoming BMW 1300 GS), but I struggle to understand the need to fix something that ain't broken. Not only do I think these split tail lamps look ugly when switched on, but I also found them to be vibrating quite a bit on the rough patches. With brake lamps and indicators on, and with the vibrations of those stalks over rough patches - I found it difficult to decipher what was happening when I was following the Himalayan on another motorcycle:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06951.jpg

With the hazard warnings OFF and ON:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-tl_1600.jpg

The bike comes equipped with 140/80 R17 CEAT Gripp Rad steel RE tyres at the rear. Braking duties at the rear are handled by ByBRE 270 mm ventilated disc with a single-piston caliper:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06506_1600.jpg

Mono-shock at the rear, also with 200 mm travel as with the front. Preload can be increased by rotating the 6-step adjuster clockwise using a C-spanner provided in the tool kit:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06495_1600.jpg

A look at the swingarm and the mandatory saree guard provided on the bike:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06604_1600.jpg

A very recognisable Royal Enfield key:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06607_1600.jpg

The circular TFT display has two appearance modes. This is the analogue with turn-by-turn navigation and...
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06831_1600.jpg

... this is with digital mode with excellent Google Maps navigation casting:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06837_1600.jpg

Drawing parallels only from a size perspective, the bike looks and feels larger and heavier than direct competition like the KTM 390 Adventure or the Triumph Scrambler 400X. It is more in line with twin-cylinder competition like the Honda CB500X:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06614_1600.jpg

Whereas the first generation was best described as functional, the new one can even be called good-looking. It is a very competent motorcycle overall, and not just for Royal Enfield. As always, there is some room for improvement and we hope Royal Enfield listens to the feedback and focuses on those areas:
Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review-dsc06575_1600.jpg

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 4th January 2024 at 17:32.
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Old 4th January 2024, 14:58   #5
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re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

Thread moved out from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 4th January 2024, 16:13   #6
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Re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

The earlier discussion which is closed now is available here:

https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/motor...-revealed.html (2023 Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 | Now officially revealed)

There are some useful discussion there, right from when H450 was a rumour.
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Old 4th January 2024, 16:39   #7
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Re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

Excellent review. If I could, I'd rate it 5 stars!

Here's a wishlist with regards to the review

1. A comparo picture between the older/outgoing model and the new model side to side would have been good to have.

2. Also but a picture with pannier / top box would have been the cherry on the pie. The older Himalayan felt extremely versatile / useful with a pair of pannier boxes; is there any change to rear frame/structure?

Btw, I see they still retained the useless saree guard. Well, there's another half a kilo off the bike.
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Old 4th January 2024, 16:43   #8
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Re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

Thanks for this Now I have something to spend my free time upon by reading every word of this post !!
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Old 4th January 2024, 16:50   #9
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Re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by ninjatalli View Post
Btw, I see they still retained the useless saree guard. Well, there's another half a kilo off the bike.
The saree guard is a legal requirement during homologation.

I'm curios as to who would take someone donned in a saree for a ride on an adventure bike?

Take it off and use it for bbq parties

Last edited by n_aditya : 4th January 2024 at 16:51.
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Old 4th January 2024, 17:03   #10
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Re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

Great review as always. Kudos to Team-BHP for keeping up the quality of reviews top-notch!
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Old 4th January 2024, 17:16   #11
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Re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
• At 196 kg - the Himalayan is heavy compared to single-cylinder rivals.
Can the following be removed to reduce weight?
- Metal structure around the tank
- Main Stand
- Luggage rack at the back
- Saree Guard

How much would each of these weigh??

Anything else which can be removed easily without affecting the city usage of the bike?

Last edited by 2000rpm : 4th January 2024 at 17:21.
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Old 4th January 2024, 17:22   #12
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Re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

Great review, Crazy Driver!!

Having been riding this bike for 100+kms, I can vouch that every word written is the exact feeling I had while riding it!

I can say it is a chameleon of bikes. In traffic conditions and frequent gear changes, it has a different character. Once the throttle is opened up, then it's a altogether different beast! I haven't ridden at higher revs due to run-in restrictions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by n_aditya View Post
I'm curios as to who would take someone donned in a saree for a ride on an adventure bike?
That, besides the height which the pillion needs to scale!. My wife feels the pillion seat is on the mezzanine floor and needs an elevator to reach

Last edited by rich_heart : 4th January 2024 at 17:32.
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Old 4th January 2024, 17:49   #13
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Re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by ninjatalli View Post
Here's a wishlist with regards to the review
Thanks for the suggestions - I did not have access to an old Himalayan for photographs during the review period, but I did get an ex-Himalayan owners feedback. Hopefully he should also be posting his views soon.

Also accessories were not available on display for any bikes and nothing extra was installed on our media bike. Hence we will have to wait and watch for ownership reports on that aspect.

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 4th January 2024 at 18:14.
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Old 4th January 2024, 18:28   #14
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Re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review



Great review! Thanks for all the inputs, it's bang on where the heart and head lies right now and this review only amplifies that feeling.

It's a good product but could have become great for those few corners that they have cut and post price hike more so!

Should I take a plunge or not is still not clear because I have burnt my hands with a classic back in 2010 with the UCE.

However, the service center details pouring out and the way RE is managing issues on the himmy is commendable and a little confidence inspiring to say the least.
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Old 4th January 2024, 20:23   #15
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Re: Royal Enfield Himalayan 450 Review

As Always a great review from Team Bhp! RE has lifted it's standards with aesthetically appealing big bike feel. Hope RE will do necessary improvement and sort out all initial niggles.

Quote:
the navigation needs your screen to be unlocked
Does the Google maps in TFT display works with pocket mode in android phones? Did anyone go down that path?

Last edited by FueledbyFury : 4th January 2024 at 20:25.
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