News

Himalayan 450 is perfect for Indian conditions: Meteor 350 owner

Royal Enfield has done a great job with the weight distribution. I really couldn’t tell this was a 196 kg motorcycle at any point.

BHPian rahulcmoulee recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

Finally got a test ride of the new Himalayan 450 albeit a very short one on city roads. Here are some observations from a Meteor 350 owner's perspective:

Seat and Ergos

Being used to the 765mm seat height of the Meteor, I expected to face some difficulty getting my feet down. But surprisingly even with the seat set to the tallest height, I could easily get both my feet flat on the ground. The seat itself is very comfortable and I could see it remaining that way for long durations. The Ergos were also very comfortable. Spacious seat with room to move around, legs didn't feel cramped, Body was nice and upright, bar was nice and wide with good leverage. The standing ergos were pretty good too. The only thing I would change would be to get some handlebar raisers as I felt the bars were just a tad bit too low for my personal preference.

Engine

This was the aspect where the bike felt most un-RE-like. The bottom end is quite dull and I even ended up stalling the first time I tried setting off. Being used to the tractor-like torque from the J series engine, this was the area that needed me to retune the way I ride. But once I got used to it, it was a pleasant engine to ride at city speeds under the 4000rpm mark. Go past the 4k mark and the bike comes alive and pulls in one clean sweep till the redline. Performance is super strong and this will be more than adequate for touring in India. I managed to get upto 90kmph in 5th gear and there was only a mild buzz in the pegs and bar. Nothing that would be cause for concern.

Suspension

The absolute highlight of the bike for me. This suspension is just set up to perfection for Indian conditions. Small-medium size bumps are barely felt and the bike just glides over them effortlessly without any need to even think of slowing down. The larger potholes are also dealt with utmost composure and confidence. Barely felt the need to stand up over Bangalore’s potholed roads.

Weight

On paper, the Himalayan seems like a heavy bike compared to its chief rivals but apart from when I had to put it on the center stand, I really couldn’t tell this was a 196kg bike at any point. The weight is distributed well and the bike is very well-balanced. Once on the move, the weight is excellently masked and I could thread through traffic surprisingly easily.

So to sum up, in my opinion, the Himalayan makes for a very very good one-bike garage option. Priced well for what it offers, I think this is the perfect bike for Indian conditions. As per Teknik Motors Bellandur, some colours (I think Slate Poppy Blue and Slate Himalayan Salt) are readily available. Other colours will take up to 4 months to deliver. I can definitely see one of these in Slate Himalayan Salt making its way into my garage in the future. For now, I still have some memories to make with my Meteor.

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

 
Redlining the Indian Scene