Royal Enfield has finally launched the much-awaited Classic 350 after months of testing. Aimed at making the bike more refined and attract newer and younger riders, Royal Enfield seems to have done quite well. Here are the top 8 changes that take this cult of a motorcycle a few notches higher in the classic motorcycling food chain in India.
The biggest change in the new Royal Enfield Classic 350 is the engine. Built on the J platform this engine is far superior to the one it replaces. This new air-cooled, four-stroke 349 CC engine produces 20.2 bhp and 27 Nm of torque as opposed to 19.1 bhp and 28 Nm of the older one.
A slight change in power however is the least important aspect of this engine upgrade. The new engine which first came with the Royal Enfield Meteor 350 is not only smoother but also revs higher. Older Classic 350s had a cruising speed of 70-80 which has been increased upto 90. The new Classic 350 revs higher and is far smoother to ride than the older one that should make it a comfortable ride for those long rides.
Yes, you read that right. The addition of a fuel gauge is the second most important change in the 2021 Classic 350. Customers have been crying out for a fuel gauge since the launch of the Classic 350 in 2008. Given they take this motorcycle to long rides and even in the Himalayas where fuel stops are very wide apart, a fuel gauge becomes a necessity. It has however eluded the Classic 350 for more than a decade. Royal Enfield has finally added a fuel gauge in the 2021 Classic 350 something that will certainly make the lives a little easier for many.
Double cradle frame
A very important change that often gets unnoticed is the addition of a Double Cradle Frame in the new Classic 350. Given the fact that big single CC engines vibrate a lot, it is very important for them to have good support. This is why Royal Enfield has chosen to hold the engine with a double-cradle frame as opposed to the single ones that most motorcycles come with. This not only makes the chassis stronger but also restricts the engine from shaking too much, resulting in a far smoother ride.
First introduced in the Royal Enfield Meteor 350, the double-cradle frame is carried over to the 2021 Classic 350 as well.
This is something that many are a little angered with. But let me offer you an olive branch. Have you ever used a kick on a new motorcycle? I have owned an NS 200, Unicorn, CB 350 and never have I ended in a situation where I thought, “If only this bike had a kickstart”. All new bikes come without a kick and they do just fine. Think of it as a vehicle. Does any vehicle apart from motorcycles come with a kick start? Their engines start fine without it doesn’t it? So why do motorcycles need to have them in 2021?
They add weight to the motorcycle something that every manufacturer wants to do away with. The new 2021 Royal Enfield Classic 350 does not come with a Kickstart and it’s okay!
All the other lights apart from the backlights have remained the same. The backlight, primarily the housing has been changed and made a little cutter free. It looks slightly odd when you first see it but grows on you the more you use the bike. It’s not a very big deal.
First introduced in the Royal Enfield Meteor, the Tripper Navigation is added to the Classic 350 as well. It is also better integrated than it is on the Meteor and certainly on the Himalayan where it looks like a blatant afterthought.
The 2021 Royal Enfield Classic 350 also comes with broader tyres both at the front and at the back. It certainly adds weight to the motorcycles but makes the motorcycle look better.
Getting off and on the Classic 350 seemed like a two-step process as the rider had to first unlock the handlebars from the neck like some sort of weird foreplay. Now Royal Enfield has changed the system so that the handle can be locked from the top ignition key slot itself saving the rider the hassle of tickling its neck everytime they wanted to ride.
Ther are the top 8 changes that Royal Enfield has made to the Classic 350. The motorcycle now runs smoother, faster, calmer while still holding the same form that we’ve fallen in love with for more than a century. What are your thoughts on the new Royal Enfield Classic 350? Have I missed any other changes to it, please leave your comments below.