Making the Himalayan a better bike without taking away it’s retro economic charm – and keeping it affordable – was a challenge for Royal Enfield, but first reports for the world launch – where we had Australian Adventure Bike’s Andrew Clubb scribbling for Road Rider – indicates the new machine is the bike many riders want.
More from Clubby and the launch soon, with the full review coming in issue #177, but here’s the press release…
THE ALL NEW ROYAL ENFIELD HIMALAYAN.
BUILT BY THE HIMALAYAS.
● The perfect equilibrium: The all-new Himalayan strikes the perfect balance between capability and usability. It is an adventure tourer that has everything you need, and nothing you don’t.
● Meticulously designed for the unknown: Inspired and shaped by the ever-evolving and often unpredictable Himalayan ecosystem, this motorcycle effortlessly adapts to the terrain, to the elements and to the rider. It is truly built for all roads, and for no roads.
● Many motorcycles rolled into one: Engineered for adventure and equipped for anything that comes its way, the Himalayan combines capability, simplicity and versatility – making it the only motorcycle you will ever need.
● An evolutionary leap ahead of its mould-breaking original avatar, the new Himalayan is powered by the Sherpa 450, Royal Enfield’s first liquid-cooled engine. It comes adventure ready with upside-down front forks, and new features like Ride-by-Wire, and TripperDash full map navigation TFT display
Based on Royal Enfield’s latest, lightest, and most technologically advanced vehicle integrated powertrain, the new Himalayan will be powered by the new Sherpa 450 liquid-cooled engine, and will have a host of new integrated tech-features that enhance and improve the adventure touring experience on the new motorcycle. Showcased recently for global audiences, the new Royal Enfield Himalayan will be launched in India before the end of this year, and will subsequently be available across other regions.
Royal Enfield has a long association with the Himalayas, which has been the brand’s spiritual home and creative inspiration. The original Himalayan was inspired by the 60-year old tradition of exploring the Himalayas on a motorcycle, and was born in the Himalayas. Purpose-built, confidence inspiring and a capable, go-anywhere motorcycle, the Himalayan has proven itself time and again as the ideal motorcycle for adventure riding in these incredible mountains. It has been the motorcycle of choice for thousands of explorers across the world who have ridden it to traverse a multitude of locations and terrains, thereby creating a niche subcategory of adventure touring that is real, sensorial, and accessible. The new Himalayan evolves from this, builds on this proposition, and takes it several notches higher.
Speaking about the brand’s connection with the mountains, and the inspiration for the all-new Himalayan, Siddhartha Lal, Managing Director, Eicher Motors Ltd., said “At Royal Enfield, we have a deep connection with the Himalayas for over 60 years, and that led us to make the first Himalayan in 2016. We had great feedback for a purpose-built adventure tourer, and that gave us a lot of courage to go in for an absolutely new Himalayan. This motorcycle is ground-up with the all-new Sherpa 450, water-cooled engine, a 6-speed gearbox, and is absolutely purpose-made for the Himalayas. It has a single purpose; to do superbly well in unpredictable terrain and weather conditions that the Himalayas throw at it. We’ve designed this motorcycle to be the absolute best in the world to do that job. We’ve developed the chassis and the ergonomics to make it great for adventure touring. It is ‘the one’ motorcycle that you will need for any purpose, anywhere in the world; because if it can traverse the Himalayas, it can traverse anything in the world”
The Himalayas are an ever-changing, ever shifting landscape and exploring in this region requires you to embrace change of plan at every step; from varying weather and unpredictable terrain to rivers that can be a trickle in the morning and mudguard-deep that same evening. The all-new Himalayan is designed to adapt to all such conditions; from its water-busting high air intake to its tough frame and luggage bars ready to take a beating when things don’t go as planned. The improvements over the original model have been driven by time spent in the saddle, from epic trips exploring the wildest mountains to riding in everyday situations. What’s more, the motorcycle has been tested and developed by explorers, globetrotters, experts and riders of all abilities across a huge range of conditions, both in adventure trips around wild landscapes and in controlled testing centres in the UK, Spain and in India. This testing program has resulted in a truly versatile motorcycle that is ready for anything and puts a smile on the face of every rider, whatever their ability level.
Speaking about the insights that went behind the conception of the new Himalayan and the development process of the motorcycle, CEO, B Govindarajan said, “Before we started working on the new Himalayan, we rode with our consumers, and spoke to globetrotters, explorers, and athletes. With the help of these insights and our own experience, we decided critical DNA we needed to retain and a few we had to evolve on the new Himalayan. The all new Himalayan 450 is mated with the Sherpa 450, liquid-cooled engine, a first of its kind from Royal Enfield. It is also the first time we have ride-by-wire feature on our motorcycle that offers optimum delivery of power and torque for challenging terrains. Also, it comes with TripperDash, the world’s first full-map navigation on a circular display built with Google Maps Platform. We have extensively tested this motorcycle for more than 5500 kms, from 22 feet at Chennai to 19,024 feet at UmLing La. The new Himalayan is therefore a combination of expert insights, new technology, and true Royal Enfield DNA”
The mountain G.O.A.T.
Nyoma, Ladakh. 4180m above sea level. Go there, grab a cup of chai from one of the cafes and watch the traffic passing. That should tell you all you need to know about the Royal Enfield Himalayan. A motorcycle born in the mountains, in less than a decade since its inception, that is synonymous with exploring this legendary region. The new Himalayan is an extension of that – it is shaped and built by the Himalayas, taking everything that was great about the original and adding more capability when the terrain demands it. Everything you need, and nothing you don’t; that was the overriding brief to the team. So, there are no features included that do not have a purpose. The new Himalayan is about simplicity, efficiency, just like the original.
Equilibrium between man, machine and terrain.
Just like the original, the all new Himalayan is not about dominating the landscape and smashing through the terrain with aggressive tyres and a glut of horsepower. It is built to harness the power of the Himalayas and state of flow; to explore, be in harmony with the landscape and enjoy it while being capable of getting to the most remote areas. The new effortlessly adapts to the terrain, to the rider and to the elements.
Built for all roads. Built for no roads.
Capable but not intimidating; is the ethos of the Himalayan. From the improvements to power, performance and handling, the all new Himalayan is an easy, forgiving motorcycle to ride. Superb balance at low speed, combined with the new light-action clutch and smooth throttle response from the ride by wire system make easy work of tight trails and tight traffic alike. The adjustable rider seat lets you tune the fit of the motorcycle and the clear, easy-to-use TripperDash gives you all the information you need when you’re riding.
On a twisty mountain road the new chassis offers improved cornering performance to match the extra power of the engine. Off road, the extra ground clearance, improved suspension travel and wide spread of torque from the engine make every trail easier. The new, more powerful Sherpa 450 motor gives useful improvement to highway riding as well as maintaining better performance at high altitude. The new motorcycle has more ground clearance to avoid getting beached off-road and a clear, simple navigation system to remove the need for a separate GPS unit on the handlebars.
Power to the Peaks with the Sherpa 450.
The new Himalayan has more power and torque and gives excellent low-rpm performance and stays true to the Royal Enfield character. With maximum power of 40.02PS at 8000rpm, and a maximum torque of 40Nm at 5500rpm the new 452cc Sherpa engine makes 90% of its torque from 3,000rpm upwards giving a tractable power delivery without needing to be revved to the moon to go anywhere. This characteristic is most helpful when climbing slippery slopes, allowing the Himalayan to find traction where others will spin. The performance combined with the torque delivery also allows comfortable two-up riding along with luggage. The new engine features a semi-dry sump design to maximise ground clearance and allow compact packaging. As Royal Enfield’s first liquid-cooled engine, it uses an integrated water pump and twin-pass radiator setup for optimum cooling, crucial when riding technical terrain at high altitude, something this motorcycle is fully intended for. A new six-speed gearbox means greater flexibility of ratios and better highway cruising. This drives through a new, cable actuated slip and assist clutch giving a lighter clutch action and longer clutch life.
Fits like an adventure glove.
The new Himalayan has higher ground clearance and long travel suspension which let you tackle more technical terrain without catching the chassis on the floor. An all-new steel twin-spar frame has been designed to give these benefits in an off-road situation, without making the Himalayan too tall or intimidating. The new frame is stiffer and stronger improving cornering performance and stability. The chassis includes a new Showa, cartridge-type inverted fork, designed to work across a wide range of conditions from smooth roads to rocky river beds. Quality suspension is not just about performance; a well-controlled fork makes it easier on the rider when tackling loose, unpredictable terrain, letting them concentrate on where they want to go, rather than reacting to every bump. The Himalayan retains the proven 21” front / 17” rear wheel combination, with newly developed aluminium alloy rims and bespoke tyres for superior grip, confidence inspiring handling and stability in both on and off road conditions. Additionally, the wider 140/80 rear tyre offers better traction and more confidence on tarmac or off-road conditions.
Ergonomics designed for explorers.
With the new chassis and compact engine came the opportunity to improve rider ergonomics, particularly when riding in a standing position. The new motorcycle is narrower between the legs, allowing better control standing up and making it easier to get feet firmly on the floor when sitting. The rear section of the new 17-litre fuel tank has been slimmed down to give a more comfortable knee-recess when riding. The split type rider and pillion seat allows the rider seat to be adjusted up by 20mm. In addition to the standard seat, there is a low-seat available as an option. Between the standard and the optional low seat, the rider gets a wide range between 805mm, all the way to 845mm seat height. This, combined with the narrower frame and tank equates to better ground access. Both the rider and the pillion seats, as well as the seating triangle have been designed to offer maximum comfort for long hours on the saddle, on or off the road.
Introducing the TripperDash – your adventure ally.
Taking from the brief of ‘everything you need, and nothing you don’t’, the technology that made the cut on the new Himalayan is all there for one purpose – to improve the experience for the rider. First and most prominent is the new TripperDash. The classic round shape has a number of innovative features for the rider, with options to switch from a traditional analogue style to a digital layout. The new TripperDash offers the world’s first full map navigation on a circular display built with Google Maps Platform with audio guidance in more than 130 languages. The joystick controller on the left-hand switch allows you to control the cluster as well as music, calls and messages as part of the mobile connectivity. Riders can choose between Performance and Eco ride modes, altering the throttle response through the new ride-by-wire setup. Rear ABS can be disabled for a more engaging off-road ride experience.
The A to Z of ADV Accessories.
With over 30 exciting new Genuine Motorcycle Accessories to choose from on the all new Himalayan, there is something for everyone. These products can be configured in a way to create two very distinctive, aspirational themes – Adventure and Rally. The Adventure accessories focus on the long-distance capabilities of this motorcycle, with bespoke Box Aluminium Luggage, Taller Adventure Screen, Adventure Seats and LED Fog Lights. The Rally accessories really accentuate the New Himalayan’s off-road capability when the Rally Rear Mudguard is paired with the slimmer one-piece Rally Seat to give the motorcycle a more aggressive look and stance. This set-up will also accommodate the Rackless Soft Bags and Tail pack, while the Rally Handguards, Sump Guard and Headlight Guard provide the ultimate in protection for more extreme terrain.
Australia & New Zealand:
Royal Enfield’s Himalayan 450 motorcycle has created a stir in the Australian and New Zealand (ANZ) regions, building upon the tremendous success of its predecessor, the Himalayan 411. The original Himalayan 411 established a strong foothold in the ANZ market, earning a reputation for its reliability and adaptability. Not only has it been the preferred choice for adventurous riders looking to explore the diverse landscapes of Australia & New Zealand, but it has also served as the ideal platform for various custom projects, showcasing the creativity and craftsmanship of local motorcycle enthusiasts. In addition to individual riders, the Himalayan has become a sought-after choice for adventure tour operators and rental agencies, allowing riders to embark on memorable journeys through scenic routes with the utmost confidence. The introduction of the all-new Himalayan 450 to the ANZ market continues to enhance the legacy of Royal Enfield’s commitment to providing exceptional motorcycles for the spirited riders of this region. With its new features and technology, the Himalayan 450 promises to take the ANZ motorcycling community to new heights of exploration and adventure.