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Royal Enfield Meteor 350 To Launch After New Honda Rebel Cruiser

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by Arun Prakash from https://www.rushlane.com

Meteor 350 is the latest offering from Chennai-based manufacturer; and will replace Thunder 350 and Thunderbird 350X

Motorcycle enthusiasts who were patiently awaiting launch of the new Meteor 350 would have to hold on a bit longer. Royal Enfield has now postponed the launch of Meteor 350 to next month.

Technically, the launch has not been postponed – as Royal Enfield never really announced a launch date for Meteor 350 officially. It was the reports via leaked images, sources and brochures, which confirmed that launch of Meteor 350 was to take place later this month. But now same sources state that launch has been postponed indefinitely.

The reason for this postponement of launch is yet unknown. But it is likely, the reason is due to the upcoming Honda Cruiser. In the last few days, Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India has announced that they will be launching a new cruiser motorcycle on the 30th of Sep. They have also released a teaser, which includes the exhaust note of this new motorcycle.

It has been years, where Honda has talked about entering the sub 500cc cruiser segment, to take on Royal Enfield. As of now, in the 350-500cc segment, it is Royal Enfield which enjoys monopoly with over 85% market share. Will Honda finally give India a fitting rival to Royal Enfield motorcycles on 30th Sep?

The teasers indicate that the upcoming Honda motorcycle is either the Rebel 300 or Rebel 500 or something which is based on them. In either case, one thing is confirmed that this new motorcycle is going to be a direct rival to a Royal Enfield motorcycle in India. The question now remains is, which RE motorcycle will be targeted by this new Honda cruiser, and what will be its price.

With Honda Cruiser launch date so near, it is possible that RE would want to wait and see what is Honda actually going to launch and in what price segment. And this could be the reason why launch date of Meteor 350 has been postponed (unofficially).

Meteor 350 Engine

Meteor 350 is built upon the new J1D platform and will draw its power from a new 349cc single-cylinder air-cooled motor. This unit is capable of producing 20.2 bhp and is 27 Nm of torque. This is 0.4 bhp more and 1 Nm less than the previous generation 350cc engine.

The new generation Classic 350 is expected to be the next motorcycle under this range. The transmission is likely to be a 5-speed gearbox however this new gearbox is said to offer far smoother gear shifts. Similarly, the clutch is also newly developed with less number of linkages and components- resulting in a better clutch life.

Features on offer

As far as features are concerned, the Meteor 350 will be equipped with a semi-digital and semi-analog instrument cluster. It also comes with a USB charging point which enables the riders to charge their phones and action cameras, thus becoming a handy touring option. The TFT screen reads out important details of trip metre, service reminder, odometer, etc. It gets a round-shaped halogen headlamp which is circled by a ring of LED DRL.

Extended features include inbuilt turn-by-turn navigation called ‘Tripper Navigation’ and Bluetooth connectivity. The Royal Enfield Meteor 350 is likely to be priced from Rs 1.65 lakh (ex-showroom) onwards.

Production-ready Bimota Tesi H2 revealed: 242 hp in a 207 kg bike!

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from https://www.financialexpress.com

The Bimota Tesi H2 is built around the Kawasaki Ninja H2 power plant and features the iconic Bimota hub-center steering design chassis covered with a carbon fiber bodywork.

Kawasaki H2 had to be the craziest thing there was in the motorcycle world but if you hand one to Bimota, the result is something on the lines of Looney Toons’ Taz. The Bimota Tesi H2 has been revealed in its production self and will be heading for a limited production run this month. It is the first production-ready motorcycle from the Italian manufacturer since Kawasaki purchased a 49.9% share of the company last year. The Tesi H2 uses Kawasaki’s 228 bhp supercharged 998cc four-cylinder engine from the Ninja H2.

The bonkers Tesi H2 was planned earlier but had to be moved to September 2020 due to the pandemic. Things now seem on track in Rimini as Bimota have also announced that the Tesi H2 can be pre-ordered. Not just that, Bimota have also released specifications of the Tesi H2 and here’s why most are calling it bonkers.

It gets Kawasaki’s liquid-cooled 998cc supercharged inline-four mounted to an aluminum chassis with the same bore and stroke as the H2 at 76 x 55 mm but a compression ratio of 8.3:1 more like the H2 R than the SX. Power has been bumped up to a healthy 231 hp at 11,500 rpm and 141 Nm of torque at 11,000 rpm, and it is a freaky 242 hp with ram-air boost. All this in a motorcycle that weighs in at 207 kg (dry).

The front and rear swingarms are made of aluminum with four inches of travel at the front and 5.11 inches at the back. The 17-inch wheels are armed with two 330mm discs at the front and a single 220mm disc at the back. For those of you who will commit to a new Tesi, deliveries of the first batch of 250 bikes will start shipping in October.

Hero Ultra Sport electric motorcycle under development in Germany

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by Nithyanandh Karuppaswamy from https://www.rushlane.com

The Hero e-US is expected to be unveiled at one of the high-profile events in foreseeable future

Hero Electric and Hero MotoCorp are two different companies. Both are into manufacturing and selling of two wheelers in India. The former has only focused in electric vehicles, while the latter, which is India’s largest two wheeler brand, is yet to launch an electric vehicle.

With electric vehicles the future, Hero Motocorp’s Technology Center in Germany (HTCG) is currently collaborating with the two wheeler giant’s Jaipur R&D HQ to develop a new premium electric motorcycle concept in addition to working on mainstream, cost-effective EV solutions.

Hero e-US or Hero Ultra Sport Eectric

According to a recent report by Moneycontrol, the powerful electric motorcycle concept which is currently under development by Munich-based HTCG is called the e-US (electric Ultra Sport). No additional information is available at this point but it is likely to be a design study to gather public opinion about a potential electric high-performance flagship.

If we were to hazard a guess, the Hero e-US could be an edgy street fighter with performance levels equivalent to a conventional quarter liter motorcycle. Or it could even be offering higher levels of performance to match something like the Ultroviolette F77. The concept is expected to be showcased at a high-profile event when it is ready. The timeline is not clear as of now.

Branding challenge for electric portfolio

Speaking at the latest Annual General Meeting, Hero Motocorp’s chairman Pawan Munjal stated that the company is well on course with its plans to enter the promising electric two wheeler market in the country. He also added that the pure electric products that are being developed by Hero Motocorp are independent of its subsidiary Ather Energy’s products.

It is to be noted that a pact between the Munjal family prevents Pawan Munjal-led Hero Motocorp to use the Hero brand name for its own electric products. As per the agreement within the family, this right is reserved for Hero Electric which is run by Pawan’s cousin Naveen Munjal.

Hero Electric is already a well established brand in the country with a market share of 45% in the e-scooter space. So, Hero Motocorp will have to chose a different brand name for its EV operations and that could be posing a huge marketing challenge.

Given Hero Motocorp has a significant stake (38.57% to be preceise) in Ather Energy, one could think using this brand to expand its electric vehicle business is a no brainer. However, Ather focuses on lifestyle products above INR 1 lakh and has previously stated it has no intention to cater to lower price categories.

Using the Ather brand for its low-cost electric commuters would significantly dilute its value in premium segment. We expect Hero Motocorp to announce its new EV brand in the coming months.

Bajaj to make Husqvarna electric motorcycle in India

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by Nithyanandh Karuppaswamy from https://www.rushlane.com

The Husqvarna E-Pilen is most likely to have India as its primary production location

KTM and its sister brand Husqvarna are betting big on electric mobility in the long term. Following an electric scooter, the Swedish two wheeler brand Husqvarna is also working on a zero emission motorcycle called E-Pilen which is most likely to employ the modular electric platform which is being developed by KTM in association with Bajaj.

The existence of Husqvarna E-Pilen came to light, thanks to an internal document which was shared at an investor meeting organized by Pierer Mobility AG (KTM and Husqvarna’s parent company). The document not only shared an early concept sketch of the Husqvarna electric motorcycle but also revealed some key details. For starters, the compact street fighter will be available with modular battery pack and two power levels – 4 kW and 10 kW.

The document also indicates that the Husqvarna E-Pilen will be ready for a launch in 2022. Further details are scarce but considering that the Bajaj-KTM modular electric platform is being developed to cater to power outputs ranging between 3 to 10 kW, this product is most likely to be one of the first beneficiaries.

What does the image say?
The low resolution image of the Husqvarna E-Pilen appears to be that of a tentative concept. As the development process nears completion, the final design and equipment are expected to change. From what we can see from the photograph, the E-Pilen derives its design inspiration from the IC-engined Vitpilen and Svartpilen street fighters. The trellis frame, USD front forks, rear monoshock, alloy wheels and tyres are likely to be shared with its siblings.

The fuel tank is there only for aesthetic purposes and the space occupied by IC engine will accommodate an electric motor and modular battery system. It remains to be seen if the rear wheel is driven by chain or belt.

To be made in India
The aforementioned modular electric platform for compact premium motorcycles will have India as its primary production base. Like the compact displacement KTM and Husqvarna products, the upcoming electric models up to 10 kW will be made by Bajaj at its Chakan facility. We can expect the e-mobility platform to also spawn KTM and Bajaj branded products in due course.

Rivals
The Husqvarna E-Pilen will be positioned as a lifestyle urban mobility solution for young audience in Europe. In India, it will be a premium alternative to the likes of the Revolt RV400 and upcoming Tork T6X.

 

Royal Enfield Himalayan Get Updated For 2021

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by Andrew Cherney from https://www.cycleworld.com

Switchable ABS and new color options make the scene for the new model year.

The trickle of 2021 model announcements has officially morphed into a steady stream as more manufacturers have started locking down their lineups for the new model year. Part of the growing tide is Royal Enfield’s confirmation that its Himalayan model will be returning for 2021. It looks like the popular 411cc midsize adventurer will come into the new model year mostly unchanged, though it does get switchable ABS this time around, as well as that ever popular manufacturer “upgrade”—new color options.

On its face, those changes sound pretty underwhelming, but then, since its introduction in 2016, the Himalayan has piled up enough accolades and impressive sales figures to the point that Enfield probably saw it as an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” situation. Which means the 2021 Himalayan retains all the original architecture and underpinnings, and simply adds a few subtle features to improve the riding experience. That includes a switchable antilock braking system (ABS) to give riders more control during sketchy off-road conditions, as well as a revamped rear brake mechanism that improves brake engagement and rider feel for decreased stopping distances. Royal Enfield says customers also requested a more refined sidestand design, so the new Himalayan gets a tweak to that unit as well. Additionally, the company improved the hazard light switch design as well for better accessibility during road- or trailside emergencies.

Now for the new colors, because for some folks that’s important too. The 2021 Royal Enfield Himalayan will be available in three new colorways: Lake Blue, Rock Red, and Gravel Gray, which join the existing Snow White, Granite Black, and Sleet hues. As before, the bike comes with a three-year warranty and will be available across all Royal Enfield dealerships in North America at the slightly increased price of $4,999.

“The Himalayan continues to be one of the best-selling units in North America,” said Krishnan Ramaswamy, interim business head and president of Royal Enfield Americas. “The affordability, versatility, and capability of the Himalayan has established it as a must-have adventure bike, and with these updates, it’s better than ever before.”

There’s also a wide variety of Genuine Motorcycle Accessories on tap so you can customize the Himalayan accordingly. To see the full lineup, visit royalenfieldna.com; interested parties can reserve a 2021 model starting September 1. Royal Enfield says quantities are limited, though we’re unsure if that’s temporary or not.

BMW Electric Bike Based on the DC Roadster Could Be in the Cards for Production

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by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

It’s a time of complete transformation over at BMW Motorrad. The Bavarian bike maker, a steady and powerful presence in markets around the world, just expanded its lineup with the introduction of its brand new cruiser, the R 18 Big Boxer that should give Harley a bit of a hard time. And electrifications efforts are being made as well, as the motorcycle industry is beginning to slowly shift to this type of propulsion.

Back in the summer of 2019, during the #NEXTGen event in Munich, BMW unwrapped the crazy-looking Vision DC Roadster. The two-wheeler was shown as a preview of a possible future when BMW would drop the use of the nearly century-old boxer engine in favor of a battery and electric motor, all wrapped in the (almost) classic body of BMW bikes.

At the time, BMW did not say anything about the future of the DC Roadster, but recent filings with the German Patent and Trademark Office uncovered by Electrek could suggest a production version is being considered. This assumption is based on the fact that in the list of desired trademarks, nine of them include DC as relating to motorcycles.

Securing the trademark for certain ideas is not something unheard of in the industry, and it doesn’t necessarily mean something is going to get made. In this case, however, chances are the Germans are indeed working on an electric bike.

Unlike electric cars, electric motorcycles are still taking their first shy steps. Lost in a flood of failing startups that promised to revolutionize the industry, Harley-Davidson is the only major bike maker to have released a bike powered by electricity.

And even if the LiveWire is not exactly the sales hit Milwaukee was hoping for, its capabilities are undoubtedly incredible. And we will all get to experience them that on September 18, when Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman’s Long Way Up hits Apple TV+.

So yes, maybe it’s not the right time for electric bikes to be made, but soon enough it will be. And it doesn’t hurt to be prepared.

The BMW trademark filings do not reveal too much about the electric bike. In concept form, it used a vertically mounted battery, complete with cooling ribs and integrated ventilator, and a motor underneath the battery. A tubular structure that includes the seat is in the place usually occupied by the fuel tank.

No actual performance figures for the electric powertrain were released at the time of the concept’s presentation.

Triple-Engined Trident Is How the Future of Triumph Motorcycles Looks Like

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by Daniel Patrascu from https://www.autoevolution.com

When it comes to the number of modifications made to models year-over-year, the motorcycle industry is by far more dynamic than the auto one. Almost every bike model of any maker suffers changes year-on-year, and that means that regardless of the size and scope of these changes, motorcycles always look fresh.

On the other side of the spectrum, the number of new models born into the industry is far lower compared to their four-wheeled counterparts. New bikes come to be at a much slower pace, and that means excitement is very high when they do.

Last week the Brits from Triumph got us all hyped as they previewed the future Trident, (a model wearing this name started being made by Triumph back in the 1990s), one that should usher in the new design era over in Hinckley.

Show in a pure-white design prototype form at the London Design Museum, the new Trident is supposed to be according to the bike maker “an all new contemporary take on Triumph style & attitude,” featuring a minimalistic form over a proven triple engine, a type of powerplant that powers, among others, the Street Triple.

What you see in the gallery above is just a prototype, completed at the end of four years of hard work. The actual production version Trident will surface in early 2021.

For now, the bike maker did not go into the technical specifics of the motorcycle, leaving us guessing as to what exactly it will be all about. But even with this complete lack of information (all that’s been said on the Trident can be found in the press release section below), we’re guessing the engineers working in the Japanese motorcycle industry are pretty troubled by this.

‘’The Trident design prototype marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter for Triumph, where the brief was all about fun, from the look to the ride,” said in a statement Steve Sargent. Triumph Chief Product Officer.

“With its pure minimalist form, clean lines, Triumph design DNA and more than a hint of our Speed Triple’s muscular poise, this gives the first exciting glimpse at the full Trident story to come. Ultimately our aim was to bring a new take on character and style, alongside the accessible easy handling and quality Triumph is known for – at a price that’s really competitive.”

 

Harley-Davidson 338R spied undisguised

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by Pradeep Shah from https://www.financialexpress.com

Harley-Davidson 338R which will be the American bike maker’s most affordable motorcycle has been snapped very recently. However, the same may or may not be launched in India for a number of reasons. Read to know!

Harley-Davidson’s highly-awaited bike that will be its most affordable offering might soon be a reality. A spy image of the said motorcycle has recently emerged on the web, image courtesy Bennetts. According to the picture, the said model will be called the Harley-Davidson 338R. The upcoming Haley-Davidson 338R will be based on the Benelli platform and is being made by Qianjiang (QJ). If you remember the sketches of the most affordable Harley-Davidson that flooded the internet in 2019, well, if you look closely, you will find many similarities with that design. The said Harley-Davidson 338R will share most of its cycle parts including brakes, frame, suspension and wheels with the 302S.

Coming to the powertrain, the engine on the HD 338R will be sourced from Benelli with a larger bore and stroke. The power output and specs of this motorcycle are currently a mystery, however, we believe that the power should be in the region of 40hp. The said model is meant to go on sale in China and some of the Asian markets but India launch remains uncertain for a number of reasons. With the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, the American bike maker announced a new strategy called ‘Rewire’ under which job cuts and reducing the number of future products by 30 percent are being implemented.

That said, it is not clear at the moment if the said most affordable Harley-Davidson 338R will be able to see the light of the day or not! Moreover, there have been rumours about Harley-Davidson shutting down its production facility in India and hence, its products will now might arrive through the CBU route. That said, if the 338R comes here via the same route, it might lose its price benefit to a certain extent. If such a situation arises in the future, the company might very well axe the HD 338R launch plans. More details on the upcoming Harley-Davidson 338R expected to reveal soon, so keep watching this space for all the action!

Budget Harley-Davidson 338R spied for first time

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by Ollie Barstow from https://www.visordown.com

The new Benelli-based Harley-Davidson 338R budget motorcycle is spied for the first time in images leaked on Chinese social media

The first images of the new Harley-Davidson 338R have leaked giving a glimpse of how the small, affordable Asian-built ‘baby’ Harley will look when it makes its debut later this year.

There was much talk about the new machine, which is a collaboration between Harley-Davidson and Chinese-firm Qianjang Motor, earlier this year but until now the model, codenamed HD350, had only been viewed in renders.

As such, this is the first time it has been seen in the metal after images emerged of a cropped side-view across Chinese social media.

The machine has been developed on the platform of recently-launched Benelli 302S (Qianjiang is the parent company for the Italian Benelli brand) and this view shows the main frame, wheels, suspension and brakes have been retained from the source.

Though we can’t see the front-end, which will likely feature a more familiar family face in-keeping with the Harley-Davidson signature style, the rather ostentatious badging should also help differentiate it from its Italian cousin.

The appearance of the Harley-Davidson 338R appears to be a step in the direction to confirming the machine’s existence, which was originally conceived under the American company’s erstwhile management structure.

Under the dubbed ‘More Roads to Harley’ strategy, the Harley-Davidson 338R was set to become an entry-level model target specifically at the Asian market and built locally.

However, new ownership and the so-called ‘Hardwire’ strategy that is set to focus Harley-Davidson’s attention on its core premium business and move the brand out of unprofitable markets – including India – suggests the 338R is rather at odds with this new approach.

Even so, Harley-Davidson could in theory maintain a separate range of badge-engineered models in specific markets, much like other manufacturers do with models that are designed, manufactured and sold in specific countries.

In short, don’t expect to see the Harley-Davidson 338R on sale in Europe or the United States any time soon if it indeed goes ahead to production.

2021 Enfield Himalayan Unveiled

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Royal Enfield Introduces 2021 Himalayan

Pre-orders for the Himalayan begin September 1, 2020

Milwaukee, Wis August 26, 2020: Royal Enfield, the global leader in the middleweight motorcycle segment, announced today the launch of the 2021 Himalayan with new features adding to the already impressive legacy of the 411cc adventure motorcycle. Since its introduction in 2016, the Himalayan has earned the respect and admiration of discerning motorcyclists and aspiring adventure riders.

Starting September 1, 2020 interested consumers may reserve a 2021 Himalayan at www.RoyalEnfieldNA.com. Quantities are limited and are only available through the website. Once reserved, consumers will present a unique buyer’s code at participating Royal Enfield dealers within seven days of receipt to confirm the reservation.

The 2021 Himalayan retains the original versatility and durability of the motorcycle, with added features to improve the riding experience. New for 2021 is a switchable antilock braking system (ABS) providing riders with more control when navigating challenging off-road conditions. The new Himalayan also features a revamped rear brake mechanism that improves brake engagement and rider feel for decreased stopping distances. Additional features in response to customer feedback also include an improved side-stand design and hazard light switch in case of road or trail side emergencies.

The new Royal Enfield Himalayan will be available in three new colorways, Lake Blue and Rock Red, and Gravel Gray, adding to the existing portfolio of Snow White, Granite Black and Sleet. The motorcycle comes with a three-year warranty and will be available across all Royal Enfield dealerships in North America starting at $4,999.

“The Himalayan continues to be one of the best-selling units in North America,” said Krishnan Ramaswamy, interim Business Head and President of Royal Enfield Americas. “The affordability, versatility and capability of the Himalayan has established it as a must-have adventure bike and with these updates, it’s better than ever before. Simplicity and a great riding experience are the center of who Royal Enfield is as a brand. We’re pleased that the Himalayan continues to deliver that experience to riders across the globe. It’s not only an approachable bike for the young and entry level rider but also a good dual-purpose addition to the stable of an experienced biker.”

The Himalayan includes a wide variety of Genuine Motorcycle Accessories as well, allowing riders the freedom to customize the Himalayan according to their pursuits. To see the full lineup of accessories and apparel, visit www.RoyalEnfieldNA.com/accessories.

The Himalayan, which was launched primarily for the Indian markets, has become one of the best adventure touring motorcycles in its segment globally. It has paved the path for more accessible forms of adventure touring and the new Himalayan will further strengthen this underserved category.

The perfect motorcycle companion for adventure touring and exploration has just gotten even better.

For more information on Royal Enfield North America, please visit www.RoyalEnfield.com/us/en/, https://www.instagram.com/royalenfield_na/ and www.Facebook.com/RoyalEnfieldNorthAmerica.