The upcoming 650cc Himalayan is being developed at Royal Enfield’s UK-based technical centre
A few months ago, rumours of Royal Enfield developing a more powerful version of Himalayan broke out on the internet. The Chennai-based bikemaker has given a green light to the project and that the new Himalayan will be powered by a 650cc parallel-twin engine.
Fresh details regarding this upcoming motorcycle have emerged which give us more insights. Himalayan 650 wasn’t initially part of Royal Enfield’s plan when it decided to build the 650cc parallel-twin motor. Development work on this motorcycle started around 18 months ago.
Demerits of current Himalayan
The primary concern for the company is that Himalayan in its current form weighs around 199 kilos which is on the heavier side. Therefore, plonking it with a larger power plant will only make it heavier. Hence, Royal Enfield is likely to retune the chassis of the adventure bike in the new 650cc iteration.
Moreover, the excess weight of the current Himalayan is also one of its prime negative attributes in the otherwise popular motorcycle. The current 411cc single-cylinder air-cooled motor delivers a fairly modest output of 24.3 bhp and a peak torque of 32 Nm while the additional weight doesn’t help its case either. The motorcycle isn’t lively on roads and is unable to hold triple-digit speeds while cruising.
Himalayan 650cc Launch
The new Himalayan 650 will have many critical variations with respect to the current model. For instance, the new 650cc iteration of Himalayan would not be as capable on rough terrains as the current model. It will be available in two derivatives- one with alloy wheels and one with spoked rims. The former will be pitched as a sports tourer while the latter will be a road-biased adventure tourer.
This means it will not be a proper adventure bike by any stretch of imagination and the adventure tourer variant will be more of a tour-orientated soft-roader. Royal Enfield is also expected to downsize the front wheel from 21-inches to a 19-inch unit for more road-friendly usage. Further, the bikemaker may not even call this upcoming motorcycle as ‘Himalayan’ and allot it a brand new moniker.
Rider will be mounted on a higher saddle in the new Himalayan 650 and ground clearance will be impressive as well. The exhaust pipe will also be mounted higher. Around 80-85 percent design of the current model will be carried forward in the new motorcycle. Therefore, we can expect Royal Enfield to retain its overall rugged styling.
Expected Features & Powertrain
The company might equip the new Himalayan with features such as a new instrument console with a TFT display. It might also offer Bluetooth connectivity along with multiple riding modes and also a one-level traction control system. Braking setup of the motorcycle will also be enhanced.
Powering this upcoming derivative of Himalayan will be a familiar 648cc, parallel-twin engine sourced from Interceptor and Continental GT. This motor pushes out 47 bhp and 52 Nm of peak torque and is coupled with a 6-speed gearbox. However, we still have to wait for at least three years since the new Himalayan 650 isn’t coming before the last quarter of 2024.