Royal Enfield has launched its eagerly anticipated Thunderbird 500 at the 2012 Auto Expo in Delhi. The company is targeting touring enthusiasts with this cruiser. The bike gets distinctive ‘black’ styling and it is powered by a 500cc Unit Construction Engine (UCE) that makes 27.2bhp.
Launching the Thunderbird 500 at the 2012 Auto Expo, Mr Siddhartha Lal, MD & CEO Eicher Motors Ltd. said, “When we launched Thunderbird in 2002, it was a one-of-its kind model on the Indian roads that redefined the cruiser segment. Today, with the launch of the Thunderbird 500, fitted with the UCE and a host of design enhancements, Royal Enfield has again upped the ante in leisure motorcycling which we have been pioneering for over half a century in India. With touring enthusiasts forming the core of our customer base, the Thunderbird 500 gives them more power, comfort and style for long-distance riding.”
The Thunderbird’s ‘black’ engine is the first of several new styling elements on the bike. It gets a redesigned seat, new lock mechanism accessible through the side panel and true to its touring-friendly nature, it gets a separately mounted pillion seat that can be removed to accommodate luggage. The handle bar has been changed to improve the bikes ergonomics, the pillion grab rail is also new and the bike also gets bungee points to tie luggage. All the new foot pegs, new design mirrors and the LED tail lamp now have the Royal Enfield logo embossed on them.
The 500 also gets two digital trip meters to keep a track of total trip mileage and intermediate mileage. It comes with a 20-litre fuel tank and it also gets hazard lamps in the switch gear, which is a first for a motorcycle manufactured in India. Rear disk brakes mounted on the new oval section swing arm, supplied by Bybre, add to the stopping power of the bike.
Enfield also showcased the Cafe Racer which is almost in final production form and will go on sale next year. Apart from the bikes on display, the Enfield stall includes biker apparel and riding accessories as well.