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Royal Enfield Bullet for learner - Any thoughts..?

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' started by plainfaced, Oct 2, 2006.

  1. Hi there. Im thinking of getting my license again after a few years without (after coming off).. Basically I love the look of Cafe Racers. Cant afford a Deus Ex Machina.. So Im thinking of a Royal Enfield bullet classic. Ive heard you can get a different tank and bars..
    Anyway. Just wanting thoughts on this bike. It will be a learner bike, for commuting and weekend ride around town. Im a bloke, pretty short about 5'5, and got a bit of a belly about 80kgs..

  2. From what I've read they're a very basic machine, based on an ancient design (their website tells me it was first produced in 1933). There's millions of them in India but that's not because they're particularly reliable or anything, just that they won a massive government tender over there or something.

    They certainly have a style of their own among modern bikes but performance and reliability wise you might be taking a hit. From memory they're pretty cheap brand new so it might not be such a big issue.

    Basically I reckon buying a Bullet would be similar to buying a classic bike, with all the pros and cons that go with that. You'd definately stand out on the street. Let us know what you decide to do!
  3. Unless you REALLY like old bikes I'd be staying away from the Classic and looking more at the Royal Enfield Electra. It costs an 500 bucks but for that you get electric start, more power, better brakes, an extra gear, improved suspension, and better fuel economy. The gap between servicing is greater too - 6,000kms compared to just 3,000 for the Classic Bullet. I reckon if you like to work on machinery, or want to learn how to, then a Royal Enfield would make a great choice. But if you're just chasing something cheap and simple to learn on then probably best to look at something else (perhaps a SR500 or SRV/SRX250).
    More info here (if you haven't already found it):
    Edit: Oh and not sure if it's LAMS legal or not (guessing it is) but a Kawasaki W650 might also be worth a look - they're no longer sold here new but you should be able to pick up a 2nd hand one in near-new condition for less than the price of a new Royal Enfield.
  4. Yeah, thanks for the replys..
    The electra I think would be better, with the disc brakes and electric start etc.. It basically comes down to me liking the cafe racer style (Bullet with alloy tank and straight handle bar mods). I absolutely love the Deus Ex Machinasr400, but the $14'000 price tag that goes with it turns me off.. another option is to go an old Jap bike like Kawa KH1100/125, and put some straight handle bars and a bucket seat on it..?
  5. I think the Enfield would make a decent beginner's bike, certainly no overwhelming power to worry about :) Reasonably low seat, too. If you really like that style, I certainly can't see why you shouldn't get one.
    The only issue is reliability - if you want a machine to tinker with, Enfield is perfect. If you want one that will be there ready to go every morning it might not be quite like that... I'd definitely go for the Electra model.

    PS. Deus Ex Machina are excellent, aren't they? I'd love to have one of them in my garage too, but I'd hate it to be the only bike... And I'd ask them to put the electric starter back in, purity be damned.
  6. Hmm, I thought the Clubman kit was designed to fit all Bullets - including the Bullet Electra. If you want to go for an old Jap bike as a base then you should consider something like a SRV250 - especially if you can find one of the Renaissa versions.