New Royal Enfield 648cc Parallel Twin
Royal Enfield have revived their twin heritage for 2018, with the unveiling at EICMA of the Continental GT 650 and Interceptor INT 650, both models utilising a new SOHC, eight-valve, air/oil-cooled 648cc parallel twin.
The first modern Royal Enfield 650 twin engine, this new platform is a single overhead cam, eight-valve, air/oil-cooled, 648cc parallel twin, producing 47bhp and 52Nm. The engine has a strong low and mid-range performance, retaining the Royal Enfield character of accessible torque through the rev range.
The engine maintains an under-stressed 9.5:1 compression ratio while fuel injection ensures smooth running.
As a result Royal Enfield claim the engine feels fun, potent, and easy-to-use.
A single-piece forged crankshaft (a first for Royal Enfield), uses a 270-degree firing order, which gives character to the engine’s power delivery while a balance shaft helps dampen vibrations.
2018 Royal Enfield Interceptor INT 650
The Interceptor INT 650 ushers in the idea of the 1960s fun, relaxed motorcycles from the California beaches. With a classic tear-drop shaped fuel-tank, quilted seat and distinctive wide braced handlebars.
The chassis has been developed from the ground up by the team at Royal Enfield’s UK Technology Centre, and Harris Performance. It has been engineered and fine-tuned for enhanced agility that can handle different terrains and speeds with ease while retaining the period classic style.
An all-new, dedicated steel-tube cradle chassis makes the Interceptor INT 650 an easy-going, versatile motorcycle ideal for riding in the city or a leisurely weekend cruise. The wide-braced handlebars offer comfortable ergonomics and a confident and commanding riding position, allowing the rider to make the most of the chassis.
The motorcycle is equipped with classic 18” front and rear Pirelli tyres and twin shock absorbers, along with front and rear disc brakes with ABS. A ground clearance of 174mm and a seat height of 804 mm, ensure that the Interceptor INT 650 gives a superlative riding experience.
Also new to the Royal Enfield Interceptor INT 650, is the six speed gearbox, especially developed for this motorcycle. The gearbox is augmented by its ‘slip/assist’ clutch, that facilitates easy riding in traffic with a light feel, and prevents wheel-hop when downshifting gears – also a first for Royal Enfield.
Mr. Siddhartha Lal – CEO Royal Enfield
“The Interceptor INT 650 carries forward the Royal Enfield legacy into the 21st century. While in its essence it retains the design and old-school character, it has all the underpinnings of a modern machine. It combines agility, usable power, excellent ergonomics and style in an unintimidating manner. However, the Interceptor INT 650 is more than the sum of its parts; it is great fun to ride and brings a smile on your face every single time that you ride it.”
2018 Royal Enfield Continental GT 650
In addition to the Interceptor INT 650, Royal Enfield also showcased the ground-up, all new Continental GT 650. The motorcycle retains its central cafe racer character while bringing in new engineering and design improvements.
It shares its engine, chassis and running parts with the Interceptor INT 650, while offering completely different ergonomics and style. The motorcycle has a front-leaning stance that gives it a sporty look. The Continental GT 650’s ergonomics offer easy reach to the mid-level handlebars, for an optimum blend of steering feel and comfort with no compromise to its 12.5L fuel tank capacity.
Like the Interceptor INT 650, the Continental GT 650 sports disc brakes front and the rear with ABS. The upswept exhaust and rear-set footrests give the motorcycle plenty of lean angle, essential for any true cafe racer.
The single seat, sculpted tank, and clip-on bars complete the authentic look, and the bike is designed for the rider to feels ‘as one’ with the machine, whether commuting or scraping knees down their favourite backroads and twisties.
Rudratej (Rudy) Singh – Royal Enfield President
“The GT has been an iconic motorcycle in Royal Enfield’s portfolio. Since its launch in 2013, the Continental GT has helped the brand strengthen its position in mature motorcycle markets across the world. In its new avatar, the Continental GT 650 is the absolute definitive cafe racer that will be loved by discerning riders across the world. Being authentic, accessible and creating motorcycles that are evocative, is at the core of all things we do. As a brand, we encourage our riders in their journey of self-expression and exploration. It is this idea that they relate to, even before they buy our motorcycles. The new 650 twins will help us strengthen this proposition further.”
Siddhartha talked further about the significance of the new twins in Royal Enfield’s global foray.
Mr. Siddhartha Lal – CEO Royal Enfield
“Royal Enfield aims to lead and expand the mid-weight (250-750cc) motorcycle segment globally. The Royal Enfield Interceptor INT 650 and Continental GT 650 will help grow this segment. While for our large customer base in India, the new 650 twins will be a compelling upgrade, we believe it will attract customers from other developing markets in SouthEast Asia and Latin America to graduate to the middle weight segment. In addition, the 650 twins will offer a very evocative option to customers in mature motorcycle markets such as Europe, Australia and North America. For us, this marks the beginning of a new chapter at Royal Enfield.“
Both the Continental GT 650 and the Interceptor INT 650 will be available in variety of colourways and two distinct styles – Standard and Retro Custom. A total of 11 options have been developed to appeal to a wide range of heritage seeking riders, as well as the modern rider seeking a classic motorcycle.
While the Standard range of colourways take inspiration from the motorcycles of the ’50s and ’60s, the Retro Custom range is a bolder version of graphics and colours. The Interceptor INT 650 in Orange Crush and the Ice Queen Continental GT 650 were displayed at EICMA and are pictured.
Mr Simon Warburton – Head of Product Development at Royal Enfield
“The new 650 twin engine and the motorcycles have been developed at Royal Enfield’s new UK Technology Centre with collaboration with the engineering and design teams in Chennai, India. The entire platform, including the engine and chassis, has undergone rigorous testing and validation process during the development programme at world-class proving grounds with professional riders. It has been subjected to lab and bench tests, in addition to being tested on race tracks and public roads. With over one million kms of testing prior to production, more than 70 different tests have been conducted on the vehicle and individual chassis components. Modern CAE techniques and CAD systems have been applied during the development of the chassis and comprehensive data logging and analysis have been undertaken. The gearbox has undergone extensive test miles, resulting in an optimum shift feel, reliability of engagement, quiet notch-free selection and perfect ratio spacing. These motorcycles have been tested for real-world riding conditions in both Europe and India”
2018 Royal Enfield Gear & Apparel
Accompanying these two new motorcycles is a range of gear and apparel that has been inspired by history, but tailor-made to be relevant to contemporary styles. Deriving their cuts and silhouettes from the contexts when these motorcycles were originally introduced, the Clymer and the Spirit Jacket in the new range, celebrate the classic design and versatility of the new motorcycles.
The range also includes, besides a curated range of t-shirts, helmets in classic shapes, both open & full-face, a boot and high-ankle sneakers along with Covert Cordura Jeans and Streetborn Gloves fusing classic styling with contemporary functionality.
2018 Royal Enfield Genuine Accessories
The Continental GT 650 and the Interceptor INT 650 will have a whole suite of Royal Enfield Genuine Motorcycle Accessories available that can help both spruce up the motorcycle and provide additional comfort, styling and protection.
The range will include functional and protective accessories such as engine guards, lifting handle, pannier mounts, and an auxiliary electrical port. The range also includes styling accessories such as chrome and stainless steel silencer slip-ons, acrylic fly-screen, single and twin-seat cowls, soft canvas panniers, and others. All the genuine motorcycle accessories have also been developed and tested along with the motorcycles in real-road conditions.
Interceptor and Continental GT history
The Interceptor has a spectacular history, as the first Royal Enfield that was built specifically for the American market. It achieved great popularity in California where the motorcycle aligned well with the relaxed, hippie and surfer culture. It is this iconic movement, and the original Interceptor, that is the inspiration behind the creation of the new Interceptor INT 650.
The Continental GT is an ode to the cafe racers of the ’50s. Café racers were born in the 1950s in keeping with the emerging racing culture of those times. Racers bought stock motorcycles and stripped down the parts to make it light and aerodynamic. The new Continental GT 650 recaptures Royal Enfield’s authentic café racer legacy. It retains the look while taking performance to the next level in terms of ride and handling.