Bikers rejoice! The new Royal Enfield Thunderbird is here!
India's iconic motorcycle brand, Royal Enfield has updated the lineup of it's Thunderbird model by launching the new Thunderbird 500 and a face-lifted version of Thunderbird 350.
The all new Thunderbird 500 gets a mighty 500cc engine that churns out 27.2 bhp of power and 41.3 Nm of torque. The Thunderbird 500 comes with a 5-speed gearbox and gets some new features that enhance the ride quality and ensures the safety of the riders.
At the launch, Siddhartha Lal, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Eicher Motors said, “When we launched Thunderbird in 2002, it was a one-of-its kind motorcycle on the Indian roads that redefined the cruiser segment. Over the years, the Thunderbird brand has built its own cult following amongst Royal Enfield customers, as a comfortable touring motorcycle.”
Eicher Motors manufactures just 10,000 Royal Enfields every month which has amounted to a waiting period of 6-8 months for some of it's models. The limited production capacity is a result of the company's single, decades-old plant in Chennai.
But, that might soon be a thing of the past as the company is pinning it's hopes on it's new production plant in Oragadam,Chennai. The new plant is expected to be ready by March 2013 and will have a capacity of producing 150,000 units per year.
"I hope with the commissioning of our second plant by the first quarter of 2013, we will be able to trim the long waiting period, which is now six to eight months. Currently, almost 90 per cent of our sales come form domestic market and still we are unable to offer the bikes on demand.
Definitely, we want to be global brand. But our first priority is to meet the domestic demand and the exports will be focused from FY'15 onwards," Mr. Lal said.
Commenting on the all new Thunderbird 350, he said, "To complete the Royal Enfield range of highway cruisers, today we are also launching the all-new Thunderbird 350 that rides on the same design principle as that of the Thunderbird 500."
The new Thunderbird, which is being touted as a tourer is priced at Rs 1,82,571 and Rs 1,43,346 for the 500cc and the 350cc models respectively (on-road, Mumbai).
Interestingly, the new Thunderbird 500 would be available in just one color, black, while being in three shades of black – midnight black, arctic winter black and matte black metallic.