Royal Enfield 650 Twins vs Harley-Davidson Street 750: Spec Comparison

Modified On Mar 20, 2019 By Praveen M. for Royal Enfield Interceptor 650

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We pit Royal Enfield’s latest flagship motorcycles against Harley’s entry-level product in India, on paper

With the launch of the Interceptor 650 and the Continental GT 650, cult bikemaker Royal Enfield has truly gone global. The brand chose the 650 platform as the segment didn't have much competition. However, in the Indian market, the motorcycles go head-to-head with Harley’s entry-level bike for the country, the Street 750. Let’s see how they stack up against each other on paper.

Design:

The Royal Enfield Interceptor 650 follows a laid-back retro-modern design language, which is reminiscent of the 1960’s Interceptor. Royal Enfield has designed the bike with a complete no-nonsense approach, as there are no complex design lines. The simple bench seat complements the ergonomic handlebars and footpeg position, resulting in a rather comfortable posture.

The Continental GT 650, on the other hand, is a sporty-looking cafe racer, with clip-on handlebars, well proportioned fuel tank and matching seat. The riding position is also aggressive, thanks to the rear-set footpegs. Both the Interceptor and the Continental GT 650 share the same chassis and engine, but have different ergonomics.

The Harley-Davidson Street 750 has typical American cruiser-like proportions. The long, raked out front is complemented by a stubby rear with a fat tyre. In typical cruiser fashion, the seat is also low-slung, and the riding position is rather stretched out.

Performance:

Specifications RE 650 Twins Harley-Davidson Street 750
Engine 648cc parallel-twin air and oil-cooled, SOHC, fuel injected motor 749cc liquid-cooled, fuel-injected Revolution-X V-twin engine
Peak power 47.6PS at 7,250rpm NA
Maximum torque 52Nm at 5,250rpm 59Nm at 3,750rpm
Transmission 6-speed slip and assist clutch, chain drive 6-speed, belt drive

Thanks to the all-new parallel-twin engine, the Royal Enfield 650 twins are capable of sustaining triple-digit speeds effortlessly. In our first ride, the Continental GT even touched about 180kmph, and maintained its composure- now that’s something you wouldn't expect from a Royal Enfield!

The Harley-Davidson Street 750's gearing is versatile enough to let you overtake below 100kmph in sixth gear on the highway. Thanks to its belt drive, the engine’s torquey nature comes alive when going off the line. The motorcycle also produces more torque at relatively lower revs than the RE twins. However, only a proper road test comparison will let us gauge the two motorcycles properly.

Underpinnings:

Specifications RE 650 Twins Harley-Davidson Street 750
Front suspension 41mm telescopic forks Telescopic forks
Rear suspension Twin coilover shock absorbers Twin shock absorbers
Front brake 320mm disc with ABS Disc with ABS
Rear brake 240mm disc with ABS Disc with ABS
Front tyre 100/90-18 Pirelli Phantom Sportscomp 100/80-17 MRF Nylogrip Zapper
Rear tyre 130/70-18 Pirelli Phantom Sportscomp 150/70-15 MRF Nylogrip Zapper
Rake angle 24 degrees 32 degrees

When it comes to handling, the RE 650 twins seem to be the livelier ones, at least on paper. This is because the rake angle is a lot lesser than the Harley’s, and the bikes also get grippier Pirelli tyres compared to tyre life-biased MRFs on the Harley. The Continental GT 650 has more agile dynamics than the Interceptor 650 since the riding position is aggressive, and the clip-ons help result in better control too.

The Street 750 is agile enough for a Harley, despite the relatively higher rake angle. In our tests, we discovered that the latest-gen motorcycle features much more responsive brakes, but even then, the rear slightly loses its composure under hard braking.

Verdict:

The Royal Enfield 650 twins, if priced aggressively, will offer way better value for money when compared to the Rs 5.31 lakh (ex-showroom pan-India) Harley. We expect Royal Enfield to price the motorcycles at around Rs 3 lakh (ex-showroom). This will give the cult bikemaker plenty of margin to undercut its American rival. Moreover, the number of service centres Royal Enfield has across the country is much more than Harley, and that could also play a major role in making the bikes popular.

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