Royal Enfield Interceptor 650 BS6 vs Kawasaki W800 BS6: Specification Comparison
It’s desi retro flavour against old-school Japanese charm
Kawasaki surprised us by launching the BS6-compliant W800 that too with a massive price cut of Rs 1 lakh, bringing its cost to Rs 6.99 lakh (ex-showroom India). But even that’s a considerable amount of money for a retro bike. The Royal Enfield, on the other hand, offers the big bike experience in an affordable retro package with the Interceptor 650. The BS6-compliant version is priced at a stonking Rs 2,64,918 for the Orange Crush variant. That’s less than half the cost of the W800. So let’s see how they fare against each other on paper.
Thanks to its sheer size, the Kawasaki W800 is not only slightly more powerful but also a lot torquier than the Royal Enfield Interceptor 650. Both its peak power and torque come earlier down the rev range, which should make it theoretically livelier than the Enfield.
The Royal Enfield’s engine gets an additional oil cooler which can help in maintaining the engine oil temperature during long rides. There’s no such function in the Kawasaki W800 as it is purely air-cooled. Even though the W800 lacks a sixth cog, the ratios are spread in a way that it wouldn’t feel out of breath at triple-digit speeds.
The gas-charged twin-shock absorber setup in the Royal Enfield Interceptor 650 should theoretically offer better damping characteristics compared to conventional shock absorbers in the Kawasaki W800. But on the flip side, the bigger rear disc on the W800 should offer better bite compared to the smaller disc in the Interceptor 650. Apart from these two aspects, the rest of the underpinnings are similar in both bikes.
Dimensions & Features:
The Kawasaki W800’s slightly longer wheelbase should give it more stability on the straights. It also has a very accessible seat height, which should be good enough for most riders in India. But since it’s designed for the international markets, the ground clearance isn’t all that much. Going over bad roads here in India will certainly be tricky with this motorcycle, which isn’t the case with the Royal Enfield Interceptor 650. As far as heft is concerned, both bikes should be in the same league (read: on the heavier side) if the Interceptor is filled with fuel.
Both bikes have a minimalistic feature list. They sport halogen headlamps and also get a semi-digital, classically styled twin-pod instrument cluster. Of course, a dual-channel ABS is standard across both the bikes.
Price & Verdict:
(all prices ex-showroom India)
When it comes to value for money, nothing can beat the Royal Enfield Interceptor 650. Its performance is almost on par with the bigger-engined Kawasaki W800 and it also offers a similar set of features and underpinnings. If you’re looking for a well-rounded big bike on a budget, the Interceptor is the obvious choice.
But if you’re willing to put a premium for a Japanese retro motorcycle and stand out in a crowd, the Kawasaki W800 is your only choice in the Indian big bike market.
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