Royal Enfield Meteor 350: What To Expect?
Royal Enfield will soon launch an all-new motorcycle. Here’s what it could come with
[Update: Royal Enfield has launched the Meteor 350 in India. Head here for the pricing and other details regarding the launch]
Royal Enfield will soon launch the Meteor 350 in India. There have been sightings of what appears to be production-ready test mules of the motorcycle. Here are the important details about the new motorcycle.
It will replace the Thunderbird 350:
Royal Enfield discontinued quite a few of its BS4-compliant motorcycles before the April 1 BS6 deadline. Among them was the Thunderbird 350, which will be replaced by the Meteor 350. It looks similar to the Thunderbird 350X and carries the same fuel tank, side panel, and alloy wheels design. However, the Meteor 350 gets a split seat setup which could have a slightly different ride height than the Thunderbird 350X. The Meteor 350 also gets a different headlamp casing. While the Thunderbird 350 had a projector headlamp setup, the Meteor gets a simple halogen-bulb setup. It also gets a different tail lamp and turn indicators. The twin-pod instrument console is asymmetric now. We expect to see a speedometer and tachometer in there along with a few telltale lights. The switchgear is all-new too and similar to the Royal Enfield Concept KX that was shown at EICMA.
It gets an all-new motor:
The all-new BS6-compliant air-cooled motor shares its engine casing with the Interceptor 650. It is expected to feature an engine displacement of around 350cc along with fuel injection. Instead of the traditional pushrod layout, the new motor gets an overhead camshaft. You might miss out on the legendary thump, but it gets more performance than the Thunderbird 350’s 9.8PS and 28Nm. It could get a counterbalancer to minimise vibrations. The gearbox is likely to be a six-speed unit for relaxed highway cruising ability. Like the Interceptor 650, the Meteor 350 could get a slip and assist clutch to reduce clutch effort.
The frame is all-new:
The Meteor 350 sits on Royal Enfield’s J-platform. Unlike the Thunderbird’s single downtube frame, this one is a double-cradle frame. We suspect Royal Enfield’s partner, Harris Performance could have helped in developing the frame as it has in the past with the Continental GT 350 and the Interceptor 650. The motor could have rubber mounts to further isolate the rider from vibrations. The suspension components -- comprising telescopic forks and dual shock absorbers -- may be carried over from the Thunderbird 350X. It gets a front and rear disc brake and is expected to feature dual-channel ABS.
Pricing and launch details:
The Royal Enfield Meteor 350 is expected to be priced around Rs 1.75 lakh to Rs 1.85 lakh (ex-showroom). While the motorcycle was expected to be launched by the first quarter of this year, with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic we might have to wait a few more months for the Meteor 350.