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My Royal Enfield Experience

Posted: March 16th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Musings | 22 Comments »

Since my childhood days, I was always fascinated by the marvelously designed body, the melodious thump and the royal look of Royal Enfield. After learning driving on a Bajaj Chetak, I wanted to ride Bullet to feel the Bullet-ness (if there is such a term) but never got a chance to ride as none of my friend had one. Primarily, all these years I have been riding the definitely male, Bajaj Pulsar.

I decided to buy a bike last year and after a lot of thinking I settled for Royal Enfield. The Bullet was first choice without a doubt but I wasn’t sure if I am the right person for it. I used to hate driving specially in Mumbai traffic and maneuvering that beast is not an easy task in Mumbai chaos. I got different opinion about Bullet like the amount your are paying to buy a bullet can be used as a down payment for a car, why do you need to buy a bike now, Bullet khareedna matlab haathi paalna hai and so on. Needless to say I did not pay attention to any of these unwanted suggestions.

Now, the next big task was to decide on the model. As I had not driven a Bullet; so, I was sure that I am not going for Standard model because it had gear shift on the right side. I wanted to go for Thunderbird Twin Spark but it does not have that thump sound, although, after going through quite a few forums I got to know that a retro silencer can give that thump. I almost zeroed in for a Machismo and that’s when Royal Enfield launched Bullet Classic models.

It was a historic launch in the sense that all models except for Thunderbird were being discontinued and going forward Royal Enfield is going to produce only UCE (Unit Construction Engine) and not CI (Cast Iron) engines. I could not make a difference in these two types of engines :-). I took a test ride of Royal Enfield Classic 350 and was pretty satisfied with the ride.

I booked my bike (Royal Enfield Classic 350) on 25th Nov, 2009 (just after 21 days of launch) by paying Rs. 10,000. The company owned Bandra showroom promised me the bike in 50-55 days as I booked a silver color bike and there was less demand for silver color. I made a mental note that I will get a delivery during Makar Sankranti. However, to my disappointment I received a call from store after a month that I will not get my bike before second week of February. I consoled myself by thinking that it would be a prefect gift for me on my birthday.

Till now, 111 days have passed (and also my Birthday, Holi and Gudi Padwa) and 3 more deadline extension have been informed so far. The next expected delivery week (yes, they talk in weeks) is third week of April. I have sent an email to Royal Enfield seeking explanation about the delay and have received a canned response that you will receive a bike on first-come-first-serve basis whenever it’s ready. I have made several calls to showroom about my bike and to empathize, they have offered me to return 90% of my booking amount and I can pay the complete amount at the time of delivery. They have also send me a Classic calendar featuring Milind Soman.

My excitement of owning a Royal Enfield is dying down, although, I still look every passing by Bullet with an astonishing feeling, the same way a kid looks up in the sky whenever he listens to sound of an aeroplane.  I am no more counting days to get my bike, however, what disappoints me the most is the manner in which the delivery date is being extended every two weeks. I am unable to comprehend how Eicher Motors is not able to produce these bikes when they have only three models in production now unlike in past when they had 4 models. The demand has increased understandably for Classic bikes but you are in business of producing bike and should have evaluated the spurt in demand.

I am still waiting for the day when I will get a call from Bandra Royal Enfield store that your bike is ready and you can take it home. So far this has been my Royal Enfield experience without even driving it.

I still love Royal Enfield, the bike but I hate Royal Enfield (Eicher Motors), the company.

Update-1 (April, 8th, 2010): After 134 days of booking, I have paid the complete amount for the bike. I have been told that bike would be available next week. Thanks to delay in production, I have to pay Rs. 2287 extra as there has been some hike in excise duty or something. Thank You Eicher Motors for making me pay extra for your fault.

Update-2 (April, 20th, 2010): After 146 days, the bike is delivered today. I don’t have words to explain the feeling of owning this beauty. The wait was all worth it ;-)


22 Comments on “My Royal Enfield Experience”

  1. 1 Yogi Kotwani said at 6:12 pm on March 16th, 2010:

    Bhaiya Sudhir (to be more specific I would say Google ),

    Thanks for sharing the nice dreams with Bikes you have and bitter experiences and wait suffered by you for getting bike.

    Hope you will get ur Bike soon….

    Thanks,
    Yogi

  2. 2 Bhavesh Joshi said at 9:47 pm on March 16th, 2010:

    Hi Sudhir,

    I can understand it is a P-ITA ;-)
    But it’s strange that you didn’t opted for returning 90% of the money back.

    Also I would suggest that now you escalate this matter at higher level and along with bike you should also ask for compensation.

    Everything has it’s time and god is never late in striking.. so just be there as you have been for past some time.

    Regards,

    Bh@vesh

  3. 3 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 9:26 pm on March 17th, 2010:

    There is no point in escalation as production is slow :-(

  4. 4 sanat tanna said at 1:33 pm on March 26th, 2010:

    Sudhir i would suggest you to to shoot a mail to Higher authorities….Its not the company its that dealer in Bandra…i had same problem with them but was lucky enough to analyis their ineffeciancy….for my Thunderbird twinspark they wanted me to book first and wait for 2 weeks or pay more and get it on the spot….
    I bought my TBTS from Soniya Bhandup..just in 3 days got my delivery..

  5. 5 Het said at 11:47 pm on March 27th, 2010:

    1st april ko call ayega :P

  6. 6 Sumit said at 1:04 am on March 28th, 2010:

    Why dont you switch to another model of Bullet.

  7. 7 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 7:19 pm on March 28th, 2010:

    Hi Sanat,

    I’ve sent an email, however, no result. The Bandra Showroom is operated by company and they cannot order bike before actual orders, however, other dealers book bikes in bulk without orders and can deliver in short time. That might be the reason you got in 3 days.
    I hope to get it next week :-)

  8. 8 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 7:19 pm on March 28th, 2010:

    Hi Sanat,

    I’ve sent an email, however, no result. The Bandra Showroom is operated by company and they cannot order bike before actual orders, however, other dealers book bikes in bulk without orders and can deliver in short time. That might be the reason you got in 3 days.
    Finally, I hope to get it next month :-)

  9. 9 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 7:20 pm on March 28th, 2010:

    Now that will also take few more months. I will better wait for another month for the beauty :-)

  10. 10 Sanat Tanna said at 1:07 am on April 7th, 2010:

    Hi sudhir,

    my friend just got a classic 500 from Bhandup (soniya) thane passing…but too my surprise he had shell out 25k above the actual prize…..to get the delivery in flat 7 days…

    i just converted my TBTS to a single seater now i am looking out for the classic bend silencer..and it looks really classy..i would suggest if you going for 350 classic instead by TBTS n convert it to a single seat…

  11. 11 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 8:24 am on April 7th, 2010:

    Hi Sanat,

    That’s exactly what I was saying. Dealers can do such thing but company operated showroom cannot. Anyway, this week I’ve been informed that bike is in transit and would be here by next week :-).
    I would love to see your converted TBTS pics. Can you please send it to sudhir [at] esudhir [dot] com

  12. 12 Nasir said at 6:49 pm on April 8th, 2010:

    @ sudhir..

    How i wish there was an alternative to Royal Enfield…

    But, you are not the one suffering alone.. there are a lot of us in a similar sour soup, brewed by Royal Enfield. May be we all can shout together to be heard by the guys in Chennai..

    The following is My story.

    BACKGROUND:
    I am a die-hard fan of Royal Enfield motorcycles and proud owner of a Machismo 350. .
    I love to tour on my Machismo and even the Royal Enfield official website has acknowledged the fact by publishing my photographs in the “Picture of the week” section, several times.

    CASE:
    I had been eagerly waiting for the launch of Classic 500 in India, since its introduction in the International market.
    After the launch, as soon as i could manage to arrange for the finances, i went ahead and booked a Classic 500 and put my machismo on sale.

    FACTS:

    Booking Date: 8th of December 2009
    Booking amount: Rs Ten thousand only.
    Booking for: Royal Enfield CLASSIC 500
    Booking at: Royal Enfield Brand Store, Bangalore.

    On-Road Price at the time of booking: Rs 1, 43, 000. (+ – Rs.500)

    Promised delivery date: 8th of February, 2010.

    Since the day of booking, i have been eagerly waiting for the bike and have been regularly following it up with the Brand Store.
    I got a letter from the Royal Enfiled Brand store (dated: 9th March 2010) stating that i would positively receive the bike by the 4th week of March.

    Today is 8th of April, and still there is no news on the bike.
    THE ISSUE:

    At the Brand Store, i was also told that the Price of the Bike has increased as a result of the union budget, and i would have to pay the increased price for the bike, when it is delivered.

    Now, why should i pay the extra amount for the delay caused by the compnay? Or is it the price one has to pay for being passionate ?

    I booked the bike with initial booking amount, and was given delivery date of 8th Febroary, 2010. ( before the union budget)

    Its not my fault that Royal Enfield company did not deliver the bike on the promised delivery date, ( and still there is no surety of a delivery date), and in the mean while the new budget has increased the price of the bike, and finally i, the customer has to bear the extra cost. Is this my fault ?

    If this was mentioned during the time of booking I would have prepared myself for this.

    The last 4 months of waiting for the bike, without any realistic delivery date, has given me enough mental tension and trauma, and on top of that, now i am also expected to pay a much higher price of for the bike.

    I would request someone to look in to this matter, and take some appropriate action, before people like me get dissapointed and loose the Passion towards the Royal Enfield Motorcycles.

    Still Waiting..

  13. 13 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 11:36 am on April 9th, 2010:

    Hi Nasir,

    Thanks for sharing your pain. I think Royal Enfield guys know that there is no alternative to Bullet and that’s why they take customers for granted.
    I wish Eicher motors should have shown some sense and should not have charged the hiked price. I also had to pay Rs. 2287 extra all thanks to their production delay.
    I did not receive any information about delay of bike ever. Every time, I had to call store for my bike and got no concrete answer.
    I hope you get your bike soon.

  14. 14 Priank said at 11:21 pm on April 14th, 2010:

    So atlast you are to make it this week, Many Congratulations to you, for your Beauty.

  15. 15 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 8:57 pm on April 15th, 2010:

    Thanks Priank
    Have been waiting for quite long now. The Goddess would arrive sometime next week.

  16. 16 Sanjeev khatoi said at 4:02 pm on April 22nd, 2010:

    Congrats boy!

  17. 17 Paritosh said at 1:23 am on April 21st, 2011:

    I also booked a RE 350 in January for precisely the same reasons as you did ? Still awaiting delivery . How is the ride ? How much mileage is it giving in Mumbai ?

  18. 18 Paritosh said at 1:25 am on April 21st, 2011:

    Congratulations for completing exactly 1 year with the bull today !!

  19. 19 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 5:58 pm on July 7th, 2011:

    Ride is awesome and in city ride, it’s giving 40+.

  20. 20 Sudarshan said at 12:09 am on August 8th, 2011:

    Congrats Sudhir…

    I am joining the RE Classic 350 Club this August 15…. :-)

  21. 21 Sudhir Upadhyay said at 4:18 pm on August 8th, 2011:

    Welcome to the club :-)

  22. 22 satyajit said at 1:09 pm on June 6th, 2013:

    Friend’s Greeting My Side
    i also booked royel enfield electra in 23 may 2013 but i am afraid of to listren all these story by you. as the store manager told me to eat for 1 and half month . guys am i possible think to get my re by time .
    it was my dream to be a woner of it and ride it .as i am not from rich family but my dream is very big there was a R E in my village when i was just 8 year from that time i dreamed for same now i am doing a little job from which i just get 15000/month with this i save some money to purchase my dream. expect to get my bike on time.


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