Royal Enfield is considered by many as one of the most promising up and coming manufacturers in the industry. It's always had a laidback air about it, with the overall motorcycling experience taking precedence over sheer performance and technology. The brand's most recent model release, the Hunter 350, along with all its other models, really, is a testament to this.
All that being said, even a company as true to its roots as Royal Enfield can't escape the ever changing tides of the motorcycle industry. I'm talking about electrification, and while an electric-powered Royal Enfield is by no means the stufff of science fiction, we have yet to see the Indian motorcycle maker actually work on EVs in-house. That being said, if Royal Enfield could come up with a production model similar to what Electric Classic Cars from the U.K. did with its Bullet-derived Royal Enfield Photon, then we're surely in for a treat.
True enough, in a recent story by Indian motorcycling publication and website BikeDekho, Royal Enfield indeed has plans of releasing fully electric models by 2026. Wait, that's a whole three-and-a-half years from now. Yes, RE has been clear that it is not in a rush to provide an electric product at the expense of quality, performance, and brand experience. That means the company will work really hard in ensuring that, despite being electric, its future models will still carry the iconic look, feel, and riding character of Royal Enfield motorbikes.
While no details have been confirmed just yet, it's expected that, in order to get an acceptable range out of the battery pack, the initial motorbike will have performance similar to a leisurely 250-300cc motorcycle. More batteries are needed for increased performance and long range, and more batteries add weight. Additionally, given the current state of technology and the role that RE has historically played in the spectrum of affordable options, offering a long-distance or performance-oriented model seems unlikely.
Be that as it may, an urban-centric electric motorcycle would make a lot of sense. This is particularly true given current battery technology, which often makes it easy to get a battery with a range suitable for urban use at a reasonable price. That being said, there are a lot of up and coming electric vehicles expected to roll out from India. In fact, we've all been eagerly waiting for the Husqvarna E-Pilen, not to mention, the slew of other EVs to come out from the Bajaj x Pierer Mobility partnership.