It’s July 21, 2023—and the Royal Enfield Bullet 350 is about to make its return. Is it the epitome of the phrase “everything old is new again?” Since the original Bullet has been in production in one form or another since 1932, it just might be.
Here in North America, the Bullet quietly got phased out of the US and Canadian lineups some time ago—in both its 500cc and 350cc forms. In India, however, the Bullet 350 has stood strong, even as Enfield began rolling out its newer, narrower, smoother J platform with the introductions of the Meteor 350, Classic 350, and Hunter 350 in 2021 and 2022.
Enfield has talked about updating the Bullet 350 to the new platform for some time. With such a popular and legendary motorcycle, it’s not at all difficult to understand why the time might be right for a revamp. Now Royal Enfield is teasing what appears to be the rebirth of the Bullet 350 on the J platform in Chennai on August 30 and September 1, 2023.
The 14-second-long teaser video of course doesn’t show much—but the sound of the new 350cc single-cylinder engine is unmistakable, especially if you’ve ridden at least one of the new models. As for visuals, we get a closeup pan across a classic Royal Enfield tank badge, zoomed in close enough to take in all the visual textures, colors, and materials involved. That's it.
While the styling, ergonomics, and aesthetic details on the new Bullet will differ, there’s every reason to expect that we already know what the new Bullet’s engine will be like. If it’s like the other bikes that share this engine, it will be forgiving, tractable, easy to shift with confidence, and good for an everyday kind of bike.
Indian motorcycle publications are abuzz with the news, and for good reason. Although the Bullet badge went away in other markets, it still hasn’t faded in India. If you wanted to, you could still go to your local Royal Enfield dealer and get your hands on a Bullet 350 that uses the previous engine right now.
Enfield’s other J-platform 350s have rolled out worldwide after premiering in India. You can find the Meteor, Classic, and Hunter readily available in multiple markets around the world where Enfield has a presence. Up until a few years ago, the Bullet was also sold in multiple markets. Will the Bullet 350 mark the reintroduction of the Bullet model to markets outside of India? Stay tuned.