By Jack the Lad

Royal Enfield Himalayan Owners Review 5000 miles
I thought some of you may be interested in the experience of an owner now
I have covered 5000 miles since January, mostly on my 2 or 3 times a week
75 mile round trip commute, with a few longer trips for pleasure.
Is 25 bhp enough? Of course, it's not the right bike for track days or if
you want to cross continents in the fast lane at 100mph, but it is fast
enough to exceed the national speed limits, cruise at the limit on
motorways for at least 250 miles (my longest single day journey so far),
get past slow moving traffic on A roads and have fun on B roads. 
That's enough for me.
I'm sorry to disappoint the sceptics, but I'm afraid that I've got
nothing to report!  I haven't even had to adjust the chain yet. 3000
mile service intervals are mildly inconvenient, but it's a simple engine,
so they are not too expensive.
Comfort, Handling, Roadholding and Brakes

Right from the start I found the Himalayan a really easy bike just to get
on and ride.  I like the sit up and beg riding position, the screen
works well for my height (6ft 1in) with no buffeting, but enough breeze to
clear raindrops.  The seat was comfortable enough for that 250 mile
trip and the return ride next day. 
It handles really well, no fuss no drama, no weaves, no wobbles, no brake
dive, nothing remotely near touching down.  Smooth fuelling means
there isn't the throttle off-on hiccup that could unsettle the 500 and
well controlled suspension takes out any worry over mid corner
The original Pirelli MT60 tyres stuck like glue winter and summer, wet
and dry, but squared off by 3500 miles and were replaced at 4800. 
I've put on Avon Trailriders, which get better reviews for tyre life -
only 3 rides so far but on cold or wet roads they feel just as good as the
Some road tests criticize the bike for weak brakes, one I saw was on the
grounds that it needed all 4 fingers to achieve a stoppie!  Back in
my real world, the brakes are just fine.  They are not 'brick wall'
brakes, but I like that. A lot of my commute is on single track B roads
with passing places. They are often wet, muddy, covered in leaves or
strewn with inconveniently place manhole covers, so gentle brakes where
I'm in charge of how heavy I brake are reassuring.  It will brake
fast enough with a good squeeze and I have neither hit anything yet nor
managed to trigger the ABS.
Other important things
I have averaged 75 mpg, with a high of 79 and a low of 68 (that motorway
trip).  I can do 3 days commute on a tankful (225 miles) with over a
litre to spare.  Best tankful was 238 miles with half a litre left.
I spent a lot of money and effort to improve the lights on my Electra
without ever being really satisfied, but the Himalayan ones are good
enough as standard to ride at pretty much the same speeds night or
Looks are subjective - but I like the way that the Himalayan looks just
as good dirty as clean.  That's lucky as I ride in all weathers and
hate washing bikes, so I've only done it twice - but there is no rust or
other evidence of misuse.
Overall I'm really pleased. 5000 miles is still early days but if I knew
then what I know now I would still buy one and recommend it to
friends.  For £4000 it's almost a no-brainer.  Like most
motorcyclists as soon as I've got one bike I start thinking about the next
one.  I haven't come up with a better alternative yet, even at twice
the price - not least because, for me, not being able to do those 3 days
commute on a single tankful is a total deal-breaker, which counts out at
least 95% of bikes on the market.

By Jamesy
Very good report and the only thing that put me off the Himalayan was that 25 bhp.However yourself and others have said it will cruise at motorway speed of 70mph.What was the running in period/miles for the bike.
By Wayne
Well done Jack and thank the Lord for common sense and honesty!

I have had my Himalayan since March and have covered nearly three thousand miles as well, I agree with all of Jacks comments and results, have not had to adjust my chain either and love the bike as well. My GT sits forlorn as I will take the Himalayan every time. It is one of the best all round bikes for the money I have ever had.
User avatar
By Adrian
That is a very helpful report. After problems with the early home-market bikes the factory seems to have got its act together, but it's a shame they haven't used that engine in more models besides the Himalayan, something retro roadster-ish in the CGT chassis would have been interesting.

By Jamesy
I think that Enfield must be thinking about a 500/650cc 50bhp engine for a future Himalayan after reviews slating the engine size.Perhaps the engine from the new Interceptor?.
User avatar
By Presto
I’m with Jack and Wayne here. The Himalayan is by far the best Royal Enfield I’ve ever ridden – and I’ve ridden plenty! It feels like a fully integrated project. In every department it seems to excel for what it is and what it’s intended to be. It’s light, handles beautifully, inspires confidence off-road without being in the least intimidating. On road it’s comfortable for huge distances – and that’s a welcome first for RE! On the question of performance, sure it’s not by any means super-quick. But who needs that! I don’t. Certainly not for the type of roads where the Himalayan is most at home.

An Interceptor twin engine in the Himalayan frame? Not for me. In my view it’s just not needed; it’d ruin everything the Himalayan seems to have got right as it is.

On that subject I bet our hosts are already planning performance mods to pep-up the standard motor without ruining the character of the bike overall.
By Jack the Lad
I'm not sure I've seen reviews that slate the Himalayan's power more of a minor regret that it doesn't have just a little more. Fitting the 650 twin would create a very different kind of bike, more like a vstrom or versus and probably cost half as much again. The Himalayan engine is a fair old lump - so there could be a bigger version in the pipeline. As long as they fit a bigger fuel tank, upgrade the brakes and keep the price rise to no more than £590, a 600 version with 35-49 bhp would be awesome!
By Jamesy
Maybe slating the engine size was a bit too harsh.The only real negatives reviewsI read said it was underpowered and should have had a bigger
engine/bhp.That won't put me off though.I will eventually book a test ride and take it from there.
By PeteF
Just my opinion of course but what the Himalayan doesn't have is any retro appeal and that's just why a lot of us ride Enfields.

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