Royal Enfield Thunderbird 500 not happening in the next six months: ICB Exclusive!
A constant question in our comments section and our Ask Experts section is that of prospective Royal Enfield owners and fans alike, asking us when the Royal Enfield Thunderbird 500 will be launched. Rumors of the Royal Enfield Thunderbird 500 first began four years ago when Royal Enfield launched the AVL engined Machismo LB500. Since the Thunderbird of yore featured the 350cc AVL engine, speculations ran rife of Royal Enfield launching the AVL 500cc engine in the Thunderbird.
Of course, that never happened even as the 350cc AVL engine of the Thunderbird was dumped in favor of the much more reliable and fuel efficient Unit Construction Engine. The rumors have surfaced yet again with press reports appearing just days ago, Of that of Royal Enfield launching a 500cc Thunderbird TBTS soon, this time with the 500cc, 27 Bhp-41 Nm UCE engine that does duty currently in the Royal Enfield Classic 500, the Desert Storm 500 and the Classic Chrome 500.
We got intrigued by the reports and knowing the high anticipation for the Thunderbird 500, got in touch with a reliable source from Royal Enfield. Our source, whom we will not name for obvious reasons, denied the development saying that although prototypes of the Thunderbird 500 with the UCE500 engine were made a while ago, Royal Enfield does not have any plans to launch the motorcycle within the next six months or so. Also, our source reiterated that the focus is currently on the best selling Classic range.
So, folks wanting a comfortable and laid back thumper will have to wait a bit longer even as Royal Enfield seems to be working flat out to meet the ever increasing demand for its retro-modern range of single cylinder thumpers, which have been making waves in India and as well as markets abroad as the Unit Construction Engine has infused new life into a lifestyle brand that was previously saddled with low fuel efficiency and high maintenance motorcycles.