Royal Enfield launched its new bike the Thunderbird Twinspark in 2008. But it was under some serious scrutiny by Bajaj Auto Ltd because of the name and the twin spark technology. Bajaj patents the twin spark technology and it had previously filed a suit against TVS motors for the same reason. But according to Royal Enfield they have not breached the patent copyrights as it holds good for 75 and 250 cc engine bikes whereas the Thunderbird is of a 350 cc version and they plan to incorporate the same technology in their future series of bikes too.
In terms of design and style the new bike has nothing new to offer, it remains the same as the previous model. There are only few things that add to the bike’s ‘new look’- two badges are adhered to the side flanks and the twinspark decal on the rear side. The bike’s engine is mainly engineered by Royal Enfield and the European design experts have tested the internal combustion and NVH of the engine. The bike on the whole has a macho look and is quite appealing. It has shifted the chain drive to the right, bears new stickers, seat and a rear splashboard. The instrument panel can be easily read even during bright sunlight. The bike also sports new Halogen lamps for longevity and the rear brake wire is move to the right side of the bike.
The new Thunderbird has a 350 cc UCE (Unit Construction Engine) that requires minimum manual interference and improves the efficiency of the engine. The engine sticks to the Euro III norms and is made to look compressed and better. But the kick-start lever does not look great. To add power to the engine they have a new trichoidal high flow pump, hydraulic tappets, better-devised clutch and the twinspark technology. The engine reduces the vibrations but remember once you cross 80 kmph it does vibrate. The engine can be easily activated with the automatic decompressor that initiates at 250 rpm. On the inner side of the UCE there is the electric motor to avoid any clutch related problems.
The new bike has an integrated gearbox that produces only 10% more power and torque compared to the previous Bullets. So, there is not much to rejoice. It generates a maximum power of 20 bhp and the maximum torque is 28Nm. For an instant halt the bike requires 150/280mm brakes. And the fuel efficiency ranges anywhere between 45-50 kmpl. The shifting of the rear brake has become easier. The suspension is not satisfactory; it is slightly stiffer but gets better with a pillion rider. Stability on straight lanes remains good but riding into curves isn’t any great. The front tyre seems to skid while breaking that causes some kind of discomfort. The bike is recommended for city riding and for a rare long drive too.
The Royal Enfield Thunderbird Twinspark is available in three colours: Silver, Black and Red and is handsomely priced at Rs 103000.
Popularity Rating of Royal Enfield Thunderbird Twinspark In India
The new Thunderbird Twinspark will not have a mad following like we see for Pulsars or Karizmas but is liked by people who already own a bullet and those who do not have one but have a liking for the brand. You might not see 100s and 1000s of these on roads, but one on road and it is a head turner.