The Bullet maker will now make a Bullet but without the thumping

When Eicher took over affairs of Royal Enfield into their strides, they basically revived the dying fire of the cult motorcycle manufacturer. Since then RE has been at the top of the game releasing products that got every motorcycle aphrodisiac’s blood racing. Right from the Classic 500 till the very recent 650cc Twins. These motorbikes spoke for themselves and the sales figures are the proof of this.

Now, the company is stepping into unknown territories. Following every other automaker in the world, Royal Enfield has also been investing its resources into the newfound electric powertrain technology for the Indian market. Although it will be quite some time before we could see an electric Enfield, the thought of not having a thumper under the hood might shake the loyalists.

Royal Enfield to plunge resources into developing electric motorcycles
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An electric project done by folks in Thailand

With 50% of Royal Enfield’s growth coming in the last five years, it was a no-brainer why Royal Enfield wants to even capture the future markets that will be filled with electric vehicles. The company has managed to sell more than half a million motorcycles worldwide in 2015, and by the end of 2018, its ambition is to double this figure.

To do just that, Royal Enfield will invest $100-150 million in their developments in the coming years which will include setting up a new facility to manufacture and assemble electric motorcycles. With Harris Performance backing their engineering team and with the newly launched Royal Enfield Technology Center in UK, RE has committed to foraying into alternative power sources and better-engineered bikes.

Royal Enfield to plunge resources into developing electric motorcycles
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An electric RE built by an enthusiast

Rudratej Singh, President of Royal Enfield in an interview with a scribe gave hints of their future plans. He said “Royal Enfield has several projects in the pipeline and the electric platform is one of them. We are in an investment phase in the project where we have a team that is working on different ideas and concepts with a long-term focus. We will disclose our plans at an appropriate time."

This will, however, ruffle the feathers of loyalists, but all of this is in a bid to attract a whole new generation of customers that believe in making a difference to the environment. Many other major manufacturers have gone through the same strategy to rope in new riders.

It looks like India is becoming a hotspot for electric two-wheeler business with a brand new firm coming up with an electric powered scooter or a motorcycle every other day. The start-up ecosystem has been given a huge push by the government through the "Make In India" initiative and multiple other subsidies for electric development. No wonder it is the biggest two-wheeler market in the world.

Source: Autocar

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