Royal Enfield History
After a long search finally Mr. George Townsend choose England for his new venture. That time England was a hub of manufacturing of small needles hooks.
Mr. George Townsend commissioned his needle factory in England in the name of GIVRY WORKS.
Over period of time, son of Mr. George Townsend named George Jr. his half brother brought a bicycle in the name of “ BONESHAKER” the same unit. This bicycle had a iron frame, wooden wheels, iron tyres and wooden pedal. This bicycle was crude in design and good for entertainment only.
Mr. George Junior and his half brother were confident to improve the over all bicycle.
In 1880, a modern bicycle was launched in the market. Other manufacturers as well as Mr. George Townsend Junior were in the race of manufacturing supplying parts of bicycle. Finally Mr.
George Jr. started manufacturing saddle spring under marketed/ patented as “Townsend cyclist saddle spring”. With this part George Junior entered in the trading of bicycle parts.
After some time George slowly moved from trading to bicycle manufacturing.
Along with producing bicycle, George was also supplying bicycle parts to other manufacturer.
That was the period when GIVRY WORKS was growing rapidly. Within next three years tenure George launched about two dozen models of bicycles in the market. These models were known as “Townsend bicycle’. These bicycles were well known for their sturdy frame.
All Royal Enfield motorcycles followed this character.
In 1890 George Townsend came across financial crises. To over came this crises he did financial tie up with a financier of Birmingham. But their finance tie up could go long way.
Due to some differences, Townsend parted with him and handover his factory to him.
In November 1891 financier brought Albert Eadie and R W Smith to run the factory. They took complete control of the factory in same month. The company again re named as Eadie Manufacturing co Ltd.
Just after taking over the factory Eadie got a contract to supply precision rifle parts to Royal Small Arm factory in Enfield Middlesex.
In the celebration of this contract they named their first new design bicycle as ENFIELD.
In October 1892 a new company was formed by Eadie Smith in the name of The Enfield Manufacturing co Ltd. This company was formed to market their new design bicycle. Latter on word Royal was added ( After the Royal small Arm co.).This was the beginning of Royal Enfield.
In 1893 word Royal Enfield trade mark “Made like a gun” appeared. The slogan become very popular in Great Britain. The company was performing well.
In 1899 Enfield Cycle co to planned to manufacture first mechanical vehicle.
These vehicle were manufactured with 1.5 HP engine in Tricycle quardricycle. The vehicle features were unique- Heavy cross frame with High wheel, solid tyres. This model was popular in the name of Eadie coaster.
There after a refined model of mechanical vehicle manufactured by Enfield cycle co was launched in the market in the name of “Riche Model”. By 1907 Enfield cycle co was having their headquarter at Redid itch and was manufacturing conventional, sports and racing cycles.
R W Smith himself made a quardricycle in 1897. Bike was simple in design and had four wheels French engine, which was placed between the rear wheels. In next two years lot of developments took places and Enfield quardricycle was awarded silver medal by Automobile club of Great Britain and Ireland on the occasion of completing 1000 miles road trial.
After the success Edie smith decided to manufacture three and four wheelers. The first Royal Enfield car was built in 1901 and launched in the market in 1902.This car was known as yellow car because body of this car was made in Leicester and painted yellow. But this car could not gain the market and lost after some time.
In 1901, royal Enfield took the biking world. At the motorcycle show that year royal Enfield displayed a small Swiss tradition engine and got good response. In 1911 slightly large model was developed. This model had two-speed gearbox and chain drive for which royal Enfield was well known.
This model stood up in the market until 1914.
In 1941 First World War begin and Royal Enfield got a contract to supply royal Enfield motorcycle to British war department. Same time royal Enfield manufactured royal Enfield motorcycle and supplied to Imperial Russian government. Royal Enfield built customized motorcycle for war purpose.
Royal Enfield was using own manufactured 225 cc single cylinder and 425 cc twin cylinder in these motorcycles. After the first war Royal Enfield started producing 976 cc twin cylinder motorcycle Royal Enfield continued to manufactured 225 cc motorcycle till 1929. In 1917 Royal Enfield supplied 225 cc motorcycles to police for the use of women police force. Also during this period royal Enfield came with 600 cc motorcycle with new features like inlet over exhaust.
Closed valve gear, two-speed countershaft gearbox, hand operated oil pump and chain final drive. Between 1913 to 1914 royal Enfield came up with Enfield V twin having unique feature like glass oil tank, giving oil level visibility all the time.
World first prototype 675 cc, 3 cylinders, two-stroke motorcycle was built by Royal Enfield in 1915
In 1924 first four stroke, single cylinder, 350cc motorcycle with Jap engine motorcycle was launched by Royal Enfield..
In 1925 Royal Enfield sidecar with V twin engine took a part in 6 days ACU commercial trail and awarded special certificate for completing course without loosing any mark.
The first company who introduce saddle tank and center spring front fork in motorcycle was Royal Enfield. This was happened in 1928.
Royal Enfield motorcycle were making their sale records continuously because of their new look motorcycles and comprehensive range of models even in dark days of depression in Great Britain till 1930.
In between ,1927 Royal Enfield introduce a motorcycle with 488 cc engine four speed gear box. Another model of motorcycle with 225 cc engine with side valve was launched in the market 1928.
In 1931 Royal Enfield launched a new model of motorcycle with single cylinder four stroke engine.
Thereafter in next ten years time Royal Enfield produced several models of motorcycle starting from 146cc vehicle to 1140cc V twin motorcycle in 1937. In 1930,Royal Enfield was having 13 different models of Royal Enfield motorcycle in the market. This largest range was available with only Royal Enfield.
In 1931 Royal Enfield introduced 4 stroke, single cylinder, four valve motorcycle and another christened Bullet in 1932.This was the first time when Royal Enfield named their model as “Bullet”. This motorcycle was having inclined engine and exposed valve gears. This model ran till 1934.
During second world was Royal Enfield introduced 125 cc motorcycle known as Airborne. During war this motorcycle were dropped along with Airborne troupes with the help of Parachute.
After the war, in 1939 Enfield manufactured Bullet 350 cc kick start model. First time two rocker boxes were used in this motorcycle for higher volumetric efficiency and better fuel flow. Royal Enfield had designed manufactured own front fork in this motorcycle.
The biggest achievement of Royal Enfield was own design own manufactured swinging arm rear suspension hydraulic suspension.
In 1947 Royal Enfield introduce telescopic front shocker system in their J-2 motorcycle. This motorcycle was the first motorcycle with telescopic front shockers.
Same front suspension was used by Royal Enfield in 500 cc, 25 BHP engine in 1948. This motorcycle was continued in production till 1958.
In 1949 M/s Madras Motors got an order from Indian army to supply Royal Enfield Bullet motorcycle. This was the time when Bullet motorcycle launched in India.Madras Motors were importing kits from UK and assembled in India.Slowly Madras Motors started to manufacture motorcycle frame in India and assembled the engine and their after they have started manufacturing complete motorcycle in India.
In 1950 several models of motorcycle were introduced in the market like 650cc Meteor twin engine,250 cc clipper, a short stroke motorcycle Crusader, 250cc trails, super 5,continental,500 cc sports twin, super Meteor, constellation and the interceptor.
In UK this was the first time in the history of British automobile industries when wide choice was available in motorcycle, different color schemes, verity of engine configuration, different capacity of engines and all this happened only in one decade.
Prior to this motorcyclist were never had such wide choice in motorcycles. T his was not happened only with Royal Enfield also with other manufacturer.
In 1950, downward trend started in lower capacity of motorcycle and higher capacity motorcycles started gaining market because of their reliability.
Royal Enfield was having a wide range of motorcycles from 125cc to 700 cc in their UK showroom.
In Madras, Indian Army insisted Madras Motors to manufacture Royal Enfield motorcycle in India. Indian Army also inform Madras Motors that they will continue to buy if motorcycles produced indigenous.
In late fifties, Enfield India Bullet motorcycle was completely different from today’s Bullet motorcycles. In next ten years time there were lots of changes took place in Bullet motorcycle and over period of time it took the shape of more or less today’s Bullet motorcycle.
From 1955 to 1959, Royal Enfield sold bikes in the U.S. under the Indian name. In 1960 this agreement ended.
In 1961 Eddie Moulder won the a Big Bear Enduro which gave a secured position to Royal Enfield in US under its own name and started marketing of the product once again.
Models include this year were from 250 cc to 700 cc. During this year RoyalEnfield won 31 races out of 39 and had several other victories which gave new strength to the product.
By 1970 Enfield India had already established them selves in the market and also changes were made in the product as per Indian road and climate conditions.
Changes were made in design of front mudguard, ignition system and in the braking system of the mudguard.
In 1962 the UK Royal Enfield company was sold and by 1967 Reddich factory was also closed for further production. Royal Enfield closed their total manufacturing operations by 1970.
In India,in seventeen’s Enfield India Ltd launched their new products like Sherpa, motorcycle and in 1973 Crusder a 173 cc motorcycle. These both product were different from existing Bullet motorcycle and small in weight size.
A 200cc ,2 stroke motorcycle in the name of Mini Bullet was also introduced in the market by Enfield India Ltd for customers wanted economical small size of motorcycle.
In 1983,Enfield India ltd commissioned their new plant in Ranipet near Madras to manufacture small, light weight,two stroke motorcycles in collaboration with Zundapp of Germany.
In 1983, Enfield India Ltd introduced their 50cc two stroke ,6.5 BHP ,two gear product in the name of Silver Plus in the market.
This was the first vehicle introduced in Indian market with die cast wheels. Later on Silver plus was upgraded to 3 gears.
Enfield India ltd also introduced a 50 cc motorcycle with die cast wheels in the name of Explorer in the market.
During eighties Fury, a 175 cc ,two stroke motorcycle with die cast wheels and front hydraulic brake ( Disc Brake) was launched by the Royal Enfield in the market.
During eighteens new models of Bullet like Bullet Deluxe was also entered in the Indian market.
Enfield India ltd entered in manufacturing of small. ligh weight,two stroke motorcycles with the collaboration with Zundapp Germany.They set up a new plant at Ranipet, near to Chennai to manufacture these motorcycles.
Enfield India ltd 50 cc 6.5 BHP two stroke motorcyle and 50cc 6.6 BHP 2 stroke step through powered by Zundapp engineering at entry level segment.Initially silver plus was with two gears operation and latter on came with three gear operation. Both the bikes were fitted with die cast wheels.
After some time Fury 175 cc two stroke motorcycle a Zundapp model was launched by Enfield India ltd in the narket. Fury was fitted with die cast wheels, front disc brake and 5 speed gear box.
Enfield India ltd launched their other products like Bullet 500cc ,Machismo and Enfield Diesel in the market in between 1990 to 1994. Later on Enfield Diesel was renamed at Taurus.
In 1990 Enfield India Ltd had a strategic alliance with Eicher group and latter on in 1994 Eicher Group acquired Enfield India Ltd and name of the Enfield India Ltd changed to Royal Enfield Motors Ltd.
After acquiring by Eicher Group Royal Enfield launched their new models in the market like Lightning 500cc Lightning 535cc motorcycle. These bikes were for young Enthusiast bikers those needs more power and style.
In 1999 Royal Enfield launched their new product Machismo with AVL engine. This motorcycle was fitted with 350cc 18 BHP lean burn AVL Engine.
Some where in 2000 Royal Enfield also introduce their new variant Campas Electra In the Market. Electra was having CDI ignition system instead of CB point system.
In 2001 Royal Enfield launched a new model called “Thunderbird”, motorcycle fitted with 350cc 18BHP engine and five speed gear box with heel and toe gear shift and fitted with CDI ignition system. This was the first model of Royal Enfield which was having left hand side gear change lever and rear brake on right hand side. Later on Royal Enfield launched new version of Machismo with five speed gear box with left hand side gear change lever.
In October 2003 a new variant of Electra was launched in the market. This model was fitted with TCI ignition system and was having better start ability. better pick up and better mileage.
In 2004 Bullet 500 cc with electric start was launched in the market.
In 2005 New version of Thunderbird with TCI ignition system and dual tone color was introduce in the market. Same time Royal Enfield also introduced Electra 5S in duel tone color and fitted with 5 speed gear box. These model were launched with option of electric start and front disc brake.
In August 2007 Royal Enfield launched their new variant of Machismo with 500cc Lean burn Engine.Bike with classic look-Chrome petrol Tank and chrome front mudguard fitted with Disc brake and Electric start motor.Split seat and saddle bags are optional with this classic motorcycle.Motorcycle is available in Black and v green color.
Royal Enfield is in process of developing a new engine on Twin spark technology for their future motorcycles.
Royal Enfield launched their new motorcycle Thunderbird twin spark in Chennai on 17 June” 08. Launching ceremony of Royal Enfield Thunderbird Twin Spark Motorcycle took place in Hotel Taj Coromandel Chennai. Mr.
Siddarth Lal, CEO Managing director of Eicher Motos Ltd and Mr. R L Ravichandran CEO of Royal Enfield were also present On the Occasion. The Thunderbird Twinspark is the first motorcycle of Royal Enfield which is fitted with Unit Construction Engine. The earlier models of Royal Enfield are fitted with traditional design having separate power unit. gear box and clutch system.Royal Enfield Thunderbird Twinspark motorcycle is mix of old and new technology which will enchantment its customers.
Twin Sparrk motorcycle is with improved engine performance and over all motorcycle efficiency.
On 7, October 2008. Royal Enfield re-introduced them self to the international motorcycling community by unveiling the Royal Enfield Bullet classic motorcycle.While the Bullet Classic is powered by a single cylinder 500 cc unit construction engine it retain the quintessential classic British styling of the 1950s simple harmonious proportioned and finished.
Built of old fashioned metal, in clean, elegant lines of classic green,the design of the Bullet classic is a tribute to the retro look of British motorcycle in the post world war.II era. In the new model, the bullet’s raw torque has been technically harnessed by equipping the UCE with electronic fuel injection technology to result in enhanced combustion efficiency, so as to comply with Euro-III norms.
The benefits are pronounced reduced transmission losses, reduced friction, lower maintenance and higher reliability. Its clean and its green!
On 4th November 2009, Royal Enfield launched their Bullet classic motorcycle in India. Launched of Bullet classic motorcycle took place in Hotel Taj Mansingh New Delhi, India in the presence of more then 150 media guys. On the occasion Mr.
Siddarth Lal, CEO Managing director of Eicher Motos Ltd and Mr. R L Ravichandran CEO of Royal Enfield addressed the press.
April 2010, was a historical moment in the history of Royal Enfield. Royal Enfield stop the production of all their models with traditional cast iron engine due to pollution norms. All Royal Enfield models re launched in the Indian market with Twin Spark UCE engine.
After introduction of UCE engine in all Royal Enfield models, Motorcyle was well accepted in maket. on 29 sep 2011, Royal Enfield launched their two new models named Royal Enfield Classic Chrome and Royal Enfield Desert Storm.
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