Royal Enfield has garnered a huge amount of fans all around the globe with its traditional design language in its range of classic roadsters. After having a successful history with the ‘Bullet’ range, Royal Enfield upped the ante in the last decade by bringing in the range of ‘Classic’ roadsters.
Having the same heritage and retro appeal as that of the Bullet in terms of design and silhouette, the Classic, in both of its 350cc and 500cc versions, have become much improved versions with mildly enhanced styling and technological advancements in terms of new age suspension, better brakes and incorporation of technologies such as fuel injection.
After launching the bigger Classic 500 almost half a decade ago, Royal Enfield has tried to make the platform more elusive by adding few more variants to the Classic lineup, the Classic Battle Green being one of them. Being the top of the line model of the Classic portfolio, the Classic Battle Green comes with additional aesthetic appeal over the regular Classic 500 and more of it, below the skin as well. Here’s our comprehensive review of the flagship model of the Classic lineup, the Classic Battle Green:-
The overall design and silhouette of the Classic Battle Green is not much different from the Classic 500 – except for one fact that it is entirely bathed in a very appealing and subtle shade of matt army green, as opposed to the colored body panels of the Classic 500. As per Royal Enfield and the evident visual appeal, this paint scheme resembles the aura of the Royal Enfield motorcycles of the world war era, a time when these motorcycles were used by the armed forces and have proven their abilities and ruggedness. Overall, the motorcycle retains the classic stance of the original Bullet, which makes it a much more special and timeless motorcycle, even after being modern by every angle of perception.
Starting from the front, the Royal Enfield Classic Battle Green has the same familiar round headlamp with a chrome surround as found in the Classic 500, giving it a face of a motorcycle from bygone era. Above the headlamp sits a small chrome cap, giving it a sense of distinction from other motorcycles of Royal Enfield. The front as well as rear fenders too are finished in the Battle Green paint shade.
The main elements of the side profile of the Classic Battle Green constitute of the curvy fuel tank with black colored side tank padding, ovular side body cowls and triangular side storage compartments, all of which come finished in the main paint shade of army green. The engine as well as long exhaust pipe are finished in chrome, whereas the motorcycle comes with spoke wheels and split seats as standard. Unlike other Royal Enfields, the spoke wheels here too are painted in the green shade as that of the other body panels.
The rear profile of the motorcycle has been imparted a simple design, with the green colored tail lamp housing mounted on the round chrome painted rear fender. The housing at the rear incorporates a round tail lamp. The round turn indicators at both the ends are finished in chrome as well.
The Classic Battle Green shares its instrument console with the Classic 500, which is archaic but looks cool on the motorcycle of this demeanor. The unit includes an analog speedometer, odometer and battery level indicator. The switch gear of the motorcycle is modern though, and includes self starter button and engine kill switch. The overall fit and finish has shown drastic levels of improvement when compared with the Bullets of previous decades. The new logo of Royal Enfield can be seen imprinted on various parts such as engine, fuel tank and instrument console, in white.
Under the skin though, there is nothing to differentiate between Classic Battle Green and Classic 500. Like the latter, the Classic Battle Green is powered by a bored out version of the engine of the Classic 350, which is a four stroke, single cylinder, air cooled, twinspark, 499cc engine. Like the Classic 350’s engine, the engine on the Classic Battle Green is fuel injected, which makes it a lot more responsive, eager and refined than the previous generation Bullets. This fuel injected 499cc engine puts out 27.2 bhp of power and 41.3 Nm of torque, and comes mated to a five speed gearbox.
Like the engines on all the Royal Enfield motorcycles, the engine on the Classic Battle Green serves you with an impressive amount of torque down the lower end of the rev range as well as in the mid range. The motorcycle pulls off nicely, with a linear power delivery throughout the rev range. The engine feels more refined than before, and the vibrations in the lower speeds have almost gone. It is only when you reach the higher end of the rev range, when you begin to feel the vibrations creeping out of the engine. The 5-speed gearbox is a bit notchy in feel, as far as gearshifts and false neutrals are taken into concern.
The ride quality of a Royal Enfield motorcycle is nothing to doubt about, given the fact that people have covered millions of explored as well as unexplored territories on them in all these years. And the same can be said about the Classic Battle Green, as it is one of the most comfortable motorcycles to ride in today’s age.
Sitting on the same simple single downtube frame on which the Classic 500 also sits, the Classic Battle Green comes with a simple suspension setup of 35mm hydraulic telescopic forks at the front and gas charged 5-step adjustable hydraulic coil springs at the rear. The suspension has been tuned a bit to take on the additional weight of the powertrain. The ride quality is a bit firm when compared to other Royal Enfield motorcycles, but composed enough to tackle all the undulations and potholes of the uneven surfaces.
The motorcycle comes with a large 280mm disc brake at front and a 153mm drum brake at the rear, though it would have been a welcome move if Royal Enfield introduces a rear disc brake on this motorcycle. The brakes though lack bite, and can lack bite at times. The Classic Battle Green also comes with a wider set of tyres, which provide more grip than the ones on the latter.
Unlike the Classic 500-based Classic Squadron Blue and Classic Chrome, the Classic Battle Green is not available in India, and possibly will never be available, due to the fact that the Dark Green shade is restricted only for the vehicles registered for the armed forces in India, and not for general public. Though, the Classic Battle Green is priced at roughly Rs. 1.65 lakh (in Indian currency) for the international markets.
The Royal Enfield Classic Battle Green doesn’t have a direct competition in the Indian two wheeler market for the time being. Though down the price range, the Bajaj Avenger Cruise 220 gives a fight to the Classic Battle Green’s credentials, pretty much actually.
Compared to the roadster feel of Classic Battle Green, the Bajaj Avenger Cruise 220 has a true cruiser stance – long stretched body, high set handlebar and a much lower seat height. Both the motorcycles look distinctive with nothing like them near their respective price points. In terms of features, both the motorcycles offer almost identical list of features, with the Avenger offering a fuel gauge instead of battery range indicator on the Classic Battle Green.
The Bajaj Avenger Cruise 220 comes with a four stroke, single cylinder, oil cooled, 220cc DTS-i engine which is much smaller than the engine of the Royal Enfield Classic Battle Green. The Classic Battle Green offers much more torque and power throughout the rev range. The vibrations at high speeds can be felt in both the engines though. Both the motorcycles feel comfortable, whatever the speeds and terrains on which they ride are.
With the Classic Battle Green, Royal Enfield has proved that there was a scope for making the Classic 500 even more special than what it actually is. The entire green colored bodywork has definitely enhanced the elusive feel of the Classic platform – the retro essence of the Classic is doubled up, and at the same time, it looks a bit burlier too. Adding to it, the proven mechanicals of the Classic 500, the core aspects of which are the oodles of torque across the entire rev range and comfortable ride quality, are thankfully persisting in this version as well. All in all, this flagship Classic, Classic Battle Green, is dedicated for all those who love the retro appeal of the motorcycle, but with a new twist of enhanced aesthetic appeal and patriotic feel.