When motorcycle fans think of the Royal Enfield brand, what comes to mind? The Royal Enfield Bullet.
Almost every single motorcycle produced by Royal Enfield that came after the bullet has been designed based on the specifications of the Bullet series. With motorcycles like the Bullet 500 in its line-up, it’s no wonder why.
The Greatest Enfield in History
No motorcycle, superbike, or scooter in the history of the Royal Enfield company has been as widely loved or had as great an impact on the world as the Royal Enfield Bullet. The word “classic” gets thrown around a lot these days, but if there’s one thing that motorcycle fans can agree on it’s that the Royal Enfield Bullet is a real classic.
The series first made its debut in 1931 and has been in production ever since, with the 2019 model having just been announced. The Bullet 500 in particular first went into production in 1949 and continues to be produced as of 2019.
The moment a bullet arrives at the bike show, all eyes are on it. The hallmarked aesthetic shines through a fully-sprung (1949) design.
The engine displacement has remained relatively consistent at 499cc over the past roughly 80 years, despite manufacturing shifting from the English wing to the Indian wing of the company once the former went out of business.
Timeline of Changes
Over the majority of the past century, the Royal Enfield Bullet has been changed more times than anybody can count. In times like these, for the sake of brevity, it’s best to focus on the first and last generation in order to five them the respect that they deserve and to highlight their differences.
Royal Enfield Bullet 500 (1949-1956)
The original Bullet 500 included many design specifications that the modern Bullet 500 would never dream of having, in part because of the constantly tightening stranglehold of emissions standards around the throats of motorcycle and automobile engineers.
These models were considered relatively big-bore for the day and had considerable enough horsepower and torque to secure wins in multiple racing circuits.
Royal Enfield Bullet 500 (2007-present)
The most recent generation of Bullet 500 motorcycles uses a four-stroke, single cylinder, OHV engine with the standard 499cc displacement and only 27.2 horsepower at 5,250 rpm. Although much has changed and decades have passed, this remains quite similar to the original models.
As of August 9, 2019, news outlets were reporting on Royal Enfield’s newest decision on how to move forward with the designs of the Royal Enfield Bullet lineup, namely the decision to add additional color options.
A Hollywood Dynasty
Royal Enfield Bullet models of all kinds have been featured in various films and TV shows. In fact, the Bullet 500 has even appeared in 11 distinct productions.
Few classics have more robust social media followings than the Royal Enfield Bullet 500. In fact, for no motorcycle that we have written about in the recent past have we been able to find a page as large as the Royal Enfield Bullet 500 page on Facebook with its more than 55,000 followers.
Royal Enfield Bullet 500 – A Motorcycling Icon
The Enfield Bullet is more than just another series and the Enfield Bullet 500 is more than just another motorcycle in just another series. This series set the groundwork for decades of fame and fortune coming to the Royal Enfield name and the Bullet 500 is at the front of it all.