Royal Enfield brings back the Classic as a 350
Royal Enfield North America pulled the covers off their all-new, re-engineered Classic 350 down in historic Savannah, Georgia. The legendary motorcycle company revealed the brand new Classic to select moto-journalists from across North America, and we were honored to be counted among them.
Here’s the official press release, including some interesting history behind the iconic model:
Royal Enfield, the global leader in midsize motorcycles (250-750cc), is proud to introduce the all-new 2022 Classic 350 motorcycle to North America. With over 3 million Classic motorcycles sold in more than 75 countries, the Classic is the best-selling Royal Enfield in the 120-year history of the brand. Completely redesigned from the ground up, the Classic 350 marks the beginning of the next chapter of this iconic model.
The design inspiration of the Classic range dates back to the Royal Enfield G2 350 Bullet in 1948, a motorcycle that revolutionized the industry with the introduction of the articulating swingarm. While this innovation transformed the performance of motorcycles at the time, the modern Classic 350 invites us to rediscover the experience of pure motorcycling. Nostalgic style cues blend with a confidence-inspiring ride, with modern touches and a refined overall feel that celebrates the original unhurried, uncomplicated feel of an authentic handcrafted motorcycle.
The 2022 Royal Enfield Classic 350 is powered by an all-new 349cc air-/oil-cooled single cylinder SOHC engine, launched last year in the Meteor 350. Distinctive post-WWII styling continues to define the Classic line, the newest generation built around an all-new chassis with improved strength for a stable, comfortable ride and lightweight handling. Developed with cooperation between teams based at Royal Enfield’s two state-of-the-art technology centers—in India and in the UK—the reborn Classic 350 arrives as a genuine global collaboration, reflecting 120 years of motorcycle history.
While the timeless experience remains central to the Classic 350, modern touches such as electronic fuel injection, plush suspension and front and rear disc brakes with dual channel ABS bring comfort and performance into the modern iteration. The Classic 350 retains that familiar thump at idle, but with the smooth glide of the all-new counterbalanced 349cc single-cylinder engine at speed. True to its lineage, the 2022 Royal Enfield Classic 350 brings the golden age of motorcycling into the modern era.
The smooth, docile nature of the Classic 350 and lightweight handling make it an ideal motorcycle for city riding and back roads alike. The standard-style upright seating position makes for a comfortable ride whether taking in the sights, or meandering across town. The beautiful chrome spoked 19-inch front wheel and 18-inch rear (“Dark” models feature 10-spoke alloy wheels) together with CEAT Zoom Plus tires provide a smooth ride, capable of soaking up bumps and uneven surfaces. The low center of gravity and responsive agility make it easy to maneuver in tight areas, while striking a good balance with on-road stability. The result is a very confidence-inspiring ride that novice riders all the way to veterans are sure to appreciate.
Smooth shifting from the five-speed gearbox ensures a wide yet capable spread of power across the torque range. The Classic 350 is content in stop-and-go riding through town, and will also glide along at highway speeds with ease. The 3.43-gallon fuel tank ensures fewer trips to the gas station, and an ECO mode on the digital display informs the rider when the Classic 350 is sipping fuel at its most efficient point.
The 41mm front suspension offers 130mm of travel, and the twin shocks in the rear feature 6-step adjustable preload so riders can dial in their preferred setting. The plush seat provides further comfort for the ride, and the inviting 31.7-inch seat height make for an easy reach to the ground—another point of confidence for new or returning riders. All Classic 350 models sold in North America are also equipped with passenger seats (which can be removed), passenger pegs and handholds.
The 2022 Royal Enfield Classic 350 is available in nine different styles and schemes. The Dark Stealth Black and Dark Gunmetal Grey models, identifiable by the dark color schemes and 10-spoke alloy wheels with tubeless tires, are available for $4599. The Signals models are inspired by Royal Enfield’s association with Indian Armed Forces, and commemorate 65 years of working with the Indian Army. Signals Desert Sand and Signals Marsh Grey feature 1950’s military stylized graphics, and are available for $4599.
Later this season, look for the release of the Halcyon collection, styled after the original 1950’s British roadsters. Halcyon Forest Green, Halcyon Black and Halcyon Blue will be available for $4499. The Chrome Red and Chrome Brown models, featuring a mirror finish and special badging, will also be arriving later in 2022, and will be available for $4699.
Commenting on the launch of the all-new Royal Enfield Classic 350, Siddhartha Lal, Managing Director of Eicher Motors Ltd. stated, “The Classic launched in 2008, was a modern and capable motorcycle that symbolized the timeless post-war styling from the heydays of the British motorcycle industry. Its captivating design language and simplicity coupled with dependability catapulted the Classic to global popularity, and it went on to redefine the middleweight (250-750cc) motorcycle segment.”
“We’ve paid great attention to every aspect of the motorcycle,” Lai recounted, “right from its stunning look, to the perfection in parts and the touchpoints, to its impeccable riding performance. The engine is super smooth, intuitively responsive and engaging, and has that gorgeous growl on acceleration. The all-new chassis lends enormous confidence while riding, with surefooted handling and agile braking. The motorcycle feels in control and well-mannered around tight corners. The motorcycle is, without a doubt, class-leading, and feels incredibly refined and enjoyable to ride.”
“Throughout our history, we have been consistent in our pursuit to build timeless, beautiful motorcycles that are great fun to ride, and the new Classic 350 does just that,” Lai reflected. “The all-new Classic 350 combines this quintessential, retro design with a modern and refined ride experience. We are confident that the all-new Classic 350 will once again redefine the midsize motorcycle space, globally.”
We here at Road Dirt have long been fans of the legendary motorbike brand. Their timeless style, bulletproof (pun intended) reliability, and incredible affordability make them among the greatest value bike brands on the world market today.
Stay tuned, as we’ll feature more photos and ride footage after we take our spins on the Classic 350 ourselves. For now, check out Royal Enfield’s site for more details and specs on the bike, as well as the other fantastic motorcycles in their lineup-
*All photos shot by Royal Enfield in and around historic Savannah, Georgia.