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Old 02-22-2011, 06:55 AM   #1
commonbear OP
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Cool2 Royal Enfield C5 Classic EFI

Morning all,

I am currently doing a bit of shopping around, thinking about upgrading my current ride from the V-Star 250 that I own, and while looking at this-and-that I ran across the Royal Enfield C5. Looking it over I am finding myself really liking the style and look in addition to the supposed gas milage and torgue, but haven't had a chance to take one for a spin yet (hoping to do that this weekend).


Might anyone have any experience with this bike? Pros and Cons? Known difficulties or issues with routine maintenance? Alternatives in the standard 500cc range?
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Old 02-23-2011, 07:57 AM   #2
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With the old RE engines you had to be a mechanic, I really don't know how reliable the new UCE (unit construction engine) is. I've found alot of reviews on the bike and all are very favorable, but I haven't come across any really informative reviews or ratings from people who have put some miles on one and get into the bikes intricacies.
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Old 02-23-2011, 10:18 PM   #3
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The coolest thing I've read about the older Enfield's is at the factory, two brothers work on the assembly line, hand painting the pinstripes. Not sure if that is still the case with introduction of unit construction EFI (and hopefully, improved reliability).

My only other comment is with some luck and patience, and for about the same amount of money, you could probably find a Honda GB500. Which won't depreciate in value and has better styling, guaranteed reliability, not to mention more HP.
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Old 02-23-2011, 11:42 PM   #4
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here:

replacing blown crank bearing in a parking lot in Bengal... they had parts on the ride... why?... not the first one to blow. I admit that it is the older generation, but India has some funny rules. Like no use of materials (bearings) made in other countries. I hear they changed the design, but who knows how good this one is? I have many years dicking with vintage bikes.... well... they weren't vintage when I bought them. Anyway, I would view the new Enfield as a vintage machine until proven otherwise.
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Old 02-25-2011, 05:27 AM   #5
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I have one of those and so far the experience has been positive.I haven't put many miles on it though.Just about 6000 Km in the last one year.It gives me a gas mileage of around 25-30 Km/L.

Maintenance till now:

Regular oil change at 3 monthly interval/3000 Km
Changed rear brake pads at 5500 Km
Changed air filter at 5500 Km
Broken accelerator cable at 5800 Km
Replaced front tire bearings at 5800 Km


This is all I can remember.
Apart from these there were a few niggles here and there which were taken care of by the workshop.

I'll be getting the fork oil and brake fluid changed next week.

I think the export models have better quality control than those for the home market.And you guys get the O2 sensor on the C5 while we don't.

I hope this helps.Anything else you want to know?
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Old 02-25-2011, 05:41 AM   #6
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Bearings, cables and brake pads that early?
That does not bode well.....

A Suzuki would not even be broken in yet!



Quote:
Originally Posted by Blizzard Beast View Post
I have one of those and so far the experience has been positive.I haven't put many miles on it though.Just about 6000 Km in the last one year.It gives me a gas mileage of around 25-30 Km/L.

Maintenance till now:

Regular oil change at 3 monthly interval/3000 Km
Changed rear brake pads at 5500 Km
Changed air filter at 5500 Km
Broken accelerator cable at 5800 Km
Replaced front tire bearings at 5800 Km


This is all I can remember.
Apart from these there were a few niggles here and there which were taken care of by the workshop.

I'll be getting the fork oil and brake fluid changed next week.

I think the export models have better quality control than those for the home market.And you guys get the O2 sensor on the C5 while we don't.

I hope this helps.Anything else you want to know?
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Old 02-25-2011, 09:36 AM   #7
wayniceguy
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Royal Enfield information

While this is a great forum if you want more information from actual Royal Enfield owners they have a great community forum
http://www.enfieldmotorcycles.com/forum/

The new engine is totally modern although it still looks pretty vintage. For example it uses Keihin electronic fuel injection which is the best that is out there. Most owners on the RE forum seem pretty happy with the new ones.

An interesting side note is that RE says it made Keihin instrument a bike and map the EFI over the highest motor-able road in the world which happens to be in India. It goes to 18,250 feet. Apparently even the carburetor versions of the RE are the ride of choice to make that climb.

Also 5,000 km on a set of rear brake shoes isn't bad in India. The driving conditions are such that frequent replacements are common. One other thing that I have noticed on my trips there is that the horn is a "wear item" LOL
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Old 02-25-2011, 05:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ-Brett View Post
Bearings, cables and brake pads that early?
That does not bode well.....

A Suzuki would not even be broken in yet!
Bearings were changed because there was some rust in the area.

Throttle cable- One of them broke .The other's still working fine.

Brake pads- The mech told me that usual life was 3000 Km.
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Old 02-25-2011, 06:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wayniceguy View Post
One other thing that I have noticed on my trips there is that the horn is a "wear item" LOL

HAHAHAHA yea you are totaly right wayniceguy! Over here instead of looking at the mirrors or over their shoulder they rely on the approaching vehicle or any vehicle in a blind spot to use their horn to make their presence known Not only do they have their own unique driving style (which takes quite a bit of time to make heads or tails of) but they ALL communicate by horn...................



It really sux at 3am when you have someone passing another car infront of your home

HONK! HONK!
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Old 03-01-2011, 09:03 PM   #10
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I'm looking at a C5 to commute with. I've read that the oil change procedure is kind of a pain - there are a bunch of gaskets to check and replace, etc. Can anyone comment on the routine maintenance experience? I'll be coming from a KLR, and I'd be putting on 200-500 miles a week so I'd hope these are as easy to work on...
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Old 03-01-2011, 10:31 PM   #11
Blizzard Beast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by antonac View Post
I'm looking at a C5 to commute with. I've read that the oil change procedure is kind of a pain - there are a bunch of gaskets to check and replace, etc. Can anyone comment on the routine maintenance experience? I'll be coming from a KLR, and I'd be putting on 200-500 miles a week so I'd hope these are as easy to work on...

Routine maintenance is easy.I don't do it myself though.I get it done at my local Authorized service center,just a couple of miles from my home.

Service interval is 3 months/3000 Km.I don't remember seeing the service guys replacing lot of gaskets.Just one,maybe 2.Watching them do it,it seemed simple enough.
For me the service cost usually comes out to be Rs 600-800 ie $ 15-20 including labour,washing/cleaning etc.
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Old 03-02-2011, 09:31 AM   #12
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Wow, if only... the bike itself costs three times as much in the U.S.. I'm guessing the hourly rate for most work would be in the neighborhood of 75-100USD.

I hope what they say about quality control being superior for export models is true enough to justify the difference in price.

What's really keeping me from buying this bike is the extra cost involved in the warranty. I am so far away from the closest dealer that it would be basically impossible to get service done unless I were provided a loaner bike. This would be unlikely, since it's primarily a Jeep dealership. I understand the value in a 2 year unlimited mileage warranty, but only if I can actually take advantage of it. Barring engine / transmission failure, which seems unlikely given the short but positive track record of this engine (and which would preclude me from getting the bike to the dealership anyway), replacing things like fuel sensors, indicators and other miscellaneous things under warranty would be a nuisance unless they would just ship me the part and compensate me for my time.

I actually did get the opportunity the weekend before last to take a G5 for a spin. I posted my impressions on the RE forum, but I'll quote them here since most of the perspectives on Enfields come from the cruiser and not dualsport crowd:

Quote:
Today, I took a blustery (crazy wind gusts) 40-mile jaunt over the river to Lenihan Auto in Marlton, NJ, where I test-rode a G5 deluxe. I figured I'd share my impressions of the Enfields I looked at today. Some of these will resonate in particular with dualsport riders, if there are any here that haven't met an RE face-to-face yet.

The thing that first struck me was how incredibly small these bikes are. You don't really appreciate it until you're sitting on one, but stepping off of a KLR, which has a 21" front wheel and takes a 38" inseam to flat-foot, the difference is huge. At the same time the weight is still noticeable, and just sits low. I guess the only comparison I can make here is that the Kawasaki is the SUV to the RE's small sports car.

The videos on youtube don't do the engine sound justice, not by miles. The bike I tested had the stock straight silencer, but both standing next to it and sitting atop it, it sounded very deep and throaty, and not anemic and puttery as it sounded in some of the clips I've seen.

Clutch engagement was fine, and the engine pulls well in first gear with no strain. Shifting was okay, but the engagement didn't feel as positive as it does on my KLR. The KLR has a very obvious 'clack' into first gear, and you can feel with your foot when you're in it, because it will not push down again once engaged. The Enfield, when in 1st gear, has a spongy dead zone you can push the shifter back into. I'm sure this is something that I could get used to, but it felt weird. Winding first gear up made the bike blat in protest, so I didn't bother trying it again. A quicker shift to second would prove that the engine produces more than enough torque to keep the party jumping without much hesitation. I have no sportbike comparison to make here, since I've never ridden anything with more than one cylinder.

As I zipped around the dealer lot (they either couldn't find a tag to put on it, or didn't want me taking it out), I noticed how very nimble it is. It seems to want to fall easily into a clean, effortless lean. I'm sure the relatively small wheels and low-slung stance contribute greatly to this - I had none of the 'I'm on a horse, and this horse is going to topple over' feeling that I used to get taking slow corners on the KLR. I'm interested in seeing how this will translate to 60-70mph highway cruising, but again I was not given this opportunity. The knee pads on the G5 deluxe stick out too far, and felt uncomfortable and unnecessary. The ones on the C5 seem more fitting.

General fit and finish were both okay. On the C5 I looked at a bit more thoroughly, I noticed some spotty looking mottling of the chrome finish where what looked like the O2 sensor was installed. Some of the paint on the underside seam of the tank had a rough runny appearance to it, and the engine casing wasn't quite as shiny and uniform as the stock photos would have you believe. The clutch lever on that bike squeaked, but I guess it's hard to fault it for that, considering that it had been sitting on the showroom floor for many winter months without being touched.

I have been enamored for years with the styling of these bikes. After checking them out in person, my impression was mostly positive. At this point, I think I've narrowed down my choices to the following bikes:

- RE C5
- Moto Guzzi V7 Classic
- Ural Solo sT

These comprise my group of rag-tag standard champions that actually have character, unlike what I see in the endless, soulless parade of Harleys and sportbikes - two extremes which in my opinion are totally unnecessary and totally impractical.

If the C5 gets a kicker in the next few months, I'm going to give it some serious consideration.
After thinking about it, my ideal would be ordering the bike to be freighted directly to me, do my own set-up, and purchase a minimal warranty. That, or try to find a used one a year or two down the road.
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Old 03-02-2011, 12:26 PM   #13
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My only other comment is with some luck and patience, and for about the same amount of money, you could probably find a Honda GB500. Which won't depreciate in value and has better styling, guaranteed reliability, not to mention more HP.
I was interested in a RE for making a cafe racer type bike. I love the old school looks and general idea of it. I test rode a new one with the EFI and came away from it feeling sort of less enthusiastic. As I see it the price is the biggest detractor, it's too expensive for what it is. They are asking ~$6k for a new one.



The bike rode OK and the FI works well. It shakes just like an old school thumper without the benefit of any counterbalancing. The gearbox works well and it goes about the basic functions reasonably well.

The problem I had with it was getting back on my '09 KLR650 which felt like a rocket powered magic carpet ride in comparison that only cost me $5.5k OTD (new) last year.

The overall finish on the RE isn't that grand either when compared to most other bikes out there, they are a bit crude in some areas.

Honestly, I felt the right price for the bike would be about $3.5-4k new, at least that's the price point that would make me interested in one. I'm not knocking it, I wanted to like it more. But it's very hard to justify at the price they are asking. Heck, it's made in a low cost country why is it so expensive? If I wanted a bike to ride for commuting etc. I'd pick up a bargain Versys for the same price and ride away laughing.

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Old 03-02-2011, 06:08 PM   #14
ToesNose
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Quote:
Originally Posted by antonac View Post
I'm looking at a C5 to commute with. I've read that the oil change procedure is kind of a pain - there are a bunch of gaskets to check and replace, etc. Can anyone comment on the routine maintenance experience? I'll be coming from a KLR, and I'd be putting on 200-500 miles a week so I'd hope these are as easy to work on...
I've researched it quite a bit and the new UCE engine is much different, it comes with a "E-Z oil cap" so it's no longer fusing with O-ring, Filter, O-ring, plate, O-ring, Washer, Spring, gasket, and cover with O-ring all in order and aligned with spring compressed to get bolts started. From what the majority of the RE owners are saying they basically change the oil and service their bikes themselves. Other then the oils changes most people just make sure that no nuts and fasteners come loose during the break in and make sure to have Loctite onhand for any that do come loose.

Quote:
Originally Posted by antonac
I hope what they say about quality control being superior for export models is true enough to justify the difference in price.
The overall quality for bikes made for India and export have greatly improved, the difference in price is for a number of things including a different emmisions system, recoupe cost of R&D on the new UCE engine (they didn't just redesign the engine they changed the entire manufacturing process), the cost to ship and such.
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Old 03-03-2011, 05:28 PM   #15
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I have done a lot of research into to New C5. It is a solid motor with very good reviews... HVA's (Hydraulic Valves) and PGM-FI (Fuel Injection). Better suspension and electronics make it much easier to ride and enjoy. I am planning on buying one this year... just need to find a dealer near me that has one instock.
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