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Royal Enfield Meteor 350: 12,114km Long Term Review


Pandemic is out of sight (and out of mind), and my return to Pune was welcomed with a Meteor shower

Odometer reading: 12,114km
Fuel efficiency: 28.3kmpl (90% on the highway, with an average speed of around 75-80kmph)

The pandemic is waning, nature is healing and things are slowly (and finally) going back to normal. I’ve moved back to Pune, and my colleague Jehan welcomed me with two questions: do you want the Royal Enfield Meteor 350 or the Royal Enfield Continental GT 650

My most natural response was: “Conti GT!” I mean, who doesn’t love a gorgeous chrome-laden cafe racer with a powerful parallel-twin heart, right? But then reality dawned upon me. There were two aspects to my epiphany: 1. I’m a cruiser guy who likes to ride comfortably, and I also own a Royal Enfield Thunderbird 350. 2. Fuel prices are pinching everyone, including me. Once I came back to my senses, I chose the Meteor 350. Working from home in Chennai, I missed the opportunity to ride the Meteor 350, so it was high time I swung my leg over the saddle of one anyway. 

When I received the motorcycle, the first thing I noticed was that it feels a lot more solid, a lot more polished and a lot more premium. Of course, it also had a bunch of Genuine Motorcycle Accessories (GMA), which really gave it a lot more pizazz, not to mention practicality. 

Thumb the starter dial and you’re greeted by refined throb that’s unlike any UCE-powered Royal Enfield. After having lived with the Thunderbird 350 for around seven years, I will never get used to how incredibly refined the Meteor is. The gear shifting is clean, precise and it slots in the gears with a nice clunk. There were no instances of false neutral either. The icing on the cake was its highway mannerisms. It’s impressive how the vibes were contained even as I pushed the motor beyond 90kmph. That’s not all, the bike didn’t feel out of breath even as I hovered around 100-110kmph.

Royal Enfield has truly worked on the pain points of the UCE platform and has come up with a much well-rounded product. But of course, the company also went ahead and tried to fix something that wasn’t broken in the first place: the switchgear. Sure, those old-school dials look cool, but keeping two switches with horizontal action for two completely different purposes (low-high beam and pass / turn indicators) tends to mess up when you’re trying to use one or the other. You’ll just have to rewire your muscle memory, so it takes time to get used to. But overall, the Meteor 350 has been so much more of a wholesome upgrade over the Thunderbird 350.

Royal Enfield Meteor 350 Video Review

Royal Enfield Meteor 350
4.3
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