The saga of Royal Enfield pathetic part quality continues. The coil of Altaf Khalifa‘s Himalayan burned for the second time. The first time this happened just after we entered India from Nepal. We jump started the Himalayan using a Tiger’s rear wheel and limped it to Lucknow. Luckily this time the Royal Enfield showroom at Ratnagiri was close by. The Himalayan was out of warranty. But the folks at the dealership sought and received an approval from Royal Enfield to replace the entire coil, magnet and flywheel assembly under warranty.
When the technician opened the part from the packaging to fit it, Altaf noticed something weird with one of the magnets on the flywheel. A gentle rub of the finger broke the magnet and pieces of it came loose. If this part was installed in the Himalayan there is no telling what more damage would have been caused.
Since the Himalayan’s magnet and flywheel was fine, Altaf asked the technician to replace just the coil. We don’t know how long this coil will last. According to Altaf, the coating on the wires of the coil maybe of substandard quality, which is why the wires touch each other causing them to burn. The Lucknow dealership told Altaf that his was the 15th bike whose coil had burned. The Ratnagiri one said that this was their 5th case. Exact same problem.
People reading my blog and watching my videos think that I hate the Himalayan. That isn’t the case. I’m not a fan of it’s looks or it’s heavy weight. But it’s a nice motorcycle. I’ve seen my friends do wonderful things with this bike, on and off road.
What I absolutely hate is the fact that it can and will break down frequently, just like a regular Royal Enfield. But the difference is that unlike other Enfields where you can tweak something yourself to get it back up and running, when the Himalayan breaks down, you are left immobilized. I mean, it breaks down properly. Full and final satyanas. There are no back up systems to fall back on. For example, there is no kick start of the electric start fails. And it will. For more than one reason. The coil getting burned is just one of them.
I will never buy a Himalayan, or any Royal Enfield motorcycle for that matter, until the company gets its shit together. They know that whatever crap they build there will always be fans who will wait for months in line to buy it. So why bother about quality? In my mind Royal Enfield is a marketing company who just happens to manufacture and sell motorcycles.
I hope Royal Enfield doesn’t manufacture too many of the new EFI Himalayans. I say this because whoever had to buy a Himalayan most probably already has. The regular “thumper” fans don’t consider the Himalayan to be an Enfield. It doesn’t look, sound or feel like a classic motorcycle they are used to fussing over.
I feel Royal Enfield should stick to building their regular thumpers which aren’t ridden too far away from civilization. Royal Enfield had one chance at a budget adventure tourer and they blew it.