Royal Enfield hybrids aren’t uncommon these days. No, I’m not talking about fuel cell or hydrogen powered Royal Enfield Bullets (they’ve yet to discover overhead cams, for heaven’s sake) but the inane looking Enfield Davidsons you see around every street corner. The Enfield Bullet in its various forms has been around for generations and if everybody and his uncle haven’t owned one, they’ve probably had a go at tuning one and are India’s world famous Bullet tuners. So why am I telling you all of this? It’s because the bike you see in these pages is an Enfield hybrid, with a difference.
Sachin Chavan, our friend from RE, was in Mumbai and I managed to catch up with him and his little drag bike Nandi. The bike has a standard 500cc cast iron engine, but that’s where the similarity ends. The engine sports high lift cams (sports cams) and is fed by a 34 mm Mikuni carb that’s wired to a quick-throttle. The ignition is a standard TCI setup which signals two HT coils to light up the twin plug system. Yes, he discarded the decompressor and has absolutely no problem starting the bike.
Visually, Nandi sported an aluminium tank with a single seat setup. A street racer handlebar with specially made triple clamps held the front end together while a fork brace from a TZ250 worked against flex. The matte black, stock looking silencer is actually a straight-through stuffed with a little glass wool. Far too little we reckon, with Mumbai’s ever burgeoning stray dog population.
So now that you know what’s been put into this bike, let me tell you about my experience. Sachin’s really particular about who rides his bikes. I was buttering him up – and later, pestering him – into letting me ride Nandi at the Ridermania trackday, but Murphy ensured that the legendary Bullet Bose who was using it as a pace bike burnt a valve on the main straight. This shoot is officially my millionth try and Sachin can’t refuse me a ride, technically, since I’m writing the article and all.