Royal Enfield are celebrating their 120th anniversary this year. The British born company is the longest running motorcycle manufacturer... Words & Images: Royal Enfield

From humble beginnings at the Redditch factory in 1901, Royal Enfield, the oldest motorcycle brand in continuous production, have been a preserver of the legacy of building simple, pared-down, authentic classic motorcycles with plenty of simple and fun bikes.

The Redditch factory provided a lot of iconic bikes in the early Royal Enfield days.

Continuing its journey of encouraging and kickstarting the active, lifelong pursuit of exploration, Royal Enfield is gearing up to celebrate 120 years of being fiercely unique, riding ahead with undeterred grit and resilience and building pure motorcycling culture since 1901.

To commemorate this milestone, Royal Enfield will mark the year 2021 with several initiatives across the globe to celebrate the legacy and the journey of motorcycling.

They even provided bikes in WW1 with a machine gun attached to the sidecar.

“120 years is a long legacy for the brand, and we are very happy to have made it count. Royal Enfield is not just a motorcycle brand, it is a symbol of resilience and exploration and has been able to build a thriving culture of leisure riding around the world.” said Siddhartha Lal, Managing Director of Eicher Motors Ltd.

“Through these years we have endeavoured to stay authentic to our roots, continued to remain unique and distinctive, established a genre of leisure motorcycling that is accessible, inclusive, and absolutely enjoyable, and stayed relevant through the decades. Our goal is to strengthen Royal Enfield’s position as a truly global brand, and we will continue to challenge ourselves to develop products and experiences that will give wings to our desire to go further and experience new frontiers”

The 1968 MK1A Interceptor was a hit, but difficult to find one now.

Royal Enfield has a rich cultural heritage which transcends International boundaries. These timeless motorcycles have stood the test of time and help create many motorcycling records and memories. One of the prime examples is Winifred Wells, a motorcycling pioneer, and Royal Enfield Legend.

In 1950, she rode a 350cc Royal Enfield Bullet from Perth to Sydney and back – covering over 5,500 miles in just 22 days. Less than 2 years later, accompanied by her father, Winifred then circumnavigated the entire Australian continent, covering almost 10,000 miles in 65 days, battling temperatures of up to 44°C.

A while after the 350cc Bullet, Royal Enfield then brought out a 500 Bullet.

“It is a proud moment to achieve this milestone of 120 years of unbroken legacy. Not many brands have stood the test of time and enjoyed the privilege of journeying for over a century. It is a very proud moment for all of us at Royal Enfield, and for everyone who has been associated with the brand.” said Vimal Sumbly, Head – International Business – APAC, Royal Enfield.

“We are fortunate to have the support, endorsement and encouragement of our customers, partners, and most importantly, of our riding community. It is their journeys and adventures that has made this brand legendary. This year in the APAC region, we will have a host of engaging activities for our communities as an ode to their support that have made us reach this remarkable milestone.”

Johnny Brittain In the 1952 Scottish Six Days Trial on a Royal Enfield.

Royal Enfield have said that these 120 years have been a journey of undying resilience. Through it all, RE has remained true to its core principles of making simple, accessible, and engaging motorcycles. Riding through two world wars, surviving near shutdown in 1967 and 1977 and emerging victorious in rides that have tested the endurance of man and machine, RE has remained relevant and desirable through the ages.

Today a leading global player in the middleweight motorcycle segment (250cc – 750cc) with an ambition to grow and expand that market, a strong and diverse product portfolio and more than ten million riding enthusiasts across the world, Royal Enfield is 120 years old and only just getting started.

They even rocked up to the 1914 TT with Douggie Alexander. Fredrick James Walker came third that year on a Royal Enfield.

You can go through Royal Enfield’s full journey by clicking here.


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