In Part 1 of our interview with Nick Graveley, we discussed who he is, how he got started in clay modeling, and how he goes about his work. In talking with Graveley, his enthusiasm for the job was infectious, and the conversation naturally flowed, going a lot longer than we initially anticipated.
Here is a group of names you’ve probably heard of: Massimo Tamburini, Miguel Galluzzi, Gerald Kiska, Hans Muth, Adrian Morton, Pierre Terblanche. Hell, even if you don’t know these names, you’ve definitely seen their work. These are the men responsible for some of the greatest contemporary motorcycle designs in all of history. But have you ever thought about how a design goes from a napkin sketch and turns into a real-life motorcycle? There must be a process by which a 2D rendering transforms into a 3D object.
Eicher Motors has filed trademark applications for two potential models: “Royal Enfield Flying Flea” and “Royal Enfield Roadster”. The trademark applications were filed yesterday with the European Union Intellectual Property Office for use on “motorcycles; parts and fittings therefore,” as well as for various clothing items.
We’d kind of written Royal Enfield off as a niche builder of weird bikes for weirder people, but 1.4 billion Indians can’t all be wrong. Five years ago RE enlisted the help of Harris Performance in England to build the frame for its pretty little Continental GT (which sadly contained a really old Single left over from colonial days).
It’s been a stellar year for new motorcycles; our frequent flier miles are piling up like crazy as we span the globe to bring you the thrill of victory (Indian now) and the agony of defeat, from the 2019 bumper crop of everything from Nikens to Svartpilens. There’s more to it than new bikes, though. So, let’s take a look at what’s got us excited as we approach the mid-point of 2019.
As we wrap up 2018, we wanted to let you, our favorite MOrons, have a say. So, let’s take a look down memory lane – courtesy of Google Analytics. Our approach is simple: We tabulate the most read articles of the year and then, in order to maintain an equal ranking across the line, we divide that total by the number of months the article has been online. This keeps the list from being overrun by articles from early in the year.
Concept bikes are often used to showcase the design chops of a manufacturer while testing the water for potential new model ideas. Royal Enfield has clearly stated that the Concept Kx is just to allow the company’s designers to strut their stuff and raise the company’s profile. The Kx certainly does attract attention with its blend of retro and modern styling. Of particular interest is the combination of the massive girder fork and headlight assembly that step cleanly away from RE’s focus on more historically based designs. However, even with this neo-retro design, RE says it drew its inspiration from the Royal Enfield KX of the late 1930s, a 1,140 cc V-Twin.
The Model Year 2019 show season is fully underway, and so far, we’ve seen some exciting news. It began in Intermot with the unveiling of new models from Aprilia, Ducati, Indian, Kawasaki, KTM, Suzuki, and Triumph. Then the focus turned to Las Vegas, NV, and the AIMExpo where Motorcycle.com was on-hand to witness the unveiling of the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R and other offerings from the motorcycle industry as a whole.
Ever since my interview last December with Rod Copes, President of Royal Enfield North America, I’ve been looking forward to experiencing the new 650 Twin the company developed for the Continental GT 650 and the Interceptor 650. The common engine and chassis underlying these two models represent just one of “several” platforms slated to be released by RE in the next 3-5 years, according to Copes. Additionally, Copes claims that these platforms will all be aimed at the 400-700cc category because Royal Enfield wants to be the global leader in the middle-weight segment, which he thinks is underutilized as most manufacturers have been exploiting the heavy-weight market with its wider profit margins. Since I am a fan of both middle-weights and parallel Twins, these were heady statements to receive.
I should probably have broken this down into “Riders Over 50 with a History of Failed Relationships and Bad Decisions Without a Pot to Piss In,” and “Riders Over 50 With Healthy Portfolios and Dazzling Smiles”… but I didn’t. Because motorcycles are still relatively inexpensive, and because all us old guys seem to be drawn to the same ones whatever they cost. Besides, even wealthy motorcycle people mostly seem to be inherently cheap; otherwise they’d be car people, no? Consider this my personal cross-section of the bikes people like me covet most, and/or actually would (theoretically in my case) own.
Three Amigos 300cc ADV Bike Comparison: BMW G 310 GS Vs Kawasaki Versys-X 300 Vs Royal Enfield Himalayan
Why don’t we go to Baja more often? Well, one reason is the manufacturers want us to get special dispensation before we take their bikes to a foreign country, you need to buy Mexican insurance, everybody speaks a weird language down there, you can’t drink the water… those are all really easy obstacles to overcome, and I’m told you can drink the Baja water now.
Humankind has been preoccupied with fire and metal throughout recorded history. The Greeks had Hephaestus; the Norse – for simplicity’s sake – had Logi, though their table of organization for all things fire and metal related is about as cumbersome as General Motors before their reorganization, and the Romans? The Romans had Vulcan, often depicted with a large hammer, their god of fire and metalworking, the master of the forge.
You know what they say, “Bad news travels fast,” and a few months ago, it seemed like the motorcycle industry was full of it. Every day felt like there was a new report painting a gloomy portrait and claiming the motorcycle industry was doomed if we didn’t do something about it. How could something so awesome as motorcycling be destined for failure?
Royal Enfield designed and built this motorcycle in India, for Indians, a few years ago, with no plans really to export it. Why bother? India took over from China last year as the world’s biggest motorcycle market; Indians buy something like 48,000 motos a day (which probably includes lots of scooters and mopeds, but you get the picture – something like 17.7 million a year).