As Royal Enfield continues testing its BS-VI range, the Thunderbird X has made another spy photo appearance. As many as four Thunderbird X series motorcycles were photographed when the company’s test riders probably decided to take a food and beverage break. The alloy wheels, a flat handlebar and the missing pillion backrest give away the fact that it is indeed the Thunderbird X series model.
The motorcycles appear to be production-ready, sans the tags and graphics that will be added once the vehicles start rolling on the assembly line. The latest sighting gives a look at the styling cues for the 2020 range. The BS-VI model will continue to feature the retro-styling while adding a pinch of sportiness to the package with the use of split-seats and two-piece pillion grab rail. Closer inspection also reveals the rotary-style switchgear, a feature that was also seen on the spy photographs of the 2020 Classic series motorcycle.
The next-generation T'bird will use the brand’s new J architecture. The round headlight and black paint on various parts are carried forward from the existing range. The black colour will be used on the headlight housing, engine covers and the alloy wheels. The exhaust setup, however, was seen with a full silver finish. Unlike the current Thunderbird X range, the saddle setup benefits from a split layout to give easier access to under-seat space. The tail section has received more prominent styling upgrades, and the 2020 Thunderbird X looks more retro look with its round stoplight.
Royal Enfield is also working on a full-blown cruiser style variant of the Thunderbird range that will join the list in 2020. The new bike was seen through a spy video, revealing the revised ergonomics on the full-blown cruiser version. The updated ergonomics were achieved with courtesy forward set footpegs and increased distance between the handlebar and the saddle.
The 2020 Thunderbird range will retain the budget-friendly shock absorption hardware and use conventional telescopic front forks and twin-sided rear springs. Stopping power will come from disc brakes on both wheels, while the setup will be governed by the dual-channel ABS.
The engine specifications will most likely be similar to the current model, although the 350 range will benefit from a fuel-injection technology. Both motors will continue to use air-cooling. The current 499 cc single-cylinder, air-cooled, fuel-injected engine, for reference, delivers 27.57 PS at 5,250 rpm and 41.3 Nm at 4,000 rpm. The carburettor-equipped 346 cc single-cylinder, air-cooled mill churns out 20.07 PS at 5,250 rpm and 28 Nm at 4,000 rpm.
In other updates, Royal Enfield will introduce a new, lower-spec variant of the current Thunderbird 350 that will use a single-channel ABS and a rear drum brake. Aimed to boost sales, the new model will carry a lower price tag than the standard Thunderbird 350 ABS.
[Image Source: gaadiwaadi.com]