PAYING homage to the great success experienced in its trials racing history and Johnny Brittain’s works Bullet trials bike of 1956 and 57, Royal Enfield have spawned a limited-edition motorcycle that takes us back to that all-conquering era.
All that history and glory has been replicated in the 2020 Royal Enfield Bullet Trials Works Replica 500, with just 150 examples of the learner approved bike, available with a red or green frame, headed down under.
Add to this the exclusive #48 Trials Works kit, a must for any true enthusiast and available at the time of testing as a free add-on, and you have a very sweet looking bike.
The Trials Works kit adds extra details such as the 48 decal, wire headlight guard, aluminum sump guard and handlebar pad, which really add to the visual appearance and racing heritage of the 2020 Bullet Trials.
Powered by a single cylinder 4-stroke, air cooled, electronic fuel injected 500cc motor that produces 27.2hp and 41.3Nm of torque. The Bullet Trials 500 engine is fused to a 5-speed constant mesh gearbox, and utilises a wet, multi -plate clutch.
The result is a user-friendly motorcycle, that’s enjoyable to ride. Whilst still being punchy, the Bullet Trials is a perfect Sunday café cruiser or possibly a very stylish commuter, although we think it is possibly a little more special than the every day.
As an added bonus the Royal Enfield Bullet Trials Works Replica 500 is learner approved. It’s a testament to the brand that a limited edition production bike is so accessible to beginner riders, as well as those with a full unrestricted licence.
Handling is a real bench mark of the Bullet Trials bike too, with telescopic front suspension that allows 130mm of travel, and twin gas shock absorbers allowing 80mm of travel on the rear the suspension.
It’s a combination that works well, and creates a nimble bike, that’s not overly large either. At a length of 2080mm and a seat height of 800mm, and a kerb weight of just 192kg, the Trials is accessible to riders of all dimensional proportions.
With ground clearance of 135mm it’s also good a little light off road enjoyment. Braking is handled by a 280mm disc 2-piston caliper set up on the front and a 240mm single caliper on the rear, with both featuring ABS.
The riding position is relaxed and we must admit that there is nothing overly complicated about this bike to distract from the riding experience. There’s an easy to read single speedo with a fuel light. Simple stuff.
It fires up every time via an electronic ignition and the handlebar position is good too. As a larger guy, this author is not sure he could ride the Trials for extended 600km plus day trips on a regular basis, but for shorter 200-300km trips, comfort is more than adequate.
And in case you were wondering where the name comes from, trials competitions were used by manufacturers to demonstrate their machines dependability and endurance on the rough, un-melted highways of Britain.
A trials rider had to negotiate rocky hillside tracks, traverse slippery gullies and other such treacherous terrain. Riders were deducted points if they were to put a foot down to navigate the conditions.
It was rough and tumble, and riders would fall off a lot. Today we’d find it somewhat amusing that those same riders would simply hop back on these bikes at the end of these grueling contests, and ride home.
The 2020 Royal Enfield Bullet Trials Works Replica 500 is, as the name suggests, a replica of those amazing bikes from an era past. It’s simplistic and charming, and loaded with character. You might say it’s a nod to history, that’s also a great way to cruise around.
Prices start from $9,190 ride away. It comes with a 2-year warranty, and is available in very limtied numbers.
Our test bike was provided by Royal Enfield Australia. To find out more about the 2020 Royal Enfield Bullet Trials Works Replica 500, contact your local Royal Enfield dealer. Pictures courtesy of Cameron Cooke Photography.