2024 Royal Enfield Bullet 350 (launch ride)

The opportunity to experience Royal Enfield’s new Bullet 350 on the streets of Melbourne was too good to pass up. And so it was that we headed south for the Australian media launch of a shiny and new learner approved motorcycle.

Recognised as the longest running production model anywhere in the world (Royal Enfield has been making it for 91 years), the Bullet 350 is steeped in history. The launch event just happened to occur on this writer’s birthday, so it was also a pretty cool present.

Hosted at Adina Melbourne Pentridge (yes the very same site that once housed a prison), our day began with some breakfast (as you might expect) before we hit the road for a ride around the city.

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From there, we returned to the hotel for a presentation on the bike as well as a special surprise (more on that in a moment). In the case of the latest incarnation of the Bullet 350, the bike looks clean, comfy and ready to ride.

The seat is a standout, offering exceptional comfort, even over long rides. The ergonomics are great too, and even at 183cm and tipping the scales at 120kg, this rider felt everything was in easy reach, and placed where you would expect it to be.

2024 Royal Enfield Bullet 350
2024 Royal Enfield Bullet 350

The clutch was super light, and the new 349cc air-cooled single cylinder J-Series engine (shared with the Meteor, Classic and Hunter), produces 15kW of power and 27Nm of torque, with the latter delivered in a smooth, linear way.

That’s paired to a 5-speed transmission, with the fifth gear working as an overdrive. The ratios are good, with enough power to get away at the lights. In the real world, that means this bike is right at home in suburbia and perfect for commuting.

We’d probably steer clear of freeways calling for 110km/h though, as it will have to work hard to get there. It’s a handy thing then that Royal Enfield has plenty of 650 variants in its model line-up, should highway rides be more you.

On the road, handling and manoeuvrability have been improved thanks to the updated, stiffer twin downtube cradle frame, allowing for a more stable riding experience at higher and lower speeds, both through corners and on straights.

Couple this with the 41mm conventional telescopic fork up front, with 130mm of travel, and twin tube shocks on the rear, with six-step adjustable preload, and wider tyres than the previous version, and you’re left with a very usable everyday package.

2024 Royal Enfield Bullet 350
2024 Royal Enfield Bullet 350

Throughout the launch, we got to put the new Bullet 350 through its paces in a variety of conditions, including some twisting turns and stop/start city riding. It handled it all with ease. The braking package is also sufficient and fit for purpose.

A single 300mm disc with a twin-piston floating calliper can be found up front, with a 270mm disc at the rear, with a single piston calliper. ABS is fitted to both. These are no superbike brakes, but are suitable for the type of riding the Bullet 350 is designed for.

The new digital/analogue instrument cluster provides easy to see and understand information on the fly, and is backed up by a USB port that allows charging and connection to the world.

The 2024 Royal Enfield Bullet 350 features some nods to its history, like hand-applied gold pinstripes on the fuel tank, and is available in Standard Black, Standard Maroon (both $7,890 ride away) and Black and Gold ($8,050 ride away).

Both Standard models offer a polished paint finish with chrome exhaust and engine covers. The Black and Gold model features a matte finish, with a blacked-out exhaust and engine. It’s backed by a 3-year unlimited kilometre warranty and 24/7 roadside assistance.

2024 Royal Enfield Bullet 350
2024 Royal Enfield Bullet 350

For further details, you can visit the Royal Enfield website, or talk to your local dealership. Now back to that surprise we mentioned. At the same event, we got to see Project Origin – an exact replica of the brand’s first ever motor-bicycle from 1901.

Gordon May, Royal Enfield’s historian, rode Project Origin into the hotel car park. It’s an amazing piece of machinery, and a bike he says is nothing like the motorcycles of today.

“If you look where the engine is, its centre of gravity is totally wrong, making the ‘motor-bicycle’ a challenge to ride. It had no throttle, no clutch and only one gear so it goes full speed and full power the whole time,” he said.

“Imagine what that was like back in 1901 when you’d never ridden a motor-bicycle before and you go off down the road at 30-miles/hour with only bicycle brakes.”

Adam Cranstone
Adam Cranstone
Adam Cranstone started his motorbike journey in his teenage years when he brought home his first bike against his parents wishes. It was at that point that he knew motorbikes were in his blood. He has a love for high performance sports bikes, dirt bikes and tourers, but is happy to climb aboard any two-wheeled machine.


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