In recent times, there are few motorcycles which were as anticipated as the Royal Enfield Interceptor. The first ever parallel-twin from Royal Enfield in the longest time! The Interceptor and its twin, the Continental GT 650 got a massive reception and the first impressions have been pretty positive to say the least. But we could not help thinking how the Interceptor will fare against its strongest rival, the Harley-Davidson Street 750. We really cannot wait to pit the bikes against each other in the real world, but that will have to wait for at least five-six months. Till then, here is our on-paper comparo of the Royal Enfield Interceptor 650 and the Harley-Davidson Street 750.
Look and design
The Interceptor carries a simple, minimalist design which harks back to the Interceptor Mark I of the 60s. The lines are clean and there is absolutely zero clutter going on. The old-school round headlamp and the chiselled fuel tank make the bike look good and keep the styling in tune with Royal Enfield’s overall design language. Coming to the Harley-Davidson Street 750, it is a typical cruiser in terms of look and styling. The Street 750 offers more in terms of visual mass and street presence. The V-twin engine surely makes its presence felt! The overall design of the bike is busier than that of the Interceptor 650 but in no way it feels overdone. A tough choice, but we will go with the Street 750 for this one!
Engine, features and dimensions
Right! This is where it gets interesting. The Interceptor gets an all-new 648 cc parallel-twin engine, paired to a 6-speed gearbox. The engine makes 47 bhp at 7,100 rpm and churns out a peak torque of 52 Nm at 4,000 rpm. In comparison, the H-D Street 750 gets a 749 cc V-twin, which makes a peak torque of 59 Nm at 3,750 rpm. Harley does not reveal the power figures of its bikes. The Street 750 too has a 6-speed gearbox. Both motorcycles could be said to be evenly matched in terms of performance. The Interceptor weighs 202 kg (dry) while the Street 750 weighs 223 kg. We do believe that the weight will make a difference as far as riding dynamics are concerned but can only confirm once we do a complete road test.
Both motorcycles get ABS as standard, which is a good thing. The Royal Enfield Interceptor gets twin-pod instrumentation while the Harley gets a single pod instrument console. The Street 750 gets alloy wheels while the Interceptor gets old-school cool wire-spoke wheels.
Pricing and accessibility
This is where the Royal Enfield has a massive opportunity to get its bikes selling. The Harley-Davidson Street 750 has a starting price of ₹ 5.14 lakh. If Royal Enfield is able to keep the pricing of the Interceptor below ₹ 4 lakh, then we believe there are high chances of the bike becoming a best-seller. Adding to this is Royal Enfield’s decidedly bigger sales and service network. Expect Royal Enfield to keep an aggressive pricing on the Interceptor and the Continental GT 650.