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Finally the launch date is here. Royal Enfield will finally launch the Thunderbird 500 in the Indian market on the 11th of October 2012. The 500cc version of the Thunderbird was first unveiled at the 2012 Auto Expo. It has been a long time coming but due to production constraints, the Chennai based motorcycle maker had to postpone the launch. The Thunderbird 500 has many changes compared to the Thunderbird 350. Not only does it sport a more powerful engine, the motorcycle is also the most advanced Royal Enfield machine till date.

Royal Enfield has given the Thunderbird 500 front and rear disc brakes. The front sports 280 mm disc and the rear sports 240 mm disc. This is a first for a Royal Enfield motorcycle. The Thunderbird 500 also receives projector head lights with LED. The head light is a 55 watt unit. Power comes in from the Classic 500’s 499cc, twin-spark, air-cooled, single-cylinder engine which belts out 27.2 BHP of peak power at 5250 RPM and 41.3 Nm of peak torque at 4000 RPM. This torquey engine is mated to a 5-speed gearbox.

Royal Enfield has also given the Thunderbird 500 an all new instrument cluster with a digital readout for odometer, trip meter and fuel meter. The Thunderbird 500 will be available in three shades of black – midnight black, artic winter black and matte black metallic. Although prices are yet to be announced, one can safely expect the Thunderbird 500 to be the costliest vehicle in the company’s line-up, with our estimates pointing to a Rs. 1.75 lakh price tag. Dealers are now accepting bookings for the higher capacity Thunderbird.

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