Originally posted by kitcross:
I know the general opinion of an Enfield is its unreliability. These would be new. Any other thoughts?
Unfortunately, even new Enfields are unreliable, although the new 350cc alloy engines are much better than the old ones.
The standard iron head 350/500cc models are built to the original 1940s British design - when it was normal to spend two hours in the workshop for every hour's riding! Add some high class Indian manufacture and you have a bike that has bags of 'character' (the great 'bullet beat'), but could dump a litre of hot oil down one of your legs at any moment. Running in takes a while too. 1000kms at 30mph max, then 1000kms at 40 mph, etc.
The alloy engined models were launched in the last couple of years and are lighter, better on fuel, more powerful and look good, but true bullet afficionados say they don't have the 'bullet beat' (personally I think they sound just as good). They also come with front disc brake and gear shift on the left (front drum brakes and gear shift on the right are still standard on Indian models).
Technically you can't legally buy an Indian Enfield as a foreigner, but most dealers will ignore the law and happily sell you one. Cost new is 75000 to 85000 Rupees (US$1700 to $1950) depending on model and extras. The 500cc engine is no longer available as standard, but can be ordered from the factory and takes up to 14 days for delivery.
I understand that US customs has some wacky law which stops the import of Enfields younger than 21 years old (or something like that!), so you're right to check Canadian import rules.
Hope that's useful.
no pipe, no slippers