Royal Enfield Vs Jawa: Choose Your Machine

The Royal Enfield and Jawa these two Classic legends have taken the Indian two wheeler segment upside down. These classic retro themed modern motorcycles are making huge waves. The Royal Enfield Classic 350 is the highest-selling model from the iconic bike manufacturer’s product lineup. The Classic 350 dons a retro design reminiscent of classic motorcycles from yesteryears. It’s a perfect example of a dated design with modern technologies. The Royal Enfield Classic 350 features metal encased telescopic front forks emphasizing its retro character along with the chrome crowned headlight. The front mudguard covers the front tyre completely revealing a vintage styling of the Classic 350. The teardrop fuel tank of the Classic 350 with the chrome fuel tank cover and black-rubber finished knee-pad reinforces its retro styling. Other key elements of the Classic 350 like the body colored dual rear suspension and the single saddle seat with springs takes you back to the 1940s.

The Royal Enfield Classic 350 and its siblings the Desert storm, Pegasus, or Classic chrome etc. give a lot options to buyers along with uncluttered finish with smooth flowing rear mudguard leading to a retro designed taillight. Whereas in the Jawa Motorcycles have launched two new models in India – the standard Jawa and the Jawa 42. They also ‘launched’ a bobber variant called Perak. However; this model is likely to hit Jawa’s showrooms only by late-2019 or early-2020. The standard model is called the Jawa and features a properly old school design similar to the Jawa bikes of the past. Even the instrument console is reminiscent of the older motorcycle, but gets a small digital inset for the odometer. The speedometer and the fuel gauge are analogue units.

Despite being technologically modern, the engine has been designed to look like the two-stroke motors seen on older Jawas, adding more character to the overall styling. The 293cc liquid cooled, DOHC single-cylinder unit mated to a 6-speed gearbox produces 27.2PS and 28Nm. It sits in a double cradle frame with telescopic forks up front and twin gas-charged shock absorbers at the rear. The spoke wheels are shod with MRF Zapper tyres. The motorcycle comes to halt using a 280mm disc and 153mm rear drum brake. Jawa offers only a single channel ABS as standard, likely due to cost constraints.

Now as Moto enthusiast and blogger here are few pointers from my side when it comparing these two legends.

Upside & Downside

So why a Common man does want to buy a Bullet or Royal Enfield? The Thump (the exhaust note) is what attracts every Royal Enfield buyer. Where Jawas loses its stand in the signature note when compared to its earlier models. Being the oldest two-wheeler manufacturing company Royal Enfield till date provides spares parts from its late models 60’s Royal Enfield!

Whereas being a new company in market Mahindra has limited stores and limited services centers and have failed to provide better service to their first product the MOJO itself so with limited service center and spare parts scarcity what can one do? In India breaks are very important rather than cursing we tend to break hard most of the times than twisting the throttle.

Royal Enfield with their line up comes with dual channel ABS both front and rear. Whereas in Jawa Motorcycles only comes with front single channel ABS disk brakes.

Coming to the big question Pricing? Royal Enfield classic models might vary between 137,195.00 to 151,793.00 Ex-Showroom Price. Whereas in Jawa is around 1.64 lakh, and the bobber variant called Perak at a price of Rs 1.89 lakh 00 Ex-Showroom Price without dual channel ABS.

Paint scheme and options to choose from: Royal Enfield gives plenty of options almost 10 to be precise when it comes to color or paint job or pinstriping where each tank is hand painted and carries a legacy. Coming to Jawa Motorcycles it has limited color options and looks like a poor imitation on the pinstriping.

Have you ever tried starting your bike when the battery is dead? To my surprise, Jawa doesn’t come with a kick starter. Well Royal Enfield can be brought back to life even if the battery is dead as it comes with a kick starter in their classic series. Every biker dreams of open roads and long rides! Royal Enfield bikes have two separate seats to provide maximum cushioning comfort to those long rides and to some extent to taller riders like me better tail support. However, Jawa comes with a single narrow seat with fewer cushions which doesn’t help on long riders and definitely not for tall riders.

Every Indians big question (kitna deti hai) what’s the mileage? Jawa gives an average of 20 to 22 KMPL for its twin cylinder at least what the company claims. The classic models of Royal Enfield give a whopping 37 kmpl for a 350 CC engine.

So here you have it. The Classic 350 or the Jawa? It’s up to you to decide.

Happy Riding!

Blog by Vinod Basavaraj, RT Bengaluru

Pic Credits: Drivespark

5 thoughts on “Royal Enfield Vs Jawa: Choose Your Machine

  • February 21, 2019 at 1:46 am

    Twin Cylinder… Since when did the new Jawa have a twin cylinder?

  • March 3, 2019 at 10:29 pm

    As a kid, I saw Jawa around me more often than Royal Enfield, so yeah you can forgive me to say that I do have a strong association with Jawa. However, today’s Jawa is not the Jawa from yesteryears. And honestly, it does look good. However, in comparison to RE 350, it pales. RE never stopped production of 350, and have since added variations to the product to taste a wider range of audience. Case in point you made about available colors itself.

  • March 15, 2021 at 7:08 pm

    I like your review.

    I am planning to buy a bike and for that, I have been experimenting with 2 bikes for the last couple of days., (1) Jawa 42 2.1 and (2) Meteor 350 which are almost at the same price. My height is 5.4 feet and I am comfortable riding with these 2 bikes due to the low seat height. I really like the Jawa bike for its unique design and compactness but I’m still not 100% sure which one I want to purchase.

    The following points I can’t ignore, but not sure about it:

    1. Brand Value or Brand Image with this cost.
    2. We never know the future of Jawa, we know about their history of discontinuation.
    3. Very limited-service centers.
    4. High price and almost the same price with RE Meteor 350
    5. I don’t know how long we will have to wait for accessories if there is any damage
    6. Battery problem, I’ve noticed from some reviews. As this bike has no kick start option, we need to think about any battery issues.
    7. I am not sure how long we can maintain this “matte color” in our weather conditions.

    All of these factors it’s lead me to buy a renewable brand like the RE Meter 350, but I still really like Jawa 42 and my test ride was much more comfortable than Meteor. Jawa bike is almost 20kgs less weight and 6 inches less length than Meteor.

    I don’t understand if it will be the right decision to buy a Jawa bike at such a high price where we are not sure about its brand value or resell value.

    I’m completely confused now, what should I buy? I will wait for further review before investing a good amount of money. But I must say, that the design Jawa has created, is awesome. Should I go with the design or performance or brand image? Please help.


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