Royal Enfield is one of the oldest motorcycle brands in the world. It has been producing great motorcycles since 1901. Throughout history, Royal Enfield has undoubtedly triumphed in a hike that tested endurance and perseverance. In honor of the 120th anniversary of the brand, Royal Enfield has embarked on an ambitious challenge and a tribute to the explorers who made history with motorcycles - they decided to try their hand at motorbike adventure tours to reach the geographic South Pole.
Two Royal Enfield Himalays were used on this adventure. This is a simple, reliable utility model released in 2016 and loved by many adventurers around the world. However, in order to cope with the extreme Antarctic terrain and weather conditions, the two motorbikes have also undergone some changes. In order to increase rear wheel torque, the small chainring has been changed from 15 teeth to 13 teeth. Studded tires can be run at very low tire pressures, increasing grip on icy terrain. To ensure the success of the adventure, Royal Enfield has completed two tests on Iceland's Langjökull glacier. The first phase begins in September 2020 and the second ends in July 2021.
The team departed from Cape Town, South Africa on November 26, and flew to Novo, Antarctica. Members had 4 days of adaptive training in Novo, loading supplies, checking equipment and motorcycles. After starting from Novo, the team covered a land distance of 3,200km in the next 9 days, braving the low temperature of -25° to -30° and the strong wind with a maximum wind speed of 60km/h to the predetermined starting point of the Ross Ice Shelf. However, due to a sudden snowstorm, the team was forced to change the starting point and start the adventure ride from 87 degrees south latitude.
Two riders, Santhosh Vijay Kumar and Dean Coxson, rode two Himalays for more than 400 kilometers in ice and snow, overcoming many difficulties. In the end, the adventure team arrived at the geographic South Pole at 90° south latitude on December 16, 2021, and sent back photos through satellite communication, completing the pioneering work of motorcycle adventures to the polar regions.
During the entire trip, the whole team did not forget to care for the environment. Teams try to ride on compacted snow as far as possible to reduce drag and keep emissions to a minimum. In addition, all rubbish, including excrement, is carried away, ensuring that no traces are left except for ruts that will soon be covered by wind and snow.
Siddhartha Lal, Managing Director of Eicher Motors (the parent company of Royal Enfield), said: “Over the past 120 years, we have created and nurtured a thriving cycling and adventure culture around the world. This pursuit of adventure has always been part of our An integral part of our DNA. 90° South - Polar Adventure is the new chapter in our extraordinary series of motorcycle adventures. Such an attempt to ride to the end of the earth will inspire people to be adventurers again.”