It is incongruous to see an Indian customising studio coming out with café racer kits for the Royal Enfield Bullet and that too for the export markets! When RE’s Continental GT itself is available why should anyone embark on reinventing the wheel is the logical question but then in mature motorcycling marketer Andreas Glaser’s view, there is a small but sizeable market for genuine old school café racer kits to hop up old Royal Enfield Bullets. Glaser had seen Jay Patel’s efforts with his customised creations on Bullets and the duo worked out a prototype that was placed on the German’s website. This elicited a very strong response and orders poured in and it was then incumbent on Jay Patel’s eponymous J&D Customs to reel off these kits which retail for over €4000 sans fitment.
The bare bones of the 35-piece kit which looks smashing on this 1957 Bullet 350 is of course the headlight cowl, new aluminium tank (replete with a sexy Monza-type quick filler cap plus an Ammeter embedded on it) and single seat unit (delectably draped with quilted leather) plus of course the absolutely sanitary layout with the electrics and their wires hidden out of sight. Everything from the design to the construction of most parts (barring the Smiths speedometer and the bought out switch) was done at Jay’s facility in Baroda including the triple clamp machined from a solid billet of aluminium. Jay also extended the swingarm by about an inch and a half to take in the rear shock absorbers (from a Bajaj Pulsar 220) and the 18-inch wheel rims from a present-day RE Bullet. The effect is that this is a kit that embellishes not just the looks but also improves the ride.
I like the purity of purpose on this café racer, and also the high aesthetic appeal thanks to good design plus quality components on it, which is the only way to go. Now I can’t wait till early next year when J&D Customs plan to add an entirely new bobber custom kit for old Bullets!