Royal Enfield Scram 411 first ride review
Many see the purpose-built dual-purpose Royal Enfield Himalayan to be a very apt motorcycle for a country like ours, seeing as we don't have to go really far in search of adventure if you actually think about it. After a couple of heavy showers during the monsoon season, many of our city's municipalities treat us to the finest stretches of broken paved roads, massive craters and sometimes there's even the occasional river crossing right outside our doorsteps. The Himalayan manages to take all this in its stride with great diplomacy, however, the Royal Enfield felt the need to make gritty Himalayan more accessible to the audience it caters to, and lo and behold, the Scram 411 ADV-crossover (as RE coins it), was born.
Design and Features:
The Scram 411 is poised to be less visually imposing and less of a hassle to ride (for the vertically challenged). In essence, the Scram is the Himalayan, but with a couple of aesthetic as well as functional bits missing. The Scram loses the Himalayan's windscreen, and so is the bracket on which the headlight of the Himi was mounted, which also doubles up as tank guard on which you could mount your jerry cans on your adventurous rides. Instead, the Scram sports a small metal headlamp cowl with the headlight itself now mounted on the fork. The 411 also gets these small fuel tank extension panels that add some substance to its mid-section and are just itching to be customised. Just like the Himalayan, the Scram doesn't get LED lights as standard fitment. Elsewhere there are subtle changes all over, like the single stock pod display, the single-piece seat, the side panels and the tighter tail section, but the most critical change comes in the form of the Scrams front wheel which has shrunk down to a wider section 19-inch spoke wheel from the 21-incher on the Himalayan.
Although the Scram 411 can be seen is a dialled-down version of the Himalayan, RE hasn't held back when it came to slapping a decent amount of features onto the new bike. The Scram gets essential bits like disc brakes at both ends, dual channel ABS, and the single digi-analogue offset instrument cluster which reads out speed, todo, trip, time gear position and DTE, while stuff like the tripper navigation pod and even the centre stand are things that aren't included in the motorcycles standard cost price. Those are some of the features you'll have to book on the RE Make It Yours (MIY) app should you fancy them.
Powering the Scram 411 is the same 411cc single cyl, air-cooled motor from the Himalayan in a slightly tinkered state of tune and it sits in the Himi's brilliant split cradle chassis as well. Mated to the motor is the same five speed gearbox as the Himalayan.
Ride and Handling:
The Scram 411 doesn't feel like the quickest bike off the line, but still, there's a good amount of grunt on tap from the 411cc single pot low down the powerband and the tall gearing won't leave you feel wanting in most low-speed and off-road situations. The bike also gets the same 5-speed gearbox as the Himalayan which, out on the highway, meant that there were many times when I would be in search for a sixth cog. But, just as with the Himalayan, everything appears to be well thought out with the Scram 411.
The 19-inch wheel up front means that the Scram stands 20mm closer to the ground compared to the Himilayan's 220mm of clearance, also the rake angle has reduced a tad along with the wheelbase by 10mm from the ADV, while the handlebar and the seat height is down by 60mm and 5mm respectively. These changes all mean that it's easier to swing a leg over and get astride the Scram, and once you set off, the bike doesn't require as much effort as the Himalayan to manoeuver about in the city. This is also aided by the fact that the Scram weighs in at 183.5kg dry, which is a good 6.5kg down from its more adventure-focussed sibling. The commendable part about this motorcycle is that at its core it still maintains the level of grit and ruggedness that the Himalayan exudes, while also going about its business in a refined manner. You get the same bore and stroke motor, the same long travel suspension and disc brakes as the Himalayan, although the ABS has been recalibrated to account for the smaller front wheel. Feedback from the front is good which is confidence inspiring when you hit broken patches of road, the only major difference with this bike is that it felt like it takes little more effort to get over obstacles like big rocks in comparison to the Himi.
The Himalayan is known to be one of the most comfortable adventure bikes out there, period, and thankfully the Scram too won't try to shuffle your organs about when you take on the rough stuff. The seat is generous and very accommodating which makes long stints in the saddle a breeze. The long-travel suspension provides a very polished and pliant ride over rutted surfaces. Muscling the bike over off-road trails takes less effort than before and you'll really have fun riding this bike off-road. If there was one shortcoming, it would have to be the brakes which could have a better bite to them on paved surfaces, and also the fact that the ABS can't be switched off which would be ideal for off-road riding.
Still, the Scram is immense fun to ride once you stand up and grip that big 15-litre tank with your knees over really rough patches, and you are always assured a good sense of control with that wide handlebar. We had the opportunity to check out how the scram held up when put through a proper off-road obstacle course as well as a flat track circuit, and both activities were immense fun. Over the bumps, jumps and slippery stuff, the suspension and the tyres are just so spot on! Out on the highway at triple digit speeds, you'll be baring the full brunt of the wind astride Scram with the lack of any wind protection up front, but it's not a deal breaker by any means.
So, why should one chose the Scram 411 over the Himalayan? Well, it all boils down to your riding requirement and taste in styling if you ask me. Of course there aren't as many features on the Scram, but you've got to think, do you really need them? You can see the Himalayan as a proper, fun off-road motorcycle that's very touring-friendly as well, while the Scram is an equally exciting bike that tilts more in favour of short rides on all or no roads. Also the Himalayan can be a big and imposing motorcycle for shorter riders, an issue which the Scram aims to address. The best part about the Scram is that it's made up of the same rugged DNA that makes the Himalayan such thrill to ride and own. Apart from the quicker turn-ins, the only downside to the Scram is that it doesn't feel leagues apart from from the Himalayan in terms of an overall ride experience. It doesn't feel like a completely different and all-new motorcycle at all, because it really isn't.
Starts Rs 2,03,000
Starts Rs 2,01,000