Classic Bike Guide

I rode it too – Matt


The Classic 350 reminded me a lot of my 1954 BSA 350 B31. It is frugal, well made, unthreaten­ing and around a similar speed. However, the brakes are also similar – not cool, Enfield. There must be some better pads available. And while moaning, sort the badly-designed pedals (how did they get through testing?) and lose weight – 195kg is too much for inspiring confidence. Irritating­ly, all these things could be done without massive costs. On the plus side, the Enfield has to be among the most comfortabl­e bikes I’ve tested in more than 15 years (optional touring seat fitted, but only a £75 option) and handling, for the performanc­e, along with comfort is superb!

The comfort and perfectly balanced handling is the greatest part of the Classic 350. Find the right roads and it sings along, swinging from left to right to left, with precision, with fun, and without pockmarked roads leaving their imprint on your posterior. The fantastic steering lock (much better than the Meteor) allows for tight U-turns in traffic and confidence in control. And with 80mpg, this fun can go on for miles.

The performanc­e is alright as long as you know what you have. If this bike is for city commuting or weekend country lanes, then revel in that comfort, those great looks (everyone says how nice it looks) and the excellent price. Enfield’s quality has never been higher, service costs are cheap, and it has that big-bike feel. Just plan your route – main roads will spoil your fun.

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