It's a retro bike war zone in India, with a slew of seriously well equipped retro bikes breaking their way into the premium end of the Indian motorcycle market, capturing the imagination of the Indian people. Usual suspects aside, there’s an old rival with a new backer, Jawa Motorcycles is back on sale in India with Mahindra owned Classic Legends in their corner. Early last month, Jawa pulled the wraps off the three bikes that would form the spearhead for Jawa’s charge in India. The three bikes, namely the Jawa the Jawa 42 and the Perak have simplistic names peppered with little nuances that make them interesting. Each of them has a small but interesting back story although not all of them are about motorcycles and that’s unique.
We’ll start with the Jawa, the conventional classic, no prizes for guessing that the Jawa pays homage to the original motorcycle that was the Jawa 250 on sale in India. It retains most of the design queues of the original motorcycle, to keep it as simple as possible, the name followed suit with the Jawa tag stand alone. The Jawa Perak is the high-end factory custom that will go on sale after the Jawa and the Jawa 42 roll-out. In today ethos, the Jawa Perak comes with a bobber style single suspended seat and a bored out 300cc motor with a slightly higher displacement and is expected to get slightly uprated power figures as well. The Perak is a throwback to original Czech Jawa 250 Perak bobber that was on sale in the 1950s. Apparently, Perak was the name of an anti-fascist superhero entity that emerged post-war in the Prague.
The Jawa 42, on the other hand, has a much more interesting and thought provoking story that can be traced back to one of the most iconic books of our time. While the internet has a smorgasbord of stories from the number of years that Jawa was last produced globally to a rhetoric about the Czech country code which is 42. The answer is actually much more interesting and finds its roots in the book “hitchhikers guide to the galaxy” in which a supercomputer was asked to answer questions about the meaning of life and after much combobulation the computer answers, rather comically, the computer replies 42. Thus the simple name which signifies the meaning of life. For some its happiness, for others its a purpose and for all those roads you have the 42!
Side Note: This might start a war, but, the Jawa brand has in the past been the cooler brand when compared to Royal Enfield. The super cool names smeared with urban legend and mystery are a great start but, this is still Royal Enfield’s Ballfield. With Sid Lal at the helm, the brand stands stronger than ever and undoubtedly cooler. Not that we are trying to insight a fresh rivalry but, let's just say we like where this is going!