Benelli unveils a new line-up of motorcycles at EICMA

A range of exciting all-new products, these products should debut in India over the next 18 months.

DSK-Benelli may have had a dream run since its India debut late last year, but both parties aren’t taking things easy. At EICMA 2015, Benelli has unveiled five interesting new prototypes, of which at least three will make it to India by next year.

First up is the Leoncino, a nameplate Benelli plans to bring back from the dead with this new-age scrambler. Re-imagined by CentroStile, Benelli’s new design arm, the Leoncino draws inspiration from one of its most celebrated motorcycles, blending with new-age tech with retro styling, giving birth to a modern-day scrambler. At the heart of the new Leoncino lies a new powerplant from Pesaro: a twin-cylinder, liquid-cooled 500cc motor that will make its presence felt in many new products to come. In the Leoncino, the motor develops 47hp and 45Nm of torque, teamed with a six-speed gearbox. There’s the signature steel trellis frame, upside-down 50mm forks upfront and a monoshock at the rear. The scrambler also sports aluminium wire-spoke rims 19-inch at the front, 17-inch at the back. At the unveil, Benelli said “The all-new Leoncino represents an authentic and pure hearted design concept that rediscovers the style and accessibility of the original, all while delivering a contemporary motorcycle that provides a sporty and exciting experience. Original.” And, this scrambler will be a part of the Benelli brigade at the 2016 Delhi Auto Expo, with launch expected to be scheduled in the second half of the year at a price tag of close to ₹5 lakh

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Next up is the gorgeous Tornado 302, a faired version of the TNT300, powered by the same twin-cylinder 300cc motor found in the naked. But, the similarities between the two end there. Benelli is pitching the Tornado as an entry-level sportsbike that can be used for daily commutes and at the same time, be fully exploited on racetracks as well. And for that, the engineers have made significant changes to the platform. Take the chassis for instance. It’s different from that of the TNT300, and “can better cope with the challenges it will face on a racetrack”, says Benelli. It's lighter, the handlebar is placed lower, it'll be offered with ABS as an option, and has a lower centre of gravity, thus making it dynamically superior to its naked twin. The wheels are lighter compared to the TNT's, and they're wrapped in sticky Metzeler rubber, something enthusiasts will appreciate. Plus, changes to the ECU will make sure it suits a sportsbike better. And, if you think 35hp and 27Nm doesn’t cut it for you, Benelli will offer performance kits to spice things up. Expected to be priced at around ₹3 lakh, the Tornado 302 will be launched at the 2016 Delhi Auto Expo.

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Benelli also plans to offer something to those looking for a small-capacity adventure tourer with the TRK 502. Off-road tyres, a 20-litre fuel tank, optional 19-inch aluminium wire-spoke wheels, USD forks upfront and a monoshock at the rear with 150mm of travel, higher ground clearance, angry-looking beak and the tall visor state its adventure touring credentials in a rather shouty manner. It will be powered by the same 500cc twin-pot, pumping out 47hp and 45Nm of torque, with a 6-speeder sending the power to the rear wheel. The 502 will be showcased at the 2016 Delhi Auto Expo, and we expect it to be priced under ₹4 lakh when it is launched around May 2016.

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Next up is a motorcycle, which, according to Benelli, can make city transport fun. The Tornado Naked T is a 125cc motorcycle that sits on 12-inch wheels. Yes, 12-inchers. Benelli says that will bless the T with great agility and stability on the road. It will be powered by a single-cylinder, 125cc (135cc option available), with 11.7hp and 10Nm of torque. The Naked T will be showcased in Delhi, but DSK is still evaluating if it would be feasible to launch it in India.

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The last one is the BX 250 Motard, a motorcycle Benelli thinks will cater to the ‘young and dynamic riders with no limits’. Powered by a single-cylinder 249cc motor, the power output of 18hp and 21Nm sounds generous for a motorcycle that weighs in at 135kg (dry). Will it make it to Indian showrooms, is doubtful. Well, like the Naked T, this one, too, carries a 'tentative' tag. But, if DSK finds enough takers for these two motorcycles, it would only be more than willing to launch them in the second half of 2016.

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DSK-Benelli isn’t stopping at this. There are four more products in the pipeline (in the 200cc-600cc range) and are expected to be launched by the end of 2016. So, its clear that by the end of next year there should be some prominent sportbike companies creating their own space in India.

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Last updated on 18-11-2015. Published on 18-11-2015.
Published by Bikes4Sale in category Upcoming Bikes
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