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Benelli's new scrambler?

30th November 2015

 

499cc | 47bhp | Leoncino | 6-speed | Pesaro 

 

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We'd be a lot more enthusiastic about this recently proposed Benelli Leoncino scrambler (or pseudo scrambler) were it not for the fact that the parent company is Chinese; specifically, the Qianjiang Group (one of the largest motorcycle manufacturers in the world).

 

Of course, everyone knows that Benelli is an Italian firm with a proud history dating to 1911 in Pesaro where the firm was founded. Except that's all water under the bridge, and it's Chinese now (in law if not in spirit). Still, we hear that the bike was at least designed in Pesaro, so there's a residual connection with its heritage.

 

Anyway, what's the detail? Well, it's a 499cc, 6-speed, liquid-cooled twin that supposedly develops 47bhp @ 8,500rpm. Maximum torque kicks in at 4,500rpm and, it's claimed, returns 33lbs-ft (45Nm). The numbers sound realistic, so we'll take them at face value. The forks are (evidently) inverted. The wheels are 19-inch front and 17-inch rear. The front brakes are twin 320mm discs with four-piston calipers. A single 260mm rear disc with a two-piston caliper checks the rear. The seat is "Alcantara leather" which is in fact a polyester/polyurethane mix and simulates suede.

 

If a production bike arrives at all, it could be well over a year away. And it's way too early for any kind of price. We can only guess what die-hard Benelli fans make of this, but some of them might well be crying. Click the Benelli Leoncino link for a closer look.

 

 

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