In October 2020, Benelli, a Chinese-owned, Italian-designed motorcycle manufacturer set up shop in the North American market. With one of its most popular bikes, the TRK 502 adventure bike, enjoying relatively successful sales, it began increasing its model lineup in the States to include the likes of the Leoncino and Leoncino Trail. Meanwhile, across the pond in Europe, Benelli continues enjoying impressive sales, particularly for the TRK 502.
At one point, the TRK 502 was selling so well, that it even outsold the BMW R 1250 GS in Italy. In June, 2021, the mid-sized ADV also smashed its entire 2020 sales figure in just six months. With the popularity of the TRK 502 now a certainty, it seems that Benelli has pulled the trigger on a bigger, better, and more capable TRK. The TRK 700 has surfaced in type-approval documents in China, by Benelli's Chinese owner, QJ Motor. The launch of the new 700cc adventure bike is surely timely, as the 650cc to 900cc class of adventure bikes is certainly where all the hype is at the moment.
With new and exciting ADVs from both young and old manufacturers hitting the market left and right, the Benelli TRK 700 will certainly have its work cut out, especially against the likes of the Yamaha Ténéré 700, Aprilia Tuareg 660, and even the CFMoto 800MT. Right off the bat, the Benelli TRK 700 will clearly sport some upgrades versus its 500cc stablemate. For starters, we see mild improvements in the chassis, with the swingarm now constructed out of aluminum, as opposed to the TRK 502's tubular steel swingarm. The overall styling, however, is clearly similar, with angular bodywork, a tall windscreen, and split LED headlights.
Beneath the classic ADV styling resides a 693cc parallel-twin motor rated at a respectable 76 horsepower. This is, more than likely, the same motor found in the QJ Motor SRG 700 which was unveiled last year. The Benelli TRK 700 is expected to become available in two variants, just like its smaller sibling. On the one hand, the standard TRK 700 will likely feature alloy wheels with more road-oriented rubber. Meanwhile, the TRK 700 X is expected to feature more off-road-ready wire-spoke wheels with dual-purpose rubber. Certainly, we can expect to learn more about this bike, as well as other upcoming Benelli models in EICMA later this year.