Almost a year after Benda announced the new model, images of the much-anticipated VTR-300 Turbo have appeared online. Though the release of this 300cc sportbike is likely still several months away, we already have a good sense of what to expect. Unlike most Chinese manufacturers, Benda has consistently produced motorcycles with unique designs that meet European standards.
The same can certainly be said about the VTR-300 Turbo, both in terms of its styling, but more so, about what lies beneath the fairings. While the turbo isn't visible in the images, it's more than likely that it's hidden beneath the fairing. It is speculated that VTR-300 will use the same 298cc liquid-cooled V-twin engine as the other models in the Benda range, which is rated at around 30 horsepower. However, a point made by German motorcycling publication, Motorrad Online, suggests that a V-Twin engine isn’t practical for a forced-induction application.
Benda does, however, have a 400cc parallel-twin engine currently in use, an engine that would make a lot more sense from a manufacturing point of view. Nonetheless, the use of a turbocharger in such a small engine, and in a bike that seems to be positioned towards the beginner spectrum at that, seems to be sitting at the border of practicality. Because of this, it’s more than likely that the VTR-300 Turbo won’t be pumping out thoroughly impressive performance figures—I’m guessing somewhere within the 45 to 50 horsepower ballpark.
Nonetheless, the fact that Benda is actually making progress on the VTR-300 Turbo is pretty admirable and impressive. Needless to say, just like Benelli and CFMoto, Benda could be well on its way to changing the negative perception people have of Chinese motorcycles. We’ve seen some pretty impressive models roll out of Benda’s factory. Bikes like the LFC 700 cruiser and the radical Tang Knife naked bike are well and truly bikes we’ve never seen before. Only time will tell, however, if this Chinese manufacturer can live up to its promises.