Benelli is one of those manufacturers that doesn’t seem to get tired of rolling out updates to existing models and concepts to upcoming models. It’s as if something new about the Chinese-owned Italian brand pops up every single day. Because of its super strong appetite for innovation, it’s no surprise that Benelli is advancing at a rapid pace all over the world.
In fact, Benelli continues to set record-breaking sales in Europe thanks to its TRK 502 adventure bike. In Asia, on the other hand, its affordable bikes like the Leoncino 500 and 502C have made bigger, high-performance motorcycles more accessible to the general public. At present, there are several Benelli-branded motorcycles in development, and it seems its Chinese owners, QJ Motor, have no intentions of slowing down. You see, renders of two modern-styled street bikes have surfaced online, and it looks like these could be Benelli’s future entry-level big bike offerings.
The first of which is a duo of 550 bikes bearing the well-known Benelli TNT branding. While Benelli does have a current offering of 500cc models, it seems that the 550 bikes will be based on an all-new platform; the same platform QJ Motor is using on the MV Agusta Lucky Explorer 5.5. What’s interesting, though, is that the drawings show two bikes—a naked streetfighter and a fully faired sportbike with raised clip-ons. Could this mean that the TNT could be launched in two flavors, say, a TNT 550R and TNT 550F? Your guess is as good as mine.
Meanwhile, moving up the displacement game just a bit, we find renderings of a Tornado 650, another familiar name in the Benelli family. It takes the form of a full-fledged sportbike complete with a sleek fairing, low clip-on bars, and aggressive rearsets. It almost looks like it borrows a few styling cues from MV Agusta’s sport bikes, too, with its sharp edges and elegant curves. Its engine, however, could likely be based on the existing TNT 600i engine, albeit slightly bored out to account for the additional 50 cubes.
It’s interesting to note that the recent unveiling of the MV Agusta Lucky Explorer 5.5 has so quickly resulted in the innovations spilling over to other brands under Qianjiang Motors. This so-called cross-pollination of technology across multiple brands under one corporate umbrella is certainly good for us consumers, as a wider variety of bikes in different styles and flavors are always welcome.