The market is witnessing a surge in Chinese-made motorcycles, particularly in Europe, as Chinese manufacturers capitalize on lucrative partnerships with Western counterparts. One such example is Zongshen's collaboration with Norton, where certain models from the Chinese brand incorporate Norton technology. Indeed, there have been notable Zongshen models in the past featuring Norton engines, such as the Cyclone RX6 adventure-tourer.
That being said, there is yet another Zongshen model powered by Norton technology. Dubbed the Cyclone RX650, it is an evolution of the RX6 and is designed around a road-focused adventure-touring platform. With its rugged bodywork, tall windscreen, and standard massive side panniers, the Cyclone RX650 appears to be a capable long-distance bike, designed specifically for on-road touring.
The Cyclone RX650 boasts a 650cc liquid-cooled, fuel-injected, parallel-twin engine, delivering 71 horsepower at 8,500 rpm and 42 pound-feet of torque at 7,000 rpm. While its performance specifications may appear average within its category, they are comparable to other popular models like the Kawasaki Versys 650 and the Moto Morini X-Cape 650.Despite the Cyclone RX650's performance figures being relatively lackluster, Zongshen goes above and beyond by offering an impressive array of advanced tech features.
In fact, it sets itself apart as potentially one of the most well-equipped adventure tourers in its class, at least in terms of cutting-edge technology. The inclusion of full-LED lights ensures excellent visibility, while features like cornering ABS and traction control enhance safety and stability on different road conditions. The up and down quick shifter allows for seamless gear changes, while keyless ignition adds convenience. Moreover, the addition of cruise control, radar-powered blind spot monitoring, AI-powered voice control, and even a built-in dashcam, make it a technologically advanced choice for tech-savvy riders.
The Cyclone RX650 is part of a growing lineup of technologically advanced motorcycles emerging from China, and it is priced at 42,000 Yuan, which is approximately $5,900 USD. Although it is not yet available in the United States, other Chinese models have already made their presence known in the U.S. market. CFMoto's Adventura 650 stands out as an affordable adventure-tourer, retailing for just $6,799, which is $2,000 less than the bike it’s trying to imitate, the Kawasaki Versys 650. Another option is Moto Morini's X-Cape 650, which offers off-road focused performance and is available in the U.S. at a price of $8,299 USD.