Among the launches of Benelli at EICMA 2023 was the stylish and rugged BKX 300. First unveiled in concept form earlier in 2023, the BKX has the younger generation of riders in mind, thanks to its approachable performance, radical and futuristic styling, and go-anywhere performance. It’s the latest addition to the growing number of entry-level adventure-focused machines that have made their debuts at EICMA, so let’s dive right into the specifics.
As you probably know, Benelli is a motorcycle company with Italian roots, but has been owned by Chinese motorcycle giant Qianjiang (QJ Motor) for quite some time now. According to Benelli, the new BKX 300 has been developed at Benelli’ Style Center in Pesaro, Italy, the birthplace of the Italian brand.
The design language is distinctly modern, and a stark departure from the brand’s adventure bike styling found in the TRK range. It clearly has rally-inspired aesthetics, and a clean and surgical look to it, almost like that of Husqvarna.
On the front of the bike, we find two vertical LED headlights that give it an alien-like look, while the rear lights feature an interesting “combo light” assembly. The bike’s tall stance is accentuated by streamlined bodywork that seems to follow a contour line from the front to the back.
Meanwhile, the bike’s engine is exposed, and it breathes through an upswept exhaust system that’s positioned in parallel with the bike’s tail. The bike rolls on wire-spoked wheels measuring 19 inches up front and 17 inches at the back.
On the technology side of the story, the BKX 300 remains fairly accessible and simple. It’s powered by a single-cylinder engine displacing 292.4 cubes. Complete with liquid-cooling and electronic fuel-injection, it has a maximum power output of 29.2 horsepower at 9,000 rpm and a torque rating of 24.5 Nm (17 pound-feet) of torque at 7,000 rpm.
Power is sent to the rear wheel via a six-speed manual gearbox, but an assist-slipper clutch has been added for smoother downshifts – a feature that beginner riders will surely appreciate.
The powerplant is housed in a steel double-cradle frame to keep weight low, and the suspension system consists of a non-adjustable inverted front fork, and a preload-adjustable rear monoshock. Suspension travel is a generous 180 millimeters front and back, so the bike is surely capable of traversing beyond the confines of pavement. For stopping duties, we find a single front disc brake with a 280mm rotor, and a rear floating disc measuring 240mm.
When it comes to pricing and availability, Benelli says that the bike will be made available from the second half of 2024. Furthermore, it’ll also be launching smaller versions – 125cc and 250cc – for markets with stricter licensing parameters. As of this writing, however, Benelli has yet to release pricing information for the new model.