The battle for the king of middleweight adventure bikes is well underway. Among the first was BMW, with the 650 GS, now upgraded to 750 and 850 displacements. Yamaha has always had the Dakar-inspired Ténéré 700, whose current iteration shares its platform with the MT-07. KTM followed with the 790 Adventure.
Just in the past few months, the battle has been heating up, with the Aprilia Tuareg 660 launched, built off the platform of the RS and Tuono 660 models. Just recently, UK-based manufacturer, Triumph, entered the battle with their sport-tourer Tiger Sport 660, which shares some key elements with the potent Trident 660.
With these new competitors sporting more rally-raid (a la Dakar Rally) inspired designs, those already in the segment are beginning to rethink their contenders. One of them is Benelli, this time, with a 650cc V-twin adventure bike.
Benelli, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Chinese manufacturing giant, QuiangJiang Motor since 2005, has filed for a patent for an upcoming middleweight adventure bike, with some speculating that it will replace the existing TRK502X.
As of this writing, the upcoming adventure bike from Benelli is yet to be named, but sources say that the bike will be powered by a 650cc, V-twin, similar to that of Suzuki’s V-Strom 650. Also, the upcoming bike seems to feature 21-inch and 18-inch (F-R) tires with a high ground clearance – clearly proof that Benelli will be fielding this as a capable off-roader.
Let’s just hope that Benelli has also designed this upcoming adventurer with weight savings in mind, unlike the TRK502X which, unfortunately, is a very heavy bike for a 500cc.