Thursday, November 19, 2015

2016 Benelli Tornado 302 unveiled at EICMA, aims to take on Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, KTM

A bit basic, a bit heavy, but the 2016 Benelli Tornado 302 could well take on Japanese, European and Korean competition, especially in India and other price-sensitive Asian markets

Small-capacity sportsbikes with full fairings are popular in Asian markets and machines like the Honda CBR250/300, Yamaha R3, Kawasaki Ninja 250/300 and KTM RC390 are doing quite well in many markets. Given Benelli's aggressive push into India and other large Asian markets, they want a piece of the action and hence the new Tornado 302, Benelli's first fully-faired sportsbike after the Tornado 1130.

The built-in-China Benelli Tornado 302 is powered by a 300cc 8-valve DOHC liquid-cooled parallel-twin, which produces 35 horsepower and 27Nm of torque. Six-speed transmission, steel tube trestle frame, 41mm USD front fork, preload-adjustable rear monoshock, twin 260mm brake discs at the front with 4-piston calipers, 14-litre fuel tank, 17-inch alloy wheels (shod with 110/70 and 150/60 rubber), and optional ABS complete the package. The bike is a bit heavy, weighing in at 180kg dry.

The Tornado 302 will be in Benelli showrooms worldwide by mid-2016 and will be priced to take on its Japanese, Korean and European competition.

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