SPIED: Benelli’s 500cc “GS”

A Chinese-Designed ADV Twin In the Works?

It's a long way from being the sort of beauty that you might expect from Benelli, but these leaked pictures reveal the designs for a new 500cc parallel-twin adventure bike that's under development at the firm's Chinese parent company.

The Benelli-branded brake calipers and the fact that the engine is visually identical to the recently launched 300cc Benelli BN302 show that while this bike has been created by Qianjiang in China, it’s destined to use the storied Benelli badge when it reaches production.

Although the engine shares its castings with the BN302, the new bike’s code name, BJ500GS, reveals that this is a 500cc variant. Given that the BN302 claims 38 hp, it’s likely that the 500cc version will be able to hit the 47-hp limit that certain European motorcycle licenses are restricted to. All good so far.

The styling, however, is a mess at best. This image shows a styling mock-up, painted white on the left-hand side and blue on the right to demonstrate its appearance in different color schemes, but the bodywork is a riot of shapes and angles, none of which seem to fit with the next. There’s clearly a bit of Multistrada in there, and a dash of BMW GS, but the result is less than beautiful. Fortunately, there’s still time for it to be restyled before it hits the market.

When it does, while it’s likely to be branded as a Benelli in many countries, it could also be offered under several other brands under which Qianjiang also sells bikes.