Seat height is 890mm but feels higher. It's not an uncomfortable riding position, but with a short, firm seat and wide, close handlebar it always feels like an off-roader (an accessory 'comfort' seat is available).
The modest screen offers reasonable protection at A-road speed, though at over 6ft tall my knees press against the 18-litre tank and the seat doesn't have many perching options.
Vibes from the 600cc single are un-intrusive below 5000rpm (75mph in top).
The real issue is from the chassis - the suspension is firm and the Fast Ace forks feel choppy, and the ride is fidgety on open roads and motorways.
Confidence for off-road novices
Previous SuperDuals had an adventure-style 19in front wheel and 17in rear. The new X gets proper enduro sizes, with a 90/90-21 front tyre and 140/80- 18 rear, and it rolls more easily down rutted trails.
SWM claim geometry and ground clearance are unchanged, but that’s fine – with decent suspension travel (210mm front, 270mm rear), 200mm of ground clearance, Metzeler Sahara tyres and a dry weight of 169kg, the SWM gives confidence to off-road novices.
Developed by BMW when they owned Husqvarna, the 600cc single-cylinder motor is what CCM put in their Spitfire.
It’s willing to rev and SWM reckon there’s 54bhp at 7500rpm, though it occasionally feels a bit stifled – I recall the old TE610 being punchier.
Harshness increases with revs beyond 5000rpm, so shift gears in the midrange with the light clutch and snickety lever.
The single is happiest and feels nicest thrumming down tight roads and back lanes, responding cleanly to the light throttle. Handling is solid and secure, and the SuperDual still leans-in cleanly despite the large front rim.
SWM’s importer collapsed last year, so UK distribution has been taken over by 3X Motorcycles. 3X have been in the game for yonks, and the new set-up will improve availability of bikes and genuine spares as they recruit new dealers. Though not a premium device the SuperDual X uses big-brand components and overall quality seems on-the-money for a seven-grand bike.
The new big-wheel X is £7020 on the road. A luggage-shod GT version is £7720. It feels a decent amount of bike for the money, and there’s not really anything else similar.
Husqvarna's 701 Enduro is far plusher, smoother, faster, efficient and a more capable trail bike, but is an extra two grand.
Suzuki’s adventure style V-Strom 650 and Kawasaki’s Versys 650 are better on-road but aren’t the same thing.
And though Royal Enfield’s Himalayan does almost everything the SWM does for £2700 less, it’s less attractive and slower.
You won't find umpteen-level traction control or a riding mode specific for an overcast Tuesday afternoon.
Switchable ABS is the extent of the modernity, the compact digital dash having basic info (one of the two trips doesn’t work on our test bike), while switchgear is basic but functional.
This doesn’t mean a lack of useful bits: span-adjustable levers, tweakable suspension (best with everything backed off), rack, crash bars, fog lamps and centre stand are all standard.
The bodywork looks like it’ll shrug off low-speed spills, too. And while those big plastic mirrors aren’t good looking, they’re good to look in.