Bikes don’t get much longer: Benda LFC 700 is almost as stretched as BMW R18

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Meet the LFC 700 from Chinese firm Benda. Unveiled as a concept under the name LF-01 last year, the production bike that’s due to make its debut this summer is set to be almost indistinguishable from the show model. Recent spy video shows a disguised prototype on test and Benda’s first European importer also list the LFC 700 on their website.

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At the heart of the LFC 700 lies Benda’s first four-cylinder engine: a 680cc, DOHC design clearly inspired by Honda’s CB650. It’s not a direct copy, but the bore and compression ratio are identical and the bolt pattern on the side covers looks much like that of the Honda.

Where it differs is in the castings themselves, as well as a longer-throw crankshaft that adds 2mm to punch the engine’s capacity up by 30cc.

On its show debut last year, the engine was topped by an unusual intake system more like a car’s than a motorcycle’s, with a single electronic throttle butterfly and a one-into-four manifold to feed air to the cylinders.

There’s speculation that the production model will revert to a more conventional setup, but either way the new spy video shows the bike in action and proves the engine works. Exhaust escapes through an equally unusual exhaust, with four side-facing exits from a single under-belly collector.

Benda LF 01 right side

Performance-wise, the LFC makes a claimed 97hp at 12,000rpm and puts that power to the rear wheel via a slipper clutch, six-speed box and a chain final drive.

The engine sits in a cast aluminium chassis that helps the bike achieve a surprisingly light 215kg despite vast dimensions. The 1720mm wheelbase and 2430mm overall length are both only a centimetre shorter than BMW’s mammoth R18 but the bike is claimed 130kg lighter.

The frame is a massive alloy casting, extending back to support the seat. Bolted to this are adjustable upside-down forks with Nissin radial four-pot brake calipers and Bosch ABS, a promising combination.

Benda LF 01 concept design

Finally, An enormous 310/35-18 rear tyre, wider than any current production model, sits at the back, although a more modest 240-section option is expected to be offered on the finished model.

Although there’s no final figure yet, Benda have said it will cost around £5500 in their home market, which is impressive considering the spec on display; LED lights, a TFT dash with smartphone connectivity, cruise control and keyless ignition are all expected to feature.

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Ben Purvis

By Ben Purvis