Benelli on a budget? All-new wallet-friendly Leoncino 800 range

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Benelli have released a pair of new, larger-capacity Leoncino 800s powered by an all-new twin-cylinder motor, which looks set to take the fight directly to Yamaha’s MT-07.

Consisting of the new Leoncino 800 and 800 Trail, they are the brand’s first larger capacity offerings since being taken over by Chinese giant Qiangjiang in 2005.

At their heart is a 754cc parallel twin engine producing a claimed 80.5bhp at 9000rpm, along with 49.4ftlb of torque – all paired to a slip-assist clutch and six-speed gearbox. To put that in context, the power claim is a little more than Yamaha’s slightly smaller capacity, class-leading 689cc MT-07.

Benelli Leoncino 800 headlight

Both Benellis share a tubular steel trellis frame, box-section aluminium subframe and alloy swingarm. Suspension comprises a set of 50mm adjustable USD forks with an adjustable monoshock at the rear featuring a simple remote hydraulic preload adjuster.

The standard Leoncino has 130mm of suspension travel front and rear while the Trail has an extra 10mm. Both bikes sport wire spoked wheels, 17in on the standard model, while the Trail has a 19in front, both shod with Pirelli Scorpion Rally STR tyres. The trail’s larger front wheel, combined with the longer travel suspension, raises the seat height by 18mm.

The rest of the new bikes’ componentry is high class, too, including radial Brembo calipers, a proper centrestand, full-colour TFT dash and LED lighting – there’s even a funky little Benelli lion figurehead on the front mudguard, also found on the lower-capacity Leoncino 500. The Trail adds to this with a high-level slash cut exhaust and a nifty little fly screen.

There’s no official word on pricing on the two new bikes yet but we understand they will arrive in the UK early next year. Based on previous models, plus competitors, we’d expect the Leoncino to cost around £6500.

Benelli Leoncino 800 front mudguard with Lion figurehead

Eicma 2018: Benelli unveil Leoncino 800 concept

First published: 07.11.18

Benelli Leoncino 800 concept revealed at Eicma 2018

Benelli have unveiled a concept large capacity version of their Leoncino 500 at EICMA 2018. The Benelli Leoncino 800 looks to have a new steel trellis frame which houses the same liquid-cooled, 750cc parallel-twin engine found in the naked Benelli 752S.

The forks look similar to the USD 50mm ones found on the 752S as do the Brembo brakes and the front mudguard-mounted lion figurehead. MCN will bring you more as we get it.

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Benelli Leoncino 800 rear view

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