Making its much-awaited India debut, Italian bike maker Benelli has introduced the Leoncino 500 motorcycle priced at ₹ 4.79 lakh (ex-showroom, India). The all-new offering is a scrambler-styled bike that takes inspiration from the 'Lion Cub' models of the 1950s and '60s while packing in modern mechanicals. The Benelli Leoncino 500 has been a long-awaited model and is the second launch from the bike maker after resurrecting its operations in India earlier this year in collaboration with Adishwar Auto Ride India. Bookings for the Benelli Leoncino have commenced online for ₹ 10,000, and can be done at any of the manufacturer's dealerships as well.
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Commenting on the launch, Vikas Jhabakh, MD - Benelli India, said, "The Leoncino combines tradition and passion with contemporary style, innovation and performance. The modern version of the Leoncino is a pure makeover of the original model and is a tribute to a legend of Italian motorcycling that largely contributed to the history of the brand, which today finds its identity in the modern world With the Indian motorcycle market gearing up for new segments and superbikes witnessing a progressive growth in the last few years, we have taken a strategic decision to bring in some of the globally renowned Benelli products into the Indian market. We are building a strong customer base and network across India and we are confident in driving sales and register positive growth in the coming years."
The Benelli Leoncino is designed as a scrambler with minimal bodywork coupled with retro looks. The bike gets a round LED headlamp with a projector lens, while the Lion of Pesaro is placed on the front fender and was the source of the name's inspiration. The tear-drop fuel tank is nicely done with the exposed Trellis frame underneath. The tail section sports an LED taillight while the minimal panels make for a clean look at the rear. The bike uses a pod-styled digital instrument cluster that packs all the necessary tell-tale lights. The Leoncino for India is being offered in the road-biased version and get 17-inch alloy wheels with a ground clearance of 145 mm. The bike is available in two colours options - Leoncino Red and Steel Gray.
With respect to the powertrain, the Benelli Leoncino 500 is powered by the 499 cc twin-cylinder, liquid-cooled motor tuned for 47 bhp at 8500 rpm and 46 Nm of peak torque available at 6000 rpm. The motor is also seen on the TRK 502, and comes paired with a 6-speed gearbox. The bike is suspended by 50 mm inverted forks up front while a lateral hydraulic monoshock unit does duty at the rear. Braking power comes from a 320 mm front disc with four-piston calipers, and a 260 mm disc at the rear with a single-piston floating caliper. Dual-channel ABS is part of the standard kit.
Like the TRK 502, the Leoncino is also being offered with a five-year unlimited kilometre warranty as standard. The bike comes as a stylish and more affordable alternative to other scrambler motorcycles including the Ducati Scrambler and The Triumph Street Scrambler. The Leoncino though does not have a direct rival at its price point.