For the motorcycle world, 2020 meant bikes covered in the garage for a good part of the year and the riding gear tucked safely back in the cupboard. The trade shows were cancelled too and it seemed the world stood still for a brief period. But digitisation played the perfect foil and allowed manufacturers to announce new and exciting models, giving us hope to go out and ride again to our heart's content. And with that in mind, it's time to enter the new year that promises more bikes, the premium kind, landing on our shores. So, here's a list of the top 10 upcoming premium motorcycles set to arrive in 2021 that we can't wait to get our hands on.
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1. Triumph Trident 660
The Triumph Trident 660 is the brand's most affordable offering yet and promises to be the ideal big bike you would want to upgrade to. The styling is retro yet modern and the hardware is premium. The bike will draw power from the new 660 cc in-line triple-cylinder engine tuned for 80 bhp and 64 Nm of peak torque. The performance will be linear and the prices will be aggressive, expected to start from under ₹ 7 lakh (ex-showroom). Triumph Motorcycles India has also begun accepting pre-bookings for the new Trident 660 that will arrive in the first quarter of the new calendar year.
2. Ducati Monster
It would be an understatement to call the 2021 Ducati Monster all-new. It is all-new indeed but a bit too new maybe if you've been a fan of the original muscled naked streetfighter. Controversial styling aside, the Ducati Monster remains one of the more highly-anticipated launches of 2021 with its new and lighter frame that replaces the steel trellis unit, and a 937 cc L-Twin engine that packs 110 bhp and 93 Nm of peak torque. The new Ducati Monster packs more electronic aids as well and with a dry weight of just 166 kg, it promises to be a fiery middleweight naked.
Also Read: 2021 Ducati Monster Revealed
3. Triumph Tiger 850 Sport
Another Brit making its way to India next year will be the Triumph Tiger 850 Sport. Unveiled globally on the heels of the Trident 660, the baby Tiger 850 shares its underpinnings with the larger Tiger 900 right down to the frame and engine. However, this one is intended to be a tourer more than an adventure-ready offering. The 888 cc in-line three-cylinder motor has been detuned to produce 84 bhp and 82 Nm of peak torque, and comes with two riding modes - Road and Rain. It also rides on alloys as opposed to spoked wheels, while retaining the premium hardware from the 900. The more interesting bit will be the pricing though which is likely to be substantially lower than the Tiger 900 and is expected to start from under ₹ 10 lakh (ex-showroom).
4. Honda CBR650R BS6
One of the more delectable bikes in the 650 cc segment, the Honda CBR650R was pulled off the shelves with the industry's transition to BS6 norms in April. Nevertheless, it now meets Euro5 norms internationally, we expect the updated version to make a comeback in 2021. Do not expect a major change over the predecessor though but the bike could be joined by its naked sibling - the CB650R. The streetfighter borrows cues from the larger CB1000R with the neo-retro design theme and will compete against the Kawasaki Z650, and the upcoming Triumph Trident 660.
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5. Honda 500 Range
In addition to the 650 cc line-up, Honda 2Wheelers India is looking to spread its 'big wings' far and wide in 2021 with the launch of the 500 cc range. The mid-capacity motorcycles would be the antithesis to the KTM and Husqvarna bikes in the sub-500 cc segment, and Honda already retails a number of options overseas. The company is expected to bring a handful of those in 2021 that includes the CBR500R, CB500X, CB500F and the Rebel 500. Powered by the 499 cc parallel-twin motor that develops 47 bhp and 43 Nm of peak torque, the bikes are likely to be locally-assembled which should make for an attractive price tag.
Also Read: 2021 Honda 500 cc Range Gets Updated
6. Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR
Kawasaki won the World Superbike Championship (WSBK) for the sixth consecutive year in 2020, and the brand will bring its track prowess to the road with the 2021 Ninja ZX-10R and the ZX-10RR. The updated versions of the litre-class motorcycles were unveiled earlier this year and will come to India sometime next year. Upgrades range from a subtly reworked chassis, new integrated winglet design for a more aggressive look and enhanced aerodynamic properties, as well as revised styling. The Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR also boasts of a more track-bred engine with new intake and exhaust valve springs, titanium connecting rods and lightweight pistons. All the changes have made power output go up by 1 bhp. That's shaving off milliseconds in terms of track times, and sometimes that's all that matters between winning and losing.
Also Read: 2021 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR Unveiled
7. BMW S 1000 R
Following up on its full-faired sibling, the new-generation BMW S 1000 R made its global in 2020 and gets its most comprehensive update since it first went on sale in 2014. The distinctive styling has been lost in the process though in favour of a more muscular albeit generic design language. There are plenty of upgrades right from the 999 cc in-line four-cylinder engine that now develops 162 bhp and 114 Nm, to a new flex-frame chassis and a lighter kerb weight of 199 kg. The new BMW S 1000 R looks aggressive and if the S 1000 RR was anything to go by, this one too will be rider-friendly. Expect it to hit the Indian shores by the end of 2021.
Also Read: 2021 BMW S 1000 R Revealed
8. Suzuki Katana
The Suzuki Katana made its global debut in 2018 but it is yet to grace the brand's showrooms in India. The sports tourer did make an appearance at the 2020 Auto Expo and that did get our hopes up but there has been no movement from the bike maker since. Nevertheless, 2021 could just be the year, Suzuki Motorcycle India brings the Katana to the country with its retro-themed design language and a tractable 999 cc in-line four-cylinder motor that develops 150 bhp and 107 Nm of peak torque. As we said, there's no official word on the launch yet but the bike could arrive in the second half of 2021.
9. Royal Enfield 650 Cruiser
Royal Enfield might just expand its 650 cc segment in 2021 with what would be the brand's first cruiser. The model has been spied testing a couple of times now and takes cues from the KX-concept that was first unveiled in 2018 at EICMA. Royal Enfield is looking at a new product offensive from 2021 onwards and that promises a new bike or variant every quarter. That keeps our hopes high that the KX-based cruiser could arrive next year itself or at least the Chennai-based bike maker will give us a glimpse of its next big launch.
10. Ducati Multistrada V4
Ending this list with the big daddy of Bologna. It is the new Ducati Multistrada V4 we are talking about. The Italian bike maker's most powerful adventure tourer yet and comes with quite the menacing appeal. The Multistrada V4 sports the larger 1158 cc Granturismo V4 engine from the Panigale V4 but has been tuned to develop 168 bhp and 125 Nm of peak torque. The bike also comes with the semi-active Skyhook suspension and Marzocchi shocks at either end. Electronic aids are in abundance and with kerb weight as high as 243 kg on the V4 S, it's anything but light. But conquer all, it shall!
Also Read: 2021 Ducati Multistrada V4 Unveiled
In addition to these exciting launches, bike makers including Benelli, Ducati, Yamaha, MV Agusta and many more are expected to bring BS6 versions of their existing motorcycles that were pulled off the shelves. We also expect to hear about some important announcements from KTM, TVS-Norton and of course, Hero MotoCorp and Harley-Davidson.