Premium naked motorcycles pack the best balance between performance, practicality, and value. India has been waiting on some of these models for a bit, and we expect to see them hit the streets in 2018. The Benelli Leoncino scrambler was first brought to the 2016 Auto Expo and sharing its engine with the TRK 502 adventure motorcycle, it appears to be a capable machine for those looking to throw up some dirt on the weekends. Benelli had also recently showcased its Imperiale 400 at EICMA 2017, touted to be a Royal Enfield challenger with its retro-styling. With the TVS Apache RR 310 already launched towards the end of 2017, we look forward to seeing its naked German cousin the BMW G 310 R this year. The Hero Xtreme 200 meanwhile is something that has been in the pipeline for while now.
Here are the premium naked bikes you will see in 2018:
This retro-naked is expected to be launched sometime this year in a bid to strengthen Benelli's position in the midrange performance space. It is powered by a 499.6cc, liquid-cooled parallel-twin engine producing 50PS and 45Nm that is mated to a six-speed transmission. The international-spec bike comes shod with Pirelli Angel ST tyres on 17-inch rims and uses fat, 50mm upside down forks at the front. We believe the bike will be priced at around Rs 4.5 lakh.
The Imperiale 400 broke cover at the 2017 EICMA and when launched in India later this year, will have Royal Enfields in its crosshairs with its classic design. It uses a 373cc air-cooled single cylinder engine producing 20PS and 28Nm, mated to a five-speed gearbox. The bike uses spoked wheels, a 19-inch front and an 18-inch rear to add to its retro feel. When launched, it will be priced between Rs 1.8 lakh and 2 lakh.
The G 310 R will be BMW Motorrad's first locally produced motorcycle and is powered by a 313cc, liquid-cooled single producing 34PS and 28Nm, identical to the TVS Apache RR 310. The reverse inclined motor is one of its biggest highlights and has allowed BMW to make the bike very compact. Expected to be a stonker of a machine, the G 310 R will be launched this June, cost a little over Rs 2 lakh.
The Xtreme 200 will mark Hero MotoCorp's return to the performance arena and will be its biggest naked yet. Expected to be powered by an all-new engine the Xtreme 200 will challenge bikes like the Bajaj Pulsar NS200, TVS Apache RTR 200 and Yamaha FZ25. Outputs should be in the same region as its competitors and we expect Hero to up its refinement and handling game, after the lukewarm response to the Xtreme Sports. Pricing will be around Rs 90,000.