Benelli Q.J. launched its motorcycle company in 1911. The Italian Company produces scooters and motorcycles. There have been a lot of changes through the years. The Geely Holding Group controls the company. It is now owned by the Qianjiang Motor Group, since 2005, the second-largest motorcycle company from Italy is now a Chinese company. The TRK 502X is one of Benelli’s most popular bikes with an Italian origin, yet produced in China. It can be a bit confusing as this model is offered at what most would consider a budget price. It’s a mid-size adventure bike that is offered at an affordable price, with a brand name that turns a few heads in the Italian motorcycle enthusiast communities. We take a closer look at the Benelli TRK 502 X to explore the rationale for its popularity.
Overview of the Benelli TRK 502 X
The Benelli TRK 502X appears to be in the middle when it comes to pricing, size, and power. According to Ultimate Motorcycling, the 2021 Benelli TRK502X is a mid-size adventure motorcycle that retails for a starting price of $6,399. It’ not the least expensive, coming in at $500 over the cost of the comparable Kawasaki Versys-X300 ABS, but it is $600 cheaper than Honda’s popular CB500X ABS, placing it in the middle for pricing. The bike is new to the United States market but has been in production since 2017.
Benelli, an iconic brand with recent quality concerns
The Benelli TRK 502X is an upgraded model of the TRK502. The X designation beefs it up over the standard version for higher performance in the dirt. Benelli lengthened the suspension’s travel by 0.4 inches with 19-inch wire-spoked wheels front and back, applied Metzeler Tourance tires, and equipped it with a center stand for a mere $400 price difference over the standard model. These are all positives, but what about concerns recently raised over quality?
Benelli is an iconic Italian motorcycle brand. The acquisition of the company by the Qianjiang Group, with production in China, has raised some quality concerns, as some Chinese companies produce lower quality products for affordable prices. For those experiencing hesitancy, it’s essential to know that Benelli is a 110-year-old company specializing in Italian motorcycle and scooter design with a long history of some ups and downs, but a reputation for solid quality. Although the manufacturing of Benelli motorcycles occurs in China, the design still originates at Benelli in Italy. The Benelli TRK 502X is stylish with components made of aluminum and plastic and has undergone numerous test runs by curious critics who wanted to get some hands-on experience.
Benelli TRK 502X Reviews
The opinions of riders who took the TRK 502X on a spin from Motorcycle.com begin with the aesthetics. It’s a beautiful bike with the exotic looks of a European bike with dated high pipes and an MV-like tank. It’s equipped with tapered aluminum handlebars, a firm and compliant ride, cantilevered rebound-adjustable shock, and a comfortable seat. It has a controlled whine thanks to the inline-Fur packs that may take it down a few notches, although it sounds fast, the engine didn’t leave an impression worthy of excitement. First impressions of the adventure bike indicate that the 500cc liquid-cooled DOHC 8-valve parallel-twin-engine provides enough propulsion to make it fun. It delivers 38.5 horsepower to the rear wheel, which isn’t a lot, but it does manage to achieve a top speed of 104 mph.
Fuel consumption averages 50 mpg on road trips. The bike is Euro 5 compliant and for a Benelli, the powerband is one of the best produced by the brand. We remember that it is a midrange bike and it isn’t going to perform like a racer, nor should that kind of feature be expected. As for comfort, the seat is thick with good ergonomics and exceptional absorption of bumps in the road. on both pavement and off the road. Vibration is middle of the road and although not a dealbreaker, you notice it’s there at all RPM. The windscreen does its job and cuts the turbulence. The bike is about 70 pounds heavier than Suzuki’s comparable V Strom 650 XT, but again, it’s not a deal-breaker.
The Benelli TRK 502X offers a decent range of versatility for both on and off-road performance, its intimidating size, and sexy Italian aesthetics, but performance is rather bland. Test rides failed to produce reports of anything above average. It would have been nice for an outstanding performance feature to emerge, but this wasn’t the case.
The power to weight ratio of the TRK 502X is nothing noteworthy. It’s an ADV bike with 2.5 inches rear-wheel travel and it’s got the potential to offer for rising to a higher posture in its niche, but Benelli needs to step up to the plate and throw in at least one more unique feature to soar above its nearest competitors at Honda and Suzuki. On the plus side, the 2021 Benelli TRK 502X has a premium look and is equipped with some premium elements. Overall, for its price range, it is a lot of bike for the price
For a mid-range adventure motorcycle, the Benelli TRK 502X offers a little more than its standard base model. It’s a beautiful bike that delivers high on curb appeal. It’s comfortable to ride with a high seat, that is firm and comfortable. The positioning of the handlebars is also comfortable. Benelli designs all of the motorcycles for manufacture in China. Quality isn’t a major concern, but most tet riders feel that Benelli could have done a little more to make it an exciting bike to ride, namely, by making some adjustments in the power production. It’s not bad for a mid-range, but it could be better, and isn’t it all about improving each generation of a motorcycle as you go? We give it an overall thumbs up with hopes that Benelli will maximize its potential in the years to come.