Well the title of the article says it all, up to the point of this writing; we haven’t seen this wonderful piece of machinery on the road yet. Well of course, no one has; it’s just because the bike isn’t actually on the road yet following it’s announcement back in April if we’re not mistaken. The Benelli brand is still relatively new here in Malaysia and it was once operated by a different company before. Under the new management, we can see that the Benelli brand is making their ways slowly into the Malaysian demanding motorcycle market.
The Benelli RFS 150i. What about it? It’s pretty much a contender to the 150cc supermoped class which currently being competed by two Japanese big names. In our head, we would never imagined that Benelli would step into the game in which we were hoping the likes of Modenas or even Demak or SYM to join in the game for a slightly “affordable” option compared to the Japanese brand. But then again, Benelli now are being operated by the same people behind the success of SYM here in Malaysia. Immediately from it’s announcement, the brand and the bike itself gets an instant amount of opinions from the public from both spectrum of comments. So here is our turn to shed some opinion on this mysteriously interesting bike.
Why do we say it’s mysterious? Well, that is just us being dramatic on how we want to say that we’re curious on how it’s going to perform with those specification. Some highlights from it was, it got 3 sparks plug; as if one or two wasn’t enough. It needed 3? Well, according to Benelli, it’s supposed to give a much efficient performance. Efficient performance does not translates into that high accelerating and exciting motorcycle, this is according to a source that has actually ridden it; saying that the bike is a bit slow in building up speed but once it reaches the optimum RPM in 3rd gear, everything changes. But this can be due to the gear ratio and the sprocket being used.
Up side down forks and other “sporty” elements being thrown into the bike to give it a more performance derived machine. We’d say that Benelli did their studies in the Asean market as we are known to be very passionate about affordable made performance machine. Well, that says a lot on how you can expect it to be. Here in Malaysia alone, our premiere class of racing comes in the shape of Cub bikes. Another source close to use also stated that the bike seems to handle well and there were less vibration and swaying to it especially in corners. But these are just opinion of a rider and it may differs from one to another as we weighted differently. Benelli Malaysia was said to be involved in a Vietnam moped racing series with the RFS 150i to further develop and test the bike; this should be a good indicator to how serious they are with this model.
The looks department comes in a very subjective way as always, the bike seems to been given an emphasize on “Italian” design and they are also stating that it has a good aerodynamic body to help the bike be more stable at high speed. We’re not so sure on this but whatever pointy shapes they thrown onto the body will help. At least, that’s what we’re hoping for. The bike will be priced at around RM6,900 to RM7,900 on the road and that ladies and gentleman; is by far the cheapest 150cc bike in it’s class. That will be a huge selling factor for the machine, and we would like to see if Benelli can give a run for its money against the Japanese giants duo.
In all of seriousness, we are hoping to get our hands on this bike soon and maybe make a film for it to show how it reacts to the real world situation here in Malaysia. It’s one thing to assess a bike based on it’s specs sheet and the manufacturer’s claim, but it’s a whole different story when the final product gets to the hands of consumers. We’re feeling that it’s going to be all good for the RFS 150i except maybe to it’s durability and some build quality of the machine. But we’ve been proved to be wrong in a few occasions before and let’s hope that Benelli can prove us wrong again in that perception.