In this video, Snag checks out Benelli’s range-topping LAMS adventure bike, the TRK 502X, and hands the keys over to youngster Angus to get a new rider’s perspective.
The Benelli TRK 502X is billed as a little more off-road capable than its European sales winner, the TRK 502.
Distinguishing the higher-spec X over the base variant is a range of upgrades to cater to those looking to hit the road less-travelled, light dirt included. Aiding that capability, the exhaust is routed higher and to the side to get it out of harm’s way, Benelli has added pretty cool looking spoked wheels (the front a 19-incher) with Metzeler Tourance adventure tyres, there’s a sump/engine guard and you get longer suspension travel at the rear.
Brakes are graced with floating calipers, and the X also has a centrestand and wave discs.
What we like:
• Super comfortable
• Well priced
• Good engine response
Room for improvement:
• Front brake spongey
• It’s bloody tall
• Gearchange a little notchy
The 499cc parallel twin which is used across a host of Benelli’s models, delivers power and torque figures of 35kW at 8500rpm and 46Nm at 6000rpm, but those numbers have to cope with a wet weight of 235kg. This motor is a bit of a highlight, nonetheless.
Surprising power is always just a clever gear selection away. The ratios are just right to keep the bike in the fat of the powerband, and I never felt wanting for more go. Really nice execution there from the Italian engineers.
The real plus factor with the 502X is to be found in the rideaway price of just $9890. To come in under the ten grand barrier puts this one smack-bang before the Australian buying public. And that is sure to see it considered strongly at purchase.
It’s no lightweight, and the seat height of 850mm will test shorties, but new riders will appreciate that price and of course, LAMS approval offers adventure touring to a sector of the local bike buying audience that has traditionally been left a little out in the cold.
Snag’s career in motoring journalism spans 29 years with stints at major bike mags Australian Road Rider, Motorcycle Trader and AMCN along with contributions to just about every other outlet worth a hill of beans. He was editor of Unique Cars magazine and hosts his legendary podcast ‘Snag Says’ when he gets off his date.