Pune is one of our favourite destinations after Mumbai, not only because of the great climate and easily accessible twisty roads of Lavasa and Amby Valley, but also because it has turned into a motorcycle hub as many manufacturers have set up their plants around that region. The latest addition to the memories related to Pune is the beautiful sunny Thursday that we spent last week riding the yet to be launched Benelli motorcycles, the BN600i and the TNT899.
The mesmerising ride was followed by a friendly chat with DSK Benelli India’s Service Head Joseph Augustus who gave us a gist of what this oldest Italian motorcycle brand has in mind for the Indian audience. To begin with, Augustus told us that the launch dates are scheduled in mid to late December. The company will then start accepting the bookings while the deliveries would commence next year. In the meanwhile, DSK Benelli India is on the path to set up nearly eight showrooms throughout the country by this year’s end.
DSK-Hyosung offered a few aftermarket parts for the Hyosung motorcycles right off the shelf and DSK Benelli India has similar plans. So expect to see aftermarket exhaust systems and similar products right at the showrooms.
Coming to riding gear, DSK Benelli India also plans to introduce riding apparel at its showrooms. However, the riding gear, at least for the initial few days, will miss out on leather made products. The main reason behind the subtraction of leather riding gear was the import cost from Italy which would result in very high retail prices in India. Other activities would include customer interaction program to build a better relationship with its audience.
Now coming to pricing and this is the most crucial part especially for every upcoming brand. The friendly people at DSK Benelli India remained mum on the pricing but were curiously asking us whether we found the Benelli TNT 899 in the same league as the Kawasaki Z800 and Triumph Street Triple both of which are priced at Rs 7.9 lakh and Rs 7.65 lakh (both ex-showroom) respectively. This led us to believe that this near 900cc inline three-cylinder motor powered Italian machine will be priced near its Japanese and British competitors. We cannot say much about the Benelli BN600i as currently there is no direct competition to that motorcycle in the country. The entire range will come to India via the CKD route and this will help DSK Benelli India price the motorcycles very competitively.
We are closely following all the action from Benelli and also trying to lay our hands on more motorcycles from the Italian marquee to get you the exhaustive reviews and more updates. So stay tuned to Motoroids for more updates from Benelli and the motoring industry. Do let us know your thoughts about the DSK Benelli India motorcycles through comments below. Meanwhile, you can read our review of the Benelli BN600i and the TNT899.