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Benelli Imperiale 400 BS6 Long Term Review: Introduction

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Neil Nair

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Introduction

Benelli Imperiale 400 Right Front Three Quarter

It seems like modern retro motorcycles are exactly what Indian consumers want nowadays. At least that's what it looks like with manufacturers fighting for the top spot with modern-retro motorcycles in various engine displacements. And since it's the trend and Benelli didn't want us to be left out, they sent us the Imperiale 400 to join our long-term fleet.

While we have ridden the Imperiale before, it was only for a couple of days. This time the modern retro stays with us for a healthy 180 days through which I will be riding it in and around the city, doing some intercity commutes, and a couple of long-distance rides too. So, before the beginning of its journey in BikeWale’s long-term fleet, let me introduce the Benelli Imperiale 400 to you.

The Bike

Benelli Imperiale 400 Left Side View

Benelli chose the Imperiale to be its forerunner in the BS6 era solely because it turned out to be an instant hit for the brand when it was launched a year ago. It was also meant to take on the big guns of the segment like the Royal Enfield Classic 350 and Jawa. And the competition just got stiffer with the newly-launched Honda H’Ness CB350.

Benelli Imperiale 400 Instrument Cluster

In terms of features, the Benelli comes with a twin-pod analogue speedometer and tachometer along with a digital instrument cluster that provides basic info like two trip meters, an odometer, and a clock. It also gets a vertical fuel gauge that looks neat. The package also includes a hazard lamp as standard- a boon for those under illuminated highway runs, as well as a pair of preload-adjustable shocks at the rear.

Now, if you compare it to the competition, the Imperiale 400 is lacking when it comes to features. Moreover, with an ex-showroom price tag of Rs 1.99 lakh, it is also the most expensive of the lot. Nevertheless, Benelli is betting big on the Imperiale's 374cc engine that churns out 20.57bhp at 6,000rpm and 29Nm at 3,500rpm.

Benelli Imperiale 400 Engine From Right

The output from the motor is at par with the segment but the loud and bassy exhaust note, which has always been Benelli’s strong point, will put its rivals to shame. What’s more, it is loaded with chrome bits like a properly retro replicating motorcycle. And as we found out through our first ride review, the Imperiale 400 also boasts of good build quality, and with its seemingly large dimensions, it also has a significant road presence.

What’s next?

Benelli Imperiale 400 Right Rear Three Quarter

The next report will be all about how the Benelli Imperiale 400 is to ride in the hustle and bustle of the city traffic and how it is for everyday use. I will also be telling you a few changes that were made during the bike’s first service. So, stay tuned!

Bike Stats

Odometer- 1,486km

Kilometres ridden- 1,200km

Fuel Efficiency- 23.2kmpl

Photos by Kaustubh Gandhi

Gallery

Benelli Imperiale 400 Right Front Three Quarter
Benelli Imperiale 400 Right Rear Three Quarter
Benelli Imperiale 400 Instrument Cluster
Benelli Imperiale 400 Engine From Right
Benelli Imperiale 400 Left Side View

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