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Moto Morini Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street: Road Test Review

26 February 2023, 10:47 AM Suvil Susvirkar


Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Right Front Three Quarter

Why to buy it?

- Commendable build quality

- Good engine performance

- Premium hardware

Why to avoid it?

- Engine heat

- Fewer dealers and service centres

Apart from a complicated name, the Moto Morini Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street is a fairly simple motorcycle. It does not have comprehensive electronics such as riding modes or traction control system to fiddle with, however, it gets ABS because it’s a norm nowadays. And all of this gives the Moto Morini Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street a bit of old-school charm – something that experienced riders would appreciate.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Left Front Three Quarter

But it isn’t a dinosaur either and the feature list includes full-LED lighting, Bluetooth connectivity, adjustable front forks, Brembo calipers, and a tyre pressure monitoring system. Now, before we tell you what makes this motorcycle so likeable and its drawbacks, let’s discuss the first thing that you consider when buying a premium motorcycle – design.

Styling & Quality

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Fuel Tank

As the name suggests, the Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street has retro styling. Thus, you have a round shape for the headlight, a dual-tone front fender, a contrasting shade for the side panel along with the ‘6½’ decal, a flat-ish saddle, split-style pillion grab rails, and a rear-fender-mounted number plate. There are plastic cowls under the engine, but most of the drivetrain, chassis, and the sub-frame have been exposed for minimalistic aesthetics – and it looks likeable. But the fuel tank has one too many creases while the tail-end isn’t as muscular as the front half, thus making the motorcycle look slightly disproportionate. In this regard, the Seiemmezzo 6½ Scrambler looks more aesthetically pleasing. Further, the taillight isn’t the most stylish unit either and it looks vanilla when compared to some of its rivals.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo

  • Displacement649 cc
  • Max Power(bhp)54.24 bhp
  • Kerb Weight215 kg
  • ;

Avg. Ex-showroom price

₹ 6,99,000

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Side Panel

However, the visual drawbacks are compensated by a commendable build quality and this Italian middleweight motorcycle feels pretty solid. The fuel tank and the front fender look promising, while the brushed finish on the side panel looks stylish and appealing. Then, the switchgear operates well and it is easy to access even with riding gloves. There are a lot of wires running around, but they’re neatly strapped by rubber fasteners. If we were nitpicking, the black plastic near the keyhole could have been of a better quality since it’s already showing signs of ageing. Then, an integrated high/low-beam function in the pass switch would have made the setup more modern.

Ergonomics & Comfort

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Right Side View

Despite the relatively flatter handlebar than the Seiemmezzo 6½ Scrambler variant, the Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street packs upright ergonomics. It’s also easy to ride the motorcycle while standing on the footpegs when you want to give some relief to your glute muscles or tackle bad roads without overloading your lower back. Then, the footpegs are neutral-set and the motorcycle delivers a very comfortable rider triangle that works well for city riding.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Bike Seat

Now, the Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street tips the weighing scale at 215kg, which is on the heavier side, and it takes some effort to move the motorcycle around. However, things become relatively easy due to an accessible seat height of 795mm. Then, the saddle has sufficient padding as well and riding for long hours doesn’t get very tiring. Sure, the lack of windblast protection does mean that you cannot ride it at high speeds for long. But cruising at 80-100kmph is fairly easy. The engine, too, feels comfortable at these speeds and then some more, and we will explain that in detail in the next part of the review.

Performance & Handling

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Engine From Right

The Italian word, Seiemmezzo translates to six and a half, which indicates the displacement of this motorcycle. The 649cc, parallel-twin, liquid-cooled engine makes a maximum output of 54bhp at 8,250rpm and a peak torque of 54Nm at 7,000rpm. This motor is linked to a six-speed gearbox that, surprisingly, misses an assist clutch mechanism. It does, however, get a slipper mechanism. The engine feels comfortable anywhere above 2,500rpm and it gives a commendable output in the mid and higher revs. The step up in acceleration post 6,500rpm is praiseworthy too. In the sixth gear, the 100kmph mark comes around 4,500rpm while 120kmph is hit at 5,500rpm – which is a sweet spot to cruise on the highway as the engine is at the cusp of its power band and can be used for quick overtakes.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Left Front Three Quarter

Now, despite the high-revving performance of the engine, the vibrations are well managed, unless you are above 7,000rpm. That’s where you can feel a buzz from the footpegs. Otherwise, we didn’t find anything to complain about.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Front Wheel

The engine performance is complemented by the suspension setup and the braking hardware. The upside-down front forks and rear mono-shock are tuned for spirited riding and thus set on the firmer side. The front forks are adjustable for compression and preload while the rear mono-shock can be tuned for preload only. In the stock state of tuning that we received from the manufacturer, the motorcycle glided over minor undulations efficiently. The bigger bumps and potholes, however, sent a harsh bump to the rider. One thing that you must know is that the front forks tend to completely extend out, hitting the stopper when tackling speed breakers at a relatively faster pace.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Rear Wheel

The anchoring hardware on the Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street includes twin 298mm discs at the front and a single 255mm rotor at the back, both grabbed by Brembo-sourced calipers. The setup packs an ample amount of bite and feels progressive, thus giving you the confidence to brake late into a corner. The ABS, however, feels intrusive and the system kicks in way too soon, and there is no option to adjust the feedback. Then, the Pirelli-sourced Angel GT tyres deliver promising feedback and sufficient grip for spirited riding, and the Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street feels remarkably fun around twisting roads.

Features & Technology

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo TFT / Instrument Cluster

Now, the feature list is almost similar to Kawasaki Z650. However, the Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street misses the traction control system. But, there is dual-channel ABS, full-LED lighting, and a Bluetooth-enabled five-inch TFT display with more features and controls than the Kawasaki roadster.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo TFT / Instrument Cluster

The data on the console is neatly placed and it’s easy to read crucial ride-related information. The range, for example, is conveniently placed above the fuel gauge. The tachometer takes up a large part of the display while the speedometer is placed on the right side of the screen. Now, the display can be seen in another format when the Scrambler mode is engaged.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo TFT / Instrument Cluster

The layout of the information changes while the background features an off-road graphic. There is a tyre pressure monitoring system as well, but the numbers are not visible on the main screen. That said, the display, although comprehensive, is difficult to read under bring sunlight since there is no option to make the background white.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Head Light

The LED headlight delivers a decent performance, but it isn’t the best. The high beam is set too tall, which can annoy truckers. This, however, can be resolved by making small adjustments to the setup.

Should You Buy It?

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Right Front Three Quarter

Standalone, the Moto Morini Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street is a very likeable motorcycle. The styling may not be its strongest suit, but its performance, refinement levels, hardware, and handling prowess make it a very appealing product that’s worth your consideration. Moreover, the adjustability function on the front forks gives the Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street an edge over its rivals.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Right Front Three Quarter

Now, this does not come without flaws. There are some heating issues, and while it does not feel very uncomfortable while riding, things can get bothersome in bumper-to-bumper traffic, especially during summer months. Then, there is the Japanese competition. At nearly Rs 7 lakh (ex-showroom), the Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street competes against the likes of the Kawasaki Z650 and the Z 650 RS.

Moto Morini Seiemmezzo Left Rear Three Quarter

These 650cc Kawasaki motorcycles, similar to the Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street, pack a 649cc engine but make more power and weigh lighter than the Italian product. Plus, the Japanese models are backed by a more comprehensive sales and service network than the Moto Morini product — all of which does not work in the Seiemmezzo 6½ Retro Street’s favour.

Photography by Kapil Angane


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