The Moto Morini brand was recently introduced in India by Adishwar Auto under their latest venture, Moto Vault
Story: Azaman Chothia
Photography: Apurva Ambep
It is always exciting to see a new adventure motorcycle being launched in the Indian market. With the X-Cape 650, the Moto Morini brand is offering two variants, Standard and X, which will allow customers to choose on the basis of their riding style. The X variant is more off-road-focused and sports a set of spoked wheels as compared to the cast alloy ones on the standard variant. Both bikes get a 19-inch wheel at the front and a 17-inch one at the rear. While we did not get a ride on the standard variant, we spent a very limited time astride the 650X.
The bike has a commanding stance with those split LED headlights and daytime running lights (DRLs) giving it a unique character. It sports a large 18-litre tank which promises to ensure a good range before refuelling is required. With a seat height of 845 millimetres and a kerb weight of 215 kilograms, the X variant is slightly tall and heavy, even so, it was manageable through the slushy trails.
Powering the X-Cape 650X is a 649-cc, twin-cylinder, liquid-cooled motor that puts out 60 hp at 8,250 revolutions per minute and a peak torque of 54 Nm at 7,000 rpm. This motor is paired with a six-speed gearbox. We are not in a position to comment on the nature of this motor because we spent most of our time on slippery off-road trails and were only able to shuffle between the first and second gears. From the little taste of the bike that I got, it does have a decent amount of power and was quite capable off-road, too, although there were a few vibrations post 5,000 rpm.
Suspension duties are handled by a fully adjustable Marzocchi upside-down (USD) fork at the front and a monoshock that is adjustable for preload and rebound damping. The two-piston Brembo calipers paired with the dual 298-mm disc brakes provide great stopping power and the Pirelli Scorpion STR tyres give a rider more confidence off-road.
In terms of features, the X-Cape gets a really good-looking and large seven-inch TFT dash with a lot of information and premium switchgear to complement it. There are two riding modes wherein the anti-lock braking system (ABS) can be switched off in the off-road mode. The bike supports phone connectivity but misses out on navigation, although there are two USB charging ports for added convenience on long rides. The durability of the product needs to be seen; considering this is a new brand in our market, there will be limited touchpoints for servicing. It does seem to be a promising package but we need to test it properly on road as well to bring you further details.
Moto Morini Seiemmezzo
Just like the X-Cape 650, the Seiemmezzo will be offered in two variants: STR and SCR. The one with cast alloy wheels is a retro street bike and the one with spoked wheels is essentially a scrambler. These models have a nice design and each one is offered in three different colour schemes. Apart from the wheels, there are some very minor differences in the bodywork to make each one of them stand apart. These models make use of an 18-inch wheel at the front and a 17-inch one at the rear.
They make use of a steel trellis frame and an aluminium swing-arm. Enclosed in this chassis is the same 649-cc, twin-cylinder, liquid-cooled motor. In this application, it is tuned to deliver 55 hp at 8,250 rpm and a peak torque of 54 Nm at 7,000 rpm. This motor is paired with a six-speed gearbox and they also get the adjustable clutch and brake levers. The scrambler was the one that we got to spend more time astride and it felt quite stable while wading through slippery trails. The handlebars on both motorcycles are different. The one on the scrambler is set higher, so a rider can stand up on the pegs while being comfortable, while the unit on the retro street is lower and slightly narrower. The bikes get a seat height of 810 mm, making them accessible to shorter riders as well.
Suspension duties are handled by 43-mm KYB front forks with 120 mm of travel and a KYB monoshock at the rear with 118 mm of travel, both ends being fully adjustable. Similar to the X-Cape 650 is the sharp braking feedback. These bikes do not get ride modes, so ABS cannot be switched off.
In terms of equipment, these models get a smaller dash but it displays adequate information and also get phone connectivity. The STR model will go up against the likes of the Triumph Trident 660 and the Honda CB650R. Considering that many riders convert their retro street bikes into scramblers, it is nice to see Moto Morini offer both on the same platform. We hope to spend a good amount of time astride them in the future to bring you more insights into the handling characteristics and much more.