#ODRewind: New RE base at Leicestershire, Benelli launches TNT25, YZF-R3 wins ICOTY 2016 & New Yamaha R1 & R1M recalled
Royal Enfield, the India based classic bike maker, will soon be setting up a new technical centre at Leicestershire which will be the manufacturer's development centre. The official team has already been placed at a temporary location and the construction has been commissioned to start work from next month onwards. The new development is in line with Royal Enfield's long term vision of being a strong global brand. RE had already acquired Xenophya and Harris Performance; the teams responsible for styling and chassis development of Continental GT, who will be moving into the new facility. A total of 70 people will be working at this upcoming technical development centre.
On December 18, 2015, DSK Benelli entered the entry level performance motorcycle segment with the launch of the new TNT 25, priced at Rs 1.68 lakh for the base and Rs 1.75 lakh for the premium variant, both prices ex-showroom. Powering the Benelli TNT25 is a 249cc liquid-cooled engine that makes 28.5PS of power at 9,800rpm and 21.6Nm of torque at 8,000 rpm. The motor is mated to a six-speed transmission unit. The Benelli TNT25 primarily competes with the Mahindra Mojo and KTM Duke 200. On paper, the Benelli TNT25 stands strong against its competition but only thing that runs against it is it's higher than expected pricing which is due to the virtue of it being imported as a CKD and then assembled here in India.
Another motorcycle which grabbed attention this week was the Yamaha YZF-R3, which won the coveted Indian Motorcycle of the Year (IMOTY) 2016 Award. At an event in Delhi which saw the presence of prominent automobile manufacturers, Yamaha YZF-R3 was given the prestigious title by Dr Raghupati Singhania, chairman and managing director, JK Tyre & Industries Limited, and Aspi Bhathena, editor, Bike India, and chairman, IMOTY 2016, along with other members of the IMOTY jury. Battling for the top honors were two other motorcycles namely the Honda CBR 650F and Benelli TnT 300, however, the Yamaha YZF-R3 stood taller than the other two when judged on various parameters of price, fuel economy, styling, comfort, safety, performance, practicality, technical innovation, value for money and suitability for Indian riding conditions.
On the other hand, the going has not been that great for Yamaha globally as the company issued a second recall after the rear electronic Ohlins suspension problem. The second recall of the recently launched YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M motorcycles is being done cause of a faulty gearbox. The weak component quality might lead to a breakage of the gear wheel in case of extreme riding / gear shifting and can lead to a serious crash. The issue has been realized at different parts of the world which include Canada, U.S. and most parts of Europe. This will also affect the units sold in India. The company has also accepted the possibility of the third and fourth gears warping under stress. Looking at the complicated construction of the gearbox, it is evident that the replacement work won't be a minor job. If you are one of the customers of Yamaha R1 and R1M, we recommend you get in touch with Yamaha to find a way to fix this issue.
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