Posts by Category: Benelli

Benelli February 28, 2018 posted by

Oh Sei can you see? Two Benelli SEI 750s on eBay

In striving to bring readers the best online classifieds every day, RSBFS writers are besieged by drought and deluge. Some rare machines might not be seen for months or more, only to arrive in pairs. Such is the case with today's 12-cylinder post; not one but two awesome Benelli 750cc six cylinder examples for your enjoyment. Widely known (pun intended) as the World's First production six cylinder motorcycle (despite the later attempts by Honda, Kawasaki and BMW), the Benelli was a technical and stylistic tour de force. Engineered by none other than Alejandro de Tomaso of Pantara fame (the sports car, not the band), the Sei persisted for more than 15 years until the ultimate merger of Benelli into Moto Guzzi. Interested in one of these ground-breaking machines? Read on!


1977 Benelli Sei 750 for sale on eBay

The first of the 750 Benelli Sei models were introduced way back in 1973. While Honda was busy wowing the world with their four-cylinder technological might, de Tomaso sought to one-up the Japanese by tacking two extra cylinders onto a copy of the Honda power plant. With that move, a 500cc four became a 750cc six - and history was made.

To keep the already portly engine block from becoming too unwieldy, de Tomaso re-positioned the alternator from the end of the crank (where it sat on the Honda) to behind the cylinders. This move not only narrowed the ultimate width of the engine, it also started a trend to centralize mass within the frame; a discipline followed to this day. Total power was not tremendous - rated HP was a mere 72 ponies.

From the seller:
Up for sale is this extremely rare 1977 Benelli 750 “Sei” (Italian for “six” – not “sex”!), one of the three vintage six cylinder bikes ever made. It is an un-restored original in excellent condition, With a clear title and only 10,463 miles, (16.742 Kilometers) this is one of the nicest survivors of only a thousand 750 Seis imported into the US from 1974 to 1978. And it’s a “rider,” not a trailer queen: driven once every month or two, and only in clear weather – has never been in the rain, nor been dropped or scraped. Only cosmetic flaw is a tiny chip on the tank.

In the year 1977 only 283, 750 Sei were made, making this year a very rare one. Breaks got a tune up and work just as well as a modern bike, all switches and gauges work as they should, gas tank received a coat treatment to prevent rust, it has new air filters, recently got carburetor tune up. This bike only has a small dent on one of the exhausts and very small paint chips on the gas tank(please see pictures).

I will include some spare parts, a copy of the owners manual, a copy of the shop manual, as well as a copy of the spare parts manual. Some magazines in which the bike was featured at that time. Previous owner kept this motorcycle in a museum. This motorcycle is only missing the tool kit and the rubber strap that holds the gas tank.

This particular 1977 example appears to be in great shape. Benellis of this era were not exactly known for robust reliability, so it is actually a huge benefit that this is a regular rider. Nothing ages a motorcycle like stagnation, and this one has thus far avoided the neglect that many of these complex machines have suffered. Check it out here, but be sure to bring lots of Lire - the starting bid for this one is a cool $19,000.


1979 Benelli Sei 750 with ZERO miles for sale on eBay

The Benelli Sei is as much an exercise in excess as anything you are likely to see. The frame is dominated by the huge engine and offset by six exhaust pipes. Nothing on this bike is subtle, nor was it meant to be. The visceral elements of the Sei were created by famed Carrozzeria Ghia (think of the VW Karmann Ghia or the Ferrari 212), the bodywork as striking as the mechanical elements. Benelli - under the guidance of de Tomaso - was going to make a statement: the Italians were the equal of Japanese technology and held all the cards in the styling department. At the end of the day, they surely succeeded.

Today the Sei continues to be more distinctive than anything short of a one-off, overwrought custom cruiser. To consider that this was a production model for sale publicly throughout the 1970s and 1980s is unbelievable. It is also pretty rare. Sei models were considerably more expensive than mass-produced counterparts; the dealer network was smaller than Japanese, German, or even other Italian marques.

From the seller:
1979 Benelli 750 Sei. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to buy a zero mile... yes , zero mile motorcycle. Here is the story as I was told when I bought it. This motorcycle was purchased new by a Florida collector, who at the time of his death (about 2 years ago) was 82 years old. The previous owner had amassed over 300 motorcycles, many of them being rare, high ticket items.

His widow sold 70% of his collection to a German collector, as a package deal. I managed to get a few of his other bikes, two of which were Benelli 750 Sei zero mile bikes. This collector, as described by his brother, was extremely eccentric, and not particular about the absolute care, and method of storage for his motorcycles. Consequently, although a zero miler, it does display various imperfections which are visible in the photos. Please feel free to contact me and we can do a video walk through closeup of the specifics. Included with the sale are, the original toolkit and manual.

1977 is listed as the final production year of the 750 model; the 900cc replacement version of the Sei entered as a 1978 model. However it is not uncommon for model year data to be based on the sale or registration of a given bike. It is also not uncommon for smaller European brands to have somewhat erratic record keeping, making exact determinations difficult. Regardless, this claimed ZERO mile example is certainly an albino of the Unicorn world. Low mileage specimens of low-volume production models will always perk the interest of collectors. There are lots of questions on this one - including the overall condition - but the seller seems open to answering them. Check it out here, and once again bring lots of Lire to the party: this one is $24,000 in a Buy It Now format, with the seller open to offers.


At the end of the 1980s Benelli was absorbed by Moto Guzzi. The name and rights were later sold to a Chinese company, and Benelli enjoyed a brief US revival in the early 2000s with the three cylinder Tornado and TNT models. Today Benelli - while still officially headquartered in Pesaro, Italy - is a Chinese company that partners with with DSK Group of India, producing smaller and middleweight motorcycles and scooters for those markets. There are Benelli imports into the US, but only officially through a third party (SSR Motorsports). The glory days of Benelli being a power house of style and technology are largely over. Better collect an old school example when you still can. Good Luck!!

MI

Oh Sei can you see? Two Benelli SEI 750s on eBay
Benelli May 17, 2017 posted by

From Russia with Love: Benelli TNT 1130

OK - I admit it. I chose to write up this cherry Benelli TNT only because of the punny title. Well, that and it's a very unique bike in classic Benelli green. It has very low miles and appears to be in great condition. Above all of that, the seller claims the first owner was noted Italian singer and actor Adriano Celentano (you might remember him from the Italian-language Tarzan rip-off, Bingo Bongo - or not). With a signed tank and other indications that this bike was owned by someone famous in the past, this might well be the TNT you have been hoping for.

2004 Benelli TNT 1130 for sale on eBay

You'd be forgiven if you do no recall Adriano Celentano OR the Benelli TNT model. Both are acquired tastes, after all. Both are Italian. In the case of the Benelli, you are looking at the naked version of the Tornado 900, with a bump in capacity. Three cylinders of 135 HP goodness, funky side-mounted radiators, single high center exhaust, alien styling that puts Ducati naked bikes to shame and enough green paint to attract leprechauns, the Benelli was either a brilliant Engineering/Marketing move, or a last gasp attempt to remain solvent. Sadly, it was the latter, and Benelli fell into the hands of yet another owner. In this case, Benelli is under the ownership of Motor Group Qianjiang (Q.J. Group), a Chinese manufacturer of millions of scooters. Today there are no offerings close to this TNT (or even the Tornado) in the lineup.

From the seller:
Real 4060 kilometers
Condition is very rare, like new.
The motorcycle was in the collection of a Russian businessman who bought it in 2006 at a charity auction in Germany. In Russia, the bike traveled about 2,000 kilometers. Tires of 2004, all tubes, rubber bands of the year 2004. A total of about 1,000 motorcycle data were released. This motorcycle is number 23 (or 823). In the kit there is a book with a key and a flash drive (the instruction and the catalog of spare parts). Very beautiful and bright motorcycle. There is a complete set of documents. ORIGINAL ITALIAN !!!

I'm not sure about the rubber bands, but the rest of the bike seems to be complete and in great condition. And what a bike it is! Reviewers at the time universally praised the power and the handling, some claiming it to be the best naked bike of the current crop. Longer term tests highlighted some potential reliability issues with the bike, which is the more sobering concern; while Q.J. Group owns Benelli and manufacturers small-bore bikes bearing the name, they may not have spares available for earlier models. Knowledgeable readers with late-model Benelli parts experience are welcome to share what you know.

RSBFS is a global affair - as is motorcycle collecting. I'm pretty sure this will be a pass for our US-based readers, but for any of our Euro-Asian followers, here is one a bit closer to home. You might even know about Adriano Celentano, have seen his movies or own one of his albums! This TNT 1130 is a pretty rare model by most counts due to the financial and distribution situation with Benelli, yet looks as modern as the day it rolled out the factory door. Thirteen years is a long time in design language, but this one still speaks volumes. Check it out here, and then share your experience, expertise, or even just your opinion on this unique Benelli. Good Luck!!

MI

From Russia with Love: Benelli TNT 1130
Benelli March 27, 2017 posted by

Unobtanium Alert: 1982 Benelli Sei 900 with 52 miles

1982 Benelli 900 Sei with 52 miles on ebay

Back in the late 70's and early 1980's most motorcycle manufacturers were focused on one aspect of bike development: power or as the t-shirts used to be emblazoned, "no-replacement-for-moving-fast-down-the-pavement!'   This orientation towards higher and higher top speeds resulted in motorcycle manufacturers trying lots of different configurations, including turbochargers and 6-cylinder engines.  While the large manufacturers could afford to pursue both routes (example:  the Honda turbo CX and 6-cylinder CBX in the same lineup) , smaller manufacturers typically picked one or the other method.  But even with their larger lineups the large companies didn't always end up with the most desirable bike; consider the 6-cylinder Sei range from small Italian manufacturer Benelli.

Benelli was actually the first company to introduce a six-cylinder universal motorcycle way way back in 1972 with the 750 Sei (six in italian).  Somewhat ironically the 750cc Sei was actually conceived as a response to the Honda 500 Four series, except per ownership it had to "go big".  And go big it did, with six 125cc in-line cylinders fed by 3 separate 24mm carburetors. And while other companies 6-cylinder efforts where forced to look somewhat consistent with the rest of the bikes in the company's lineup, the Benelli operated under no such pretense.  The Sei was outfitted like a typical Italian machine of the period with gobs of chrome and dramatic Italian red paint.  Oh and it had one of the best exhaust systems ever produced, consisting of six separate trumpet/cone pipes stacked 3 to a side that made a truly epic sound (check it out here.).   Sadly this unit has the 3-into-1 units on each side which were offered by the company at the time but the triple pipes for each side are apparently available fairly easily.

When the Sei 750 was unveiled in 1972, the press was wowed, calling it "outrageous" and a "flashbike" but the pressure from the cheaper Japanese was unrelenting so in 1979 Benelli upped the displacement to 900cc.   A unique duplex drive chain was added, wire wheels were replaced with gold-colored Campagnolo rims and a rear disc brake replaced the former drum unit.   But even with these changes, the bigger Benelli was still hampered by a limited distribution network and the continuing Japanese onslaught.   By the end of production in 1989, fewer than 2,000 examples of the 900 Sei had been built.  It has been estimated that less than 80 of them made it to the U.S. market. (Motorcycle Classics, May/June 2015) so finding one here in the states in this condition and mileage is not something that will happen often.

As for condition, well the mileage kind of speaks to that.  The seller does include some decent pictures, although some more basic profile shots would have been nice.

Here is a summary of what the seller writes in the ebay listing.

  • all-original Benelli 900 Sei, never registered, only 80 kilometers total.
  • perfect chrome, polished alloy and rich Italian Racing Red paintwork, all the original/unique badges are in place and in as-new condition
  • original Pirelli tires, Campagnolo wheels, dual-link roller chain drive and Brembo brakes all in A1 condition
  • disc brakes are fitted to both of the gold finished Campagnolo rims
  • comes with complete Italian documentation

Now we come to the big (no pun intended) question - what is this six cylinder 1970's survivor going to cost you?  Short answer - it's not going to be cheap.  Previous listings on RSBFS for similar Benelli Sei bikes (mostly the 750 series) seem to range between $11,000 USD and $18,000 USD and I would expect this one to be somewhere near the top of that range.   NOTE:  Current bidding is already over $10,000 USD.

Given the limited production run and condition, the value of this one will probably continue to creep up especially if the mileage is kept down.  This pristine 1980's Italian big six will probably appeal mostly to someone seeking an investment/collector bike but I have to admit I would love to hear this one at a bike night, maybe with the triple pipes added and in an exhaust note competition against something like a Ducati Desmosdici...that would be truly amazing.

-Marty/Dallaslavowner

Unobtanium Alert:  1982 Benelli Sei 900 with 52 miles
Benelli March 15, 2017 posted by

Italian Week Continues: 1983 Benelli SEI 900

We seem to be celebrating an Italian theme on RSBFS this week. That is not too surprising, as pound-for-pound the Italians produce more lust-worthy hardware than most. I'm not discounting the ruthless efficiency of German machines, nor the bright spots in the Japanese flood of scooters; however if you tally up the total number of bikes produced by a given nation and identify what makes you drool, one small country stands out above the rest. Why? A unique combination of passion and performance would be the likely answer. Can we name a few brands that we might like to own? The list is long and glorious: Ducati, Bimota, Moto Guzzi, Moto Morini, Cagiva, Laverda, Aprilia and MV Agusta. That doesn't even count the bespoke builders of dreams: Mondial, Morbidelli or Ghezzi-Brian. Have I missed one? Probably more than a few. Nobody but the Italians are able to artfully blend the focus of performance with visceral good looks and color. Today's example is this gorgeous Benelli SEI 900.

1983 Benelli SEI 900 for sale on eBay

Look past the miles-deep pool of red paint. Shield your eyes from the sparkle of the chrome. Ignore the mags, the quarter fairing, the set and the stance. Strip everything away and go back to basics. In this case it is a fabulous 900cc inline six banger. The first to release a six cylinder into production - originally a 750 - the Benelli SEI 900 utilized a larger bore & stroke to provide additional motivational might. With a quarter fairing evoking a period Laverda or Moto Guzzi, the SEI was a technological, aural and visual bombshell of the time. Eschewing the 750's six-into-six exhaust in favor of a six-into-two, the SEI looked more like a normal motorcycle from the side, although from the front it was all but impossible to hide the width. This seller obviously cares about this bike and it's history, so we'll let him pick up the story.

From the seller:
There is a good article that says this is probably 1 of approximately 80 Seis 900s imported to the US. “By the end of production in 1989, fewer than 2,000 examples of the 900 Sei had been built; some sources claim no more than 80 of them made it to the U.S. market.” (Motorcycle Classics, May/June 2015).

1983 BENELLI SEI 900
Built June 1982, titled 1983
VIN: ZBNB0AB00DP011261 Engine No: BGB011248

History:

Original owner (name unknown) bought and rode the bike a little over 9000 miles and then parked the bike in his collection. No significant changes were made. In 1987, second owner (Sterling, MA) bought part of the collection including this Sei 900. The second owner was told it did not run so he stored it in a shop intending to restore it, but never rode it. He sold it to me in mid-2014. I cleaned the carbs, etc. and it started!

I did a complete 1 year effort to do a ground up restoration; inspecting and replacing anything needed except one thing: it has the ORIGINAL BODY PAINT!

Mechanically inside this bike looked like new, still crosshatches on cylinders, great compression, good shifting, etc. Fortunately, the tank was very clean. Outside it had some rust on the frame, wheels, and rear drive chain.

Key restoration items include the following:

- Powder coat the frame and wheels
- All new wheel bearings and brake seals/pads
- Replaced the starter gear and shaft and 2 bearings in the transmission
- Honed cylinders and light valve grind
- New seals and gaskets throughout
- New fork tubes and dampers
- Rebuilt carburetors
- 1 new badge (original missing)
- New seat cover, fuel cocks, and rubber parts
- Re-chromed original exhaust system and other chromed parts

Majority of these parts were original Benelli replacement parts bought from Benelli-Bauer GmbH in Germany.

Upgrades not original style parts include:

- New complete electronic ignition system
- New regulator/rectifier system (original alternator like new)
- New rear shocks
- New rear drive chain and sprockets
- New tires and battery
- K & N air cleaners
- Some new stainless steel hardware

It had 9,272 miles on it when I bought it; it has 10,008 miles now.

Runs and rides absolutely GREAT! Starts instantly, although a bit cold blooded (needs a few miles to warm up). Pulls evenly and shifts fine. And yes, it is as smooth as the books and reviews say.

Sure, in comparison to some Japanese, upgraded-spec, chain-saw razor with pipes and slicks, this SEI is a flat dog. If your idea of riding involves pre-mix and a quarter liter of squish band, feel free to look away. But somehow I doubt a true enthusiast can look at this and not be in awe - even a little - at what Benelli has created. Once owned by the legendary DeTomaso namesake, you can be sure that performance (such as it may be defined) exists within. This seller has done a tremendous job on the restoration of this machine, as well as the presentation. There is strong interest in this auction, and I'm sure a new owner will be celebrating the arrival of a dream very soon. If you're into Benelli (or even if you've only just discovered these marvelous machines), act quickly. Very few SEIs came stateside, and very, very few are in this level of condition. Check it out here, and let us know what you think. Viva Italia indeed!

MI

Benelli November 10, 2016 posted by

Quick Fix? 2005 Benelli Novocento in need of some care

Most of the bikes we post on RSBFS are in pristine condition or if not, are so rare as to make their condition less of a concern.  This one is somewhere in the middle...a 2005 Benelli Novocento with what appears to be light cosmetic damage.

Before proceeding further with this post, I have to admit that in the past I have had a bit of bias against the newer Benelli bikes, mostly due to the fact that the triple engine was originally designed to be the new power plant for my beloved Laverda marque (a pox on your house, Francesco Tognon!)  But as any smart collector or US/UK voter knows, allowing your emotions to influence decisions can cause you to do/not do things that you end up quickly regretting.  Therefore we present this 2005 Benelli Novocento in need of some light care/restoration for your consideration.

benelli-1

2005 Benelli Novocento on for sale eBay

The history of Benelli has been well chronicled on RSBFS, with an especially good write up done here, but suffice to say the company has gone through the trials and tribulations that are typical for a small Italian motorcycle manufacturer.  Right now primary ownership seems to be Chinese with a major brand focus on scooters but parts for this model do appear to be available.  This is important because this bike does show evidence of being lightly down but the seller is quite honest about this with lots of details/pics and the damage looks to be cosmetic.  Best of all the price seems to have been adjusted to reflect the current condition so this might be an opportunity to pick up one of these at a discount.

belllei-4>

Reviews by owners of the 900cc Benelli were very positive, although the seat height is apparently fairly high and apparently the OEM mirrors are basically worthless.  It may not be the fastest bike but it looks and sounds awesome and it certainly isn't something you are likely to see at your local bike night.

Here is a video review from Motorvision.

Mileage on this one is at 6,155 which means it has been broken in.  The seller does indicate that all the issues associated with the early Benelli bikes have been addressed, including the factory warranty replacement of the clutch basket.

Here is an overview of what the seller has posted in the ebay listing

  • Upon bringing the bike home, I ordered all of the updated parts it required from a Benelli dealer in Germany.  This includes updated clutch basket and bearings, z25 gear, alternator drive cup and cushions, z25/alternator driven shaft, bellville washer and bolt, side cover gasket, as well as a few other pieces.
  • All original parts will be included in sale.  
  • Oil has been changed every season (less than 1000 miles) with AMSoil full synthetic and hiflofiltro filter (one filter will be included with the sale).
  • The only upgrades from stock have been a Leo Vince sbk titanium slip on exhaust, and a top notch Rk gold chain.
  • Comes with a benelli branded ,fitted cover.
  • I will be including many extra parts, some used, some new, including stock exhaust, cover, full shop manual in english, extra carbon fiber mount for the Leo Vince exhaust if you want to delete the passenger pegs, extra coil sticks

bellie-3

The seller seems to be quite honest about the condition and includes additional pics in listing via a link to google drive.  There are also a fair number of questions with seller responses embedded within the eBay listing , which seems to indicate an honest seller.

Note - I emailed the owner about the missing riders right mirror, he indicates this is not included in the sale.  However research on owners has indicated the mirrors on this bike are one of the more commonly replaced items due to the standard ones poor effectiveness.

benelli5

Now for the question - should you consider acquiring this bike?  Well as stated previously it is in need of some love to bring it back to OEM condition but most of the effort seems to be cosmetic.  The level of detail provided by the seller is good so I don't think this one has been abused, probably just unlucky.  And the current opening bid price of $5000 is much less than the average $9500 prices we have seen for these previously on RSBFS so even with the cost of any repairs/restoration you might end up ahead.

I think this bit of green and silver triple powered Italiana is a good opportunity for someone who is reasonably comfortable with light restoration.  Personally I would consider this bike as an acquisition if the seat height was a few inches less.

-Marty/Dallaslavowner

Quick Fix? 2005 Benelli Novocento in need of some care
Benelli February 24, 2016 posted by

Tasty Triple: 2007 Benelli TnT for Sale

2007 Benelli TNT R Front

Following on the heels of and offering a more practical alternative to the Tornado, the Benelli TnT offered up wide bars, weird naked insect styling, and big power. For a while, these were all over eBay, sitting unsold in dealers' showrooms with slightly ridiculous asking prices, then with reasonable ones... Then they disappeared. I'm guessing a slightly insane-looking but premium motorcycle from largely forgotten Italian brand with questionable reliability and a non-existent dealer network was a hard sell at the time.

Go figure.

2007 Benelli TNT L Rear

But if you can find one now, and have a hooligan-bike-sized hole in a garage that includes several other motorcycles to ride while you're waiting for parts, you should most definitely give the Benelli a second look. Why? Well motive force is supplied by an 1130cc triple producing somewhere in the neighborhood of 120whp and 86ft/lbs of torque, backed by a six-speed cassette gearbox.

2007 Benelli TNT Dash

Reviews when new were very positive when describing both the handling and the powertrain and if you're thinking, "wow, it's too bad Laverda never built an engine like this to power a reborn line of bikes," rumor has it that this three-cylinder mill was originally intended to do just that, but got passed to Benelli when Piaggio shelved the Laverda brand.

2007 Benelli TNT Exhaust

From the original, very uh... spare eBay listing: 2007 Benelli TnT for Sale

I'm reducing my collection and only keeping a few bikes so i have a few more to sell,so up for grabs is a excellent running and riding Benelli TNT Tornado.

2007 Benelli TNT R Detail

There's something cobbled-together about these for sure: the plasticky dash, the manufacturer's warning and information decals stuck to the fairing sides, the tacked-on side-mount radiator fans... But the engine offers that classic triple blend of low-end torque and top-end howl, the suspension components are top-notch, and the bike has a quirky charm and undeniable style. And it's certainly rare, especially here in the US.

2007 Benelli TNT R Rear

At $5,500 with just 2,700 miles, you'd be hard-pressed to find a bike that combines exclusivity, performance, and exotic looks for such a low price. These are mechanically reliable bikes, although the electrics have a bit of a reputation. The biggest concern will be the uphill battle finding parts and a shop to install them...

-tad

2007 Benelli TNT R Side

Tasty Triple: 2007 Benelli TnT for Sale