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Benelli TRK502 in Elba Island, Italy

The Chronicles of Ubuntu Ride 2022
1 February 2022
How I acquired my 2nd hand first bike
2 February 2022
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By Jack Rooster

They say when in Rome, do as the Romans do, being away from home was difficult especially since I was not able to take my usual rides. I was used to commuting daily on my DR 650.

Thanks to the folks at Desmorent, I was able to gain access to a wide range of motorcycles and during my stay here in Italy I hope to sample the finest range of two-wheel machines that Italy has to offer. I begin this ambitious and exciting task by sampling the best-selling 2019 edition of the Benelli TRK 502X.

I came to find out that Italy has a wide range of great places to enjoy a weekend of riding, after much deliberation a final decision had to be made with the two final options being ride to the iconic Cinque Terre or take the shorter ride to Piombino and then take the 1 hour ferry ride to the Island of Elba from where loads of touring could be done.

The Final route looked something like this:

Rome > Piombino > Ferry to Portoferraio > Marina Di Campo > Poggio > Porto Azzurro > Cavo > Rio Marina > Biodola Beach > Portoferraio > Ferry to Piombino > Rome

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The ride started off at Desmo Rent, who have a wide range of motorcycles available to cater to your every adventure need. Check them out here: Bookings are tight so make sure you book weeks in advance to get the bike of your choice for your next adventure.

While the Benelli is an entry level lower Cc engine it holds its own in the highway amongst the bigger bikes and garners the same kind of respect on the open road.

One thing to note on the open road is that when the bike hits around 130Km/h it starts to seem rather unstable. So I kept it at that.

The bike sounds and looks great with an ability to draw attention everywhere we go. At the ferry stop specifically, it caused quite a stir, it is an extremely beautiful bike.

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One of the most memorable parts of the trip was riding through the winding roads that caress the sea

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The Metzler Tourance tyres deserve a special mention here. They offer amazing grip and feedback on paved surfaces as well as on loose gravel winding roads. Don't expect to venture too far or engage in some bundu bashing. You'll definitely need a set of knobbies for that and probably a gym session to handle all that weight. Yes, that's the biggest drawback. Out on the narrow seaside roads and trails, it took some effort to back it up while executing a U-turn. And if you happen to drop the bike, it'll take more than a pair of hands to pick it up again.

Cavo is a great view

In the end we managed to cover 700Kms over the two days of riding with amazing sights and sounds. We used 40 Litres of fuel meaning 17.5litres per Kilometre.

Fuelling here is self-service.

Final Review

Although built to meet a price point, nothing about the Benelli looks or feels cheap. It is a very good looking bike and feels great to both pillion and rider for long distances. Apart from the slight wobbliness issue noted at 130km/h plus,this is a great investment for those looking for a mid-range bike with the look and feel of a higher end bike.

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