Benelli Sei

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750 Sei
Benelli.jpg
Manufacturer Benelli
Production 1972–1978
Engine 747 cc air-cooled inline-6
Bore / stroke 56 mm × 50.6 mm (2.20 in × 1.99 in)
Compression ratio 9.8:1
Top speed 200 km/h (120 mph)
Power 76 hp (57 kW) @ 9000 rpm[1]
Transmission 5-speed, wet clutch
Suspension Front: 38 mm Marzocchi telescopic forks
Rear: Twin shock
Brakes Front: Twin disc
Rear: Drum
Tires Front: 3.50 H 18
Rear: 4.25 H 18
Weight 235 kg (518 lb) (dry)
255 kg (562 lb) (wet)
Fuel capacity 23 L (5.1 imp gal; 6.1 US gal)

The Benelli Sei is a series of motorcycles that were produced by Italian manufacturer Benelli, and masterminded by automotive designer Alejandro de Tomaso, from 1973 to 1989.[2]

Benelli 750 Sei[edit]

The Benelli 750 Sei was the first production motorcycle with a 6-cylinder engine and had two model releases.[3][4] De Tomaso intended it to become Italy's premier sporting motorcycle and wanted it badged as a Moto Guzzi. On its launch, it received tremendous publicity overshadowing all other Italian bikes of that year. It started the trend of angular designed motorcycles moving away from traditional round forms.[5]

The engine was based on the four-cylinder Honda CB500, but with two extra cylinders.[6] The cylinder head fins of the Sei were squared off to provide a cosmetic individuality, but otherwise the engine is in most respects obviously derived from the Honda. The "angular, bold design" was by Carrozzeria Ghia.[7] It produced 96 bhp (72 kW) at 9,000 rpm, had a top speed of around 127 mph (204 km/h) and was one of the smoothest European tourers.[1][8]

Despite the extra cylinders, the Sei's width was kept to a minimum by siting the alternator (which, on the Honda, is at the left-hand end of the crankshaft) behind the cylinders. Cooling was improved by having air passages between the cylinders; the Sei had three Dell'Orto VHB 24 mm carburetors (the Honda CB 500 had four, for four cylinders).[6] The vehicle appeared to reviewers as heavy and cumbersome but handled surprising well, and had a unique signature exhaust note from its six mufflers.[9]

The Benelli 750 Six remained the only six-cylinder motorcycle in production until the entrance of the Honda CBX in 1978.

Benelli 900 Sei[edit]

900 Sei
Benelli 900 Sei
Manufacturer Benelli
Production 1979-1989
Predecessor Benelli 750 Sei
Engine 906 cc air-cooled inline-6[10]
Bore / stroke 60 x 53.4 mm[11]
Top speed 120 mph[10]
Transmission 5-speed, wet clutch
Suspension Front: 38 mm Marzocchi telescopic forks
Rear: Twin shock
Brakes Front: Twin disc
Wheelbase 56 inches (1,422 mm)[10]
Dimensions W 25.75 (654 mm)[10]
Weight 549 lbs (249 kg)[10] (wet)

In 1979, by which time Benellli had sold 3,200 vehicles, Benelli developed the 750 Sei into a 900 cc motorcycle, with six-into-two exhausts and a small bikini fairing used on the Moto Guzzi Le Mans. Less than 2,000 were made in and four model releases.[6] Described at the time as "outrageous" [12] or a "flashbike". Flashbikes tended to be "rare, expensive, European, quirky, handsome and high performance".[13] It had an original MSRP of $3,995.[10]

Benelli 900 Sei Sport

It was later released as a "sport" model with a larger bikini fairing.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Grubb, Jake (March 1975). "Easy riders: the grand touring motorcycles for '75". Popular Mechanics. Retrieved 15 July 2010. 
  2. ^ Benelli 750/900 Performance Portfolio 1973-1989. R. M. Clarke. Brooklands Books, 20 Jan 2005
  3. ^ Imports and Motorsports. Bill Hartford. Popular Mechanics Jan 1974
  4. ^ Clarke, R.M. (2005). Benelli 750/900 Performance Portfolio 1973-1989. Brooklyn Books. ISBN 978-1-85520-668-7. 
  5. ^ The Moto Guzzi Sport & Le Mans Bible. Ian Falloon. Veloce Publishing Ltd, 30 Jun 2007
  6. ^ a b c Siegal, Margie (September–October 2006). "Benelli 750 Sei: The Italian answer to the Japanese onslaught". Motorcycle Classics. Retrieved 15 July 2010. 
  7. ^ "Benelli 750 Sei". Cycle World. August 1974. Retrieved 15 July 2010. 
  8. ^ World's Fastest Motorcycles. John Cutts, Michael Scott. Book Sales, 1 Aug 1991
  9. ^ 365 Motorcycles You Must Ride. Dain Gingerelli, Charles Everitt, James Manning Michels. MBI Publishing Company, 10 Jan 2011
  10. ^ a b c d e f Mitchel, Doug. "The Benelli Sei 900". Motorcycle Classics September/October 2009. Motorcycle Classics. 
  11. ^ Walker, Mick. Motorcycle: Evolution, Design, Passion. Baltimore, MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press. p. 164. ISBN 0-8018-8530-2. 
  12. ^ Cycle World, Volume 33. CBS Publications, 1994
  13. ^ Walneck's Classic Cycle Trader, March 2008, Dominion Enterprises,. Originally published in Cycle World,

External links[edit]