Claimed as the best Tornado Naked to have ever been produced by the Italian maker, the Sport Evo stands out thanks to its 127.4 horsepower engine and a versatile chassis to back it up. It represents one of the best ways to prove that the naked segment is clearly influenced by such builders and it was well worth taking it for a ride (like that’s ever bothering).
The Sport Evo makes an awful good impression in whatever situation and this translates into a great bike for riders who have a thing or two for performance, but still desire a bike that retains a comfy riding position. Once these two features are combined with the rider’s skills formed usually on super sports bikes, the result is a wonderful and long time collaboration that will definitely determine the rider to head at Benelli’s when a new bike is wanted.
After the company was revamped at the end of 2001, beginning of 2002, the first model that rolled out of the production line and has successfully been marketed was the Benelli Tornado Tre LE. Although the bike we’re talking about today doesn’t share that much features with the Tre LE, this last proves that heritage is a primordial issue and the maker started working right from where it abandoned.
A closer thing to it is the Tornado Naked Tre 1130. Introduced in 2004, this bike started the naked revolution in the Italian plant with an outstanding look and a 131.3 horsepower inline-triple engine fitted with DOHC and 12V.
A year later an even more exclusive and better performing naked bike was presented and it was called the Benelli Tornado Naked Tre 1130 Sport. The TnT Sport has further improved its performance so power and peak torque was even better.
The Sport Evo was introduced in 2007 and it represents the culmination of refinements that such a model could have ever received. The looks set it on a pedestal and once you swing a leg over it, there’s nothing to stop you from having the greatest riding experience as there are no drawbacks included in the package.
It seems that every bike has something to crave for, but some bikes offer more than others do, a great example being the comparison between the subject of today’s review and the Triumph Speed Triple. This last has been produced by fourteen years, so it beats the Benelli at the history chapter, but that would have been nothing if the bike wouldn’t have performed as expected.
The features which back up the Triumph Speed Triple name consist into a truly powerful (131 horsepower at 9,250 rpm) engine, a top notch chassis and a characteristic British Urban Sport look. For 2008, the Triple comes with a redesigned radiator, brand new rear sub-frame, new LED rear light, Brembo radial front calipers, black anodized front forks and new tapered anodized aluminum handlebars. The Benelli isn’t that much improved so we’re clear who sets the trend in this category. This doesn’t necessarily make it a leader, but it surely gives the Speed Triple a damn good advantage. Also, a great advantage is the $10,299 MSRP which is meant to have it dominate any other daring attempt such as the Sport Evo.
But what Triumph has to admit is that the Benelli is a great appearance in the city and a true companion when the road ahead stretches like it never intends to end. It is all a matter of attention to details and continuous attraction acting on the buyer’s eyes and soul. It all starts with the knitted headlight that makes it look like a bee for some and like a streetfighter for others, but it surely amazes everyone.
The small side fairing is sharp-looking and has the purpose of cutting through air like a knife while making the bike look corpulent and implicit able to remain stable at high speeds. A stylish gas tank further continues the lines of the bike and even though a bit tall, the handlebars are also there to cover that space and enhance a nice and comfortable riding position. The seat is fairly low (820mm above ground) and not as angled as on super sport bikes; it is more suitable for a sport-touring bike. Ending this perfect harmony is the rear end with those nice aerodynamic fins and the well blended in passenger seat. Underneath it, the exhaust creates a balance between the left and right side of the bike.
The Sport Evo will be easily identified thanks to its “evo” writing in the lower sides and “sport” on the passenger seat. Also contributing to that is the red and black combination realized with the intervention of the frame and rims which, no matter color scheme, can be found painted the same on the bike.
Colors available for it are Black, Grey, Grey and White.
As soon as you get on the new Sport Evo you know that this won’t be your average riding experience because given to this bike’s versatility you really don’t know what feature of it will amaze you next. The engine pulls strongly at any rev range and the top quality chassis is the piece that completes the impeccable riding feel.
I immediately noticed that the seat is a perfect unit for it as it makes you feel like you’re one with the bike and not riding on top of it as you might expect from a motorcycle that you haven’t ridden before. The wide and tall handlebars don’t have your hands stretched and even though there are no scrappers on your riding suit the arrangement of the footpegs will surely have you willing to see if can touch the asphalt so why don’t wear them when going for a long ride?
Hit the starter button and bring to life the mighty 124 horsepower 1131cc inline-triple and while letting it worm up a little bit I suggest enjoying the wonderful bang that it produces and no vibrations would come near you while at idle and neither when pushing it strongly down the motorway.
Now that I was properly accommodated on top of a wormed up engine and with a clear route in my head I was good to go. In the urban jungle any bike in this category will perform excellent, but the Benelli is simply more than I can take. It delivers great torque from well down low and it is extremely easy to maneuver between cars on crowded streets and this helps a lot when taking it on a weekend trip.
Revving the engine shyly between stop signs isn’t the best performance of such a bike so I was on my way to the twisty paths of road on which I like to see the handling characteristics of a bike.
By the time I was approaching such an enjoyable sector of my short trip I was feeling well at home on the Tornado Naked Sport Evo. The bike’s easy and yet quick handling helped me take it through corners with the greatest ease and it really makes you feel like there’s nothing else that you would desire. Power is a twist of a throttle away and it would straighten out your ride immediately, while the powerful brakes will yet again prepare before the courageous lean over.
The fully adjustable front and rear suspensions will help a rider get even closer to its culminant point when riding a bike and I bet that it would happen on the same sector of road. The 50mm upside-down fork and tubular steel trellis swingarm keep it stable and safe around the corners proving that there can be no biggest expectancy from a bike in this category.
On the motorways I suggest approaching the naked aerodynamic position which involves the chin in the chest and the throttle kept opened with only the tip of your fingers. It has no point doing this if not rolling with high speed and in this case we’re talking about a top speed of over 160 mph. At this kind of speeds you can’t really talk about wind protection on a naked bike, but I have to say that it doesn’t feel like of a fully undressed Bandit or Hornet, the small fairing does complete with the goal of its creation.
An impressive Italian ride is all a rider can desire in a worm April day and I wasn’t about to become an exception. Awesome ride and top quality built bike.
The new Benelli Tornado Naked Tre 1130 Sport Evo definitely situates among the bikes I would beg to take home and even though I’ve ridden better, the Italian styling and charm is simply irreplaceable. Good power and peak torque, quick handling and a comfortable riding position is exactly what buyers search for when heading to Benelli and there are much chances that you will do so and feel satisfied with reading this review.
Engine and Transmission
Type: In line 3 cylinders, 4-stroke, liquid cooled , 4 valves per cylinder double overhead camshaft, with balancer shaft
Displacement: 1131 cc
Bore x Stroke: 88 x 62 mm
Compression Ratio: 11.2:1
Rated Output: 95 kW (127,4 cv) @ 8500 rpm
Maximum Torque: 110 Nm (11.4 kgm) @ 5250 rpm
Fuel Supply: Electronic injection with three throttle bodies ø53 mm
Exhaust System: With catalytic converter and oxigen sensor
Certification: Euro 3
Clutch: Wet clutch
Gearbox: 6 speed
Final Drive: Chain drive, ratio 16:36
Chassis and Dimensions
Frame: Modular, tubular steel trellis frame, rear aluminium alloy casting
Front Suspension: Ø50 mm upside-down fork, with hydraulic rebhound / compression and spring preload adjustments
Front Suspension Stroke: 120 mm
Rear Suspension: tubular steel trellis swingarm, progressive rear damper with twin hydraulic compression adjustments / rebhound and spring preload adjustments
Rear Suspension Stroke: 120 mm
Front Brake: Twin floating disk ø320 mm with 4 piston radial calipers
Rear Brake: Single disk ø240 mm with double piston caliper
Front Rim: 17”x3.50” DOT-D
Rear Rim: 17”x6.00” DOT-D
Front Tyre: 120/70-ZR17 58W (-120/65-ZR17 56W-)
Rear Tyre: 190/50-ZR17 73W
(180/55-ZR17 73W - 200/50-ZR17 75W - 190/55 ZR17 75W)
Length: 2128 mm
Width Excluding Mirrors: 790 mm
Height Excluding Mirrors: 1050 mm
Seat Height: 820 mm
Wheelbase: 1443 mm
Dry Weight: 199 kg
Road Ready Weight: 206 kg
Admitted Total Weight: 400 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity: 16 lt
Reserve: 4 lt