Chinese Bike Brand Kove Takes Rally Win in Tunisia

A race-prepared Kove Rally has taken first and second place in the Swank Rally in Tunisia

Chinese Bike Brand Kove Takes Rally Win in Tunisia

It’s fair to say that many riders regard Chinese bikes as cheap, badly put together, and not very reliable. Kove is proving this section of the biking public wrong, as its rally bikes seem to be doing quite well out in the desert.

It took two of its rally-prepped 450 Rally Factory Editions to the Swank Rally in Tunisia, and they didn’t do badly, bringing back a first and second-place finish in the arduous seven-day desert race.

While the Swank isn’t quite as extreme as the Dakar, you won’t see Sam Sunderland or Toby Price lining up at the start, for instance, it is still a true test of rider and machine, with two and four-wheeled participants having to navigate the five stages themselves. It also features two classes, one for those who wish to race and navigate, and a ‘Tourist’ class for those who just want to enjoy bashing through the Tunisian desert.

Kove Italia Riders, Matteo Bottino and Cesare Zacchetti, were firmly in the competitive ranks, and they managed to bring home the bikes and lock out the top two steps of the podium.

The Kove 450 Rally Factory Edition is the trickest bike in the range, boasting a 53bhp single-cylinder engine, a towering 960mm seat height, 30 litres of fuel capacity, and a featherweight 145kg wet weight. It also comes decked out with all the tech and gizmos you need (roadbook and GPS), meaning you can at least look like you know what you’re doing as you ride aimlessly through the vast expanse.

All this Dakar-ready tech and engineering isn’t quite as expensive as you’d think either, with Kove UK listing the bike at a fairly reasonable sounding £13,500.

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