Benelli's 250cc single

Should be cheap, at least.

THIS time a year ago, Benelli showed a rather attractive 250cc supermoto called the Motard 250. OK, so it was only a 25bhp single, but even so it looked appealing.

Since then, we've heard little of that bike, but now Benelli has transplanted the same engine (courtesy of its Chinese overlords at Qianjiang) into a street bike called the Uno C 250. According to the specs its got a 24.5bhp single, a steel trestle frame (unlike the firm's new 600, those 'aluminium' bits are just plastic covers) and even upside-down forks.

OK, so some bits look cheap. The single disc is fine for a 250, but the empty caliper mount on the opposite fork leg makes it look unfinished. And that over-large headlight doesn't help the styling – making the rest of the bike look rather more anaemic than necessary.

Even so, presuming its price tag is as low as it should be (and since the real-deal, made-in-Italy Tornado 900 is currently only £5999 in the UK according to Benelli's website, we're guessing it will be seriously cheap) then it could be an attractive option to new riders on a tight budget.

The firm says it will be available in mid-2013, but we'd take that with a pinch of salt – Benelli has a track record of showing bikes that somehow fail to come to fruition. Remember the Due 750? And the aforementioned Motard 250? Don't start saving just yet.