New Bikes

Brand spankers Jawa 350 race replica

Jawa is born again as Mahindra starts to weave its magic

BACK IN 2016 the mortal remains of Jawa were snapped up by Indian car and bike maker Mahindra. Last year that deal led to the launch of the Jawa 350 and now there’s this fully-faired addition to the range. Simply called the Jawa 350 Special it harks back to the brand’s racing past.

And it looks great, but perhaps a little familiar.

That familiarity stems from the fact that, apart from the lower fairings, Jawa badges and the paint scheme, the Special is based on an existing machine. It’s the Chinese-made Shineray XY400. That bike, in turn, is sold in the UK as the Mash TT40.

The web gets even more complicated when you consider that the engine and chassis are identical to the unfaired Jawa 350, the Shineray XY400-2 and the Mash Roadstar. Oh, and the SWM range of 445cc singles are also closely related, given that SWM is backed by Shineray money.

Unlike the SWM machines, the Jawa gets the 397cc version of the engine, similar to the one used in the Shineray XY400 and Mash TT40. That means around 28hp at 6500rpm, so don’t go expecting racy performance to match the styling. It’ll break the motorway speed limit, but only just…

Wet, the bike is 10kg heavier than the naked version, coming in at 170kg complete with fuel in the 17 litre tank.

At the moment there’s no word on when the Jawa Special will be available, or even if it will reach the UK market. However, the firm has gained European type approval for the bike, so it clearly meets all the requirements including the Euro4 emissions limits and ABS brakes. If you really want one right now, the virtually identical Mash TT40 comes in at £4799, although it lacks the Jawa’s lower fairing.

Under Mahinda’s ownership, Jawa is clearly being lined up as a rival to Royal Enfield’s single-cylinder range in the Indian market. However, at the same time as buying the Jawa brand, Mahindra also snapped up the rights to the BSA name.

So far there’s been little sign as to what Mahindra will do with that brand, although on buying the name in 2016 it promised a new BSA model within two years. That time is nearly up. Will the BSA brand be applied to more reworked Chinese machines, as the Jawa name has? We should find out soon.

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