Feely 500 – a worthwhile Chinese adventure bike?

Twin cylinder motor and decent design bodes well for budget middleweight traillie

Feely 500

UNTIL RELATIVELY recently buying a Chinese bike meant lumbering yourself with an air-cooled 125 with a life expectancy best counted in months rather than years. But the rate of progress over there has been phenomenal over the last few years and now there’s an ever-increasing number of relatively large-capacity, well-equipped machines on the Chinese market.

This one is the new 471cc parallel twin adventure bike from Feely, and it’s quite a handsome beast in its own way.

If that 471cc capacity sounds familiar, it’s because this engine is very similar to the unit used in Honda’s CB500 range. It is believed to be made by Chinese firm Loncin, although it’s not clear if it’s a licenced version of the Honda engine or cloned copy. The same motor has already appeared in a host of Chinese bikes, including the Motrac MG500 and Loncin’s own HR7.

The Feely wraps the 47hp twin in tubular steel frame and adds an alloy swingarm, upside down forks and radial brake calipers. 

In China, it’s set to sell for a remarkably cheap-sounding £3,500. There’s no word on whether the Feely brand will ever reach export markets, but it’s another indication that bike manufacturers in the rest of the world need to start paying attention to what their Chinese counterparts are doing.