Often before you buy a motorcycle, you’ll read the reviews online on what people have to say about the motorcycle that you’re interested in.
Unfortunately, for Benelli TRK 502 there wasn’t many back in 2017 (when I purchase it) and the motorcycle news website that I was relying on has given a very bad review on this machine.
Now that I’ve used it for 3 Years and still running, I’ll share my Benelli TRK 502 review as an owner and hopefully, it will be useful to you.
Ride Quality – ☆☆☆☆☆
Riding this machine is phenomenal! It is very comfortable; provides excellent handling and you will be in a good riding position all the time. I’m 181CM tall and the windshield keeps the wind away.
Brakes – ☆☆☆☆
Whilst the brakes are equipped with ABS, the rear brake feels a little spongy or soft but it does work. You can also switch off the ABS if you’re riding off-road.
Engine – ☆☆☆☆
It has a good engine! It accelerates in a humble way and you won’t get excited by the initial torque but it won’t let you down either if you keep in your mind it is only a two-cylinder 500CC.
I’ve also ridden 2100 KM in a day whilst doing an Iron Butt trip and it didn’t overheat or whatsoever but the battery went dead which can be also due to the spotlight that I’ve installed (tapped on the wrong wire, my bad).
The top speed of this machine can reach up to 183 KM/H (without panniers & top box).
Build Quality – ☆☆☆☆
This motorcycle has, in fact, some things that it is lacking in the quality of the product. The paint and welding job on its frame, the cheap feel of Benelli stickers on the fuel tank, the low-quality crash bar’s screws, and the seat cushion which gets worn out quite fast.
For the design, this machine looks really good. It may look like a GS1200 or the Multistrada from a distance 🙂
Reliability – ☆☆☆☆
I’ve clocked 50K+ Mileage now and rode solo most of the time with TRK 502, I can say it is a reliable machine provided you service it regularly. Some of the trips that I’ve done with the TRK are including Peninsular Malaysia, Borneo, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and many more. I never had any problems during my trips except I had a puncture in Laos.
Some of the local riders here have also clocked over 100K+ KM and never had any problems with the engine.
Running Costs – ☆☆☆☆
The maintenance interval is between 6000KMs and it requires 3.2L of engine oil (if you change the oil filter). The cost varies as it depends on the type of Engine oil you will be using and the oil filter will cost you about RM 30-35.
90% of the time, I only use my TRK for long-distance rides which I why I follow the service interval at 6000KMs and I use fully synthetic 15W50 JASO MA2 grade oil.
If you’re using it for daily ride, I would suggest that you keep the service interval at 3000KMs and use semi-synthetic 10/15W50 JASO MA2 grade oil. (Don’t waste money on fully-synthetic oil if you’re using it for a daily ride but the choice is yours!)
You can get about 300-350 KMs for a full (20L) tank of fuel and this depends on the speed you riding, roads condition etc. Overall, the cost of maintaining this machine is affordable.
The spare parts are also widely available online and it’s quite affordable if you compare it with the Japanese make motorcycles.
Equipment – ☆☆☆☆☆
It is fully loaded! Better than any other touring motorcycle offering in its class. It comes with ABS, Pirelli Angel ST tyres, frame protection retaining bar, USB charging port, lever protector, splash guard and the gear indicator on the dashboard. It would be perfect if it has the center stand and a skid plate by stock. (It does now with the TRK 502 X Version).
Off-Road – ☆☆☆
With the standard set-up, you can go for the easy off-road with this machine but no way you should do deep sand riding. For a 500CC with a 213KG dry weight, The TRK would struggle and for me, the torque is not quite there unless you do some modification on the sprocket’s ratio etc.
I also felt the front suspension needs to be improved as I felt its kind of short (travel length) especially when you’re bouncing off a bump at a certain speed on off-road.
Value – ☆☆☆☆☆
For the price that I paid for and with the extras that I got compared to other standard motorcycles, this is a very good value for money.
Most websites mentioned it’s little less than a Honda CB500X (Rival) but they failed to mention that if you going to put all the standard extras that Benelli TRK 502 offers, it will cost CB500X owners a few thousands more.
Overall – ☆☆☆☆
Despite the motorcycle has a dry weight of 213kg, it seems to fall away from the instant the motorcycle gets moving. The engine has its power spread broadly across the rev range and no real detectable in sudden surges in power.
The stock tyres (Pirelli Angel ST) have good grip makes it easy to ride in wet roads condition with no power surges to worry about causing a loss of traction. However, the stock tyres didn’t last long for me, I can only clock about 12K-13K KM before it wears out. At the moment, I am using Metzeller Road Tech 01 tyres which are quite good and I can get about 22-25K mileage with it.
Whilst some may think the TRK power characteristics bland, I find it they are ideal with the price tag and especially for the inexperienced rider who may be using a motorcycle like this as a stepping stone to upgrade to a bigger CC machine.
TRK 502 Specifications
Quick Video Review
No More Side Boxes/Panniers?
Over the years, I realised it’s important to travel light and with the weight of this machine, I don’t want to add more weights into it by having sideboxes/panniers. Well, I know, to reduce the weight on the motorcycle is to have me on diet but hey! I have bad records sticking on a diet plan to reduce my weight! 🙂
For now, I have a dry soft bag (clothes) that I usually strap it on the pillion seat and the top box for my tools. I find this set up is good for me and then I can also manoeuvre easily at the traffic without the panniers.
Things I’ve added/Changed (Non-Stock)
- Skid Plate
- Center/Double Stand
- Paint Job
- Automobile Power Outlet (cigarette lighter)
- Givi E43ADV Top Box
- Tint Film on Odometer, Windshield & headlamp
- GPS/Mobile Holder (MotoWolf)
- Water Bottle Holder
- Metzeler RoadTec 01 Tyres
- Grip Puppy at the handlebars
- Bosch Horn
- Custom Seat Cushion
TRK 502 or TRK 502X?
Which one should you get? If you’re into hard off-road riding, (involves river crossing etc.), you should get the X version as it comes with off-road tyres, higher exhaust and better ground clearance than the standard 502 version.
The only downside of the X version is that it’s not tubeless like the standard version for now. If you’re into touring and may go into the easy off-road ride, you can go for the Standard version and it’s cheaper than the X version.
The TRK 502 comes with a 2 years warranty or 20,000KM, whichever comes first. MForce Sdn. Bhd. is the Benelli distributor in Malaysia and honestly, their customer service is excellent provided you channel your complaint(s) correctly and follow their warranty policy.
Like any other machines, this is not perfect either. I did run into some issues with this machine as mine was from the earlier production but it’s often fixed by MForce. The rule of thumb is, if you take good care of your motorcycle, it will be running in good condition.
If you’re planning to get one, please ensure that you get the current year model. This is because the newer version has been significantly improved and all the issues reported in the older version/year, has been resolved.
2020 Chris’s TRK Photos
I hope that my Benelli TRK 502 review has provide you with the information you need.
If you have an interest in this motorcycle, I would suggest putting any doubts aside and take one for a test ride at least.
Based on its own merits; its equipment offerings, riding experience and most importantly the price tag, It get a 4 out of 5 stars from me. Overtime, Benelli Malaysia has been doing a great job in improving their products and their after-sales service is quite good too.
What do you think about the TRK 502 / X? Did you like it? Share your thoughts via the comment box below or if you have any question(s), let me know.