Chinese motorcycle maker Zongshen has decided to hop aboard the whole retro-modern bandwagon which has been extremely popular in recent years. With so many new retro-style bikes popping up left and right, and from a variety of motorcycle companies, it’s starting to look like creating a cafe style or scrambler style bike is becoming a rather low hanging fruit when it comes to designing new motorcycles.
The whole neo-retro craze has recently been picked up by numerous Chinese motorcycle companies looking to enter the western market. We’ve seen bikes like the Loncin Voge 500AC, which bears a remarkable resemblance with the Triumph Trident 660, as well as the Himalayan-esque Hanway G30. This time around, we have Zongshen’s interpretation of a neo-retro street bike in the form of the Cyclone RE3. At a glance, the Cyclone RE3 boasts a muscular stance with its chunky tires, beefy inverted forks, and wire-spoke wheels. It employs a rather familiar stance, too, which reminds me of the Triumph Thruxton R.
At its heart is a 377.8cc single-cylinder engine which produces a rather pedestrian 36 horsepower. It comes with the aforementioned inverted forks, which is actually becoming a rather common feature on new budget-oriented machines from Chinese companies. Putting things to a stop are disc brakes up front and out back. All of this seems like pretty common fare in the entry-level bike segment. So where exactly does Zongshen find its advantage in?
Well, I’m not exactly sure. You see, the Zongshen Cyclone RE3 isn’t a cheap bike, either. Initially launched in China for CNY 29,800, or the equivalent of $4,603 USD, it’s priced well within range of other bikes in the 300cc to 400cc category. In fact, you could go out and get yourself a brand spanking new Yamaha MT-03 complete with a full network of dealers, service support, and abundance of spare parts and aftermarket options for even less money than the Zongshen.
Nonetheless, we can surely expect to see this bike make its way to the global market, albeit bearing different branding and naming conventions in different markets. After all, Zongshen does have quite a name for itself with a massive production facility with a production capacity of three million bikes per year.