You’re about to have more choice in the Canadian motorcycle market, with news that Moto Morini is in the early stages of entering our market.
The news came out at AIMExpo, the American powersports industry trade show that has replaced the old mid-winter Dealer Expo shows. Moto Morini has targeted the US market for a while now, after rebooting its business in Europe. Now Canada, which has been somewhat ignored by the Italian/Chinese OEMs in recent years, is also on the list of target markets.
Note that phrase—”Italian/Chinese.” Like Benelli and some other famous motorcycle marques, Moto Morini is a historic manufacturer that was once owned, built and designed in Europe. Now, it’s designed in Italy, but owned by China’s Zhongneng Vehicle Group. The bikes are built in China, too.
However, these machines are a far cry from the Lifans, Konkers and other budget-minded bikes that came to Canada 15 years ago. Moto Morini has modern liquid-cooled bikes that look like they’re as well put-together as the Euro or Japanese competition. Their lineup is based around a 650 parallel twin that makes about 60 hp, currently sold in the Seiemmezzo scrambler and X-Cape adventure bike platforms. The X-Cape seems to be more popular and gets decent reviews in Europe and even the US, where it’s been sold for a while. At Intermot, Moto Morini also confirmed their new X-Cape 1200 adventure bike will go to buyers in the States soon (and therefore presumably Canadians as well). They also revealed the new Calibro cruiser, which uses the 650 engine.
Moto Morini is still getting its paperwork sorted for entry into Canada, and we haven’t heard of them signing any dealers yet. All those preparatory steps will take time. It would seem silly to expect Moto Morinis in Canadian showrooms this year… but maybe in 2025?