Mad, mad, mad.
Molly: I parked my Guzzi Le Mans over the road from the Benelli TNT waiting for my test ride. Its styling is maddly off the wall--great in my opinion. I left my driving licence at the desk and, trying not to grin madly, took the keys out to the glorious beast. The engine spins up incredibly quickly and revs die instantly. Er Wow! I throw my leg high over the seat to avoid damaging it. Not too high but the wide bars push my elbows out and up. Very carefully I teeter out to the road junction. Clear, off we go, carefully. WHIZZ! Snick in second and whizz. Sheet! This is a 30mph zone. The throttle is very jerky to my paws used to a heavy flywheel effect. I squeeze the front brake and pull in the clutch for the roundabout. Into first, clear, swish, whizz off and out at 12 o'clock. Some throttle and the road rushes by. The engine is simply too powerful and it rockets or stops like anchors out. I am not tuned to a race type engine. After half a mile at the next roundabout I decide to go right round and back the way I'd come. On my old Guzzi I'd need to scan the road surface, check gear, revs, position and mirrors then ride the bike all round to roll the trottle on upon exit. With the TNT I put it in gear and simply sat there as the bike slipped round and screamed off as I instructed it to. I thought, "Well that was fast, could have been three times as fast but so what? Big deal. The bike was simply too good! No excitement or involvement. I think you'd need to hammer the bike to get a kick and that would be to lose your licence in short time. There is no doubt in my mind that the TNT is an awesome bike but needs to go too damn fast to be fun. It absolutely drinks fuel as well. Personally I didn't like the engine characteristic, I'd prefer a twin, but I came back shocked, feeling the crazy potential that the bike has that I can't get from it. That is one hell of a bike for anyone with the cash, skill, desire and can take the fuel consumption. It could easily scare me and just as easily kill. It's every bit as mad as its looks. TNT is just the perfect name. Back on my old GUzzi it felt slow, heavy, lethargic.....but I forgave it instantly and soon began enjoying the ride home. The boss had greeted me with, "What do you think? It's an incredible engine eh?" (He races one!) Linzi, shaken and stirred.