The mysterious V4 engine
In recent weeks, several patent applications have surfaced in China showing a new V4 engine being developed by Qianjiang, Benelli’s parent company. Although there are some similarities between this engine and the one in Honda’s VFR800, it does not appear to be a simple copy. The patents give a good insight into the appearance and operation of the new engine, which can compete with other modern V4 engines, although with a 90-degree angle it is less compact than Aprilia’s RSV4 engine, for example.
Which motorcycle will get the new V4 engine?
It is still unclear which motorcycle will be equipped with the new V4 engine. Some of the patent drawings include the QJMotor logo, suggesting that the engine will appear in at least one model in the fast-growing QJMotor lineup. However, Qianjiang already splits its current engines between the QJMotor and Benelli models, so it is likely that the new V4 engine will also appear under the Benelli brand.
Qianjiang’s ambitious plans
With the introduction of the V4 engine, Qianjiang is getting closer to its goal of having every conceivable type of internal combustion engine in its motorcycle portfolio. Earlier this year, a 1,000cc four-cylinder engine was already unveiled in the MV Agusta Brutale 1000. There were plans for a Benelli model based on this MV engine, but the future of this collaboration is uncertain, as KTM owner Pierer Industrie acquired a substantial stake in MV Agusta late last year and maintains close ties with Chinese Qianjiang competitor CFMoto.
Independence from MV Agusta
The existence of a V4 engine project developed by Qianjiang means that QJMotor and Benelli will not have to rely on the MV Agusta 1,000cc engine to produce future high-performance models if cooperation between the companies fails.
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