First Look
MBP motorcycles bring big Chinese bikes to the West
MBP motorcycles bring big Chinese bikes to the West
1 month ago First Look
Sponsored by Moto Animals

MBP isn't a familiar name in motorcycling, but the brand has appeared on the market from nowhere with an extensive range of machines from 125 cc scooters to 1000 cc V-twins.

Founded in 2022 by Keeway, MBP's initials stand for Moto Bologna Passione, reflecting the company's design team in Italy. Like several other Chinese-owned Italian brands, the bikes themselves will be manufactured in China, and the initial range has been created in part by borrowing models that are already in production under other names.


From the get-go, MBP has a 13-bike range, with four scooters, four roadster-style bikes, three adventure bikes and two cruisers. Eight of the initial bikes are 125 cc singles, including three of the scooters, three of the roadsters and two adventure bikes. Of the others, there's a 300 cc twist-and-go scooter - the SC300 - and four larger bikes, the M502N roadster, the T1002V adventure bike and the C650V and C1002V cruisers.

While unfamiliar to most western eyes, most of those bigger bikes will be familiar to Chinese riders. The M502N and C1002V are both from the Gaokin stable - the brand that manufactures Brixton models for the European market. The M502N is known in China as the Gaokin Flame 500, using the same 50 hp, 486 cc parallel twin that's used in the Brixton Crossfire 500, but with an up-to-date look instead of the Brixton's semi-retro style. The C1002V was recently launched in China as the Gaokin V1000 Thor, using a 997 cc, 94 hp, water-cooled V-twin engine. The same engine is also in the MBP T1002V adventure bike, but that machine doesn't appear to have been shown under another brand name in China.

Gaokin isn't MBP's only supplier, as the smaller MBP C650V cruiser has previously been seen in China as the Longjia V-Bob 650 (smaller 125 cc and 250 cc Longjia V-Bob models are sold in the West under the Bullit and Bluroc brand names), using a 447 cc V-twin, making 68 hp.


The most interesting model in European markets is, without doubt, the T1002V adventure bike. Weighing in at 235 kg dry, its power and weight figures are competitive against several existing models in the segment, and components like J.Juan brakes and KYB suspension are familiar from a host of budget models. Like most of the company's bikes, it's due to hit the market in the first part of 2023.

An addendum to the MBP story is that the same company that has trademarked the brand's name and logos - Powerlink Technology - has also applied for trademark rights to the Morbidelli name, as well as the titles 'Morbidelli MBP' and 'Morbidelli MBP Pesaro'. While these applications may come to nothing, they indicate that the old Morbidelli brand name could return to motorcycles in the future, perhaps on MBP machines.

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