New items 2019
Fantic is celebrating its street comeback with a new edition of the Caballero.
The light-footed Scrambler is in her element on small, winding streets.
It’s easy on the eye: milled fork bridge, anodized aluminum handlebar, off-center cockpit.
The engine and footrest mounting plates are also milled, and the shift lever sits directly on the shift shaft.
The beautifully made upside-down fork comes from Fantic itself. LED headlights and indicators are standard.
Overall, we were allowed to try out two different engines on the trip.
The Caballero of the 70s was a household name among young people, but in this country its popularity exceeded its spread.
Technically identical, Flat Track (left) and Scrambler only differ in their appearance.
The new Fantic models are not necessarily a bargain.
The list price for the 250 in Italy is 5,790 euros.
The 500 is available in Italy from 6,590 euros.
The engine really impressed on the first test drive.
The new Fantic models are also well equipped in other ways.
Incidentally, the new Fantics are being built in Treviso.
The 250 single-cylinder develops 28 hp at 9,000 revolutions.
By the way, another Caballero variant was announced in autumn 2018.
The so-called "Rally" is in the starting blocks for 2019.
Fantic Caballero 250/500 in the driving report (2018)
Scrambler and flat tracker
Fantic is celebrating its street comeback with a new edition of the Caballero. A total of four variants, two scramblers and two flat trackers with 250 cm³ and 500 cm³ each, should appear this year. We were allowed to try out the newbies.
Celebrates with a scrambler and flat-track variant, each with 250 and 500 cubic engines F.antic his return. The 250 series started in July, the 500 series will follow in September. Another rally variant has been announced for next year. The water-cooled four-valve sohc engines were designed by Piaggio and manufactured by the Chinese joint venture partner Zongshen. The models differ mainly in styling, with frame and drive the models are the same up to the Arrow double exhaust. Even the easy-revving 250 single-cylinder produces 28 hp at 9,000 revolutions, with a torque of 22.5 Nm at 7,000 revs.
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Fantic Caballero 250/500 in the driving report (2018)
Scrambler and flat tracker
Motorcycles no bargains
The short-stroke 500cc Caballero gets a decent 43 hp from 449 cubic meters at 8,500 tours and lifts a torque of 40 Nm at 7,500 revolutions. The German list prices of the 250 models are 5,899 euros, the 500 duo is available from 6,699 euros. The motorcycles are therefore no bargain, especially when compared to a KTM 390 Duke made in India. The prices should also reflect the fact that the Caballeros roll off the production line in Treviso and not in the Far East. Only the engine with six-speed gearbox and multi-plate wet clutch is manufactured in China and delivered to Italy.
Visually and technically, the new Fantic models are well done.
If you take a closer look at the models, you will discover parts made of high quality. Because Fantic put some effort into the construction, not only in terms of the design, which is strongly reminiscent of the Caballero of the 70s. Milled fork bridges and footrest plates, the backbone frame made of chrome-molybdenum tubing is complemented at the front by a 41 mm Fantic FRS upside-down fork with a generous 150 mm of travel. The shock absorber is adjustable in rebound and also has 150 mm of spring travel. The stylish 320 mm wave brake disc from Braking together with radial pliers from the Asian Brembo offshoot Bybre provide deceleration, supplemented by a 230 mm wave disc at the rear. Everything is monitored by a two-channel Conti ABS that can be switched off. Also front and rear: LED light. However, the digital speedometer is not as easy to read and intuitive to use as the instruments of a Duke.
The 250er craves speed
Other components prodotto in Italia: the Tommaselli handlebar with domino grips and the black spoked wheels, 19 inches at the front and 17 inches at the rear. They carry Pirelli Scorpion Rally STR all-rounders, which, in contrast to similarly coarse tires from other manufacturers, roll surprisingly quietly at higher speeds on asphalt. Speaking of speed, the 250 is hungry for revs, distributes its power evenly and also offers pressure from below. The Fantic doesn’t run out of breath in the top two courses either.
This is what the 250 version looks like in a flat-track garment.
Thanks to the balancer shaft, it also runs quite smoothly, even if the vibrations in the footrests increase with the engine speed. The gearbox shifts cleanly in both directions, and the good-natured and, for a quarter-liter ratio, spontaneous throttle response make the Fantic a great city motorcycle, where you can enjoy a clear view of most car roofs thanks to the 845 mm seat height. The relatively long wheelbase of 1,425 mm ensures high stability, and thanks to the rather high Tommaselli handlebars, you can swing lightly over winding country roads. This is where the 250cc Caballero is the most fun, apart from the asphalt jungle already mentioned.
Motor really awesome
The 250 weighs 138 kg dry, its big sister 145 kg – interesting how heavy a bigger piston is, because according to Fantic that should be the only difference between the two bikes. The 500s: Same but different. Above all, it has more flavor in the lower area. This results in better acceleration and the constant need to lift the front wheel, much to the pleasure of passers-by, less to the pleasure of the gentlemen with the chic Alfa Romeos with the beautiful blue lights on the roof … Although I was sitting on a pre-production model , whose engine has not yet been finalized, I think the Caballero 500 is already a lot of fun. It has a lot of torque underneath and still the same smooth clutch of the 250. But above all, the extra power that allows you to jump from gap to gap even in the rolling stream of the sheet metal avalanche.
A look into the past: the Caballero from the 1970s.
Even the exhaust was not yet ready for series production, as – ouch – slight burns on the leg show. But this wonderful engine is really awesome. If something like this comes from China these days, it is not least due to the strong competition in India, which is also opening up new markets worldwide. With the connections to the west via Piaggio and Norton (for which Zongshen will soon be producing 650 parallel twins – it is foreseeable that this engine will be built into future multi-cylinder flat trackers), it is no surprise that Zongshen accepts the challenge to put higher quality over lower prices. This great 450cc four-valve engine could soon power many models from other manufacturers.
Conclusion: excellent quality and high performance
The well-equipped, well-developed and valuable single-cylinder duo stands for excellent quality and high performance. It clearly shows that Fantic is back – with powerful machines that live up to their tradition. Just like back then.
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