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Is the Brixton GK1200 a worthy rival to the Triumph Bonneville?

The Chinese motorcycle maker is stepping up its game.

Is the Brixton GK1200 a worthy rival to the Triumph Bonneville?

There's no denying that in recent years, Chinese motorcycle manufacturers have stepped up their game when it comes to the level of quality and peerformance of their products. In fact, brands like CFMOTO and Benelli have made it to the global stage, and have proved that they're capable of competing with some of the industry's most established brands. Other up and coming brands are beginning to make their presence felt, too. 

One such brand is Brixton, a Chinese motorcycle maker that centers on retro-styled roadsters. Its most recent creation, the GK1200, clearly has the Triumph Bonneville in its sights. Unveiled at the recently concluded 2021 China International Motorcycle Expo (CIMA), the Brixton GK1200 looks like a Bonneville clone. It does, however, get a touch of modernity with some electronic features. Having said that, does this newcomer have what it takes to challenge the mighty Bonneville? Let's take a closer look. 

Brixton GK1200

From a performance standpoint, the GK1200 is equipped with a 1,200cc parallel twin. This engine, produced by Chinese heavy industries company Gaokin, employs Bosch electronic fuel-injection, liquid-cooling, and an eight-valve cylinder head, lending itself to some impressive power figures—81 horsepower and 110 Nm of torque. The bike is underpinned by adequate, albeit retro styled componentry consisting of KYB-sourced standard telescopic forks and preload adjustable rear shocks. Additionally, there's no denying the retro charm this bike brings to the table. However, is it just a little bit too similar to the Triumph Bonneville?

To set itself apart from the crop of retro-styled roadsters, Brixton has integrated a rudimentary, albeit useful suite of electronic rider aids to the GK1200. It gets standard ABS, traction control, and riding modes, all of which can be toggled via an aesthetically pleasing circular full-color TFT display. At present, there's no indication as to whether or not this bike will make it to the global market. However, Brixton's bikes are available across Europe and parts of Asia. Additionally, with the rise in popularity of China-made bikes with impressive performance and affordable price tags, seeing this bike in the Philippines isn't a far-fetched notion.  

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