SWM Revived with Chinese Money and BWM-Era Husqvarna Technology

SWM Gran Milano 440 16 photos
Photo: SWM
SWM RS300RSWM RS300RSWM RS300RSWM RS300RSWM RS300RSWM RS300RSWM Silver Vase 440SWM Silver Vase 440SWM Silver Vase 440SWM SM650RSWM Gran Milano 440SWM RS650RSWM SM650RSWM Gran Milano 440SWM Gran Milano 440
When we first heard that SWM was coming back to life with Chinese money we weren't exactly happy. Of course, bringing an old Italian manufacturer back in the spotlight is indeed a nice thing, but learning that it will be used by a Chinese maker as a gateway to European markets was a bit of a problem.
Call me prejudiced and whatever, but the Chinese bikes simply aren't among the ones I trust too much. Several machines proved to be dependable, whereas most of them have no chance in a direct clash with what the Europeans are used to. Maybe their price could make a difference, but so far, I'd say that the Chinese motorcycle makers have a long way ahead if they want a piece of Euro cake.

However, Shineray (aka China Chongqing Shineray Motorcycle Co.,Ltd.), because this is the name of manufacturer in this story, has opted for a much smarter, and we hope, profitable move. They stepped in and bought whatever was available after the controversial change of hands of Husqvarna from BMW Motorrad to KTM.

Building on the BMW and KTM leftovers

If you remember, back in 2013, BMW suddenly declared they will make a series of "strategic realignment" moves and will sell Husqvarna to KTM. In turn, KTM took what they needed from Husky and laid off the workers in the Varese plant, leaving from Italy and bringing Husqvarna to Austria.

Even then, KTM said that they are only partly interested in the intellectual property bearing Husqvarna's badge and would gladly sell the remaining assets to anyone interested. Now, you don't need us to tell you that Shineray was the one manufacturer that stepped in and bought almost everything.

Shineray got their hands on ten Husqvarna models designed under BMW ownership, they also bought the fully-operational Varese plant and hired back the trained personnel to run it.

And having also bought the rights to use the SWM (Speedy Working Motors) name, the future has been graciously outlined as a revival of the Italian brand using German tech and know-how.

Seven models are expected in the first SWM wave

SWM/Shineray will deliver no less than seven motorcycles this year. The Enduro line-up comprises three models, the RS300R, RS500R and RS650R, and they will be accompanied by two Supermoto machines, the SM500R and SM650R. Two more road bikes will also join the party: the Silver Vase 440 scrambler-styled one and he Gran Milano 440 roadster/streetfighter.

The first SWM that will make it in the dealerships will be the top-of-the line RS650R which is expected to start production today, followed by the 650 Supermoto machine in August. The rest of the Enduro and Supermoto models are to be manufactured starting with September, while the Silver Vase and Gran Milano should start to be assembled from October on.

According to gizmag, more engines are expected next year, as 125cc, 250cc and 450cc power plants will surface. Rumors also see a 900cc twin mill that could power a street and an adventure model. Is reminding you about the Husqvarna Nuda 900 such a wild guess?

SWM will be sold in Europe first, with Australia and North America next on the list, while Asia, South America and Africa will receive the bikes with a Shineray badge.

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