Liter bikes like the Suzuki Hayabusa may thrill, but it’s the small-capacity motorcycles where a lot of the sales are. Honda offers a slew of them, from the Grom to the CB300R. And KTM is expanding its Duke lineup in the US with its new 200cc model. Now, though, there’s another name joining in: Peugeot is about to release a 300cc motorcycle.
How the Peugeot name ended up on motorcycles, scooters, and mopeds
As a whole, ‘Peugeot’ is a name that’s typically associated with cars, not 2-wheeled vehicles. However, not only are there Peugeot-branded bicycles, there are Peugeot motorcycles, too. Or rather, there were.
Peugeot has a rather complicated manufacturing history stretching back over 200 years, Super Street Online explains. The French company started out making sewing machines, saws, and other various tools and machines. Then it started making coffee grinders and pepper mills—indeed, you can still buy Peugeot pepper mills.
It didn’t start making cars until 1891, though. And while Peugeot made its first bike in 1882, its first motorcycle came in 1898, Cycle World reports. Technically, it’s one of, if not the oldest motorcycle manufacturer in the world, Vintangent reports.
Peugeot’s earliest motorcycles were little more than motorized bicycles, as was the case with Ducati and Triumph. But by the 1920s, its motorcycles out-paced its cars in terms of technological advancement, Motorcycle Classics reports. However, Peugeot soon split up its various businesses, including its motorcycle and car divisions. So, technically, although Peugeot cars and Peugeot motorcycles share a name, they’re not made by the same companies.
Today, Peugeot Motorcycles doesn’t really make motorcycles. Although it once sold mopeds, its current lineup includes 2-wheeled and 3-wheeled scooters. However, that might change very soon.
The Peugeot P2X and the upcoming 300cc motorcycle
In 2015, Indian company Mahindra purchased a 51% stake in Peugeot Motorcycles, RideApart reports. If that name sounds familiar, that’s because Mahindra also owns Royal Enfield and the now-Indian Jawa. And in 2019, Mahindra bought ought the French motorcycle brand completely.
That same year, Peugeot introduced the P2X motorcycle concept at EICMA and the Mondial del Moto shows, RideApart reports. The P2X featured an inverted fork, a TFT dash, ABS, and a liquid-cooled 300cc single-cylinder engine, RideApart reports. While the P2X is a naked bike, Peugeot also showed off a 125cc café-racer-style version.
And because the reception has been positive, VisorDown reports, Peugeot Motorcycles might have a production-ready version in the works. Also, while the 300cc model is the focus, the bike’s platform can accommodate 150cc or 500cc engines, too.
Will it come to the US?
As of this writing, Peugeot Motorcycles hasn’t released official plans, pricing, or even a timeline for a 300cc bike, BikeWale reports. However, in an interview with Italy’s Motociclismo, Mario Minella, the president of the company which distributes Peugeot bikes in Italy, claims it could arrive sometime in 2021.
Whether it comes to the US, though, is a more complicated matter. The automotive brand Peugeot is planning a return to the US by 2023. The recent FCA-PSA merger has undoubtedly helped speed some things along. But Peugeot Motorcycles is a separate brand, one whose scooters aren’t currently sold here.
However, Royal Enfield’s bikes are sold here. If Peugeot’s cars return, whose to say Mahindra couldn’t ride the media wave and bring in the bikes, too?
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