When you think of a cruiser, chances are machines from Harley-Davidson and Indian come to mind. Generally speaking, these laid back machines feature long wheelbases, massive engines, and are decked out in chrome trim to give them a “custom out of the factory” feel. Over in Europe and Asia, however, the idea of a 1,800cc cruiser is exactly that – just an idea, but one that isn’t really practical in the real world.
Sure, we have small-displacement cruisers in the U.S. market such as the Honda Rebel 500, but bikes like this are almost always associated with newbie riders. Across the pond in Europe, there’s been a growing trend of small-capacity cruisers – most of which from Chinese manufacturers – that emulate the styling of American V-twins, but in much smaller, more practical packages. The V400 from Jonway is a good example of this.
The Chinese brand has been operating in Europe for quite some time now, but its products consisted mainly of commuters and scooters. It seems to be leveling up its game with the V400. Clearly employing styling inspired by Indian’s cruisers, the V400 exudes an illusion of size thanks to its low seat height, laid back ergonomics, and beefy tires. The fact that Jonway got a petite rider as its model helped with this, too. On its own, it’s obvious that the Jonway V400’s designers used the Indian Scout as a point of reference for this bike.
On the performance side of the equation, the Jonway V400, as its name suggests, is powered by a 400cc V-twin engine tuned to deliver up to 33 horsepower and 20 pound-feet of torque – rather lackluster power figures, as the Honda Rebel 500 produces 47 horsepower, and the Benelli 502C churns out 48 ponies. The V400 is suspended by inverted front forks that don’t feature any adjustability, as well as a preload-adjustable rear monoshock. It comes to a stop with front and rear disc brakes equipped with dual-channel ABS.
Interestingly, more and more small-displacement cruisers have been hitting the market. Just a couple of days ago, another Chinese manufacturer, CFMoto, unveiled the CLC 450 Bobber. It’s worth noting that CFMoto recently made a rather strong entry into the U.S. market, flaunting models such as the Adventura, Ibex 800, and 450SS. Indeed, there’s a likelihood that the CLC 450 Bobber would make its way stateside, giving bikes like the Rebel 500 a run for their money. Could there be room for a bike like the Jonway V400 in the U.S. market, too?