Succeeding with Excess: 1976 Benelli 750 Sei for Sale

1976 Benelli Sei 750 R Side

“If some is good, then more is better.” That pretty much sums up the philosophy in effect here. Benelli’s six-cylinder Sei wasn’t really faster than an equivalent four. It didn’t handle any better. And it certainly wasn’t any more frugal. But it was more. Six freaking cylinders more, at a time when the motorcycling world was just getting used to the idea of easily available four-cylinder machines, Benelli went and built this thing. In fact, the driving philosophy behind its creation seems to be, “Because we could.” Which is a great reason to build things, as far as I’m concerned.

Especially motorcycles.

1976 Benelli Sei 750 Engine

Introduced in 1972, the 750 Sei featured an inline-six engine that was enlarged to 900cc in 1978. While 71hp was nothing to sneeze at, the real advantage of the configuration was smooth power and a wide powerband. Certainly, the wide engine limited cornering clearance, and the bike wasn’t really suited to back road scratching. It was a sophisticated sport-touring machine, the classic “gentleman’s express.” Unfortunately, styling was a bit subdued, performance was a bit underwhelming even when bored out to 900cc, and the bike was naturally expensive to run. But six-cylinder motorcycles sound amazing and, ridden within their limits, are very enjoyable motorcycles.

1976 Benelli Sei 750 R Side Tank

This particular example is in very original condition, apart from the 6-into-1 exhaust. Certainly the look of the original system is more classic, although this set up will save plenty of weight and perhaps improve the limited cornering clearance issues.

From the original eBay listing: 1976 Benelli Sei 750 for Sale

Bike is complete. It has been stored inside for many years and the front forks, having no mechanical problem, are somewhat pitted and rusty. The chrome rear fender, headlight rim and front fender have some surface ‘stuff’ on them but they are not rusted. The rim itself isn’t perfect. Tires are new, battery isn’t.

This bike was purchased disassembled in 1985 from a dealer. All of the parts were new. After reassembly, the bike was ridden sporadically for 5 years and then stored indoors. It is currently in Birmingham Alabama, stored in a car enthusiast’s toy room. The bike is stock except for the Marving 6-into-1 exhaust system. The tires look new but they have been on the bike for over 20 years. The battery was changed about 5 years ago and charged occasionally. The electrics all work.

1976 Benelli Sei 750 R Side Rear

With a $7,000 Buy It Now price, I think the seller is aiming a bit high, considering the bike’s condition. Obviously, while the paint on the tank and bodywork are very original and shiny, much of the bits that rust have surface corrosion and pitting. This is a great starting point, but anyone looking at this bike should be planning for an extensive and probably expensive restoration to get this bike in working order. Is it worth it? Certainly not from a financial standpoint. But these are obviously rarer and more exotic than a CBX and have the same draw: a physically massive, silky-smooth six cylinder engine.

-tad

1976 Benelli Sei 750 R Side Panel

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3 Responses

  1. sr88 says:

    These are pretty “Meh” without the six mufflers.

  2. tad says:

    A bit boring-looking for sure. I mean, they’re handsome in that UJM way, but not all that special-looking. Although if you fired it up with that current pipe on their, it might be a bit more interesting than it is sitting still…

  3. sr88 says:

    You have a point, once you get this bike running. I’m looking at the rust on the front forks and wondering what the pistons/rings/cylinders look like.