KTM 450 Rally practices for Dakar

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These photos and this video were taken as Marc Coma, Cyril Despres and Juan Pedrero put in a practice session on the KTM 450 Rally. The 2011 Dakar kicks off in Buenos Aires on 1 January, complete with an uncommonly diverse grid. Still, this €29,300 factory racer looks to be the bike to beat.

Photos: Edmunds J./KTM Images

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  • Deltablues

    Hmmm…Is there a 450R Adventure in the pipeline? Probably be expensive. Probably be awesome.

    • http://www.tripleclamp.net Sasha Pave

      I’d love to see it too, but I don’t think there’d be much of a market for a 450 adventure, especially if it’s based on the racing 4 stroke engine used in the EXC/XC/SX.

      A better option would be a 690 Adventure based on the 690e platform. The chassis is strong enough, and the new LC4 engine is magic. In fact it could be the exact same bike with a larger tank, fairing, and luggage option in the rear (factory soft bags would make sense).

      • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

        Ha, you might as well just stand by the side of the road and burn $100 bills for how far that bike would get you on an adventurish tour. How many hours between rebuilds on that 450?

        Yeah, a 690 Adventure would be awesome. Like the 800GS or Tiger 800, just heavily off-road biased and just about highway capable.

        • http://www.tripleclamp.net Sasha Pave

          Too true, a motor that holds about 1liter of oil and requires service every 3 hours is not going to get you far. BUT there are some crazy bastards who do some serious adv touring on them http://bit.ly/dWyt0j (159 page thread on advrider about why the KTM RFS makes for a perfect adv bike).

          The 690 Adv makes perfect sense for KTM and I really hope they offer it. The previous LC4-based adv bike (1997-2007) was really nice, but suffered from vibration and a dated design.

          The new LC4 engine is smooth and the chassis is a nice compromise between lightness and strength. The plastic subframe would probably have to be reinforced for saddle bags, although some aftermarket providers are already addressing it (wolfman, sw-motech, touratech).

          I’ve ridden a 690e at freeway speeds and it’s remarkably comfortable and unstrained. With some taller gearing, a large tank and some luggage, I think it would do much better than the previous generation.

          • th3w3s

            KTM have been promising a 690 adventure for what, 4 years now? Apparently the latest is that it’ll be a 2012 model released late 2011. I’ll believe it when I see it.

  • carcanal

    look what happened in the baja 1000 the team that was to dethrone honda failed. I always wondered how can KTM dominate dakar and not make a dent in the baja.

    • http://www.tripleclamp.net Sasha Pave

      I’d say a 3rd place finish in the 07 race, and a 2nd place in the 07 Baja 500 proves the bike.

      Beating the Honda factory A-list team is a tall order.

  • http://bloodfalcons.blogspot.com motoguru

    These things are so incredibly badass. I can barely make words right now…

  • http://www.postpixel.com.au mugget

    Well that sucks. The video has been removed. :/

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Should be fixed now.