KTM Freeride E entering production next year, priced below $10,000

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He of the Kushitani leathers and Union Jack Arai, Alan Cathcart, just became the first motorcycle journalist to take a KTM Freeride E prototype for a spin. He liked it, but the real news here is word of production dates, prices, configurations and future electric KTMs. E-Duke anyone?

“We plan in July or August of 2012 to build 500 pre-production bikes, then gather feedback from non-professional riders after they’ve run the bike in different conditions and in different climates, from Spain to Sweden,” KTM CEO Harald Ploeckinger told Cathcart. “We plan to learn as much as we can from this, because we don’t want to have a new technology that creates problems for the customers, but to develop it properly under all conditions. And then towards the end of next year we will start production of the Freeride E at a price below or comparable to what you see already with a four-stroke Enduro – so it has to be below 10,000 ($13,500), including battery.”

KTM actually plans two variants on the Freeride E theme. That street-legal enduro and a motocrosser sans lights, indicators and other niceties. Cathcart also reveals that a supermoto version is planned, complete with smaller wheels and road tires and firmer suspension. His E-Duke monicker is likely just a bit of fun though, we’d expect the company to stick to variations of “Freeride.”

Like the KTM Freeride 350, the E isn’t going to be a “race-ready” competition machine. Instead, it’ll be focused on attracting new riders, putting fun over performance. “We wanted to start out by offering something to those customers who want to ride off-road but not in competition — nothing extreme, just to have fun on the bike,” Ploeckinger continued to Cathcart. “I compare riding the Freeride E to cross-country skiing, where you use a different set of skis than when you go alpine skiing downhill. Each is fun — just one is more extreme than the other.”

Tantalizingly, Ploeckinger hints at the potential for faster electric KTMs in the future. “The battery pack is scalable, as a combination of parallel and sequenced cells, and as long as you don’t change the voltage you can use the same controller and motor, so we’re looking towards urban mobility concepts, as well.”

Cycle News

  • Thom

    Jeeze !!!!

    Two in one day ?

    Just how much pandering to the ‘ Green Weenies ‘ do we need ?

    • http://www.anotherdamndj.com evilbahumut

      Yeah right, I could care less about the trees and glaciers, but hooning on the sidewalks and skatepark in my neighborhood at midnight? I’m all in dude!

      I’m surprised at the price. I have a KTM; I was ready for a $15K price tag.

    • Joe

      Dear Thom,

      Please STFU about our awesome electrical future. Thanks.

      Sincerely,

      The Internet at Large

      • tomwito

        LOL

      • Gene

        Actually, I pretty much agree with Thom.

        A) I think the greenies suck. I’d personally volunteer to sink the Rainbow Warrior with all hands.
        B) Having owned many battery-operated products, I think they suck too.

        • Joe

          If you are focusing on only the “green” aspect of electric bikes, and harumphing about it because your a super macho man who can’t be seen as a “greenie weenie,” you are completely missing the point of these bikes.

          Electric bikes may be green, but more importantly they offer a a riding experience that will attract new riders.

          Low maintenance
          Low noise
          No “dirty” engines
          And with more development, a low cost.

          These are the things non-motorcyclists want, and these needs must be fulfilled to keep the industry going.

          • http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=305107 stickfigure

            but more importantly they offer a a riding experience that will attract new riders

            …for all of 45 minutes.

            • Joe

              Why would they be bored with an electric bike but not an ICE one, especially if the electric bike is their first experience?

              They might not have even considered an ICE bike, so at least an electric one got them on a bike in the first place.

              • http://rider49er.blogspot.com Mark D

                I think he means until the battery runs down…

                • Joe

                  That could be the case haha

        • http://rider49er.blogspot.com Mark D

          You’re right, Teddy Roosevelt was a fucking pussy. Him and his dumb national parks and respect for the natural world.

          Pollution rocks.

          • Gene

            This still doesn’t alter the fact that batteries are rubbish, and not likely to improve much at all.

            You better hope replacement batteries are cheap (they’re not) and easy to swap.

            • Gurupurkha

              Your comment makes no sense as it relates to what Mark D stated. Moreover, I highly doubt you are in a position to make wide-sweeping prognostications about the battery innovation curve. Somebody like yourself could have just as easily said computers wouldn’t improve beyond their computing capabilities in the 1950s.

              • Gene

                I highly doubt you’re in a position to read the thread back far enough to see my original comment.

                Reading comprehension isn’t just for high-school English tests, ya know…

  • http://www.anotherdamndj.com evilbahumut

    “His E-Duke monicker is likely just a bit of fun though, we’d expect the company to stick to variations of “Freeride.””

    Wasn’t one of the concepts a supermoto? Or am misreading that?

    http://www.motorcycle-usa.com/PhotoGallerys/freerdie_street_90.jpg

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Yep. But this is the first time we’ve seen KTM commit to production of a supermoto variant.

  • T Diver

    They should offer custom baby seal skin seats and hand grips.

    • Gene

      Oh I prefer mine in Polar Bear fleece. Much warmer and more comfy!

      • pplassm

        Whale foreskin lined riding suits? Like the GS guys?

  • http://www.muthalovin.com the_doctor

    I like it. And it seems affordable. From KTM. I really like it.

  • Rydre

    From the freeride-e-can’t-jump promotional video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5SqoyR8Ht0 staring at about the 2 minute mark) to putting an inexperienced dirt riding reporter on the bike for its first write up, it looks like KTM is hiding some performance issues. The numbers all look good, but something still smells fishy.

    But even if it’s not the perfect trail riding bike out of the gate, it’s great to see KTM pushing into the market (and the Freeride 350 looks like a great spinoff to keep me happy until the E is ready).

  • M

    small edit:

    €10, 000 ≠ $10, 000

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Wes Siler

      Sure. But when we say dollars, we mean dollars.

      • John2

        Is there a reason your title jumps to $10,000 from Harald Ploeckinger’s $13,500?

  • http://krtong.com KR Tong

    Looks like BRD’s got the KTM beat power:weight. And only a couple grand more. Not bad for not having the deep pockets like KTM.

  • BMW11GS

    im really excited about KTM, already a fairly niche player already, coming out with electric bikes that though may not be perfect now, will continue to improve the more people get excited about them.

  • tbowdre

    Doesnt an electric motor suppy 100% of its potential torque instantaneously? If this is acurate it sounds kinda cool to me. Seems like lots of options for different power delivery would be available.

  • pplassm

    I don’t understand the folks who have bad things to say about this. I’d love to have this bike in my garage. There are lots of suburban paths and trails around here that I could ride silently. If Cathcart’s experience is correct, it looks pretty much ready to go. 1.5 hours of “casual” trail riding? I want one.

    • pplassm

      And I don’t really care whether it pollutes more, or less. I just want a silent dirt bike.

  • Jason

    well done KTM – the honesty in marketing is refreshing. I guess we all need a quiver of everything!!