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Categories: Galleries, Dailies

As the first electric motorcycle from an established manufacturer, this KTM Freeride E is a significant bike. When we unveiled it last night, we expressed some concerns over specs that seemed inferior to those of the Zero X. Now, with full data, can an Austrian dirt bike company hope to compete with a Bay Area startup?

The KTM produces 29.6bhp (peak) and 31lb/ft of torque. Continuous power is just 10bhp. No details, but we’re guessing its “disc armature” motor is air-cooled. It Lithium Ion battery holds just 2.1kWh of power. Enough, KTM says, for 90 minutes of riding. There is apparently a facility for hot swap, but no word on how much extra batteries will cost. A full recharge with a 220v outlet will take just 90 minutes. KTM big ups the dust-proof, water-proof nature of the powertrain’s construction, but this is nothing new. You could ride most electric bikes underwater if a few of the circuit boards were sealed first. The whole shebang weighs 95kg/209lbs. No word on price.

The 2012 Zero X makes quite a bit more torque — 50lb/ft — and, despite carrying 3.0kWh, weighs just 213lbs. The Zero doesn’t have hot-swap capability, but it does claim a 60-120 minute range.

Despite crisp styling, an established dealer network and nice componentry, all this leaves us more than a little disappointed in the KTM. The one factor that’s still unknown is price. Could KTM leverage its manufacturing base and ties with Bajaj to undercut the Zero’s $9,950 price tag? It needs to.

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