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Old 03-16-2013, 06:18 PM   #1
keener OP
Speed changes you.
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since 1934 - a KTM History

I just came across this blog post that I though you orange heads would enjoy:


KTM History

Hans Trunkenpolz opens a repair workshop in Mattighofen [Kraftfahrzeuge Trunkenpolz Mattighofen].

The Trunkenpolz company appears as an official supplier of motorcycles for the first time (sale of DKW motorcycles).

Hans Trunkenpolz and his sister aboard an early Wanderer motorcycle

The Trunkenpolz company expands continuously, becoming one of the biggest motorcycle and car repair workshops in Upper Austria.

First major development commences: a lightweight motorcycle of 98 cc (R 100).
KTM R 100

Introduction of the first production series of KTM motorcycles (a team of 20 completes 3 motorcycles per day). First racing activities (5th Gaisberg competition: KTM comes first, second and third).
[Businessman and racing enthusiast Ernst Kronreif buys into KTM.] The company is now officially known as “Kronreif, Trunkenpolz, Mattighofen”.

Delivery of the 1000th KTM motorcycle. KTM wins the Austrian 125 category national championships for the first time.

Development of the KTM Tourist model (125 cc); first road races.
Baederpreiss Race – 1955

First participation in the International Six Days; Egon Dornauer wins gold.
125cc DOHC Apfelbeck

Range extended to include a sports motorcycle (Trophy 125 cc) and its first scooter (Mirabell).
KTM Trophy

Erwin Lechner – 1957

Erwin Lechner keeps on winning off-road with KTM’s new racing motorcycle, constructed by engineer Ludwig Apfelbeck.

Motorcycle production ceases as the result of the crisis in the two-wheel industry. However, the first “Ponny” scooter and KTM moped are introduced.
KTM 125 RS – 1959

Range increased to include the Comet.

Bicycle production commences. Cross-country racing resumed; birth of the first KTM works team participation in the Six Days.

Production of the 10,000th Comet moped. KTM wins three gold medals at the international Six Days in Sweden.

Production of the cross-country Penton Six Days for export to the USA.

Production of the first KTM engines commences. Manfred Klerr wins the Austrian national championships on the newly developed 250 cc Motocross bike.
Engine Assembly line 1970

KTM’s workforce reaches 400.

Serial production of the 250 (Cross & Endure) commences. First WC points and Grand Prix wins for KTM (P. Roulev & G. Moissev).

KTM’s product range consists of 42 different models. Series production of KTM Hobby III commences. Russian Gennadij Moissev wins the first 250 cc Motocross World Championship title for KTM

Introduction of the road model Comet Grand Prix 125 RS. KTM works rider Sigi Lerner becomes Austrian Motocross road champion. Alessandro Gritti becomes European Enduro Champion. Gennadij Moissev wins his second 250 cc Motocross World Championship on KTM.
Comet GP 125 RS

Construction of our own 125 cc engine. International success for the Italian Farioli racing team (two European Championships).

“KTM America Inc.” established in Lorain, Ohio; the company’s first US subsidiary. 50 cc product range extended. Third 250 cc Motocross World Championship title for KTM and Moissev.

Company name changed to “KTM Motor-Fahrzeugbau KTM”. Intensive further development of the sports models (weight reduction, membrane steering).

Production of the first water-cooled 125 cc Motocross bike. 700 employees achieve an annual turnover of ATS 750 million, 76% of the production is exported to 13 countries.

Motocross models fitted with the new “Pro Lever” back wheels suspension. Development of a KTM 4-stroke engine with water-cooling commences (first supplier on the market).

Manufacture of KTM radiators commences. First order for the Austrian Army. Heinz Kinigadner becomes 250cc Motocross World Champion on KTM.

Production of the 100,000th KTM engine (500cc, liquid cooled, over 50 bpm). Heinz Kinigadner wins the 250cc Motocross World Championship for the second time.

KTM becomes the first manufacturer to offer disc brakes front and rear. KTM wins every category at the Six Days in Italy.

Series production commences of the KTM 4-stroke engine (1 cylinder, 560ccm, overhead camshaft). Production of 98,000 radiators, 93,700 bicycles, 12,600 mopeds and 10,600 motorcycles.

Scooter manufacture ceases.

KTM and Trampas Parker (USA) become 125cc Motocross World Champion, and Motocross World Champions in the sidecar category with the Huesser twins (CH). Majority shares sold by KTM to GIT Trust Holding. Company manager Erich Trunkenpolz dies.

KTM Motorfahrzeugbau AG files for bankruptcy; divided into independent successors for radiators, motorcycles, bicycles and tooling manufacture.

The newly formed motorcycle division – KTM Sportmotorcycle GmbH – opens up under new management, new Hard Enduro concept and a new motorcycle design. KTM Enduro World Championship title 1990 goes to Paul Edmondson (125), Peter Hansson (500), 1991 and 1992 to Jeff Nilsson (125), 1992 to Mario Rinaldi (350).

KTM Rally commitment begins (win at the Atlas Rally in 5 categories).

KTM Sportmotorcycle GmbH renamed KTM-Sportmotorcycle AG. Workforce 212. Company commences production of the road model of the Duke series.
Duke 640

Acquisition of Swedish Husaberg AB and takeover of White Power Suspension (NL). Production of 12,000 motorcycles, turnover ATS 1.1 billion. 2 Enduro World Championship titles, wins at the Master Rally and the Tunisia Rally.

First series production of KTM LC4 engine with e-starter. Other subsidiaries set up (Germany and Switzerland). KTM-Motorradholding AG listed on the Vienna stock exchange. 500cc Motocross World Championship title with Shayne King, countless wins in Enduro and Rally competitions.

Market introduction of the LC4 Supermoto for the road, and LC4 Adventure, KTM’s first cruising bike. 3 Enduro World Championship titles: Shane Watts (125), Mario Rinaldi (400) and Kari Tiainen (500).

PDS (Linkless Suspension System) on the 2-stroke models, new engine generation 125/200cc, new Z design. Construction of a new assembly plant with a new R&D centre. Marketing subsidiary KTM UK opens. KTM wins 2nd to 12th position at the 20th Paris-Dakar Rally.

Production commences at KTM’s new manufacturing facility. Production of KTM’s new 4-stroke engine with separate lubrication 125/200cc.
Marketing subsidiary KTM Spain opens. Withdrawal from the stock exchange. Enduro World Champion Juha Salminen (125), overall winner of the Enduro World Championship (Giovanni Sala). Thierry Magnaldi wins the new Rallly World Cup.

Introduction of KTM’s 2-cylinder project at the Intermot Munich. Marketing subsidiary KTM France opens. Extremely good year for competitions: KTM wins 6 World Championships! 125cc Motocross World Champion (Grant Langston), 500cc Motocross World Champion (Joel Smets), 125cc Enduro World Champion (Juha Salminen), 250 4T Enduro World Champion (Matteo Rubin), 400cc Enduro World Champion (Mario Rinaldi), 500cc Enduro World Champion (Kari Tiainen).

Move to the new spare parts warehouse in Mattighofen. 5 times victory for KTM at the Dakar Rally: Fabrizio Meoni wins the Dakar. Juha Salminen takes World Enduro Championship title and James Dobb wins 125cc Motocross Championship.

Move to the new engine assembly plant in Munderfing. Therry van den Bosch becomes World Supermoto Champion. Fabrizio Meoni wins the Dakar Rally riding the new 950 Rally twin. Juha Salminen wins the World Enduro Championship again.
Fabrizio Meoni’s Dakar winning LC8 950 – Ciao Fabrizio, sempre con noi.

more at
04 ADV 950
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Old 09-18-2013, 07:02 AM   #2
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WW2 History?

Just found that - good stuff!

I'm really interested to know what was KTM doing during WW2.
1938-1951 some how are not mentioned in that history.
Were they in production? Did they become a Nazi factory?
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Old 09-18-2013, 07:41 AM   #3
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Good read. Thanks for posting.
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Old 09-18-2013, 08:05 AM   #4
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awesome history lesson, thanks!
Originally Posted by Rodknee View Post
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Old 09-18-2013, 08:24 AM   #5
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Sweet. Still cant pronounce their name when people ask what ktm stands for.
-Chrome don't getcha home, but carbon fiber sure is fancy
2005 KTM 950 Adventure - back from the dead, Was totaled.
2005 Yamaha YZ250F - low compression, because race bike
1989 Yamaha TW200 - clapped out from a tweaker
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Old 09-18-2013, 02:24 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by MrSandman818 View Post
Sweet. Still cant pronounce their name when people ask what ktm stands for.
Me neither. So I started telling everyone it's a hybrid built by Kawasaki,triumph and motoguzzi. 8 out of 10 times the person then says oh yea I just read an article in cycle world about that.
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Old 09-19-2013, 08:00 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by blake716 View Post
good read. Thanks for posting.
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Old 09-19-2013, 12:44 PM   #8
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a bit of sadness...

Ciao Fabrizio....
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