Can KTM build a significantly lighter 700-800cc twin? Is there a market for it?

Discussion in 'Crazy-Awesome almost Dakar racers (950/990cc)' started by LukasM, Oct 28, 2012.

?

Would you buy a 370 lbs wet, 80-90 HP, 700-800cc twin, priced between 690 and 990?

  1. Tomorrow, bring it on!

  2. Too small, prefer the exisiting 990 and upcoming 1190.

  3. Too big, prefer a single.

  4. Not interested in a KTM.

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  1. Yellow Pig

    Yellow Pig Allergic to asphalt!

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    All they need to do is copy and improve this:

    [​IMG]

    <TABLE border=1 cellSpacing=1 cellPadding=3 width=580 align=left><TBODY><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Model:</TD><TD>Highland 750cc Desert X</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>

    <TABLE border=1 cellSpacing=1 cellPadding=3 width=580 align=left><TBODY><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Displacement:</TD><TD>750.00 ccm (45.77 cubic inches)</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Engine type:</TD><TD>V2, four-stroke</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Engine details:</TD><TD>60 degree V-engine</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Valves per cylinder:</TD><TD>4</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Fuel system:</TD><TD>Injection. EFI, fullu adjustable</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Fuel control:</TD><TD>DOHC</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Ignition:</TD><TD>Digital, coil on plug</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Lubrication system:</TD><TD>Wet sump</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Cooling system:</TD><TD>Liquid</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Gearbox:</TD><TD>6-speed</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Transmission type,
    final drive:

    </TD><TD>Chain</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Clutch:</TD><TD>Wet, multiplate</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Driveline:</TD><TD>6-speed constant mesh</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>



























    <TABLE border=1 cellSpacing=1 cellPadding=3 width=580 align=left><TBODY><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Frame type:</TD><TD>HyTens stainless steel</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Front suspension:</TD><TD>Telescopic fork</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Front suspension travel:</TD><TD>300 mm (11.8 inches)</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Rear suspension:</TD><TD>PDS</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Rear suspension travel:</TD><TD>269 mm (10.6 inches)</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Front tyre dimensions:</TD><TD>110/80-19 </TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Rear tyre dimensions:</TD><TD>150/70-17 </TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Front brakes:</TD><TD>Single disc. Four-piston</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Front brakes diameter:</TD><TD>310 mm (12.2 inches)</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Rear brakes:</TD><TD>Single disc. Single piston</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Rear brakes diameter:</TD><TD>320 mm (12.6 inches)</TD></TR><TR><TH colSpan=2>Physical measures and capacities</TH></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Seat height:</TD><TD>1,026 mm (40.4 inches) If adjustable, lowest setting.</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Ground clearance:</TD><TD>345 mm (13.6 inches)</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Wheelbase:</TD><TD>1,506 mm (59.3 inches)</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width="25%">Fuel capacity:</TD><TD>15.14 litres (4.00 gallons)</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>
    #61
  2. KMC1

    KMC1 There is no spoon.

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    I'd rather have a 690 Enduro than something another 50lbs heavier. :puke1

    I don't find the 690 to be that buzzy as has been mentioned by 1 or 2 guys, but I do agree that the gearing is either good for pavement or good for dirt, not both. :1drink

    I wonder if KTM has ever though about a dual range transmission like the old Honda's from like 30 year ago? :ear

    That seems like THE solution. 65 horsepower, 315lbs, $10k and boooyahhhh!
    #62
  3. Chadx

    Chadx my toot toot

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    Yes, very early considering this thread was only started yesterday and there are already 32 votes that say they'd buy it tomorrow. Granted, that's easy to say from the safety of a keyboard.

    For me, this is the bike I want and is the class that I've been looking into. I would love to have one of the 1,200 cc Adventure Tourers, but when I realistically look at how I use a bigger adventure bike, I keep going back to bikes with more ground clearance and lighter weight than the liter+ bikes. When not on my small dual sports, an 800cc class bike just seems to fit my needs better. I primarily ride two up with my girlfriend on longer rides (because otherwise we'd be on our smaller bikes) with camping equipment in the panniers. The trails we ride are rugged enough that I need the ground clearance. Trails we fly across on our WR250R we need to go sloooooow on the Vstrom and still smack the skidplate and bottom out contantly. The Wee is an in-between bike (price was right) until we choose our next medium sized dual sport that we hope to keep a while. With patience, I'm amazed where we've been able to take it. Even more so when I ride it solo. However, riding at that slow speed is a huge tradeoff and having something with 2 or 3 more inches of ground clearance and stouter suspension would make our riding much less stressful. Granted we live near, and ride, the rougher type of trails that 3/4 of the country don't have access to, so maybe we are too small of an audience.

    The 690 is somewhat close, but as far on the small side as the 1200 are on the big side. The 690 subframe is not strong enough for two up and gear, close ratio tranny no good for having both low dirt-worthy 1st AND tall highway gearing, and lacks wind protection. With taller gear, vibes might be doable on hwy but realistically, a twin will be smoother. Most importantly, reliability issue. Any bike I take on a couple day adventure needs to have that. I can ride 8 hours on Montana trails and not see another person. I like that, but it means trouble if you are on a bike that isn't reliable. I don't like little voices in the back of my mind whispering concerns of reliability. Lack of "excitement" is a trade off I'm willing to make for reliability (read: no race motor. Reliable and easy to service).

    Since others are throwing it out there, here is my wish list.

    - 550 - 750cc
    - 65 - 80hp
    - two cylinders (less highway buzz than a single).
    - Good wind protection (or ability to get it with aftermarket)
    - Good ground clearance and stout enough suspension for easy two up trail riding while loaded down or more aggressive solo riding
    - Subframe to handle panniers and two up riding
    - Wide...no, make that wiiiiiiide ratio 6 speed - I want a granny gear first gear and really tall 6th gear because I don't want to choose between a really low first with buzzy highway rpm or a too tall first to get low highway rpm
    - Focus on gas mileage rather than hp to remove the the need for carrying 6 gallons of gas and associated weight. With true 60-70mpg, 4.5 gallons will get you long range and strapping on a 1 gallon rotopax (only when needed) gets you another 60-70 miles range rather than 35 - 40 miles
    - Reliable as a hammer.
    - Reasonable weight. As others have noted, with the 990 weighing what it does, there is no reason why a reliable adventure bike couldn't weigh 50+ lbs less (including the savings in wet weight by needing less fuel on board). Since the 1190 is up a bit on weight over the 990, that would leave a fair weight spread between a 750 and 1190.

    This puts me in the category shopping the midsized two cylinder adventure bikes and that is a limited market currently (BMW 800GS / Triumph Tiger800XC). Would love to have a KTM version of these bikes since I have confidence they can better these with a slightly more rugged terrain flavor...just PLEASE make it reliable.
    #63
  4. wpbarlow

    wpbarlow Long timer

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    Reactive polling. There were only 4 votes for it when I made my post-- couple hours later... :lol3

    In all seriousness, I think KTM's experience with the SE has told them all they think they need to know about "money talks, bullshit walks" wrt what many internet posters say they'll spend real money for.
    #64
  5. Chadx

    Chadx my toot toot

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    Very true. By the time they built it, we'd all probably be on to the next dream bike that we would "buy tomorrow". For whatever reason, that bike that is available off the production line never quite meets up to what we had built up in our minds. Kind of like that pretty girl that you think you would live happily ever after with...until you get her. :lol3
    #65
  6. Pantah

    Pantah PJ Fan from Boston

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    I rode my 950 for seven years. I sold it and bought a new 690r and equipped it for trips. I have been on three dual sport rides. While I am a timid rider, the 690 is much more capable for me than the 950 was. It's just about as quick up to 90mph too. I added the KTM touring screen and other comforts. I still need to fix the seat. I'd like about 210 miles fuel range. It has about 175 miles I think.

    Totally smooth at 65. Slight buzz until 80. Then smooth again. I can do 600 mile days on it. I have 3200 miles now and it's smoother as we go.

    For me the 690 was a no brainer once they softened it up for 2012. They could build a small twin, but it would be around 360 lbs, have cast wheels and cost over $15k. Add the steel spokes and another 20lbs.

    The truth is, I can pick up my 690 without much drama. I needed help with the twin. That made it quite limiting when solo.
    #66
  7. crofrog

    crofrog Long timer

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    And that's the cruel joke. Riding big heavy bikes off-road is a young mans game, and the people that buy them for the most part are old.
    #67
  8. wpbarlow

    wpbarlow Long timer

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    Hey! I resemble that remark!:lol3
    #68
  9. Pantah

    Pantah PJ Fan from Boston

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    :D

    :1drink

    :gerg
    #69
  10. AZ-Twin

    AZ-Twin Dusty and Thirsty

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    The problem is the manufactures have no reason to make this bike, or we would have really good ones by now.

    450CC MX bikes, governed by a class of racing. Every few years they get lighter and better.

    600CC sport bikes, governed by a class of racing. Every few years they get lighter and better.

    1000CC sport bikes, governed by a class of racing. Every few years they get lighter and better.

    Adventure bikes. Governed by internet bragging rights, the Touratech catalog, and the philosophy that bigger is better! The bean counters determine what is produced. They think the guys who will buy the new 1300cc bike because it is better than the old 1200cc bike are the ones that bring the money to the dealer. In a few years, we will make a 1400CC bike and they will all come running again. That is how we got where we are today.

    We need a class of racing that requires a a 750CC bike, and the rider has to carry luggage. That is the only way the bike you guys want will get built!



    [edit]

    That is the only way the bike we want (I want one too) will get built.
    #70
  11. AZ-Twin

    AZ-Twin Dusty and Thirsty

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    I posted in the poll I would buy one tomorrow, but the truth is I would have bought one 3 months ago instead of my 990R.

    Swapping back and forth between my 990 and Xchallenge, it might be easier to tour on a bike slightly too small, than do the challenging stuff on a bike slightly too big. Only time and my trip next summer will tell.
    #71
  12. yellowbronco

    yellowbronco Been here awhile

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    Here's your class of racing:

    http://www.kingsofthewestrally.com/

    Now if we could just get Notmybikemodelwhatshisface to get off his butt and turn this into a wildly popular underground racing series...
    #72
  13. crofrog

    crofrog Long timer

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    There was a racing class, it was called Dakar. Saddly only KTM wanted to play at the end.
    #73
  14. KMC1

    KMC1 There is no spoon.

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    Oooohhhh......OUCH....:rofl

    Spot on though. The new Honda 450 looks cool but its not the "magic" bike.

    :1drink
    #74
  15. Bob599

    Bob599 Bob599

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    The question we should ask is are you willing to pay $16,000 for a KTM 750 Adventure? I would but I live in the sweet spot. 3-4 highway hours and I am in thousands of miles of trails in Northern WI and Upper MI. That bike would be perfect.

    KTM 690 rally with an extra cylinder! Maybe Highland will offer this as an option...................
    #75
  16. Bob599

    Bob599 Bob599

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    How much does that Highland weigh?

    Found it 280lbs. More gas tanks, heavier sub frame for luggage. HMMM may have found the unicorn?
    #76
  17. cjracer

    cjracer AWD please!!

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    Don't forget SEAT HIGHT.

    Everyone wants a 30" tall seat hight with 12" suspension travel.....

    Are riders looking for this bike willing to only be able to get a toe down at stop lights?

    My 950 has a 39" seat hight. Anyone want to take it for a test lap should do so before they order up a TALL bike, then want the suspension shortened so they can get both feet down. :deal

    See you soon Bob. :D

    :freaky
    #77
  18. cjracer

    cjracer AWD please!!

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    Compaired to my 950 SE, the 950 Highland felt like a 525.
    #78
  19. yellowbronco

    yellowbronco Been here awhile

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    I almost pulled the trigger on a 950 Highland right before the tragedy that took their top company officers. If they were still in business and building those bikes, I'd definitely have one. I just wasn't too keen on the fueling issues that are evident in the Youtube video of someone riding the 950 supermoto. CJracer, I definitely envy you the ride you got because I never had the opportunity to spin one.

    The last time I was on the swedish highland websight (apparently the swedish group still has the rights to the name) it was just a copy of the US Highland site. Now the page is blank. Part of me hopes that the engines are still going to be available. However, the technology in their engines dates back to Husqvarna in the 70's and I have to believe that KTM can do better. I seriously question if dual overhead cams is necessary (the Highland appears to be DOHC). Clearly Honda didn't think so with the Unicam design. I recall a few magazines saying that you just couldn't get the rpm's necessary for a competitive 450 with a single cam. If the new Dungey bike engine is any indication, that logic is flawed.
    #79
  20. Schannulleke

    Schannulleke Been here awhile

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    Try again. Not blank when I go to www.highland.se
    #80