Complete details on new-generation KTM enduro range.
KTM has pulled the covers off its complete range of 2017 EXC-F and EXC enduro models, featuring substantial updates across the board that result in a lighter, stronger and faster package that’s Ready to Race regardless of your preferred choice. And MotoOnline.com.au’s in Spain to ride the brand new models this week!
KTM had three major development targets when creating its brand new era in off-road riding: Weight reduction and centralisation of masses for better rideability, an improved performance and power delivery, plus a new state-of-the-art appearance.
The massive range for 2017 includes a mixture of models, led in the Australian market by its 500, 450, 350 and 250 EXC-Fs, as well as the 300 and 250 EXCs. The 200 has been officially discontinued.
On top of those, there’s the XC-W range of a 125 (TBC for Australia), 250 and 300. And then on top of that, there’s the 450, 350 and 250 XC-F models. For those not familiar, these are cross country bikes heavily based upon the SX-F and SX range.
The lightweight chrome-moly steel frame, the base of the MY17 enduro series, features increased torsional rigidity by 20 percent thanks to wider but lower profiles for the steering triangle combined with hydro-formed side tubes, providing more cornering and track stability.
In addition, the longitudinal stiffness was reduced by 30 percent which results in better absorption of the impact energy from the suspension. Laterally attached, lightweight engine head stays also contribute to a reduced vibration level.
The brand new sub-frame is also featured with a 20 percent weight saving over the previous generation. Overall the MY17 EXC frame is 350 grams lighter than its predecessor and a full kilogram lighter than that of the lightest competitor’s frame.
To compliment the revised frame design, the MY17 range features the all-new WP XPlor 48 upside-down fork, a split fork developed by WP in close collaboration with KTM, featuring springs on both sides and the damping action is split between the fork legs – compression is on the left side and rebound is on the right.
The forks are easily adjusted for compression and rebound by twisting the individual dials on top of the fork tubes (30 clicks each). In addition, a longer and sealed hydro-stop guarantees better resistance against bottoming-out.
The new XPlor 48 forks with 300mm of travel combine outstanding response and damping characteristics with weight savings of around 200grams over the previous generation of forks. In addition, a new, optional pre-load adjuster allows to quickly dial up one of three different spring pre-load settings without any tools.
To match the new XPlor fork, the MY17 range features the newly-developed WP XPlor rear shock, which retains the signature KTM PDS design where the shock absorber is directly connected to the upper-side of the swingarm without a linkage system.
The PDS’s been re-designed with a new frame and swingarm architecture in mind. It boasts the best possible mounting geometry, provides even more progressive damping and features an all-new shock absorber body with a smaller piston and a larger reservoir that’s positioned five millimetres more central.
Ergonomically the seat height is approximately 10-20mm lower than last year, while reworked exhaust systems across the range improves performance despite being quieter and, again, are mass centralised.
In addition, the new Lithium-Ion battery is 1000g lighter with higher starting safety, plus the newly-designed airbox and intake snorkels result in better performance. The new filter and filter support system make filter changes easier and safer.
Brakes have been upgraded with a new front brake hose protection tube with integrated channel for speedo cable, there’s a new brake disc design made by Galfer, and the new rear pedal is 10mm longer, with a 24mm brake caliper piston rather than 26. As well, they have ‘No-Dirt’ footpegs that are six millimetres higher than the SX.
As we’ve come to expect from the Austrian manufacturer, the KTM-designed throttle assembly has been refined for all models and the four-strokes have different inserts for different opening characteristics. There are also new lock-on grips made by ODI.
From this point we’ll get into the specific models, starting with the 500 EXC-F and working our way down the order through the four-strokes, into the EXC two-strokes and then onto the XC and Six Days editions.
For 2017, the KTM 500 EXC-F makes for a more dynamic enduro experience than ever, thanks to notable weight savings for a higher-than-ever power to weight ratio.
At the same time, the enhanced mass centralisation and geometry delivered by an even more compact engine layout, among others, makes for an increase in rideability, which is absolutely essential to convert the power into a true racing benefit.
The 500 EXC-F’s fuel-injected engine has been redesigned in order to make it the most compact and lightweight 500 on the market, while still delivering strong torque and power figures across the entire rev range thanks to a revised single overhead camshaft cylinder head and the latest-generation electronic fuel injection.
An all-new overhead camshaft now controls the gas flow through optimised ports, while a newly designed water jacket and combustion chamber look after combustion and heat management.
The engine’s four valves are now controlled by extremely rigid rocker arms and a shorter timing chain has been fitted with reduced-friction chain guides. All-new lateral brackets securely fixate the engine to the frame via two head stays while reducing vibrations.
The new stiffened crankshaft of the 500 EXC-F employs a shorter connecting rod for an even more compact engine layout and reduced weight. It provides five percent more inertia than last year’s model while a higher balancing factor serves to further reduce vibrations.
A plain big-end bearing with two force-fitted bearing shells runs directly on the crank pin. The necessary oil feed for this bearing is ensured by the engine’s pressure lubrication.
This design enhances the engine’s durability, allowing long crankshaft service intervals for a further increase in maintenance efficiency.
The MY17 450 EXC-F’s fuel-injected SOHC powerhouse has been redesigned with the aim of making it the most compact and lightest 450 on the market, while delivering groundbreaking torque and power figures over the entire rev range.
There’s a re-designed single overhead camshaft cylinder head and the latest Keihin Engine Management System with electronic fuel injection featuring an all-new 42mm throttle body, a new feature on all MY17 EXC-F models.
Thanks to its unique injector position, the 450 EX-F is said to feature a more direct response than ever before. At the same time, an Euro IV homologation makes clear the environmental performance is also on par.
The new 450 EXC-F’s also features a stiffer crankshaft design and employs a shorter connecting rod, which makes for an overall compact and lightweight engine with a snappier power delivery.
Another feature on all MY17 EXC-F models, the 450 EXC-F boasts the KTM-developed DDS clutch (damped diaphragm steel) with a wear-free steel basket and extremely heat resistant clutch plates.
This new design employs a diaphragm spring instead of the usual coil springs, which makes for a considerably easier clutch action. A diaphragm spring also leaves space for a damping system to be integrated into the clutch hub for increased traction and enhanced durability.
In addition, it has been fitted with a lighter basket, a re-designed inner hub and a pressure plate that provides a better oil supply and improved cooling. Actuated by Brembo hydraulics, the clutch ensures an easy operation and consistently precise control.
For MY17 the 350 EXC-F has once again been re-designed to be more compact and lighter while delivering increased torque and power across the entire rev range. The new design featuring an optimised shaft configuration makes the engine 20mm shorter for added mass centralisation and increased rideability.
A major benefit of the new design is the weight reduction by which, including the electric start system, is down to 28.5kg, a 1.9kg decrease over the previous model. Two overhead camshafts activate friction-optimised finger followers, now with a 30 percent harder DLC coating. Their revised timing is optimised for strong low-end torque.
Four lightweight titanium valves with new valve springs, retainers and high-flow ports maximise the flow rate for a wide powerband and outstanding performance across an impressive rev range extending up to 12,000 rpm.
The completely new design of the die-cast engine case also allows for a much more centralised shaft configuration, moving the crankshaft closer to the bike’s centre of gravity, while the clutch shaft position has moved 11.1mm to the rear and 26.9mm upwards.
This shortens the engine by two centimetres, contributing to the handling benefits of increased mass centralisation. Newly designed engine covers also feature an advanced surface structure in order to reduce the wear caused by the rider’s boots.
The 350 EXC-F’s updated crankshaft employs a six millimetre shorter connecting rod, which also contributes to the compact and lightweight engine layout as well as the responsive power delivery.
The MY17 250 EXC-F DOHC engine has been redesigned to be more compact and feature further weight improvements, while delivering class-leading torque and power figures across the board. Its foundation shares many of the same updates and components with the 350 EXC-F engine and enjoys class leading performance with plenty of torque thanks to its advanced fuel injection system.
The centrepiece of the compact DOHC 250 is its cutting-edge cylinder head. Its twin overhead camshafts shed another 150 grams for MY17 and the friction-optimised finger followers receive a 30 percent harder DLC coating along with a revised valve drive.
Four light-weight titanium valves and high-flow ports maximise the flow rate for an optimal power delivery and outstanding performance across the rev range that reaches up to 12,800 rpm. The new 250 EXC-F, like its 2017 EXC-F counterparts, also features KTM’s ‘No Dirt’ footpegs which have been placed 6mm higher than the SX versions for increased ground clearance.
Stiffer radiators are also featured for increased durability. An 8.5 litre fuel tank features across the range for long journeys and a new seat design, new air box design, updated body work and plastics, Neken handlebars and revised speedometer have also been fitted.
For MY17, KTM has continued their commitment to two-stroke technology by re-designing their 250cc and 300cc powerplants. An all-new design with a new shaft arrangement ensures improved mass centralisation.
There is a new cylinder with a twin-valve controlled power valve, a new counter balance shaft and both the 250 & 300 feature a newly developed cylinder with a bore of 66.4mm (250 EXC) and 72mm (300 EXC) with all-new ports. This system features a sophisticated mechanism for the lateral support exhaust ports, providing smooth and controllable power on tap at all times.
The crankshaft’s 72mm stroke remains the same, but otherwise, the component has been fully re-designed, which includes re-balancing and setting it up with a counter balance shaft against vibrations.
Compared to the SX range, it has more inertia due to a heavier ignition rotor. This helps the rider remain smooth and roll on the power for maximum traction in difficult conditions. The 250 and 300 two-stroke engine is equipped with a new electric starter located below the engine. Compared to previous models, the new starter system is less complex and more reliable.
For 2017 the 125 EXC has been replaced by the new 125 XC-W, which features all of the latest chassis and engine technology of the larger EXC models, but without any homologation features or power restrictions. It’s not yet confirmed if it will come to Australia.
The ‘XC’ stands for cross country, while the ‘W’ signifies a wide-ratio enduro gear box. Otherwise, these bikes are still largely based on the EXC models, retaining the same type of chassis hardware as well as the latest engine technology.
Being very similar to the EXC models, the main difference is that they are not street-legal as they do not comply with current homologation rules from the outset – the XC-Ws are defined for closed-course competition use only. There are also XC-W 150 and 300 models available in limited numbers.
KTM-designed lightweight die-cast engine cases featuring a high crankshaft and clutch shaft position, located close to the centre of gravity, which results in a tight mass centralisation for improved rideability.
In addition, the engine body is extremely lightweight and compact, while still able to house an optional electric starter. The newly designed engine covers also feature an advanced, highly durable new surface structure in order to reduce the wear caused by the riders boots.
Increased power and impressive amounts of torque across a wide power band have been achieved in this new design which has been packaged in an extremely compact layout that is two kilograms lighter than the previous model.
450/350/250 XC-F and 300/250 XC:
KTM will also have on offer the XC-F and XC cross country variants, with a mixture of off-road and motocross features, including the 450 XC-F, 350 XC-F, 250 XC-F four-strokes, as well as the XC 300 and XC 250 two-strokes.
These are largely based off the MY17 SX-F and SX range, including the new and highly anticipated WP AER 48 front fork, as well as Traction Control and Launch Control. There’s also an assortment of cross country features including revised transmissions, fuel tank sizing, side-stand, wheel sizing and more.
In addition to the new cross country XC range, KTM will also offer the popular Six Days range of motorcycles, which includes various models from across the MY17 line-up.
The Six Days range is based largely off the EXC range featuring the same WP XPlor 48 upside-down fork along with a predominately white colour scheme and select features aimed at extended lengths of time out on the trail.
KTM Australia is yet to release official information locally on the MY17 enduro line-up, however stay tuned for updates on arrival scheduling and pricing. Visit www.ktm.com.au for more.