KTM has revealed its 2018 Factory Edition racer which will form the basis of the 2019 production range, with an all-new frame, bodywork and heavily revised single-cam engine.
The bike, launched in the USA today, is officially a 2018 model with lots of Powerparts products, called the Factory Edition. This makes it legal for the 2018 Supercross season and will form the basis of the standard bike which will be on sale next summer.
The machine was recently revealed at the Monster Cup and has been tested in Europe by Jeffrey Herlings and the KTM GP team. Herlings reckons the bike is much more powerful. The engine is one pound lighter than the old model, and is 15mm shorter. There’s a new bottom end with an all-new gearbox but the major changes are said to be in the cylinder head and intake. There are new friction treatments on the cams and cam chain to improve efficiency.
The steel frame is new, fine tuned to build in stiffness where needed and flex where needed for a better feel. The frame is stiffer in overall feel to aid fast direction changes, and the subframe is longer. The swingarm is the same shape as the old model but has a 5mm longer slot for the rear wheel to change handling.
The new exhaust system now has even even bigger resonance chamber and a shorter exhaust. There’s now a separate mid-pipe, so it’s easier to remove the shock and exhaust – something that has been a pain with KTMs in recent years.
Air forks are still fitted to the bikes, but the WP AER 48 units have been modified to suit the new chassis. The triple clamps are CNC-machined to be stiffer and have rubber-mounted bar mounts.
As for the shock, it gains a new setting and piston. The stock shock body fits within the new frame but the race team gets a wildly new body to work with this chassis and intake.