Harald Bartol, who heads the KTM 125cc & 250cc GP teams, has revealed that the Austrian company was the first to use a Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) on Tommy Koyama’s racebike last year. KERS was first fitted to Koyama’s bike during the 125cc GP in Valencia last year, and KTM is looking to explore how KERS could be applied in other racing applications and production motorcycles.
KERS, a system that stores energy during hard braking, charges either capacitors, and then releases the energy during full-throttle application, is set to make its debut in Formula 1 racing this year, but going by Bartol’s revelation, KTM have already beaten the F1 guys to the punch. While Koyama only managed to finish seventh in the 2008 Valencian 125cc GP and his top speed during the race, and was 4mph slower than Aprilia’s Stefan Bradl,however, KTM is putting in more development work into this system and it may soon start providing a real competitive edge to KTM’s racing bikes.
For now, the system only provides an additional 3bhp, but will likely be proving a bigger boost after more development. The Formula1 variety is already producing much more power, and shows what the technology can achieve.