KTM Begins Testing Moto3 Race Bike

01/02/2011 @ 2:43 pm, by Jensen Beeler10 COMMENTS

At the end of last year we learned that KTM had committed itself internally to competing in the upcoming Moto3 class, which is slated to replace 125GP in 2012. At the time of that news, the Austrian company was still in the early stages of planning for its 250cc four-stroke single-cylinder race bike; but not wanting to let Honda take all of the Moto3 development spotlight with its NRS 250, this past week KTM began testing Moto3 chassis configuration at the Cartagena track in Spain.

Arriving with a modified 125cc chassis and 350cc SX-F thumper, KTM’s IDM Supersport rider Michi Ranseder took to the helm of the prototype race machine over the two day testing session. More of a prologue than the first chapter to KTM’s Moto3 story, this event makes it clear that KTM is still getting its bearings on what direction it wants to take its entry-level GP program.

Obvious in the current configuration is the over-the-limits 350cc motor from the KTM 350 SX-F, which is both extremely lightweight and powerful, and is likely being used because of the similar dimensions and power attributes expected from 250cc Moto3 race bike. KTM’s experience in the 125cc category will come in handy as the team is apparently starting with that chassis configuration, and building upon it to suit the characteristics of the larger displacement four-stroke motor.

The 350 SX-F isn’t a perfect analog for the new Moto3 race bike though, as KTM will have to decrease the 350’s bore from 88mm to the allotted maximum of 81mm. However, the Austrian company should have no problem meeting the required showing that it could supply at least 15 rider with similar race platforms. Moto3 is shaping up to have an interesting mix of OEM and boutique manufacturers competing in the series, such as Dutch tuner Bakker.

Source: NieuwsMotor via Two Wheels Blog

  • irksome

    Say what you will but there is nothing, regardless of displacement, that sounds as beautiful as a thumper running down through the gears.

  • Keith

    yeah there is…a 2stroke thumper running through the gear. ;^) or a twin 2smoke.

  • f the whales save the 2strokes

    2stroke > 4stroke

  • Isaac

    I know that everyone else is going to jump on this wagon. I really hope so too. I love seeing mixed grids.

    So, now we have Honda and KTM contending. I know that everyone else has a 250cc 4S in their parts bins.

    In effect we could see a grid like this:

    1. Honda
    2. Kawasaki
    3. KTM
    4. Suzuki
    5. Yamaha

    I’d love to see Ducati, Aprilia, Triumph and MV Augusta join up however it is highly unlikely because the last 250cc Ducati made was mid-last century. I have faith in Aprilia because they have had more experience with smaller displacement motors.

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  • WellWell

    If KTM would actually stick to their racing contracts and not pull out like they’ve done in years past with different series, I may just be excited. Sure, they may be able to supply 15 teams…..until they randomly pull the plug.

  • WellWell +1

  • MikeD

    We need more manufacturers to enter it so it won’t become the “HONDA CUP”, AGAIN…like moto 2 ( I don’t care if the frames are different, they all have the same engine…..LAME. )

    At least KTM is getting it’s feet WET. GO !

  • Halfie30

    If KTM does go this route I would love to see them make a “690 RC8” so to speak. The world has been in need of a single cylinder full fairing super sport bike since Ducati’s Supermono!

  • Isaac


    +1 We definitley do not need another Honda Cup.