Dakar champion Sam Sunderland said, “We’re going in confident but humble” as he helped reveal KTM’s new 450 Rally bike at EICMA. The EICMA is Europe’s major motorcycle show. The said event was held in Milan, Italy. The event was set up to for KTM for them to show their latest 450 rally bike to the world. They were hopeful that it will take them to a surprising 17th consecutive Dakar Rally victory to be held next January.
It took 2 years for KTNM to develop the said bike and it was worth the wait for the press and motorcycling enthusiasts as they finally reveal their latest output. In October they raced it in a black livery in Morocco, but in Milan it was sporting its thoroughbred race colors.
It is apparent that the KTM made the 450 rally bike in accordance to the development of the nature and landscape of the Dakar Rally. A thorough engineering is clearly done in order for the 450 rally to surpass the minor changes and to adapt the ever changing environment of the event.
They also considered the visual impact as the new 450 Rally looks sleeker, slimmer and trimmer than the previous model. It does look nearer to an enduro bike than we’ve seen before. It also features an all new engine with higher peak performance balanced by a new engine management system with a better throttle body to improve response.
Complete with a new frame to enhance agility and handling and a new air box. New rear suspension is mated to a new swing arm. There’s a lot going on, more than KTM are willing to talk about this close to Dakar.
“It’s been two years of testing to get to this stage,” said Sunderland. “We spent a lot of time in 50 degree heat in Morocco doing durability testing.
“A lot of work has gone into this bike from the whole team, and with the win at our first outing in Morocco, it’s a good sign for Dakar.”