Sharp and edgy – the best way to quickly describe any street bike from KTM. It wouldn’t be easy to find motorcycles that surpass KTM as far as the sharpness in design is concerned.
And with that trademark bright orange colour splashed in good amount all over the motorcycle, nothing else looks as lively. If you want fun, KTM offers some of the best motorcycles you could go for.
In that regard, we were given an unlikely opportunity to ride the RC8 R, KTM’s only Superbike till date. You guessed it right, it looks unlike anything in its segment, it is sharp and edgy but has a likeable design language overall. Splashed with a good dose of white and orange and a dash of black, the RC8 R looks like it is having fun even when parked at the road side. It doesn’t look uncomfortably restless, but eager to move. And that is a good thing if a sportbike can make you feel like that.
Initially displayed as a concept in 2005 with a 999cc engine from Super Duke of those times, the RC8 was launched in 2008 with an 1148cc V-twin engine. In 2010, the RC8 became RC8 R and the engine was upgraded to 1195cc with several other improvements in other areas like chassis to make it a better Superbike for street and track both. The power it produces is around 175 PS at 10,250 RPM while the torque is 127 NM at 8,000 RPM.
Yet, the most interesting thing about the RC8 R, other than riding it, remains its design. It is, shall we say, very geometrical. Look at the recesses on the fuel tank, they are straight lines joined together at various angles. It is not a typically smooth bent of metal (or plastic)! Same is the case with how the side fairing has cuts. They are a mixture of straight lines. It is trademark KTM, this is how they make their motorcycles appear.
Even then, KTM has managed to make it look quite pleasing to the eyes. It looks as uncomfortable as any other Superbike out there. But how would you know unless you’ve ridden it? After reading numerous international reviews and finally riding one ourselves, we can tell you that this radically designed KTM is quite accommodating and isn’t as torturous to sit on as it might look. It is, by far, not the most uncomfortable Superbike and that is saying something.
We Sincerely thank Mr. Rohan Chhibbar for his valuable time and letting us ride his KTM 1190 RC8 R.
By all means, it is a great value for a Superbike if you can get one. KTM never really launched it in India. But some people do have it and for this reason, you might find one on OLX if you give it a try.
However, it is time for KTM to bring out a new version of their Superbike because nearly 175 horsepower at crank is not going to cut it anymore. It is the time for 200 hp plus a plethora of electronics. And there’s hope. KTM is getting ready to enter MotoGP for next season (2017) with their RC16 race bike which the company revealed some days back.
Of course, we can expect KTM to be working on their new production Superbike as well and it is safe to assume that it will be one hell of a machine, up there with the best.