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Posts published in “KTM”

Worth A Closer Look: 2011 KTM RC8

William 1

It is impossible to talk about the KTM RC8 without mentioning that KTM stopped making them because the executive group thought that it was too fast to sell to the public.  If reading the period reviews, it was a well respected and top tier performance machine.  While not exactly faster than other offerings, it did spark a conversation around what the point of a certain level of performance was for the street.

Exact production numbers are hard to nail down, but none confuse these for mass produced vehicles.  Most agree that only a few hundred per year were made.  There are two basic generations, the RC8 and RC8R.  This bike is an RC8R with the dual spark heads and 1195cc.

From The Seller’s eBay Listing:

About this vehicle
This 2011 KTM RC8 is an original. The owner has had it for 5+ years. The vehicle runs great and is mainly used for weekend rides.
Seller’s Notes
Ducati made 300 a year For KTM . These will be going up Soon.
Vehicle Details
Pretty Much in Mint condition, I haven’t been riding lately. I guess it’s time to buy a Harley , New rear Tire, Chain, Sprockets, only needs Signal Lights

There is a lot about this listing that would make many pass by without a second thought.  Limited details, basic pictures and a hint of additional “show” lighting behind the body work.  But without risk, there is no reward.  This is a rare, low production motorcycle that packs a huge punch and has an amazing story to match.  KTM is adamant that they will never make another street legal sports bike so these are you only option if you want to feel close to they MotoGP team these days.

Buy It Now price of $9500 seems reasonable for the market and miles.  Obviously it would be wise to engage with the seller a bit before closing the deal, or better yet if you are on the east coast go see the bike in person to confirm the condition.

One Response.

Heckcat – 2011 KTM RC8R 1190

Donn 3

KTM made several updates to the RC8R for 2011, most focused on smoothing out the power and handling.  Today’s KTM evidently agreed with some rider(s), to the tune of 31K miles !

2011 KTM RC8R 1190 for sale on eBay

Along with a newly designed crankshaft to smooth out the powerband transitions, KTM re-thought the twin butterflies to make throttle response more predictable.  Engineers added twin spark plugs and found a passel more ponies, making 175 available.  Adjustments to swingarm linkage and seat subframe are added to the numerous foot and hand control variables.  WP forks and monoshock are also more adjustable than some, with separate adjustments for compression and rebound.  320mm Brembo brakes sound typical but reviewed as excellent, and a Buell-ish under-slung muffler peaks out beneath the right footpeg.

Presented by what looks to be a used motorbike parts eBay-er, this RC8R has a little patina just about everywhere, and a close brush with reality on the right side.  Even the minuscule stock rear mudguard had to go, with serious frame sliders added, and levers upgraded to the adjustable folding type.  Michelins look ready for another season, and considering how easy it probably is for an RC8R to find trouble, this one looks very good for the mileage.  Just a sentence and change from the eBay auction –

Original with OEM WP suspension, OEM Brembo brakes, and OEM Marchesini 5 spoke rims. The owner has had it for less than 1 year. The vehicle runs/shifts/rides great and is mainly used for weekend rides.

Electronic sensibilities were being introduced to the superbike segment when this RC8R was built, but KTM left it all to the rider’s judgment.  KTM stopped building superbikes for the road in 2015, with the RC390 now their only road-going supersport.  This rider could be buffed up by the next owner, but is now one of those collectible machines that they aren’t making any more of.


3 Responses.

Track Day Tuesday – 2006 KTM RC125GP

Mike 1

Track day bikes come in all shapes and sizes. Most are converted street bikes – some more elegantly converted than others – but occasionally we strike gold in the form of actual, professional grade racing hardware. And today’s find is just that. Designed by KTM as a GP race bike battling in the 125cc class, the RC125GP saw extensive use in the one-make Rookies Cup series. This was the feeder series to the 125cc class under the GP banner, with the goal of building up riders and providing a ladder to progress through the GP ranks. There was even a US-based Rookies Cup run under the AMA banner, with identical machines by KTM. Today, the Rookies Cup is contested on Moto3-spec machinery, but up until 2013 these sharp 125cc two strokes were the order of the day. These come up every so rarely, and today’s 2006 RC125GP is claimed to be a zero hour, zero mile, zero lap US Rookies Cup timepiece.

2006 KTM RC125GP for sale on eBay

From the seller:
2006 KTM RC125GP Red Bull Rookies Cup. Factory GP bike. Very limited! New they cost 42,000 EURO. This bike has Zero miles, Never raced and I believe very started. Perfect collectors bike!

For the uninitiated, it is easy to write off this bike as a simple starter bike or scooter with nifty paint work. But with nearly 40 HP up at 13,000 RPM and above, and an overall (dry) package weight that is lighter than most of us even before we don helmet and leathers (figure in the 160-ish range), the RC125GP is a serious bit of kit. With Ohlins suspension, big brakes and super sticky racing slicks the RC125 can go toe to toe mid-corner with any bike on the planet. It’s all about conservation of motion; smooth is fast. If you enjoy the problem solving you find on any given day at the track, the RC125GP forces you to up your problem solving game in order to maximize forward progress.

Here is a brief video of the US Rookies cup participating at Laguna Seca. This is NOT from this particular bike – I just found it on YouTube – but even the short clip shows how competitive this class was on one of the nation’s most iconic race tracks.

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With the advent of four-stroke technology into GP racing and the lack of available 2-stroke street bikes, the ancient duo-cycle engine was relegated to weed whackers and leaf blowers. Values for surviving two strokes began to rise with rapidity, and unobtanium examples of factory race bikes climbed faster than the tach as the engine hits the pipe. This particular example is as clean as they get, devoid of any crash damage or abuse thanks to being a zero time specimen. Pricing is in line with condition, with the seller requesting $38,000 OBO. Check out all of the details here, and Good Luck!!


One Response.

Track Bike Tuesday – 2012 KTM RC8R Track

Donn 0

KTM started to transition their flagship to a racing-only model in 2011, packing everything a superstock racer could want and leaving all the DOT equipment behind.  Here’s a rare un-used 2012 on showroom display in Oceanside, CA.

2012 KTM RC8R Track for sale on eBay

Starting in the engine bay, the proven 75-degree twin has flowed heads to accompany its four cams and four valves per cylinder.  Titanium intake valves, diamond-like coating on the cam followers and Keihin fuel injection make for a reliable 177 hp.  The underslung Akropovic exhaust is all titanium, but hidden in the knife-edged fairing.  WP dampers are all around including the steering damper, with 43mm inverted forks sporting a nitride coating, which is also used on the shaft of the monoshock.  Brembo brakes and Marchesini forged wheels keep a low profile in black, but are the best available.  The swingarm height is adjustable, along with rider adjustments for handlebars, footpegs, and seat height.  Racetrack requirements like slipper clutch, quickshifter and GP shift pattern are also on board.

Not much to say about the motorbike-porn condition, and though the dash isn’t shown powered up the bike appears un-ridden.  Just a two-liner in the eBay auction –




Either by design or anticipating competition rules, the race-spec KTM lacks traction control and ABS, and pre-dates the latest multi-gyro systems.  Nothing a pro racer would want, but track day or thunderbike entrants will have to listen to the more conservative voice in their helmet.  Any racing presumes the bike will be ridden, though a continued display career is a distinct possibility.


A Face Only a Mother Could Love – 2001 KTM 640 Duke II

Norman 2

No Reserve: 2001 KTM 640 Duke II

2001 KTM 640 Duke II

To be fair, most of us looked extremely weird in the late 90s and early 00s. Just google early 2000’s style trends and I guarantee that you will be repulsed. After you see that, not only should you be happy that that the 640 Duke doesn’t look weirder than it already does but also that women talked to you when you looked liked that in 2000s. KTM has always had some interesting headlight designs so we can’t hold that against them but if you can look past the Preying Mantis front end, there is great hooligan motorcycle to be had.

No Reserve: 2001 KTM 640 Duke II

The black and tan colorway is a departure from KTM’s signature orange but for those who like something a little more subtle yet unique, this should tickle your pickle.

No Reserve: 2001 KTM 640 Duke II

For the avid street rider, having a balance of power and weight is very important. You want to be able to zip through round-a-bouts and side streets and have fun without kissing the red line of your GSXR and it’s $50 Ebay shorty muffler. This is where the Duke 640 and it’s LC4 come in handy. With 55 hp and 44 lb ft of torque, you can confidently chuck this 350 lb bike around the city or through a tight canyon and be entertained anywhere in the rev range. The seller is including Staintune slip ons and bigger carb in the sale to juice up your ride as well.

No Reserve: 2001 KTM 640 Duke II

One of the biggest complaints about this motorcycle is that the seat may as well be a rectangle with 90 degree edges. I like to remedy this by bringing my own seat cushion via my own rear end so I don’t really consider this an issue. Regardless of how much natural seat cushion you bring, the relatively low fuel range will have you dismounting often for gas.

If you want some rear end support, you may want to check this seat cover out.

My favorite thing about motorcycles from this era are the analog gauges. So much more satisfying!

This is likely one of the cleanest 640 Dukes out there. Super low miles and not a bit of corrosion or dirt in any of the places you would expect on a bike of this age. Aside from being one of the early gems of the Duke lineup, I think what makes this motorcycle so great is that this formula still isn’t really produced today (aside from KTM’s own 690 SMC). Sure you can buy a DRZ but you’ll also be outclassed by a Ford Fusion after 60 mph.

Auction is no reserve and is currently at $2K with 10 bids. Certainly under appreciated as a rider’s bike so this may be an opportunity for a good deal.


2 Responses.

Featured Listing – 2013 KTM RC8R

Mike 0

5.18.2022: This bike has sold. Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

The KTM RC8R is the un-Superbike. It does not have the mass-market appeal of the Japanese WSBK competitors, nor does it have a long history of sexy design like the Italian steeds. What it offers instead is a no-holds-barred design philosophy that couples a ferocious powerplant with a stiff and stable chassis, premium components that enabled it to be competitive in WSBK racing, and the rarity of being something different. Exclusivity was guaranteed when KTM pulled the plug on their big bore, street going sport bikes in 2015, leaving the capable RC8 line-up in the hands of fans and those seeking something different on the used bike market. Today, these are edging their way into collector status for what they represent.

Featured Listing – 2013 KTM RC8R!

At the heart of the rare beast is an 1190cc v-twin splayed a unique 75 degrees, and spitting out 175 horsepower. All those mad, fuel injected ponies are unleashed through a tight, 6-speed gearbox with slipper clutch arrangement. That slipper clutch – along with the excellent chassis and WP suspension components, Brembo radial mount brakes, and sticky rubber – are all the tools a rider has in the tool kit to keep the shiny bits, well, shiny. You see, the RC8R is really the last manly Superbike, where traction control, throttle mapping and anti-wheelie systems are the exclusive property of the rider’s right wrist. The RC8R is a bike without techno-nannies. There is no app to program it, there are no confusing menus to scroll through. Skill and bravery are rewarded with unfettered speed.

From the seller:
2013 KTM RC8R
Purchased the bike in January 2021.

Akrapovic Evo1 full titanium system
Dymag UP7X forged wheels installed 2,000 miles ago. Tires are Bridgestone RS11.
Galfer front wave rotors and 1375HH ceramic pads
R&G license plate holder/tail tidy with LED license plate frame and Rizoma LED turn signals
CRG levers
Carbon fiber tank protectors (OEM included as well)
Carbon fiber chain guard

More from the seller:
Bike runs perfectly. No mechanical issues. Maintenance history included in images.
California Reg paid to March 2023, clean title in my name.

Cosmetic issues:
1) some small rock chips on underside of tail section and front fairing
2) nickel-sized mark on left front fairing (in pics, near the “R”)
3) pin-head sized chip in tank from interference with steering damper
4) some scratches in tank from jacket zipper
5) The left fairing is wrapped in gloss black vinyl just below the “R” logo and I assume it’s covering something up but I have no idea what and don’t want to remove it. I actually owned the bike for several months before I noticed it.

Extras included:
Removed stock exhaust, CJ Desigs SAS plates, original owners manual and copy of workshop manual, ONE key.

Located in San Rafael, CA. 94901

Today’s awesome looking 2013 KTM RC8R 1190 comes from RSBFS reader John. The bike sports some very desirable performance and cosmetic upgrades applied to a very clean example. Maintenance has been performed as annotated in the list found in the gallery below, and John has been very open about the condition of the bike – so no surprises. In a world that is going down the technology rabbit hole with ever greater velocity, it is safe to say that we will not see another analog Superbike like this again. KTM created a fantastic platform with the RC8R, and this is destined to be one of the “not to be missed” collectors in this segment in future years. Meanwhile, nothing will put a bigger smile on your face than listing to the big twin hammer its way up through the gears.. Good Luck!!


Limited Addition – 2013 KTM RC8R 1190

Donn 3

KTM made a corporate foray into the superbike market in 2008, and it quickly evolved into a very innovative and powerful machine.  Today’s RC8R has a moderate 15K miles, and looks excellent.

2013 KTM RC8R 1190 for sale on eBay

After a 2005 show bike and the 2008-9 1150, the RC8R had a host of new go-fast goodies and the updated 175 hp 1195cc twin.  Power was increased but numerous changes improved the control of all those ponies.  A familiar trellis frame had WP suspension at both ends, 43mm USD forks and a monoshock that had separate adjustments for compression and rebound damping.  Aluminum alloy was used for the cast swingarm and fabricated subframe.  Reviewers gave the RC8R high marks for adaptability, with rider adjustments for footpegs, seat, handlebars, plus hand and foot levers.

KTM is one of the few European marques this Vegas dealer doesn’t sell new, so it might have been a trade-in.  No history save the mileage is offered, but the pictures are good and the bike looks super.  A pillion mounted topcase might be the only update.  Just a little advertising copy from the eBay auction:

The ultimate power tool from KTM.  Designers pulled out all the stops in the art of engine building when it came to the 1190 RC8 R.  The rider has one of the most powerful V2 engines of our times and one of the best chassis in the world at his or her disposal — totally street-legal.  With the precision to cut out the others when entering a curve.  With the power and traction to pull away from them coming out of a curve.  With the feedback and ergonomics to enjoy the 1190 RC8 R to the fullest.

As one of the last analog superbikes, all the nannies on the RC8R are in your helmet.  KTM had planned a Superbike factory effort, but reality stepped in and they chose to compete regionally and with a single marque support series.  The plug got pulled on the model when Mattighofen saw liability under the stealth fighter’s bodywork, making the RC8R an instant and forever rarity.  Upping the ante to MotoGP in 2017 ( with Red Bull’s sponsorship ), KTM brought an all-new V4 and has had quite a bit of success, but has let more sensibly sized models work the showroom floor.


3 Responses.

Featured Listing – 2015 KTM 1290 Super Duke R

Donn 0

Update 4.2.2022: This bike has SOLD to an RSBFS reader! Congratulations to buyer and seller! -dc

Contact us now for your own Featured Listing!

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KTM introduced the Super Duke in 2005 and has proved a long term success for the brand – and the 1290 Super Duke R won most super-naked shootouts in 2015.  RSBFS reader Steve offers his impeccably maintained example for your consideration.

2015 KTM 1290 Super Duke R $11,000 in Northern California

KTM latched on to ending their engine sizes in -90 as catchy marketing, and the 1290 is close but actually gulps 1301 cc’s per rev.  Even pushing 177 hp, the V-twin is optimized for torque, with a 106 ft.-lbs. push at 8,060 rpm.  Those kinds of numbers can’t be trusted to the right wrist, so a suite of electronics offers selectable levels of throttle, traction and wheelie control, along with ABS.  WP supplies suspension at both ends of the orange trellis, with a single-sided swingarm leaving room for the Arrow muffler.  There is also a factory steering damper and ramped clutch which provides a slipper action.  The limited fairings channel air toward the radiator and away from the headlight, and don’t shield the rider as much as remind them of what’s in store.

As KTM’s most extreme streetfighter, there’s not all that much available in the upgrade department, but Steve had an Arrow exhaust fitted, and the 1290 breathes a little easier without the catalyst.  Of course the DOT rear fender has been tidied up.  Nicer Power Parts seats and luggage come with the bike, as well as the factory seats and exhaust.  Service last fall and new tires mean it should be a while before this Duke needs anything.  Steve asks $13,000 $11,000 and supplied these notes:

New Michelin 5 Tires
Full Service completed on 9/14/21 at A&S Motorsports. Maintenance history included.
KTM Power Parts Seats, OEM seats included
KTM Power Parts Luggage Included
R&G Exhaust Hanger, OEM passenger pegs included
TechSpec Tank Grip
Shorai Battery 2 years old
Arrow Race Tech, Slip-On Exhaust w/link pipe, Full OEM Exhaust included
Rottweiler SAS Block-offs/cat delete
Low Mileage 6,700
Includes Owners Manual, one key, plus Orange key and key code card
Tail tidy / fender eliminator
Runs and Drives perfectly, incredible Horsepower and Torque – aka, “The Beast”
Clean Title in Hand, California registration good until October, 2022
Clean Vehicle History Report
Garage kept. Properly maintained and Cared for. Near Showroom Condition.

A stop-and-go is required to adjust or defeat the traction control and ABS, which reviewers didn’t like.  They then went on to urge caution since the Super Duke will wheelie in the first three gears with very little effort !  The ride by wire throttle reviewed as more linear than earlier Dukes with a cable-operated throttle and closed loop EFI ( and the lean programming required ).  Otherwise the Duke will do just about anything you could ask, and the lack of fairings won’t let you tell LEO’s you had no idea of your speed.

Send questions or offers to Steve via – email –