Electric bikes are about to blow up, and obviously KTM would be foolish not to be investing serious time and money into that segment. Heck, it has already conquered every other off-road segment, so this is a logical path forward.
Yesterday the brand held a huge press event at Red Bull's Hangar 7 in Austria, and KTM principles talked extensively about its ten-year journey in electric R&D, and what's coming now, and what's coming later. Could KTM be producing an electric-powered mashup of a bicycle and a motorcycle? Seems likely, among other things. An electric-powered equivalent to a 50cc motocross bike? Sounds like it.
For now, the latest is the new KTM Freeride E-XC. This is an improved version of the Freeride bike KTM has produced in limited qualities for the last few years—it's not quite the hardcore racer line like the regular KTM XC or EXC bikes, but more of a fun all-around motorcycle. KTM recently redesigned the gas-powered 250cc four-stroke version of this bike, and now the electric model is making big strides.
KTM's press release says the bike will arrive to the North American market in limited quantities.
Here's the full PR:
The powerful and agile KTM FREERIDE E-XC is now even better. Powered by a state-of-the-art electric motor with a peak of 18 kW fitted into a re-designed composite frame that provides even better stability, this e-machine now benefits from a 50% capacity increase in its new KTM PowerPack, which offers up to one and a half hours of riding time with just one battery charge. The new KTM FREERIDE E-XC now also utilizes energy recuperation when coasting or braking for an additional range boost, and the battery has a quick charging time, while also providing 70% of its initial capacity after 700 charge cycles. In addition, this lightweight bike boasts a new WP Xplor 43 upside-down fork system with enhanced sensitivity, and a new WP PDS Xplor shock absorber with improved progression and adjustment options.
The KTM FREERIDE E-XC features three riding modes: Economy, Enduro and Cross. Its easy operation, with no clutch or gear shift lever, and a confidence inspiring low seat height of just over 900mm, combined with its extreme cross-country agility, ensures that this is the ultimate electrically powered machine for beginners to experienced level riders. Stylish new bodywork with racy graphics, trim and colors, a new dashboard and re-positioned ignition lock provide further benefits over the previous model. Producing zero emissions and minimal noise pollution, the possibilities are endless with the ultra-playful KTM FREERIDE E-XC.
This latest e-powered machine is part of KTM’s long-term commitment to e-mobility, which began over 10 years ago in KTM’s research and development department in Mattighofen, Austria. The Austrian brand plans a range of machines for the future including e-mini, and an e-scooter, as well as maximizing its partnership with PEXCO with a new possibility to produce crossover products in the bicycle sector. The vision is clear, and by 2025 KTM will increase emphasis on machines from 250 watt to 11kWh due to market suitability and efficiency.
Stefan Pierer (KTM CEO): “We are proud to present the new KTM FREERIDE E-XC, which marks the next step in development of e-mobility within KTM and is a continuation of our commitment to this segment. We know that e-mobility will change the landscape of travel in the future, and our vision is very clear. Looking ahead to 2025 we expect to have a wider range of models available with a focus in the commuting arena. We also plan crossover machines with our collaboration with PEXCO, as well as using our e-mobility expertise in other applications.”