The 2009 KTM EXC is another example of the stellar offerings presented annually by this Austrian motorcycle manufacturer. Building upon the success of its predecessors, the KTM Enduro and Motocross lines include the light, middle, and heavyweight options, ranging from 50cc to 690cc. The 2009 KTM EXC boasts a couple of different trim levels, including the EXC and the EXC Six Days. The 450cc serves as the most popular model among experienced riders, but with a little more in the realm of displacement, many riders opt for the up-sell and go for the 530cc model instead.
The 2009 KTM EXC is classified as an enduro model within the KTM family, though few individuals would ever choose to roll these capable bikes on track or streets for any other reason than heading from one trail to another. Regardless of boasting a beefier motocross look than most popular enduro models, the KTM EXC is a capable cruise-around bike to anyone harboring such a preference. The fuel tank holds over two gallons of gasoline, meaning moderate riding will actually result in several fuel-efficient miles per gallon.
Regardless of being an efficient machine, few people are going to use the 2009 KTM EXC on pavement, other than for a quick test ride. This beast is born to be dirty, and to thrive on the trails, tracks, and dunes. Several changes were made to the 2009 model, making it more rider-friendly. One detracting feature of the 2008 model was the sometimes-stubborn electric start. This issue has been improved drastically with the addition of a new cam, which offers more efficient intake and more turnover. Additionally, other engine components have been switched out for new parts, making for a more consistent, better firing stroke.
Throttle response on the KTM enduro models continues to improve annually, and the same can be said for the suspension. The 2009 EXC 450 served as another step in the right direction, and the bike is capable of handling smoothly through turns and over a variety of obstacles. The suspension offers a smooth touch-down after leaving Earth for short stints, and the six speeds within the gearbox ensure a smooth and stable ride, even when riding at high speeds.
The 2009 KTM EXC 450, and its big brother 530, look like any run of the mill enduro motorcycles when seen in print or from a distance. Step up to it, however, and the bike offers a fast turn-on or immediate intimidation. Operating on the same chassis, these EXC models are not for the faint of heart, or the inexperienced rider, as they're quite large. For those hoping for a little more in an off-road motorcycle option, it's nearly impossible to go wrong with KTM—the 2009 EXC models definitely won't disappoint.