2008 KTM RC8 1190 | Price: $19,498
A bigger bore (103mm) and longer stroke (69 mm) add up to 1148cc displacement, but thanks to right-sizing, KTM's latest LC8 engine is lighter and more compact than the 999cc version that powers the firm's other twins. Double overhead cams are chain-driven and cam followers activate eight valves, for a simple, compact cylinder head design.
The RC8's trellis frame, welded in the company's Mattighofen facility, is made from chromoly steel and weighs less than 17 pounds. The swingarm is constructed from a mix of cast parts and sheet-metal sections to save weight and increase strength. The subframe pivots to adjust seat height by .8 of an inch.
Suspension comes from long-time KTM partner WP. The fork offers 10mm of preload adjustment, 32 clicks of compression damping and 28 clicks of rebound. An eccentric fitting in the rear suspension linkage permits a 20mm ride-height adjustment. Shock access, for adjusting preload, is unparalleled.
More of the same Monobloc action on the KTM, with a pair of radial-mount Brembos up front clamping down on 10-button, 320mm rotors. Each caliper contains four separate brake pads (one per piston) for improved cooling. The rear brake is a two-piston caliper, also made by Brembo, matched to a 220mm disc.
|Engine type: l-c 75-deg. V-twin||Rear brake: Single Brembo two-piston caliper, 220mm disc||Corrected 1/4-mile: 10.27 sec. @ 138.1 mph|
|Valve train: DOHC, 4v||Front tire: 120/70ZR-17 Pirelli Dragon Supercorsa Pro||Top-gear roll-on 60-80 mph: 3.05 sec.|
|Displacement: 1148cc||Rear tire: 190/55ZR-17 Pirelli Dragon Supercorsa Pro||Fuel mileage (high/low/avg.): 40/35/36 mpg|
|Bore x stroke: 103.0 x 69.0mm||Rake/trail: 23.3/3.5-3.6 in.||Colors: Orange/black, white|
|Compression: 12.5:1||Seat height: 31.7-32.5 in.||Availability: Now|
|Fuel system: Keihin EFI||Wheelbase: 56.3 in.||Warranty: 36 mo./36,000 mi.|
|Clutch: Wet, multi-plate slipper||Fuel capacity: 4.4 gal.||Contact: |
KTM North America, Inc.
1119 Milan Ave.
Amherst, OH 44001
|Transmission: 6-speed||Weight (tank full/empty): 441/416 lbs.|
|Frame: Tubular-steel trellis||Measured horsepower: 134.9 bhp @ 10,250 rpm|
|Front suspension: 43mm WP inverted cartridge fork, adjustable for spring preload, compression and rebound damping||Measured torque: 75.4 lb.-ft. @ 7000 rpm|
|Rear suspension: Single WP shock, adjustable for spring preload, high/low-speed compression and rebound damping|
|Front brake: Dual Brembo four-piston radial calipers, 320mm discs|
Adjustability is the key word here, with multiple settings for seat height, footpeg position and handlebar rise. Roomy, too: The 18.6-inch seat-to-peg measurement is the longest of any sportbike we've measured, and the 3.6-inch bar rise is bettered only by Buell's 1125R.
The RC8's torque curve is flatter than a tabletop, and stout too, delivering upwards of 60 lb.-ft. of torque anywhere on the tach.
Horsepower builds strongly right up to 10,000 rpm and then flattens without falling off, leaving a nice cushion of over-rev should you need to carry a gear through a corner.