The KTM RC-8 is the epitome of the Austrian based cycle companies’ slogan "Ready to Race". The sharp lines and futuristic styling give the RC-8 a very distinct look and feel that make it stand out from the competition.
In 2005 KTM unveiled the concept version of the RC-8 with the engine from the Super Duke. Dressed in high-end components top to bottom, the RC-8 had a very modern look with performance to back it up. The borrowed 999cc power-plant on the concept bike was replaced with a 1,148cc behemoth for the production model. Thankfully the edgy looks and top shelf components remained intact when RC-8 hit US soil in 2008.
The RC-8 was not the first performance street bike to come out of KTM's stable but it was the first race ready Superbike attempt, and a darn good one. KTM released the second version of the RC (RC-8 R) 2010 that was powered by a larger 1,195cc DOHC V-Twin. In 2011 KTM upgraded to the Twin Spark ignition and head which utilizes two spark plugs per cylinder above 7000 rpm's for increased performance and reduced detonation. The compression was bumped to 13.5:1 and the head, cams and valves were upgraded to help boost performance. The RC-8 R is equipped with so many additional high-end, race inspired components it is nothing short of a Road Racing machine equipped with lights.
KTM has had a long-standing relationship with companies like Brembo Brakes, WP Suspension, Magura Hydraulics and other high-end manufactures. These relationships allow KTM to include high quality components as standard equipment to produce bikes like the RC-8 R that are ready for the track right out of the box. The list of standard equipment included on the RC-8 R is absolutely staggering. From the factory the RC-8 R included features like top of the line suspension, brakes and adjustable everything.
The Frame on the 2014 RC-8 R utilizes an ultra-light and rigid chrome-molybdenum steel for optimal stiffness and unparalleled stability. The Swing Arm includes an adjuster that allows the rider to limit compression and reduce rear-end squat when accelerating hard out of a corner.
High-end WP telescopic inverted forks and shock provide unmatched adjustability and control. The WP forks feature high-low speed compression damping, preload adjustment, and rebound adjustment. An adjustable WP steering stabilizer was also installed to aid in high speed control and stability. Racers normally spend thousands of dollars to obtain this level of suspension adjustment and refinement.
KTM didn't stop with the just the suspension, they also equipped the RC-8R with adjustable everything to accommodate riders of all sizes. The footrest and foot levers (brake & shifter) are height and position adjustable. The seat is equipped with height adjustment. The (brake & clutch) hand levers, and handlebars are all adjustable to tailor fit the bike to individual riders preference. The only down-side to the RC-8 R seems to be sorting through all the adjustable components to find the most comfortable ergonomics to suit your needs.
KTM RC8 Specs
Tires, Battery, and Spark Plug
KTM RC8 Specs
2005-2014 RC-8 1190
Front Tires 120x70ZR-17
Rear Tires 190x55ZR-17
Spark Plug LKAR9BI9