Fans of motorbike-like specs on four wheels, strap yourselves in. KTM has announced a planned new version of its X-Bow (pronounced "Crossbow") sports car. Few details have been released, but based on past models we can expect blistering speed and glue-like road-holding.
Prior to 2008, KTM had stuck to dealing in high-performance off-road motorcycles – and was highly regarded in the field. Covering the announcement of the original X-Bow in 2007, Gizmag said of KTM's biking heritage, "It has become competitive at everything it has attempted." It was this level of quality that it was aiming to bring to four wheels with the X-Bow.
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The original X-Bow weighed 790 kg (1,742 lb), including its carbon fiber monocoque chassis that weighed just 70 kg (154 lb). The car produced 237 hp (177 kW) and could accelerate from 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) in 3.9 seconds, hitting a top speed of 137 mph (220 km/h).
Subsequent versions of the X-Bow were released, the most recent being last year's X-Bow GT. The GT is a slightly more civilized version of its predecessors, gaining as it did a windscreen, side windows, doors and even space for some luggage. Its performance specs aren't quite as impressive as the earlier versions (although they're not far off), but the car is a little more practical should you, inexplicably, wish to use it for the school run.
All that leads us to yesterday's announcement. We know that KTM's new X-Bow will be built with Reiter Engineering, with whom KTM has had a partnership since 2008. We also know that the car will be designed specifically for use in motorsport. Beyond that, there's little else to go on, other than a couple of tantalizing quotes.
"With the X-Bow Battle we have established a highly successful one-make series competition for our customers who are also motorsport enthusiasts," explains KTM executive board member Hubert Trunkenpolz in a press release. "We are very aware that among them, and among many other like-minded enthusiasts, there is a demand for a racing car that can compete in international races. With this in mind, Hans Reiter came to us with the challenging idea of developing a completely new X-BOW for use in motorsport."
And for his part Reiter says, “Now is the ideal time to introduce a revolutionary new vehicle concept into international customer motorsport."
Watch this space.