January 11, 2006 Supermotard is a form of motorcycle racing and a genre of motorcycle which has only evolved in recent years, finding popularity in France in the mid-eighties and spawning factory-produced models from serious off-road motorcycle manufacturers in the nineties. Essentially off-road motorcycles with modified suspension and slick tyres, Supermotards are perhaps the most controllable of all motorcycles at medium and low speeds on tarmac and hence they have grown in popularity with roadgoing motorcyclists the world over, simply because they are very relevant to real world speeds and conditions. Recognising this, the FIM has now sanctioned a world championship and, predictably, the first “works replicas” are now emerging – bikes that are identical to those ridden in world championship events. The winningest marque on the World Supermotard scene is the Italian Husqvarna, and the company has produced 50 limited edition replicas of the motorcycle Eddy Seel used in the World Supermoto Championship in 2005. The SM450RR will be competitive at any supermotard race meeting, straight out of the crate.
Though loosely based on the existing SM 450R model, supermoto enthusiasts will be impressed with the range of special components fitted standard to these machines. For starters, there’s a TIG-welded frame with adjustable rake(+/- 5 mm. ; +/- 1°) as well as shortened Marzocchi forks for increased traction and maneuverability, and a shortened swing arm to improve traction and handling.
The engine has been upgraded to TC (MX) specification and the titanium Arrow exhaust system meets 2006 FIM noise rules (including db killer for further noise reduction if requested).
Other exotic goodies coming straight from the crate include an STM 'slipper' clutch, Brembo brakes with radial mount front calliper, CNC machined triple clamps with alloy stem, tapered Tommaselli 'fat bar' handle bars, fully adjustable 50mm Marzocchi USD front forks, a fully adjustable Sachs rear shock absorber and a bunch of genuine carbon fibre goodies (clutch cover, ignition cover, rocker cover, front sprocket cover, oil filter cover, engine slides, case cover and frame protection, chain guide, shock protector and front mudguard brace).
Completing the visuals are Rexfelgen red anodised wheels fitted with a 120/70/17 front and 165/55/17rear Dunlop slick tyres.
Electric and kick start systems are incorporated as standard as well as a 41mm Keihin carburettor, spare sprockets, steering rake sockets and a race stand.
The price in the United States has not yet been finalised, but the UK distributor is selling the SM 450RR for UKP7995 (approx US$14,100) and the Australian distributor is selling them for at AUD$18,500 (approx US$13,900), so don't expect a prize for getting into the ballpark. In Australia, the standard, roadgoing version SM 450RR sells for AUD$12,990, indicating the level of up-spec involved.