KTM's RC390 is already probably the most track-focused sportsbike you can buy in the small-capacity learner class. With 40 hp on tap, it's a killer machine to hone the craft of cornering on, as well as being an excellent bike to start out on. Now, with more race series beginning to open up worldwide in this class, KTM has decided to put an even sharper edge on it.
The limited edition RC390R looks much the same as the RC390, but features fully-adjustable WP suspension front and rear, shorter intake funnels to widen the powerband, foldable CNC-milled levers and a new, adjustable top yoke and handlebar kit that takes some of the focus off street riding comfort and gives the bike a racier riding position.
Five hundred units will be sold, at a retail price of €8,500 (US$10,552) including German VAT. And if you want a power boost, maybe it's worth checking out where those drum charger guys got to with their design.
SSP300 "ready to race" kit
If you want to take things to the extreme, KTM is also producing an €11,000 (US$13,659) homologated Race Kit to bring the RC390R into line with what it's racing in World Superbike's Supersport 300 category.
The SSP300 kit contains more than 230 upgraded parts for the bike, including a full titanium Akrapovic exhaust system, a Race ECU, STM slipper clutch, quickshifter kit, a new wiring harness, spare wheels, a bunch of different gearing options, a bigger radiator and a race bodywork kit made from "lightweight and strong materials."
This whole business makes me want to grab a standard RC390 and head to a racetrack. Small bikes on tight tracks are an absolute ton of fun, and a terrific way to learn a bit of track craft without breaking the bank. Without hundreds of horsepower to make up for your mistakes, you're forced to focus on technique and precision, two things I could really do with. Sign me up!
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