2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 - Performance, Price, and Photos

The RC200 maybe small on displacement but it’s big on performance

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The relatively small displacement of the KTM RC200 is misleading as this is a racebike born and bred with similar bodywork to its larger siblings, but it’s just one that’s street legal.

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 Performance and Capability

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 - Performance, Price, and Photos
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The 200 cc engine is the star of the show with 26 horsepower and 14 pound-feet of torque.

It’s easy to see why the RC200 is so popular in areas with a large small-displacement motorcycle rider base. The thumper is still the star of the show. It runs a 72 mm bore and 49 mm stroke for a total displacement of 199.5 cc with an absolutely sizzlin’-hot 14.5-to-1 compression ratio.

This generation rocks an enlarged airbox to better serve the engine’s needs and encourage the top-end throttle response. Dual over-head cams time the four-valve head with finger-follower actuation and minimal reciprocating weight in the rocker box for safe high-revving operation.

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 - Performance, Price, and Photos
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It brings 26 horsepower to the table with 14.38 pound-feet of torque on tap for rather invigorating holeshots and quick acceleration early on in the range. The engine is liquid-cooled, and even better, it has a fan that forces air through the radiator for stable temps, even in stop-and-go traffic.

Power flows through a standard clutch, which is a bit of a letdown with so much slipper-clutch tech readily accessible, but it is what it is. The six-speed transmission crunches the ratios while a tough O-ring chain carries power to the rear wheel. The overall drive ratio and Bosch Engine-Management System turn out a RC200 top speed of 87 MPH (140 km/h), so it can tolerate interstate use.

Engine & Drivetrain
Engine: Liquid cooled, single-cylinder, 4-stroke engine
Bore x Stroke: 72 mm x 49 mm
Displacement: 199.5 cc
Torque: 14.4 lb-ft (19.5 Nm)
Power: 25.5 hp (19 kW)
EMS: Bosch EMS
Lubrication: Wet sump
Starter: Electric starter
Transmission: 6-speed
Clutch: Wet multi-disc clutch, mechanically actuated
Chain: 520 X-Ring

Design

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 - Performance, Price, and Photos
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It's a racebike so all the street-legal bits easily come off ahead of race day.

KTM borrowed from its own storied racing division when it pulled design ideas from the RC16 racebike. The bodywork underwent a complete revision for this generation with more race-tastic yummy goodness in the form of improved penetration for a higher top speed and an enlarged rider’s pocket behind the bubble screen.

Right out of the gate, the RC 200 proves its race worthiness with its two-piece front fender and its spoiler-type uprights. Not only does this protect the radiator from a fling, but it also forces the incoming wind into laminar flow with the cowling to reduce drag and ensure that the ventilation operates properly.

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 - Performance, Price, and Photos
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The distinctive front fairing houses an all-new cyclops halogen headlight to split the night with LED DRLs with built-in blinkers. They’re placed well out of harm’s way and unlikely with little to no risk of damage in your regular garden-variety drop in the parking lot or at a light. Good news if you like to split lanes, the mirrors fold in to make for a narrower footprint so you don’t bash someone else’s mirror as you filter.

Behind the glass is an all-new, all-in-one LCD instrument display that sports a fresh design and comes with a gear indicator so you don’t get lost in the range. The 3.6-gallon fuel tank is a bit larger on this gen for longer track times and better range overall, and it comes with an RC4-inspired shape that helps to maximize contact area with the pilot’s legs and help you keep control when you want to dangle ’em in a curve.

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 - Performance, Price, and Photos
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For your derriere, a new resculpted seat delivers better comfort – admittedly a weak area for the marque – and the new saddle comes clad in Alcantara fabric for a grippier feel, even when wet (no giggity), right along with the pillion pad. Your passenger has aluminum J.C. handles to grab a hold of, with the usual fold-up passenger footpegs to complete the package. It’s new lightweight footpegs for you, and your passenger gets peg guards to protect from splashes and debris kicked up from the road.

As with most dual-purpose race/street models, the bike easily strikes the mudguard. The rear blinkers and license plate holder come off with the mudguard so it’s a quick changeover ahead of track days.

KTM RC200 Specs
Ground Clearance: 6.2 in (158 mm)
Dry Weight: 333 lb (151 kg)
Tank Capacity (approx.): 13.7 l
Seat Height: 32.4 in (824 mm)

Chassis

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 - Performance, Price, and Photos
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You can expect an exceptionally eager nature in the corners and infinite flickability

KTM managed to shave around 3 pounds from the Trellis frame on the RC200 ahead of MY21. This new frame sports a bolt-on subframe and a yoke-style swingarm with an open design and stiffener-webbing reinforcement for a no-nonsense/all-business look that pairs well with the rest of the structure.

At 23.2 degrees from the vertical, this steering rake angle is as short as I’ve ever seen on a full-size bike, and it speaks to an exceptionally eager nature in the corners and infinite flickability. Of course, the 333-pound dry weight helps out a lot with that as well.

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 - Performance, Price, and Photos
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WP APEX provides the suspension at both ends with an APEX 43 big-piston arrangement up front and mono-shock out back. A 4.72-inch (120 mm) front suspension stroke and 5.9-inch (150 mm) rear suspension are generous and made to accommodate the deep angles of attack common on the race course.

Aggressive ByBre anchors handle the braking duties with a single 320 mm front disc and four-bore caliper up front and 230 mm rear disc with a single-piston binder. Bosch makes an appearance with its 9.1 MB two-channel ABS that comes with a Supermoto mode that lets you break the backend loose as you slip into a turn, racer style if you like.

Chassis & Suspension
Frame: Steel trellis frame, powder coated
Front Suspension/ Travel: WP APEX 43/ 4.7 in (120 mm)
Rear Suspension/ Travel: WP APEX – Monoshock/ 5.9 in (150 mm)
Steering Head Angle: 66.8°
Front Brake: 320 mm, Four-piston radial fixed caliper
Rear Brake: 230 mm, Single-piston floating caliper
ABS: Bosch 9.1 MB Two Channel ABS (Supermoto ABS)

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 Pricing

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 - Performance, Price, and Photos
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MSRP starts at $2.8k in typical colorways with attractive graphics.

It looks like the factory wants to get a starting price of $2,790 for this little monster. The colors are what you’d expect – some combination of black, white, and orange – which is a little too predictable at this point, but at least the graphics are nice, and they help break the design up in interesting ways.

Pricing
Color: Black, White
Price: $2,790

Competitors

2021 - 2022 KTM RC200 - Performance, Price, and Photos
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2018 - 2022 Suzuki GSX250R - Performance, Price, and Photos
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This is kind of an awkward displacement to try and match, but I think Suzuki gets close enough with its scrappy little GSX250R ABS.

Suzuki GSX250R

2018 - 2022 Suzuki GSX250R - Performance, Price, and Photos
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In the looks department, Suzuki manages to channel that big-bike look through compact but proportional body panels that borrow heavily from its larger cousins. To be fair, I’m usually not a fan of Suzuki’s style as a point of personal preference, but this is a tight-looking ride for an up-and-coming sportbike rider.

As far as electronics, it looks like ABS is all you get on either of these bikes, though KTM’s SuperMoto Mode adds some flexibility that the Suzuki just can’t match. Suzuki breaks up the 248 cc displacement between two cylinders in a parallel-twin layout with 24.7 horsepower ready to go against KTM’s 26 ponies. GSX250R top speed is also a skosh higher at 90 mph, so there’s that.

KTM gets its biggest win at the checkout. against Suzuki’s $4,999 MSRP that leaves prospective buyers with an easy choice to make.

He Said

“Well I mean, if you hate orange, the GSX250R may be the better option, but otherwise, KTM is offering a lot of bike for the buck. Granted it’s more popular in Asian markets, but it’s been on our side of the pond as a model family since 2020, so it can be found on home turf. Definitely looks like a good trainer for a would-be racer, probably more so than transitional riders just working their way up the displacement range.”

She Said

My wife and fellow motorcycle writer, Allyn Hinton, says “The RC200 is a smaller version of the RC390. The RC390 has a TFT display and LED headlight, but other than some tech taken from a lower shelf, the RC200 is every bit a racebike as its bigger brother with all the quick-release and foldable components that you would expect. It’s a bike I think you’ll outgrow, but it will let you develop proper track skills.”

Further Reading

KTM

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TJ Hinton
TJ Hinton
T.J got an early start from his father and other family members who owned and rode motorcycles, and by helping with various mechanical repairs throughout childhood. That planted a seed that grew into a well-rounded appreciation of all things mechanical, and eventually, into a formal education of same. Though primarily a Harley rider, he has an appreciation for all sorts of bikes and doesn't discriminate against any particular brand or region of origin. He currently holds an Associate's degree in applied mechanical science from his time at the M.M.I.  Read full bio
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