My Top Bike Picks Out Of 2018 INTERMOT
So Much To Choose Fromby TJ Hinton, on
The 2018 calendar year may have a bit yet to go before its last gasp, but the 2019 model year is in full bloom with the beginning of the show season and the INTERMOT show in Cologne, Germany. So far, we’ve seen the genuine article for a number of previously-teased machines, as well as a few pleasant surprises from unexpected sources along with some much-needed updates. Today I want to take a look at this show, so buckle up as we head across the pond and check out some of my favorites.
Continue reading for more of my look at 2018 INTERMOT.
Indian FTR 1200
Fans of the dirt would never have been content riding a modified Scout in lieu of a proper civilian successor to the actual racebike.
First up is something that really wasn’t on the radar until a few days ago, the flat track-inspired but street-friendly FTR1200 and the decidedly more race-tastic FTR1200 S. The genetic markers are clear; both of these rides draw directly from the Wrecking Crew’s FTR750 that carried them to podium glory this past season, and why not? It’s hard to argue with success, and fans of the dirt would never have been content riding a modified Scout in lieu of a proper civilian successor to the actual racebike. That’s where the new 1200-series FTR models come in.
Nearly identical flylines greet the eye and leave no doubt as to it parentage. The jugs are punched out — 35 cc per — to give the new mill a total displacement of 1,203 cc with a sizzlin’ 12.5-to-1 compression ratio for a respectable 120-ponies and 85-pound of grunt. Want more? The “S” brings the race-tacular yummy-goodness to the table with ride modes, fully-adjustable suspension, an anti-wheelie feature, ABS and traction control; all of which is controlled through a mini-Ride Command screen that is similar to the one used on the touring line, just smaller with a 4.3-inch color touchscreen that acts as the interface. Check out my full review for more details. CEO Steve Menneto had this to say about the project;
“Our vision from the beginning was to be more than a traditional American V-twin brand. We continually seek to broaden Indian Motorcycle’s reach to a wider range of riders, and FTR1200 represents a significant step forward in that strategy. Indian Motorcycle was founded on performance and innovation, and we remain grounded by our founder’s mindset of constantly pushing forward. In light of that history, the FTR1200 is a natural extension for the brand that we couldn’t be more excited about.”
KTM 1290 Super Duke
This year with new power mapping and improved aspiration.
Next we have some rather adventuresome entries from KTM. This year, the Austrians made a few minor tweaks to its 1290 Super Duke GT/R with new power mapping, the addition of resonator chambers to tune the aspiration and super-light titanium poppets that will stand the heat and resist harmonic float better than the previous arrangement.
KTM 450 Rally Replica
An all-new 450 Rally Replica brings dirt-tacular dual-sport action to the lower displacement range.
Too minor of a change to get excited about? That’s alright, KTM’s pièce de résistance is the all-new 450 Rally Replica bringing dirt-tacular dual-sport action to the lower displacement range with a 449 cc thumper that saw a revised head along with updated suspension.
"The all-new KTM 450 Rally Replica is based on our already-successful factory machine that we began racing at the end of last year. We looked for an improvement in handling, a lower weight, as well as a bike that also meets the demands of the conditions and intensity that we now find at Dakar," said KTM Factory Rally Team Leader, Stefan Huber.
Ambitious? Maybe, but I learned long ago to never sell KTM short.
Indian FTR 1200
See our review of the Indian Motorcycle FTR 1200.
Indian FTR 1200 S
Indian Scout/Scout Sixty
See our review of the Indian Scout/Scout Sixty.
Indian Motorcycle Scout FTR1200 Custom
See our look at the Indian Motorcycle Scout FTR1200 Custom.
Indian Makes Flat-Track Race Bike Available To The Public
See our article on the Indian Motorcycle Scout FTR750.
KTM 1290 Super Duke R
See our review of the KTM 1290 Super Duke R.
KTM 1290 Super Duke GT
See our review of the KTM 1290 Super Duke GT.