KTM 450 RR
One does not simply buy a 450RR
KTM's limited-production Factory 450RR is designed and built for a single purpose – to win the Dakar Rally. As such, one does not simply buy a 450RR. You have to know someone, who knows someone, who doesn't know what we were going to do to this bike. Luckily Rally Management Services were just the kind of people willing to overlook our past discretion's, loaning us both bike and rider a mere week before shipping out for Dakar.
Crossed-up and fully swapped
The KTM 450RR features the motor out of the 450EXC, but heavily reworked by the factory for massive power gains. That motor is cradled within a custom trellis frame, looking more street bike than dirt. The rear fuel tank doubles as the subframe, and combines with duel front tanks to hold almost nine gallons of fuel. Irreplaceable bespoke fairings, three-million dollars of electronics, and a very worried owner complete the 450RR package. What could go wrong?
As it turns out, pretty much everything.
With the entire production and ground crew still wiping the sleep from their eyes, we fueled the bike, removed lens caps, and prepared for a few days of epic riding and many gigabytes of top-shelf footage. And if it hadn’t been for that initial whoop section, we probably would have come away with both.
Crossed-up and fully swapped, our RAIDEN™ rally pilot, put the freshly-wrapped KTM into dirt at full speed. Upon putting down our cameras and reaching the mildly shaken rider, it was clear that this was a bit more than a mild get-off. A new cattywampus joint had appeared in both of his forearms, indicating to even our non-medical eyes that something was amiss below the surface. Even more troubling was the fact he had ejected himself onto the sagebrush home of one very angry rattlesnake. So to answer our previous question - a crashed $30,000 bike, two badly broken arms, and possibly a dose of snake venom…that’s what could go wrong.