Something blue: It is no secret that KTM borrowed a page
from Yamaha when they chose their rising rate leverage ratio.
Selection: New SKF seals, firmer damping, higher oil height
and lighter triple clamps pay off in forks that aren’t boingy.
( 4) At 9000 rpm, the 450SXF makes five and a half horsepower more. ( 5) At 10,000 rpm, the 450SXF makes three horsepower more. ( 6) And finally, at 11,000 rpm, the KTM 350SXF catches the 450 in the horsepower race and beats it the rest of the way to the rev limiter, which is set about 3000 rpm higher on the 350 than on the 450. For clarification, peak horsepower on the KTM 450SXF is at 9100 rpm, while the 350SXF makes peak power at 10,800 rpm, which is much more usable than the previous 12,200 rpm. Q: WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT KTM 350SXF MOD THAT AN OWNER SHOULD DO? A: Gear it down one tooth on the rear (from a 50-tooth sprocket to a 51-tooth sprocket) to get it to third gear sooner. It amps up the drive out of corners. Q: HOW GOOD WAS THE SUSPENSION? A: It was noticeably better than last year. Forks: Although the spring rates stayed the same in the 48mm WP forks, the damping was increased to help keep the forks higher in their stroke. We liked this. Last year the forks were very quick through the midstroke and danced around instead of absorbing energy. The key to success with the 2013 forks is careful selection of the compression clickers and a fail-safe bailout on the oil height (if you are lighter than 175 pounds). Shock: KTM knows that the 350SXF isn’t headed for the starting line under the guidance of a young and aggressive rider, but most likely to the practice track with an aging, slightly overweight play rider, so the spring rate works for riders from 175 pounds to 210 pounds. If you are lighter than that, KTM has a 5. 4 kg/mm spring in the parts room. Q: HOW DOES IT HANDLE? A: Awesome. It tracks like it’s on rails. It is well balanced and stays level when other bikes are upset. It is the best all-around-handling bike on the track. We love the way the KTM 350SXF handles. Q: WHAT DID WE HATE? A: The hate list: