The Husqvarna TC85 is the newest mini on the market, but that is more of a parlor trick than innovative design work. The Husqvarna TC85 is
based on the KTM 85SX.
WHAT WAS GOOD? Testers raved about the broad
and easy-to-use powerband. At 25. 36 horsepower, the
TC85 has the credentials. Power and power alone
supersedes every other aspect in 85cc racing, and the
Husqvarna TC85 powerplant is a winner. That, coupled
with a sleek and narrow frame, equated to a positive feel
in corners and through the air. Most riders were relatively
pleased with the WP suspension, though it was slightly
unbalanced for faster testers. The hydraulic clutch was
a hit. An 85cc two-stroke requires a deft left hand in
order to keep the power from dropping off the pipe. The
Formula hydraulic clutch delivered without fail.
WHAT WAS BAD? Faster testers didn’t share the
same confidence in the WP suspension’s handling of
rough sections as our slower and shorter riders. We
noticed that the jetting was also a bit lean for our sea-
level SoCal tracks. And, at 33. 66 inches, the seat height
was a bit intimidating for those under 5 feet tall. The
TC85 is also the most expensive bike in the class ($5399).
WHAT’S THE FINAL WORD? Husqvarna, by way
of KTM, ascended to the top of the 85cc two-stroke
heap in the sneakiest of ways. Let it be known that the
Husqvarna TC85 is essentially the KTM 85SX, aside from
the plastics and white frame. Now you might rightfully
ask how the Husqvarna could surpass KTM’s offering
despite the fact that the TC85 is a clone of the 85SX? Our
testers felt that the Husky WP shock performed better
than KTM’s unit. They noticed several subtle differences
between the bikes—enough changes that they proclaimed
the Husqvarna TC85 the best in the shootout.