HUSQVARNA 701 SUPERMOTO (2015-on) Review

Published: 13 November 2015

Wind on the throttle and it’s impossible not to grin

HUSQVARNA 701 SUPERMOTO  (2015-on)

Wind on the throttle and it’s impossible not to grin

  • At a glance
  • 690cc  -  67 bhp
  • High seat height (890mm)
  • New: £7,999

Overall Rating 4 out of 5

The 701 Supermoto is, simply put, the KTM 690 SMC R. Husky has employed the 690 as a donor bike and made three major tweaks: to its engine maps, suspension and bodywork. Husqvarna claim the changes steer the 701 away from KTM’s ‘ready to race’ mantra and make it more accessible, comfortable and enjoyable for the everyday rider. And Husqvarna have succeeded in their aim. By softening the suspension and making the throttle more predictable, the Supermoto has become more usable, which in turn makes it more fun. It’s the ultimate big boy’s toy.

Ride Quality & Brakes 3 out of 5

The Husky inherits the same impressive spec as the KTM including a four-piston Brembo caliper up front. Apply the brakes with the merest stroke of a finger and the mighty Brembo caliper halts with precision, but despite its long travel the front fork does a commendable job of stiffening under hard braking. The brakes are assisted by the latest Bosch 9.1 MP ABS, which can be disabled completely via a button on the dash. The forks are essentially the same with different shimming to give a softer initial stroke, making it plusher and more progressive. Head for a twisty B-roads and this bike really comes to life. The fat forks, which look like two mighty Roman pillars, soak up imperfections and are firm yet plush.  And the bodywork has been altered for comfort, with rubber-mounted handlebars, and there’s an extra litre of fuel, taking the tank up to 13 litres. The seat is softer than that on the KTM, but make no mistake it's still a supermoto seat and is such is hard, unforgiving an uncomfortable. The lack of any wind protection whatsoever makes riding in bad weather quite a chore.

Engine 5 out of 5

It’s the same potent 690cc single-cylinder motor pumping out 67bhp and 50ftlb. The Husky gets three fuel maps: soft, advanced and standard (there’s also an A2-licence option). The maps are smoother and less aggressive than the 690’s with a less snappy throttle response. Wrap your fingers round the throttle, tighten your knees on the grippy fairings and wind on the throttle – it’s impossible not to grin. The torquey engine is urgent and borderline brutal in such a lightweight chassis. It manically propels you forward, seemingly topping a ton in an instant.

Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5

The 701 comes with sweet finishing touches such as LED lights and smart branding. It’s cleverly thought out, the build quality looks spot on and overall it’s impressive.

Insurance, running costs & value 4 out of 5

This is no everyday bike, it’s an impractical, yet excessively exciting toy. It’s a slightly softer option than the equivalent KTM, but with the same power and torque. So for the same £7999 price as the KTM you get all the rip-roaring, shoulder-tugging fun, except it’s easier to ride and handle, with a bigger fuel tank and the Husqvarna badge.

Equipment 5 out of 5

The 701 has swish extras such as a slipper clutch, supermoto ABS and an endo sensor (to stop it flipping). The clever supermoto/enduro ABS comes in the form of an accessory plug-in dongle that disables the rear wheel ABS while keeping it active on the front if you fancy pulling some immature skids on or off-road.

Owners' Reviews

3 owners have reviewed their HUSQVARNA 701 SUPERMOTO (2015-on) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

Review your HUSQVARNA 701 SUPERMOTO (2015-on)
Summary of Owners' Reviews
Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 4.7 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 4.3 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
5 out of 5

It's the bike you've always wanted

16 July 2016 by Andy pig rider

This is the bike I have always wanted it accelerates like a rocket it goes around corners like its on rails and makes me smile every time I take it out Read more

Ride Quality & Brakes
5 out of 5
Finding it very comftable riding it for 3 hours at a time the bike doesn't just go it will stop where ever you want it to the brakes are just perfect nice feel and ore inspiring
Engine
4 out of 5
The power is amazing can't keep off the throttle you do really need to kick the gear leaver as if you don't you will get a neutral there all over the box
Build Quality & Reliability
5 out of 5
Only owned it for a few weeks no problems so far
Value & Running Costs
3 out of 5
The intial price is high I am getting 110 miles to 10 litres of fuel, am on the throttle all the time but you ride one and try not too
Equipment
5 out of 5
The best thing about the bike is the throttle if you fit your own yellow flashes on the wheels like I had to use a heatgun to stretch the plastic as your fitting them
5 out of 5

01 May 2016 by Chris Withers

If you like supermotos, this is a beautiful bike. On first inspection I wasn't sure about the large rear fairings, but now I'm used to them, they fit the style of the 701. The blue yellow and white scheme gives the bike a nice clean look. This... Read more is my first big bike after riding around on a 125 (wr125x) and it is confidence inspiring.

Ride Quality & Brakes
5 out of 5
For a SM, the seat is surprisingly comfortable. I've done over three hour stretches with no discomfort on dismounting. The quality of the ride is amazing. The bike is so light that it moves under the slightest shift of weight, but it is perfectly balanced, so it almost feels like it's reading your intentions as you make minute adjustments ready for a corner etc. For a thumper, whilst vibrations are apparent, they are not an issue. Even at motorway speeds and beyond, the vibrations never become an issue.
Engine
5 out of 5
Power delivery is perfect.
Build Quality & Reliability
5 out of 5
This is a fairly new bike so I can only comment on quality, but the parts are very high end, and even though it's a thin bike, it has presence due to the quality of the individual parts. I have a few concerns about the speedometer. The vibrations from the thumper seem to work loose the LED bulb covers, and I had the misfortune of getting a crack in the speedometer glass from an errant piece of hail. I put the crack down to a weird fluke than a quality issue though.
Value & Running Costs
5 out of 5
-
Equipment
5 out of 5
-
5 out of 5

20 November 2015 by LL

A blue KTM Read more

Ride Quality & Brakes
5 out of 5
-
Engine
5 out of 5
-
Build Quality & Reliability
5 out of 5
-
Value & Running Costs
5 out of 5
-
Equipment
5 out of 5
-
Buying experience

Have the KTM 690 Enduro R that is basically the same bike. Don't know what all the uniqueness of this bike with it's throttle mapping modes is over the KTM. If tester did their homework, would find that this is also fitted to the 690 Enduro R.

Read all 3 owners' reviews in full

Facts & Figures

Model info
Year introduced 2015
Year discontinued -
New price £7,999
Used price -
Warranty term -
Running costs
Insurance group -
Annual road tax £85
Annual service cost -
Performance
Max power 67 bhp
Max torque 50 ft-lb
Top speed -
1/4-mile acceleration -
Average fuel consumption -
Tank range -
Specification
Engine size 690cc
Engine type liquid-cooled, SOHC, 4v single-cylinder
Frame type Steel trellis frame
Fuel capacity 13 litres
Seat height 890mm
Bike weight 145kg
Front suspension 48mm WP USD
Rear suspension WP-Monoshock with Pro-Lever linkage
Front brake Brembo four piston, radial caliper, brake disc 320mm
Rear brake Brembo single piston, floating caliper, brake disc 240 mm
Front tyre size 120/70 ZR 17
Rear tyre size 160/60 ZR 17

History & Versions

Model history

2015: Model introduced

Other versions

Husqvarna 701 Enduro

Photo Gallery

  • HUSQVARNA 701 SUPERMOTO  (2015-on)
  • HUSQVARNA 701 SUPERMOTO  (2015-on)
  • HUSQVARNA 701 SUPERMOTO  (2015-on)
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